New’n’Tasty! Oddworld: Abes Odyssey review

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After a near 3 year wait after the initial announcement of the return of our favorite Mudokon, Oddworld Inhabitants new arcade scroller based on the 1997 cult classic “Oddworld: Abe’s Exodus” finally hit the shelves for Xbox One users yesterday (As it arrived on all other platforms several months earlier) and like a giddy young lad left unattended in a candy shop I quickly threw $20 of my hard-earned money violently toward Oddworld Inhabitants. “Hurry and take my money!” I said, and as that $20 dollars very anti-climatically blew away with the oncoming breeze, Developer Oddworld Inhabitants stared at me blankly and said “Okay.” New’n’Tasty revives the tale of Abe, a Mudokon slave under the “employ” of Rupture Farms, a giant food processing plant that exterminates incredibly endangered creatures and turns them into even more incredibly tasting treats. One day our down-on-his-luck blue hero stumbles upon a top secret board meeting, sales are down at Rupture Farms as they’re running out of rare animals to kill. To keep profits high, the evil gluttons decide to process all of their slave labor into crunchy Mudokon pops! (Though personally, I’ve always preferred Scrab cakes!) Abe quickly bolts from his hiding place behind the door and sets out on an epic journey full of puzzles, ancient forgotten powers and epic flatulence to save his race and co-workers. This beautiful re-imagination of the 1997 Playstation One platformer takes full advantage of current generation technology, providing high resolution scenery and interactive environments for the player to explore. Though New’N’Tasty isn’t a direct re-make of Abe’s Exodus the Cutscenes from the first game have been recycled and used in New’N’Tasty in a way that still fits the new way this story is told, which leads to a memorable nostalgic adventure for all of the Gamers who at one point had much smaller thumbs. Though some of the more memorable moments from Abe’s Exodus don’t make a return in New’N’Tasty, such as saving your sick Mudokon pals after their severe pseudo-hangover after drinking Rupture Farm Energy Drinks, or enjoying the carnage of exploring the world in a giant mechanical wheel-tank of death all of your favorite enemies ranging from Sligs to Slogs to Scrabs and even paramites make a triumphant return and are beautifully re-modeled in stunning HD Graphics. Okay, so the game certainly looks nice, but how does it play? Fairly well in fact! Though I had to fiddle with the options a little bit in order to play in a style closer to the classic controls, the new Oddworld fits the hand very well with a few exceptions. Running, for instance, is enabled by default so you run all of the time which is great for people who want to get the job done quickly, but some parts of the game require a tad more finesse. In your options you can enable “Button to run” which as you might guess requires the player to press LT to sprint, otherwise Abe moves at a walking pace. Another quirk this games suffers from is Ledge detection. By all means, if I’m running down a dark corridor and I’m coming up to a fatal fall PLEASE NOTIFY ME! However, while you’re informing me that death awaits below, don’t stick me into a character animation that stops me in place as I probably have angry Gun-wielding cyborgs and their equally angry guard dogs! Now instead of dying from the fall, I’m now dead because I was shot and eaten, take your pick! Minor control issues aside, the game provides several environment based puzzles that the player must solve in order to advance. These puzzles can differ from simple free-running challenges to more complicated map traversal including wind tunnels and levers all while probably being chased by ferocious wild life. With that being said these environments don’t try to trick you by hiding things out of sight, the game provides you with all the information to solve the puzzle and leaves it to your intuitive mind to figure out how to put the pieces together. Top notch! But what about Co-op play? Well New’N’Tasty has that! … Sort of. Kinda? To elaborate, New’N’Tasty’s multiplayer is a lazy 21st century spin off to how us old people used to play Multiplayer back in the day. The only way we played Multiplayer is by having a few people on the couch and passing the controller down the line as we died. In New’N’Tasty the game moves the controller for you! So you and your equally lazy friend can have two controllers on at the same time, and control of Abe switches from Controller to Controller each time you meet your gruesome demise! Is “New’N’Tasty! Oddworld: Abe’s Odyssey” a direct remake of the 1997 Playstation One game “Oddworld: Abe’s Exodus”? No! Does it provide entertainment for people new to the series while delivering a strong feeling of Nostalgia to old time fans? Absolutely, yes! Oh and how could I forget!? Yes, you can “Quiksave”