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.
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.
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.
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.
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.