24 years later, you can finally pet the dog in Deus Ex thanks to its all-encompassing Randomizer mod

JC Denton is surprised
(Image credit: Eidos Interactive)

Deus Ex's Randomizer Mod has always been more than just a randomizer: its QoL features, mod compatibility, and customization options make it a one-stop shop for keeping Ion Storm's classic fresh. The Randomizer's 3.0 update, released just ahead of Deus Ex's 24th birthday, has even more features that will appeal to anyone, not just challenge runners.

Yes, now you can pet the cyberpunk RPG's delightfully low-res dogs, as well as cats and pigeons out there on the mean streets of New York, Hong Kong, and Gay Paree. I haven't had a chance to load up the new update myself and see if this love fest extends to Deus Ex's many rats as well, but you can always just rotate one around in your mind to help focus.

A real sleeper benefit of the 3.0 update is the quality of life improvements it offers for Steam Deck users: an "Augmentation Tree" similar to the weapon wheels of console FPSes will even pause the game while you're using it, which makes up for the Deck's lack of function keys in selecting your aug powerups. I can see it also being useful for anyone out there with a 70% keyboard or smaller⁠—hell, it's probably more comfortable than selecting them off the function row even if you do have a full keyboard. God put those keys there for quicksaving and loading.

The Randomizer has long offered a password autofill option⁠—once you find a password out in the world, you can just select it at the relevant terminal or keypad instead of remembering it and typing it out. While I love the tactile passwords and door codes of old immersive sims, this is a real drag on the Deck's touchscreen keyboard. With these bugbears sorted, OG Deus Ex on the go feels more like an attractive way to play the game than a novelty.

Speaking of novelties, Deus Ex Randomizer has gotten another big addition since we last checked in on it: WaltonWare mode. This sendup of the legendarily chaotic WarioWare spawns you at a random point in Deus Ex's campaign, tasking you with filling a single line of one of the Randomizer's procedurally generated in-game bingo cards. Objectives include:

  • Assassinating assorted NPCs
  • Using a urinal
  • Drinking water
  • Defenestration
  • Inflicting some of Deus Ex's myriad status effects on NPCs.
  • And now, of course: petting a dog

I remain impressed at just how flexible the Randomizer is: it offers everything from a slightly spruced up Deus Ex experience to manic 15-20 minute bingo "playthroughs" leveraging the game's beloved potential for systemic slapstick. It's also compatible with some of the other mods that can help you have the best modern day Deus Ex experience, like Lay D Denton or Revision. You can grab the Deus Ex Randomizer for yourself on GitHub or at co-creator Die4Ever's website, Mod4Ever

Associate Editor

Ted has been thinking about PC games and bothering anyone who would listen with his thoughts on them ever since he booted up his sister's copy of Neverwinter Nights on the family computer. He is obsessed with all things CRPG and CRPG-adjacent, but has also covered esports, modding, and rare game collecting. When he's not playing or writing about games, you can find Ted lifting weights on his back porch.