Title: Oddworld New ‘n’ Tasty
Platform: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, PlayStation Vita, Wii U, GNU/Linux, Mac OS, WIndows(reviewed)
Developer: Just Add Water
Publisher: Oddworld Inhabitants
Release date: Out Now
Family Focus: Click here for more information.
My nostalgia levels have been through the roof lately, alarms blaring, whistles sounding, speakers blaring; â€œNOSTALGIA LEVELS AT CRITICAL MASSâ€â€¦or at least in my imagination thatâ€™s whatâ€™s going on.
I had lost touch with Abe, everyoneâ€™s favourite Mudokon for years, until now.
Itâ€™s hard to grasp how much the game has both changed, but stayed pure to its 1997 roots until you can compare them side by side.
So thatâ€™s what I did, I booted up the old PC version, next to the new one, and the differences are incredible.
It feels as familiar as an old pair of jeans that have gone lost in the back of a wardrobe, except now you look even better in them. The same, unique environments are all there, the factories of Rubpture Farms, the forests of Paramonia, the deserts of Scrabania, but all with a new and beautiful layer of polish and detail.
The backdrops are interesting, animated and gorgeous. Rather than the flat background of the stages in the original, thereâ€™s now a world that feels much more alive, with working gears and machines in the factories, wildlife and tundra in the later stages, all making it feel like the environments are much more than the plane that you experience.
If you arenâ€™t familiar with Oddoworld allow me to enlighten you.
You are Abe, a Mudokon slave, born in captivity to work in Rapture Farms, a meat processing plant that creates questionable food products from the planetâ€™s wildlife.
However, sustainability has never been the focus of the Glukkonâ€™s (the business-type, profit focused rulers) and now unfortunately most of the beasts of Oddworld are extinct.
There are a lot of Mudokons thoughâ€¦
I think you see where this is going. After coming across the Glukkonâ€™s plan of creating â€œMudokon popsâ€, Abe seeks to escape the plant before heâ€™s turned into snack-food, but youâ€™re not the only Mudokon, are you going to leave the rest behind?
This is where the game can diverge, youâ€™re tasked with saving the rest of your Mudokon brethren from their gruesome fate, but sometimes you have to look after number 1, right?
Well, if you leave most of them behind then youâ€™re going to be in with a bit of a surprise when it comes to ending the game. So really, be a gem and save your comrades.
The puzzles are as challenging as before, and when it comes to trying to conquer obstacles, pitfalls and sleeping Sligs, whilst also trying to lead the slightly dense following Mudokons to safety, things can get a little trickyâ€¦and messy.
New Nâ€™ Tasty is just as punishing as I remember the original being. It still stirs terror inside me whenever I hear a Slig chuckle or command â€œHere, boy!â€, just waiting for them to shoulder their rifle and shoot me on sight, giggling manically over my smouldering grey corpse. Dread and remorse still washes over when a fellow Mudokon slave dies, even if it is often hilarious to see them gib across the screen after a wrong step and an explosion.
You canâ€™t help but feel some kind of revenge when you are able to possess Sligs and turn them against each other or explode them from within like they had just eaten a Paramite Pie made of explosives.
The gameâ€™s mechanics are slowly drip-fed to you, which is fortunate because the controls are still rather clunky, and stages require much trial-and-error, although mercifully there is a quick-save function.
Youâ€™ll have plenty of time to learn how to time your awkward hops and jumps from platform to platform before you have to worry too much about the more complex puzzles involving stone throwing and Slig mind control.
Visiting Oddworld is still a unique experience, and the new love that has been shown to it with New N Tasty means thereâ€™s really no excuse to visit yourself.
I still consider it one of the classics of 90s gaming, one of the games that always comes to mind when people talk about the PS1, and whilst it would be great to see a new Oddworld game appear, itâ€™s still great to see that Abe and his Mudokon bros are still loved in the gaming community.
If not so much by the Sligs and Glukkons.
If you enjoyed the original Oddworld, pick up New Nâ€™ Tasty.
If you never played the original Oddworld, pick up New Nâ€™ Tasty.
If you didnâ€™t like the original Oddworld, then a report to sector 5-A for Meat Treatment.
- True to the original
- New visuals are gorgeous
- Still a unique experience
- Controls are still awkward
Oddworld New N Tasty is rated 12+. There are some mildly violent sections, but nothing too bad, could be tricky and a bit dark for the young ones though.