Back in 1997, Oddworld’s Abe was shocked to discover that the New ‘N’ Tasty food products were to be made from the meat of his species, and it triggered his Oddysee to save his race.
Yesterday, Oddworld Inhabitants revealed their considerably-less-disturbing New ‘N’ Tasty product: the remake of the Playstation One classic, Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee.
The project was revealed a few months ago, but in that time fans had only been teased with the odd (sorry, couldn’t resist) detail and a couple of screenshots.
Even the remake’s title was a mystery until the Eurogamer Expo over the weekend, when the winner of a fan competition to name it was revealed. The official title is now Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee – New ‘N’ Tasty. Quite a mouthful, but hey: it’s a new and tasty and pretty appropriate mouthful.
Especially considering how damn good the game looks. CEO of Oddworld Inhabitants, Stewart Gilray, took to the stage to demonstrate it for the first time, and while it looks very familiar, a few key changes are apparent.
The HD suffix is deliberately missing from the title, as the developers wanted to highlight the fact that the game is not a simple “up-rezzing”, applying high-definition textures to the original game’s skeleton. Abe’s Oddysee has been rebuilt from the ground up, in a new engine, with fully 3D-rendered environments, while retaining the 2D sidescrolling gameplay.
More detailed and varied animations give the already quirky characters a greater depth and humour. Sound effects and voices have also been rerecorded to the same effect – the gameplay video below shows a bit more variety in the speech than the original’s repeated “Hello-hello-follow me-okay” pattern.
Besides the prettiness factor being cranked right up, perhaps the most obvious change to fans of the original is that the static camera angles that Abe passed through have been stitched together into a smooth, moving camera system. It’s something newcomers won’t even blink at, but long-time fans should find it a welcome modernization.
The developers explained that while the core game was the same, a few basic redesigns were implemented to account for the new camera system or to take advantage of the new engine.
Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee – New ‘N’ Tasty will hit the PC, XBLA, Playstation 3 and the PS Vita in about a year’s time, but this New ‘N’ Tasty sample already has us watering at the mouth.