Cam’s Eye View: Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty for the PlayStation 4 Review

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Normally, I would like to start out with an opening paragraph that relates to my opinion of the game I am reviewing. Today’s review is of the remastered version of Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee, which is known as Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty. I would usually talk about how unique and interesting this series of games are, but for now, I want you to go get a PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, PC, Wii U, or an Xbox One at some point in time and buy this game. If we want to see a new game in this franchise, you need to buy this game. Ignore the steep $30 price tag and go buy this game. If you want the $30 price tag to feel justified, get the PlayStation 4 version, so you can get the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita version for free. Now then, let’s get this review started, and I will write up a retrospective on the Oddworld franchise in the future.

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If you did not play the original game, here is the setup. You play as a Mudoken named Abe. Abe works at RuptureFarms, the biggest meat-making factory in all of Oddworld. Abe is just a floor cleaner, and was employee of the year at the factory. One day, as he was scrubbing the floors of the factory, he came across a board meeting being held by the factory owners called Glukkons. Abe finds out that the resources that are required are dwindling in size, and the Glukkons are losing profit. However, the big cheese of the Glukkons, Molluck, found a new treat that will get them even more money. Unfortunately for Abe, who is still eavesdropping on the meeting at hand, finds out that they are going to turn his own kind, the Mudokens, into a new food source! Abe, now with this new urge to escape and survive, escapes RuptureFarms, and is on an epic quest to save his Mudoken brothers, and shut down the factory before he and his race get turned into the next new snack. This game is filled with a lot of themes that are subtle, but also not so subtle. You have themes ranging from capitalism to consumerism. However, the best part about this game is Abe himself. He isn’t the best looking or strongest lead character in the world. He is weak, skinny, scared, and that is what makes him great. He goes against the grain of what lead characters should look like. Heck, in today’s white buff male leads, Abe still stands out. The overall story is well told, and I found the humor and the characters enjoyable.

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Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty is a 2.5D cinematic platformer. You will control Abe while going through 3D-made levels on a sort of 2D plane. You will need to run, jump, kneel down, roll around, sneak, and even possess enemies to get through the levels. You have no form of attack, so you must get past the enemies in different ways. One thing you can do is either distract them by throwing rocks or bottle caps, or you can obtain small bombs and use them to either blow up the enemies or activate other explosives that will blow up and kill any potential threats nearby. However, if you don’t have anything that can kill the nearby guards, you can take possession of them and use them to take care of a few issues that are stopping you from saving your race. In other levels, you will be riding on an ally animal known as an Elum, which leads to some rather tense chase sequences where you must run, and jump away from the gunfire. Slightly after the halfway point, you will be able to unleash the power of a thing called the Shrykull, which will release some chaos onto unsuspecting enemies or obstacles that could get in your way. The overall game, while still a cinematic platformer where you need to time your jumps or you will die, feels fresh and not repetitive. It doesn’t feel like you are doing the same thing over and over again. The game might not be too long if you know what you are doing, but there are three difficultly modes, a classic and New ‘n’ Tasty mode, a leaderboard for those competitive players, and a future DLC add-on, with new levels and a new character named Alf.

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The game looks beautiful. Even though it is now in full 3D, it still captures the cold metal imprisoning RuptureFarms, the tranquil atmosphere of the forest level, Paramonia, and you get the idea. The cutscenes are also done with in-game visuals, and while I would have liked to have seen maybe some very nice PlayStation 4 gen cutscenes, they still get the story across. I also have to give the writers credit for making the entire game’s script in rhyme. I have no idea how anyone can do this, unless they were Dr. Seuss. The music is also very atmospheric, and helps the player feel like they are enveloped in this world of odd-looking creatures. The music was composed by Michael Bross, who is well known for his work on games like Ratchet & Clank: All-4-One, Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus, Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault, and as well as the soundtracks for Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee and Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath. He captures that unsettling and atmosphere-grasping tone that, like I said earlier, makes you feel like you are a part of that world.

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If there was one major complaint that I had with the game, it is with the clunky controls. I know the original game was a slow-paced cinematic platformer, but when you go through the entire game and retool and redesign everything from the ground up, you would think that they would make sure half or more of your deaths in the game weren’t because of clunky controls. I mean, what makes death in games tolerable is when you know it was your fault that you died and not some poorly planned-out part of the game or terribly executed controls. The only minor complaint that I have is that I encountered some glitches, but I didn’t run into many of the game-breaking ones a lot of people are having.

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Man, Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty is fantastic! I mean, I didn’t know going in how much I would enjoy this game. Cinematic platformers are usually something you will either find intriguing or get enraged due to how they are designed. However, Just Add Water and Oddworld Inhabitants found a way to give the cinematic platformer genre new life and make it enjoyable. You know, unlike that remake of Flashback, which was a painful chore to get through. If you are hesitant to get the game because of the $30 price tag, just get it on the PlayStation 4 where if you purchase that version, you will get the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita version for free. This game is also coming out for the PC, Wii U, and surprisingly, the Xbox One. I only say “surprisingly” due to the controversy behind Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath’s supposed failure on the market due to Microsoft and EA. However, get it on any of the consoles listed because if they get to 250K downloads, they can remake the sequel, Abe’s Exoddus. If they can get to 500K downloads, they can make an entirely new Oddworld game. I think everyone who is a fan of the franchise would like both, due to the concept art for some of their cancelled projects. Need something a little odd in your life? Well, you better check this game out!

This game gets a 9 out of 10.

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