Oddworld: Soulstorm

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Oddworld: Soulstorm – Review

Oddworld: Soulstorm, developed by Oddworld Inhabitants is the newest installment of the Oddworld series and a re-imagining of Abe’s Exoddus. Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee was I believe the very first PlayStation game I ever owned when I got a PS1 for my birthday in 1997. As mentioned earlier this is the re-imagined version of Abe’s Exodus which happens directly after the events of Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty which is the Re-make of Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee. It’s a lot especially since there are also spin-off games, so I’ll try to keep the rundown simple.

As there have been re-makes and re-imagined games, I won’t be talking about the originals at all, which is a shame as I could talk about the original Abe’s Oddysee until the cows come home. This tale begins with our protagonist Abe, a Mudokon working as a janitor for RuptureFarms. He stumbles upon a plot to use the Mudokon workers as a new food source as the creatures they were using are going extinct.

Learning of the sinister plan concocted by the CEO of RupturFarms, Molluck a Glukkon, who works for a Mafia-ish group of Glukkon know as the Magog Cartel. Abe sets out to escape, rescuing as many Mudokon as possible, as well as blowing up the factory in the process.

This now leads into Soulstorm where we find Abe hidden away with the escaped Mudokons, unaware that Molluck is hot on his heels and quite pissed. Not only did his new source of meat escape and blow up his factory, but he was being hunted by his cartel bosses as they, and everyone else, thinks that he blew up his factory and killed his workforce for the insurance money. Once you are discovered, Abe’s next journey begins, and on escaping your hideout, you find a dying Mudokon. He tells you to save your people, find the Keeper, and then gives you an item that holds its mysteries.

Oddworld: Soulstorm, like its predecessors, is a cinematic side-scrolling platformer, using elements from Exodus and Munch’s Oddysee. There is a brand new mechanic that has been brought to the game which is the crafting ability. This means as you progress through a level you pickpocket enemies and find items along the stage that help you craft weapons and throwable items. Other than that, it’s the same run, jump, sneak, chant and throw as the main mechanics. The D-pad gives you your speaking options like follow, wait, happy and angry options. As with the previous games not only do you need to make it through the level you also have to rescue as many Mudokons as possible.

The animation sequences are just as jet-fuelled as the trailer showed us. The transitions between cut scenes, gameplay, and even other areas are fairly clean with not much of a wait. The music is epic, with the loud suspenseful tones used in the trailer along with some more chilled music when in a calmer area. The only nit-pick I have is something that happens in a lot of games; the player character talking to an NPC, but the mouths are not moving. It’s not a big deal, but it just gets on my nerves a bit. The voice acting is great, and I do not believe I have ever heard Abe talk so much in a game.

I did encounter one glitch, which happened when I had to take control of a Slig. Using Abe’s mind control abilities, the Slig ran into a wall and froze. This resulted in me only being able to look up and down and removed the ability to make the takeover end, so Abe was stuck, chanting away hopelessly before reloading a checkpoint. As with these kinds of games, the NPC’s following system is a little frustrating and caused me to reset a few times.

There is no specific follow range, so when you need to get them through a trap and you time it out, they might decide to take longer, or for some reason use a longer route and die. It can be a little annoying but luckily, I have been near checkpoints.

This game overall is so good. It has such a nostalgic kick that it makes me want to go back and play through the whole story. Even the original and spinoffs, especially Abe’s Oddysee, will always hold a place close to my heart. I recommend checking this game out, and if possible, New ‘N’ Tasty for the prequel story. If you’re feeling it I also recommend the originals and the spinoff titles.

The Good

  • Easy controls
  • Nostalgic gameplay
  • Difficult but not frustratingly so
  • Visuals are great, backed with epic music
  • Being able to say ‘get him’ when taking over a Slig
  • The new crafting mechanic comes in handy a lot

The Bad

  • The NPC are still idiots that have trouble not dying while following you
  • That one glitch that had me resetting my progress back a few time
9
___
10
Adam Brasher

Written by: Adam Brasher

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