Good day, once more
The final time we checked in with the long-awaited Oddworld: Soulstorm, issues have been trying good.
Let’s examine the way it turned out.
Oddworld: Soulstorm (PC, PS4, PS5 [reviewed])
Developer: Oddworld Inhabitants
Writer: Oddworld Inhabitants
Launched: April 6, 2021
MSRP: $49.99 (additionally on PlayStation Plus at launch)
So Soulstorm is a bizarre sport for a number of causes. The primary character Abe, is…odd. He isn’t your typical hero, aesthetically and on the core of his being. He is an unlikely prophet, a bumbling fool…ah nicely you get the image. Poor man, I will ease off.
Because the very begin, Oddworld Inhabitants managed to harness this unusual magic right into a digestible puzzle platformer with a heavy give attention to avoiding fight, if you want. It is a aim that is not solely virtuous, however continues to be extremely distinctive all these years later. And Soulstorm (named after the brew that is made out of elements of a Mudokon, the race of Abe and his individuals) principally executes on that imaginative and prescient with a couple of old skool points alongside the best way.
Billed as a revival of Exoddus (the second sport within the sequence), Soulstorm feels extra instantly lived-in. Whereas Exoddus felt extra like an growth pack, that is a completely new sport with a special framework and a grander scale. The brand new lens through which to view the story is beautiful, because it permits us to turn out to be nearer to Abe and his associates in a extra significant and deliberate means.
Likewise, the degrees (of which there are 15, with two secret levels) are extra sprawling and open. As quickly as you are out of the weeds of the primary few there are sometimes a number of paths, with heaps of secret areas to find and non-obligatory aims (like discovering and saving extra Mudokon associates, which grant you entry to the true ending). The stock system all feeds into this gameplay loop, rewarding explorers with extra instruments to deal with among the multi-pronged puzzles.
In different phrases, the extra effort you place into discovering what the sport has to supply, the extra you will succeed. Among the finest elements of Soulstorm although has acquired to be the improved motion system. Fast double-jumping fixes so many prior sequence points, and means that you can extra simply traverse among the trickier sequences whereas latching onto ledges extra typically. The possession system (one of many primarily puzzle-solving instruments, through which you’re taking over an unsuspecting enemy) continues to be so enjoyable and imaginative, and opens up a lot design house.
Bits like controlling a flying foe to undergo an impediment course so that you could open a door for Abe are genius, as a result of they match inside the established guidelines of the universe with out feeling too gamey. You typically have the choice to sneaky by, brute drive puzzles, or remedy them by way of merchandise use as nicely. The clear menu choice to see the entire Mudokons you have saved (in addition to all pertinent stats) can also be a godsend, ending the esoteric and sometimes gatekeeping nature of the collectathon component.
However with these basic rules on the forefront, there’s some clunk. Checkpoints may be actually murky at instances, as they’re generally positioned in such a means the place you will need to seize a ton of things yet again in case you die, lest you backtrack and set off one other checkpoint, then return to “resave” the present sport state. Having a few of these key gadgets positioned earlier than secure areas and then checkpointing gamers would have decreased among the busywork.
Navigating choose menus can also be an train in inelegance; most notably the principle stock, which is triggered by urgent the Triangle button after which manipulated with the analog sticks. It is the identical factor for the crafting display, which is testy at instances and requires a agency few mashes to get going. Then there’s jank like occasional jarring music and menu cuts. It is annoying, however it may be handwaved relying in your tolerance stage. There was a uncommon bug that soft-crashed the sport, however that was patched since publication, and we didn’t expertise it within the authentic construct.
There are some cobwebs to shake out of Oddworld: Soulstorm, and a few that can stay even after a scorching bathe, however you would be hard-pressed to call very many video games which might be doing what this sequence is doing in 2021. I am glad that Oddworld Inhabitants continues to be round, doing their bizarre and fascinating factor.
[This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Oddworld: Soulstorm reviewed by Chris Carter
Spectacular effort with a couple of noticeable issues holding it again. Will not astound everybody, however is price your time and money.
How we rating: The Destructoid evaluations information