Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Athanasios 01.11.2020 1

Review for Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee on Nintendo Switch

One of the greatest disappointments in the world of video games has been the extremely promising Oddworld universe. While the series started really good with Abe's Oddysee and later on, Abe's Exodus, it soon left the spotlight, with the rest of the additions ranging from flawed cult classics like Stranger's Wrath, to simply flawed like Munch's Oddysee. As this Switch port simply slaps HD textures on the latter, it doesn't fix any of the available problems, and thus makes it a title that's hard to recommend, even to those who have strong nostalgic feelings for it.

Unlike the more action-focused Stranger's Wrath, where the goal was to capture enemies dead or alive, Munch's Oddysee is much closer the original PlayStation duology, in the sense that the main concept revolves around saving various creatures of this imaginary ecosystem from the clutches of the capitalistic Glukkons & Co., while solving all sorts of puzzles to do so, something that involves utilising the GameSpeak system; the Oddworld staple that enables interacting with your allies. The only notable differences? Firstly, there are now two protagonists to control. Secondly, everything is in 3D.

Those expecting a bigger, badder, better version of Abe's Oddysee, and who are excited for it being a fully three-dimensional experience, will sadly be disappointed to know that this isn't the title they are looking for. For starters, this is one more typical example of an early '00s game where the use of 3D visuals are actually worse than the much more detailed 2D ones, and with the camera and the controls being two additional foes one has to deal with. On one hand, this isn't very challenging, so the camera and the controls are more of nuisances than actual problems. On the other hand, this isn't very challenging…

Screenshot for Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee on Nintendo Switch

The series started as a challenging, cinematic puzzle-platformer; one that forced the one holding the controller to cleverly utilise every single ability, and think before acting. This doesn't ask much from the player. Instead of puzzles, it has you doing tasks. The first area has Abe, the first of the two heroes, walking around, collecting a green substance known as Spooce or something, which can be used to activate machinery and gates. Does it require any skill? No. It just takes time. One could argue that this is just the tutorial level, but sadly that continues with the rest of the adventure.

Upon reaching the second area you gain control of Munch, who, unlike Abe who can speak with his fellow Mudokons or possess the minds of his enemies, he commands the tiny Fuzzies to attack foes, can swim, and electrocute a creature to briefly stun it. No matter the character controlled, however, once again, it's all about collecting Spooce to move on to the next section of the stage. More elements are added the closer one gets to the finishing line, like traps and so on, but they won't change things much. There's simply nothing here that can be called a puzzle. It's all just busywork.

As a final note, this lacks the cinematic feel, and overall charm and dark atmosphere of the PlayStation classics. Traces of their unique brand of black comedy, and anti-capitalistic message can be found here as well, but something is amiss. The Oddworld of Abe's Oddysee felt like a real place, and the hero's quest like an actual adventure where you were actually going somewhere. Compared to it, this "threequel" is nothing more than a lifeless array of levels (industrial or natural) that won't stay with you for very long. In conclusion, better stick to the good side of the Oddworld universe.

Screenshot for Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

4/10
Rated 4 out of 10

Subpar

Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee adds one more dimension, but throws what made the original a classic out of the window. Not only this doesn't have the beautiful visuals of the PlayStation duology, or its fantastic atmosphere and narrative strength, but it's also far from a fun, cinematic puzzle-platformer - in fact, it's not even a puzzle-platformer, but just a collection of boring tasks sewn together, and masquerading as an adventure.

Developer

Oddworld Inhabitants

Publisher

Oddworld Inhabitants

Genre

Action Adventure

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  4/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

ah harsh words indeed! I really like the stylisation but I can see why this game puts off fans of Abe's older adventures. Maybe the Soulstorm remake will scratch your itch Smilie

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