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Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee (Windows)

85
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.0
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Lady T-Dawg (699)
Written on  :  Aug 03, 2010
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars

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Summary

Yo, yo, yo, yo, yo...

The Good

When I saw this game the first time, I felt something caught me. Of course, that time I didn't know what that was. But the more I played this game, the more I felt that my own personality was developing. Because you play as the little, cute, poor Abe. In the beginning, you feel it's a friend, but after some time you're already thinking it's yourself. The character is really charming. Please, follow me, I'll tell you why.

First, the story. Actually, it's quite simple. It's basically "save your friends", such a story. Someone might find the story not so cool, compared to other games that have a lot of twists. But please, don't go away so quickly. Because how this little creature saves his friends is the most important process. The game has a lot of different characters, like Abe himself, a Mudokon, which is such a helpless creature. Even those bees can kill him! Such a poor guy. And also, those Mudokons are the ones who work together. Especially our little Abe, sometimes he sacrifices himself to save others - even though that means I die, but it also expresses the brave heart of the character.

Except Abe, there are other characters I like most - those rocky ones, Sligs. Their shape is really cool. Sometimes I don't know why they even need guns, if they already have such arms and legs which look like scythes. I don't know if I should call them hippie or not, because they wear such dark green armor, and when Abe "possesses" them, the rock music will immediately ring. The armor is shiny, and they are moving to the rock music. Maybe they aren't good guards for the factory, but I'm sure they can find some other job. If you ask me why, the answer is quite simple: they must be great rock musicians.

Well, here I must mention the Sligs' best friends: Slogs. I think they should really learn some stuff from the Sligs. They should have more fun in life. Why do I say that? Because I only see two ways of their life: sleeping or using their feet to scratch their heads. Oh, by the way, I really found a great job for them: ballet dancer?

Okay, seriously. I want to talk about the gameplay. It really amazed me how many different possibilities there are in this game. It's a platform game, but it's so different from other games of this kind. We shouldn't just jump and run like crazy, we should really think what to do. In this game, you are not some kind of a super-hero. You play as a helpless, little poor guy. The only "super" thing he does is die super-easily. He is such a creature who has no weapon, and you also can't get a weapon in the game. Except some rare grenades, stones, and meat. Most of the time he only has his bare hands.

The special part in this platform game is that the hero can't fight directly. He can only fight with his brains, trick those enemies. But it's always a big risk. There are different scenarios, and you should do different stuff to react. For example, some Sligs or Slogs are sleeping; what can this little Abe do? Sneak! Like a little baby who doesn't know how to protect himself, only can hope nobody will notice him. Such a poor thing.

Another cool scenario, which I love most of all (but some characters hate most of all): shiny little bombs. They are so cool! You should find the rhythm, and count the lights, when the lights turn green, you should use the exact moment to press the button. Don't think it's so simple; when our poor Abe dies, you will really blame yourself for not paying more attention.

I have a real faithful friend in the game, his name is Elum. I met him in the middle of the game, but whenever I met him since then, he never refused to help. He accompanied me on a scary journey, even though he's also a helpless guy. I should say he is an animal. But he always took such good care of me, and even bent down so that I could ride him. I'm really thankful for what he did! A real friendship should be like this, no? But sorry, what can I do for you?..

Wah-wah-wah, there is too much stuff I want to say. Like a level completely in shadows, which is so cool. You can't see anybody's face, only see black shadows moving. You should really know this level, then you can make it. Because you need to do a lot of trick to your dear enemies. The way they appear is cool, they just fall down from the sky, but the way I trick them is even cooler. How? You should really play and find yourself.

Our cute Abe only has one special power: he is a little "yoer". Sorry I used this word, because he is just so cute when he does this. Every time when he saves his friends, or possesses Sligs, or reads hints, he always puts his two index fingers together, lowers his head, and says quietly, sweetly: "yo, yo, yo, yo, yo..." I'm so touched by this!

When Abe possesses Sligs, it's the only time you can use a gun. You use it to kill other Sligs, who think you are a friend. Actually, it's pretty mean. But what is even meaner is how after you kill other Sligs, you actually commit suicide (as a Slig) by dropping down! Your spirit will go back to Abe again, but the first thing he does is say "hehehe". No compassion at all!

The final little stuff I want to mention is how Mudokons communicate with each other. On different levels you can see your buddies, they are hiding somewhere to help you or lead you. But every time they will request password. They can whistle several notes, and also fart. They will say "Hello" to each other, very politely. Some of the Mudokons - those who sit in the factory and work to make meat - are really helpless, even more helpless than Abe. In such time, our Abe is real gentleman. At least I played him like this. Because you can choose to save them or not. My Abe always said: "Follow me!", and other poor things just said: "okay"...

The graphics are amazing for a 2D platform game. They really made the details very carefully. The backgrounds are just beautiful. The sound effects are also good. But sometimes I "hated" them, because when I played some levels, which really requires concentration and calm, the music will scare you. Which is also a challenge of self-control. I like such kind of stuff.

The Bad

Bad things? I think the game is a little bit too long. Actually, the game develops a lot, but because it's so long, it makes people feel there's not enough development.

Also, I think it's a pretty hard game. Not like Claw, of course, but it's different, it requires a lot of thinking. But that's what I want to say: after you did a lot of thinking, you made some really great step, but suddenly there is a bloody bat flying out - you are a dead man. It's so unfair, I'm just a little poor guy, even the bats kill me like this! Where is hope in life? If the game would let the players save wherever they wanted, there would be wonderful world...

The Bottom Line

It's such a game, I can't just find a word to describe it. Because it's too rich in feelings, and rich in gameplay. The feelings is the most impressive thing in this game. And the game is very unique, different from all the others. It is an intelligent game, one that really requires people to think. I recommend it to everyone who like platform games, but want to find something more intelligent than just run around, and have more immersion. It's a special game for me, hope you can also find something special in this game for yourself. Thank you!