The Oddboxx

Review

posted 2/11/2011 by Chad Smith
other articles by Chad Smith
One Page Platforms: PC
“This is Rupture Farms.”

It only took a few words to introduce Oddworld some thirteen years ago. Players delved into a game universe unlike any other, one filled both with dark humor and lighthearted fun. While there hasn’t been a new game in the series for five years, Oddworld Inhabitants has grouped together four games into something called the Oddboxx. Unfortunately, the package doesn’t live up to the lineage from which it comes.

The Oddboxx includes Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee, Oddworld: Abe’s Exoddus, Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee, and Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath. I know, that is a whole lot of Odd. Both Abe’s Oddysee and Abe’s Exoddus were available on the PC upon released and are available on nearly every digital distribution site today. As such, I won’t spend too much time on them in this review.


Both are excellent examples of puzzle platform games. Players guide Abe in side-scrolling fashion to save his fellow Mudokon slaves from a grizzly demise. In classic (read: hard) fashion, only the basics are explained such as controls and interacting with on-screen characters. This leads to a very challenging but rewarding experience as you learn how complex the game truly is.

Just don’t expect them to look good at modern resolutions. They were designed to run at 640x480 and there is no in-game option to run in windowed mode. I suggest looking at either a third-party application to force windowed mode or using your graphics card configuration utility to prevent it from being stretched to your LCD’s native resolution. It is worth the effort, but as you will see it’s indicative of a much larger problem.


Let’s move along to what should be the biggest selling point of the Oddboxx: the inclusion of Munch’s Oddysee and Stranger’s Wrath. These previously Xbox-exclusive titles have finally made the jump to PC. A whole new group of players (or those returning due to fond memories) have been given the chance to experience these very eccentric titles. It’s been a bumpy ride since release and remains so even after a couple of patches.

First, we will focus on Munch’s Oddysee. The creativity of Oddworld Inhabitants really shines through in this entry of the series. Players control both Abe and a one-legged, aquatic creature named Munch. The two unique play styles do an excellent job of keeping the game fresh and compelling. Just like the original two games, Munch’s Oddysee makes you feel for the characters by excellent writing and quirky voice acting. It’s unfortunate that it’s riddled with technical issues.
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