This week’s Weekend Deal at Steam offers you the first two instalments in the Oddworld Series for just £3.05 – a saving of 66% from their usual asking price. The games are also available to buy separately with the same reduction, making them £2.03 each. The PC versions of these games are pretty tricky to get hold of now and if you do happen to stumble upon a copy, chances are it will set you back a pretty penny.
This is a deal well worth taking advantage of, because these games are truly fantastic and a sad reminder of what a tragedy it was that the series was abandoned. I found the more recent titles rather a disappointment but, even with their advanced age, the first two games are still a pure joy to play.
You play as Abe, a happy go lucky but naive chap of the Mudoken species, who works at meat packing plant, Rupture Farms. One night you stumble across the sinister truth behind the plant – the Glukkon bosses are running out of meat (thanks to stripping the wild virtually bare of its fauna) and have decided to use their Mudoken slaves as the newest “Tasty Treat”. It is down to you to discover how to escape and free your friends from this cruel fate.
You fulfill your heroic destiny by overcoming a series of, at times, fiendish puzzles in a 2D platform world and leading your fellow Mudokento safety through portals which only you have the power to unlock.
The second instalment, Abe's Exoddus is even better than the first. It's a direct sequel (intended more as a bonus than an actual title from the pentalogy) and the gameplay is almost identical but it is deeper and even offers a very limited 2 player co-op mode (allowing your partner to take over any time you lead Abe to an untimely demise and vice versa). Your fellow mudokens now display a range of emotions or ailments and you need to respond to them accordingly. On your travels you will come across angry, depressed, ill, blind and even wired mudokens who add to the challenge of the puzzles. Another great feature is the quicksave option, a much lamented missing option from the first game.
You'll meet a whole host of fascinating creatures and visit some beautiful environments over the course of these two games and find that Oddworld is a setting that has been lovingly realised, giving the feeling of a world that really lives.
These 2D platformers are the perfect mix of puzzle and action gameplay, adding up to a pair of games which are challenging, engaging and extremely enjoyable. They offer a gaming experience that is not just intelligent and beautifully designed but also absolutely hilarious at times. Abe is not your typical platform cutie but he's got a whole lot more personality for it and it’s hard not to grow fond of the gangly green clutz. You'll will him and his flat footed buddies on to victory, helping you to keep going on even the most frustrating of the puzzles. All in all, a wonderfully enthralling and charming nostalgia trip.
Thanks to Cuddy from Hotukdeals!