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Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD Review

danielrbischoff By:
GENRE Action/Adventure 
PUBLISHER Oddworld Inhabitants 
DEVELOPER Just Add Water 
T Contains Blood and Gore, Strong Language, Violence

What do these ratings mean?

Better bringing 'em in alive than dead.

The Oddworld series was originally slated to see seven episodes in its saga of the downtrodden and miserably macabre. Munch and company had an epic run of it, although the original developer of the Oddworld games set their sights way too high and collapsed under the difficult-to-market brand they created. In fact, Stranger's Wrath was the last game they managed to push to market, and it isn't even part of the primary storyline.

Regardless, Stranger's tale of chicken people and catching bounties in Oddworld's Wild West remains one of the highly regarded titles not playable via backwards compatibility on the Xbox 360. Just Add Water's HD revamp brings the diamond in the rough conveniently to the PSN and HD screens.

Every character and environment looks beautifully updated. No stone was left unturned and it shows in Just Add Water's port. Every nook and cranny was lovingly remapped with HD textures and the game's signature Critter-ammuniton stares back at you with life and vivid colors instead of the grainy faces you'd see if you played the original title today.

The gameplay itself is exactly as it was several years ago. You'll take bounties from the shop and head out into the world to hunt them down. If you kill enemies, you'll get significantly less cash than if you knock them out or wrap them up with specific critter ammo. Enemy bosses are guarded by less powerful baddies and navigating your way into the base so you can capture the big bounty is almost like a puzzle, although it'll require you to shake off any first-person sensibilities.

Still, Stranger's Wrath has carried many of the issues it originally released with. The camera is finicky and not at all intuitive. Switching between first-person and third-person can be difficult because contextual cues sometimes aren't clear. The game still controls like an original Xbox game at that, with flighty, sometimes frustrating, third-person platforming.

Not much else has been added to the experience, save for full trophy support on PS3. This is Stranger's Wrath. If you've played it before, you'll recognize it and appreciate the facelift. If you haven't, here's your chance to step back in time without the rose-colored glasses you might have grown accustomed to.

At only $14.99, it's hard not to recommend this Xbox classic. You're guaranteed to be charmed by the characters and artwork and personality. Just Add Water lets the game speak for itself, despite dolling it up quite a bit.
Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD
  • Same great, hidden gem of a game
  • All the Oddworld personality and humor
  • In HD with new textures all over the place!
  • But controls and camera weren't fixed
  • Stranger, one of the best characters in gaming
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More information about Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD
Also known as: odd world stranger wrath bounty

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