Stranger's Wrath explores a new dimension in the Oddworld
universe. Rather than see the series stagnate, the
developers have opted for a fresh style of gameplay
that, oddly enough, fits in perfectly with the quirky
creatures that comprise Oddworld.
best way I could describe Oddworld would be to imagine
the Muppets on a blend of crack and LSD. They look
bizarre, they act bizarre but yet they're almost loveable.
The characters all have a highly developed sense of
self in addition to a warped sense of humor. I could
just spend an entire day just watching the antics
of these guys if they had their own TV show.
less of a focus on puzzles and strategy, Stranger's
Wrath takes us into the world of the first-person
shooter. With a decidedly Old West theme, a variety
of gameplay elements support the FPS genre and help
to keep it fresh and entertaining. There are elements
of platforming, puzzles and combat that occur throughout
the game making it difficult to pigeonhole the game
in any one specific genre category. We'll just call
it an action adventure game.
is the title character. He's a rough and tough bounty
hunter looking to bring bad guys to justice just for
the money. He seems even more capable of evil than
those he hunts down. Stranger needs money for his
operation, although we are kept in the dark about
exactly what kind of operation he needs - or wants.
Suffice to say that the story takes enough strange
plot twists and turns to keep interested in further
from town to town you will encounter various characters
that you can interact with. Sometimes you'll get directions
and sometimes you'll get valuable information on situation
developments. Oftentimes you'll get some wise-ass
wisecracks that are bound to cause the odd guffaw.
A race of diminuative freaks called the Clakkerz are
more than happy to interact with you. If you're good
to them they'll follow you all over the place, chatting
up a storm and giving you all kinds of information
about your next objective. If you're not in a particularly
good mood you can lash out at these creatures to relieve
your frustrations. You can also relieve them of your
money if you so desire. Instead of following you around,
the Clakkerz will avoid you and razz you at every
given opportunity. They'll also pass the word on to
the next town that you're a bit of a bastard.
stores and Bounty stores are other things you'll find
in town. Here you can purchase weapons and ammo as
well as get information on your next mission. Each
town is different. There are different characters
to interact with and different gameplay elements to
mess with. Bosses will present themselves in each
town. When you defeat one, a new path will open up
that makes backtracking unnecessary. The boss battles
are a lot of fun but they are tough. There are more
layers to these battles than most boss fights which
means you'll be busy shooting, jumping around platforms
and solving puzzles all at the same time. Don't expect
to get through these battles the first time through.
earn more money if you can take your bounty in alive
and to do so you'll have to experiment with "Live
ammo" as well as watching the meter carefully.
Live ammo is a unique feature. It involves the use
of animals and insects that somehow interfere with
the enemy to make shooting or capturing him easier.
Not all of the Live Ammos are useful in boss battles
but they are fun to watch and you'll want to use all
of them at least once.
with all Oddworld games, the graphics are incredible.
The attention to detail is painstaking with perfectly
weather wood, rich rustic colors, dense and varied
vegetation and of course the odd and highly imaginative
creatures that make up Oddworld. The animation is
smooth and fast. Not a slowdown to report. The music
perfectly supports each new scene. The voiceacting
is equally excellent. Every line is delivered with
conviction. Someone was taking this seriously and
you're going to do something right, do it to the best
of your abilities. That's exactly what Oddworld Inhabitants
did. There are no mini-games included with Stranger's
Wrath. There are no extra single-player, co-op or
multi-player modes. Instead, you get one solid, lengthy
game that is darn near perfection personified. Who
would dare ask for more?