XXL Game Corner: ‘Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty!’ Review
Publisher: Oddworld Inhabitants, Inc
Developer: Just Add Water
Platforms: PS4, PS3, PS Vita, Xbox One, PC
Release date: Available Now
Remakes of older games that were especially dear to fans can be a risky venture. 1997’s Abe’s Oddysee became a fan favorite for it’s weird green, alien slave with the stitched-up lips and its quirky gameplay, mixing platforming and environmental puzzles. Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty! has managed to respect the original and give it a nice overhaul complete with HD textures, smoother character models, and new gameplay elements.
New ‘n’ Tasty! is a reworking of Abe’s Oddysee, retaining the characters, the storyline, the puzzles and the level design, but gone is the flipscreen progression which was replaced with brand new 3D character models, backgrounds and cinematics. The scrolling levels are enhanced by a camera that tilts and moves in close to get the most out of the fantastic artwork. All of this adds up to a remake of Abe’s Oddysee that is just as much fun as you might remember and despite the brand new visuals, New ‘n’ Tasty takes great care to retain the core side-scrolling platforming that distinguished Abe’s Oddysee 17 years ago.
The action begins with the awkward, unassuming and seemingly defenseless Abe cleaning floors at a meat processing plant. When he discovers his fellow Mudokons are next on the factory’s menu, Abe escapes the slaughterhouse and begins a memorable adventure to free his enslaved brethren. Players must use strategy to avoid danger and sneak past or outwit foes. Amusingly, you can lure enemies to hazards like trap doors, mines or mincing machines, and even possess them after a brief meditation session to cause real havoc. New ‘n’ Tasty! is a significant challenge and can demand trial and error, but instant saves and infinite restarts ensure that frustration levels don’t reach controller hurling levels. Death is frequent, but is often more slapstick amusement than annoyance. Abe is a weakling, being extremely fragile and lacking in offensive capabilities. He is more concerned with surviving his enemies than destroying them, and does this by sneaking past them, outrunning them, or turning the environment on them when possible. Abe can hide in steam vents, lead gun-toting guards into land mines, zap them by activating electric fields, and occasionally possess a guard to temporarily make him turn his gun on his comrades. As you might imagine, with the new technology things have changed with the way you will control Abe and it will take some time to master it. The original game was released before the first DualShock controller, so back then you altered Abe’s movement speed by holding down the shoulder buttons. New ‘n’ Tasty changes this by putting two movement speeds on the left thumbstick; pushing it slightly makes Abe walk, while pushing it harder makes him run.
The XXL Endgame
Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty! manages to meld the ideas of yesterday with the visual power of today to create a wonderful return for Abe and his Oddworld. This is a dope nostalgia trip for veteran gamers and a worthy buy for diehard Oddworld fans. —written by DJRhude (@DJRhude)
XXL Rating: L (Good)