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Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus - Review @ GU  

  Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus - Review @ GU

DEVELOPER: Oddworld Inhabitants

PUBLISHER: GT Interactive

MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

  • Processor: Pentium 166mhz

  • OS: Windows 95+

  • RAM: 16MB

  • Videocard: 2MB

  • Hard Drive: 32MB

  • CD-ROM: 4X

RECOMMENDED SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

  • Processor: Pentium 200mhz

  • CD ROM: 8X

  • Soundcard: DirectSound Compatible Card

  • RAM: 32MB

TEST MACHINE:

  • Processor: Pentium II 300mhz
  • RAM: 64MB
  • Videocard: Diamond Viper V550 16MB AGP (w/ 1.88 NVidia Detenator)
  • Soundcard: Soundblaster PCI64
  • CD-ROM: 8X/2X ATAPI CD-R

GENRE: Platform Game

RELEASE DATE/PRICE: December '98, MSRP $49.95

DEMO : Available Here

PATCHES: None

The Ratings System:

I review games in 8 categories: Gameplay, Graphics, Interface, Controls, Expandibility, AI, Multiplayer Ability, and Soundtrack. Each category is out of 10 points, except for Gameplay and AI which in my opinion are the most important factors to a game, which are out of 20 points. The points totalled added up at 100 points, therefore the final rating is out of 100. The perfect score mark is very hard to reach, and will only receive that if the game is flawless in that area. Those that receive extra points than possible, you know that the game is above and beyond what I expect (not too often). The genre specific ratings will not be weighted into the overall, as the genre ratings are those categories that are to be expected from that gaming genre. If a game genre doesn't really qualify to be put into a certain rating category (i.e. Tomb Raider in Multiplayer or Expandability), the game will not be graded in that area, and be given a genre specific rating (i.e. Weapons). If the game receives a total 90% or higher in the final rating, the game will have a Review's Seal of Approval. The overall ratings work like school grades:

A=90%+ - A very good game, you must get it

B=80%+ - A good game, could have been better, but lacked something that could have made it really great

C=70%+ - Just an average game, lacked two or more big things that could have made the game really good

D=60%+ - Lacked a lot of features that could have made the game good, but probably could be good if a major overhaul was done.

F=59%- - My gosh, these games are downright awful...

Overall Impression:

There was lots of hype about this game. It was a very anticipated sequal to the 1 million selling hit Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee. I hadn't played Abe's Oddysee before, but it had received very many positive views. I had never had the power (I didn't have my PII300 till late '98) to run the games. But now, I have the power to run the game and see what all the fuss is about, and I must say, I was *VERY* pleased when I started playing this game. From the very beginning it's been all fun. There are a few hard parts that are very frustrating to beat and can be annoying, but aside from that, the game is very addictive and fun.

Story Line:

Glukkons™ are using Mudokon bones as a key ingredient in making their beverage, SoulStrom™ Brew. The Glukkons™ will do anything to get these bones from the Mudokons, from torturing them, beating them, doing anything to them to get their bones. Then it's up to Abe again to save his own race, the Mudokons, from being eliminated from the Glukkons™.


Breakdown:

Gameplay: 20/20

One of the most fun and addictive games of all time. That has to be true of this game. No other game (that I have played anyway) has kept me glued to the computer this long for constantly playing this much. The game is so darn addictive! From the strange humor to the communication of the characters, the game kept me smiling while I was playing. The game is very puzzle based, and you must have very good timing. At first the game is a bit awkword, and very difficult to get the hang of the game. But once you learn the controls and how the game works, it'll be extremely hard to stop. You can't attack any guys, but there are other means of defeating the enemy. You can squash the bad guys with a circular thing you ride, you can explode a bomb by throwing rocks at it. There are very many different ways to get past a point. The main point of the game is to free your fellow Mudokons from destruction. You will run around causing havoc along the tunnels searching for other Mudokons freeing them. Some puzzles such as running by detection lights without getting caught while some guards are sleeping on the floor, while there are bombs that you must disarm before walking across. Those are just of the few tight parts you will face. You can chant and control Mudokons and Sligs and all the characters and make them do what you want. Sometimes other Mudokons will run into each other and will get exposed to some laughing gas. You'll slap them and get them out of their confusion and make them work or something. There are also blind Mudokons which require all verbal skills to tell them where to walk and where to walk. This controlling is hard, but it's a lot of fun to see what they will do. The talking of the Mudokons is also so hilarious! They sound like Mr. Bean characters! :-)

Graphics (Eye Candy): 9.5/10

Graphics of this game don't use 3D Acceleration, but the graphics still kick butt. The terrain in the game look astounding! They look so realistic I thought I was really in the mines... okay, not really, but they do look very real. The rocks have various colors, and textures which make them look real. The explosions from bombs have a nice flare to it, but they are a bit pixelated. When characters get blown up and their body parts go flying, it's kind of funny because they and dangly and seem lifelike. Animations of the characters is very smooth, and they move like a real person would. Not some clanky mechanical made robot. They take foot steps and move arms like a man would. Lighting effects are excellent. You will sometimes have to creep in the dark, the dark blends very well onto the characters, as well as the light. The FMV movies in the game are done SO WELL I thought I was watching a movie. They are so well animated and smooth. Unlike certain FMV's that are pixelated and studdery, Abe's Exoddus keeps the movies smooth and unpixelated. The only thing that bugs me is when lots of things are going on in the screen at one time, the game slows down considerably.

Interface: 10/10

Very nicely done. Many complained the save feature stunk in the first game, but the save feature here is flawless and works perfectly and very fast. Getting around to each of the options and settings is a breeze. There isn't much to configure, but you can choose between three different graphic speed settings (for better picture or speed) via the start menu.

Controls: 8/10

Controls are very big part of the game, as they involve all the talking and chanting that makes up a large part of the game. There are 8 different buttons, but many of the buttons are executed together to produce different effects. Like pressing B7 and B5 will chant (this of course is assuming you have a Sidewinder Gamepad). There are about 10 different combinations of GameSpeak™ for each of the interactible characters, each ranging from: "Sorry", "Follow Me", "Hello". But since there are so many to learn, learning them can get tedious and hard to remember, but once they are remembered, it is easy flowing.

Expandibility: 0/0

Not gradable.

AI: 18/20

This game is extremely challenging. It took my friend over 100 hours to beat the game! That's some serious gameplay time. The enemies are very smart and act human. The will sense anything that moves and will shoot at you to attack. The people you will control is under you complete control, so they will only move on your command. Several enemies require lots of planning, and saving (and loading) and several execution times to be successful most of the time. Enemies will often use the enviornment to their own advantage trapping you in corners or cliffs.

Multiplayer: 0/0

Not gradable.

Soundtrack: 7/10

Sound effects in the game are excellent, but the music is only decent. The explosion sounds sound very real, the guns and crushes are cool. The best part about the sounds are the GameSpeak™ part though. The talking of the various characters are hilarious, and the characters talk according based on the situation of the game. Say if you were escaping with some Mudokons, some guards will rise with a "AH" and start shooting and attacking. The music is nothing really to get excited about, pretty normal. Nothing special.


Genre Specific

Originality: 10/10

Has to be one of the most original ideas in the market. Who ever thought of funky aliens like these and let them be used as drinking bones? The characters are very humorous and full of laughter. Their funny speach like Mr. Bean is really a killer. And what about the toxic controlable farts!!!???

Level Design: 10/10

Each level provides a different tactic and different strategy. It's not just a run through and beat type game. You must carefully plan ahead and know what you are doing otherwise you are dead meat. Just running over everyone with the railcart isn't the smartest thing either. All the levels are very difficult and are more than just the normal level. They have differernt settings and different tilesets for each place.

Overall:   A- 92.5%


An absolute gem, you must get this game.

Final Comments:

Hey, if you enjoy games, you'll love this!

 

Screen Shots

Screenshots captured using HyperSnap-DX, compressed at 25% quality.


Landing after a jump


Abe making a jump and about to pull himself up


Abe on the ledge in the background


Possessing those Sligs!


Running over some of those bombs with the rail car


Nice litte morph effect moving from tunnel to tunnel


First tunnel tells you how to do stuff and learn the game


Abe slaps some of those Mudokons exposed to laughing gas


Added:  Monday, June 07, 1999
Reviewer:  Chris Kim
Score:

 1  

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