Outland XBox 360 Review - www.impulsegamer.com -
Outland
Reviewed by
Edwin Millheim
on
Outland XBox 360 Review With its smooth controls and challenging game world Outland comes in as a cool to play concept game that is going to be considered a simplistic throwback classic that intermingles with the gaming worlds of today.
Rating:
4.5

Gameplay 9.0
Graphics 9.0
Sound 8.0
Value 10
Publisher: Microsoft
Classification:
MA15+
Review Date:
Oct 2011
Reviewer:
Edwin Millheim

9.0

 
Outland

This downloadable game for either Xbox live Arcade or PSN (We played the Xbox Live Arcade version), is an eye pleasing hybrid of the side scrollers that are lost in the pixels of gaming time. Outland is a plat- forming style of game with insane energy bullets that have to be dodged, and moving platforms and obstacles including one eyed spider looking beasties and others that the player has to have some darn good timing to get past and move forward in this game.

At the start the player just has their jumping abilities and the game starts with baby jumping steps nothing major, at first. As the game progresses the jumping soon gives way to a sliding ability. This move can be used to slide attack an enemy and send them flying, or the move can be used to zip under a low obstacle. After a couple of level screens the player then get the means of defense by way of a sword.

At the games progression the designers introduce a new diabolical twist to the whole jumping and plat forming angle. The character can now change to different colors of energy, so changing into the color of the energy that is an obstacle the player is able to get past it with no problem at all. If the character is the wrong color as the energy hits, then they are dealt damage by the opposite color energy. Now here is where the fun begins, so far the designers introduce everything in a logical progression, ratcheting up the twists and difficulty only as the game progresses on.

Now imagine some of those platforms that are moving back and forth and up and down are now different energy colors. Jumping and changing color in mid leap to time it just right to land on the moving platform is one thing, imagine now that if you are not the same color as the platform, you fall right on through either to a spiked death below, or having to start at the bottom of the screen and making your way up again past these shifting platforms. So not only are you jumping and changing colors to have a solid platform at your feet, but changing colors to match the energy bullets raining down on you so as not to take damage. Itís a game that quickly makes you feel really good at timing things just right and advancing.

The visuals are pleasing to look at, renderings of dark silhouettes with hints of color intermingles throughout, like glowing energy signatures. The game sometimes has some annoying habits, such as changing to a forced camera perspective to show you that the switch you just hit opened a door. Now this in itself would not be too much of an issue but for one thing. Sometimes, the switch in question is in a tough area where you have to time it to get past some energy bullets, so when the camera changes you have no control of the character and when it switches back to let you view the character, the regaining of control does not happen soon enough to be able to dodge the rain of energy that either causes damage or worse forces you to play the screen again, when you lose a game life.

The story line and there is, sort of a storyline here, reminds me of some of the thrown together storylines of the old coin op days, not a lot of substance and a few simple references and off you go on the adventure. There is nothing wrong with that. Itís not a story driven game. It does not hurt for that at all.

With its smooth controls and challenging game world Outland comes in as a cool to play concept game that is going to be considered a simplistic throwback classic that intermingles with the gaming worlds of today.

Edwin Millheim
Impulse Gamer






 
 



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