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Game Profile
Game Boy
GENRE: Adventure
September 26, 2003
Oddworld Stranger's Wrath

Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee

Oddworld Stranger's Wrath

 Written by Jeff Milligan  on December 04, 2003

Review: It's really, really weird to load up a game on one of Nintendo's consoles and seeing the name "Microsoft"

Oddworld; one of the most beloved gaming series on the Playstation, and one of the best selling titles early on in the life of the XBOX. Seems like a good choice for a port to the Game Boy Advance, right? I'd agree with that, in theory. With the correct execution, Munch's Oddysey for the Game Boy Advance could indeed be a solid title. However, there's a key word in that statement. A word which we have been seeing more and more in game reviews lately; execution.


This installment of Oddworld once again sees Abe paired up with his Gabbit pail Munch, the returning duo from the XBOX version. Summoned to a meeting with The Almighty Raisan, Munch and Abe learn of the sacred realm of the Mudokon known as Break Wind Hill. Protected by pure winds, this location has been a safehaven for the Mudokons. However, Break Wind Hill is now being polluted. Thanks to the Glukkons, and the construction of their new factory Evenwurst Weenerz, the sacred realm of the Mudokons is in danger. Being the hero of the Glukkons, Abe is ordered to shut down Evenwurst Weenerz, rescue the enslaved workers within, and raid the Glukkon base Fort Glokz.


For those that have played any of the previous Oddworld games, you'll feel right at home with the schematics of Munch's Oddysey. Chanting, portals, various energy drinks, and lots of potty humor are all commonplace, as expected. Munch's Oddysey also often incorporates the use of Spooce Shrubs. Many locks within the game are unlocked by collecting certain amounts of the plants. Levers also play a large role in unlocking certain doors and pathways.


The real basis behind Munch's Oddysey is solving various puzzles and problems to progress further into the game. Unfortunately, most of the puzzles can be figured out by 5 year olds. Unlike what we found in the original PSX Oddworld games, the puzzles within Munch's Oddysey are usually nothing more than collecting Spooce Shrubs, chanting in certain locations, or just outrunning enemies. Not exactly something that will keep you locked into the game for hours.


Another thing that lowers the overall value of Munch's Oddysey GBA is the viewpoint of the camera. Instead of utilizing a sdie-scrolling view like the first 2 Oddworld games, Munch's Oddysey tries to use the overhead 3D style found in the XBOX installment of Oddworld. Unfortunately, it doesn't work very well. In certain areas, any and all depth perception can be lost. In other words, it becomes difficult to see whether you're standing in front of an object, or if you're no where near it. You may think you're right in front of a lever, pounding on the action button to pull it, but in reality it's 2-3 steps away.


One more area that could have definitely used improvement is in the sound department. Unlike previous Oddworld games, voices found in the Game Boy Advance version are dull and diluted. I suppose this fault can be pinned on the GBA hardware, but there's definitely been better quality sound on GBA games in the past. Anything else is average at best.

Bottom Line
Besides random farting and burping, it's tough to real consider Munch's Oddysey for the Game Boy Advance a real Oddworld game. When you're so used to difficult puzzles and interesting environments, it just makes it seem like this version was not only not necessary, but also just a waste of production time and resources. I myself am a big fan of the Oddworld line of games, but this one will not be joining my collection. Rent at your own risk, and stay away from buying altogether.

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