Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty stuffs the platformer genre with infectious personality, and smart gameplay, then fills it with pure, honest to goodness, fun.
You play Abe - a hard-working mudoken - who scrubs the floors in a local meat factory.
Unfortunately for Abe, he arrives in the wrong place at the right time and overhears his boss openly discuss future plans for the factory. Plans that involve turning all of Abe's mates into supper.
To avoid being put into tomorrow night's spaghetti bolognese, Abe has to traipse the factory floor, acquire mudoken followers, send them to safety through magical bird-portals, all the while creeping past armed guards and dodging deadly obstacles.So do I just go around eating things?
You'd think that, but no. New 'n' Tasty is a re-imagining of Playstation launch title, Oddworld: Abe's Odyssey, which offers new story, areas and puzzles.
While it still remains a side-scrolling platformer with a strong emphasis on puzzle-solving, New 'n' Tasty has been completely rebuilt from the ground-up using Unity.
Abe is a good jumper, but he doesn't have weapons, or any physical way to defend himself. What he does have though, is the power of speech.
Using the in-built GameSpeak feature, Abe can call out to other mudoken to follow him, wait in the shadows, go and perform an action, or - if you're feeling particularly callous - serve as a distraction so you can make your escape.
However, you'll want to save as many of the 299 mudoken slaves as possible in order to get the game's true ending. So play nice.
With his elite speaking skills, Abe can also possess unsuspecting baddies and make them to do all manner of things that they don't want to do, like fire their weapons at other guards, or charge head-first into meat-grinders.
Abe can also throw money at enemies to get their attention, and - in certain situations - even lob grenades.
If that doesn't work he can set traps for enemies and catch them unawares. But if all else fails, it's probably best to just let him run away as fast as possible.That Abe is quite heroic, isn’t he?
He is! A bit reckless, but his heart is in the right place. He also talks to other characters by farting, so that makes him ten times more interesting than most other heroes out there.
But while that just sounds like a silly gimmick to put in the game, it's actually used to solve certain puzzles.
For instance, you'll need to memorise conversational sequences with other characters in order for them to trust you.
The emphasis on character interaction, and not being able to blast everything in sight all serves to make New 'n' Tasty feel incredibly fresh and fun.
There hasn't been much like this since Abe's Odyssey first released in 1997, and this remaster only draws more attention to that fact.
While the entire game has been rebuilt, some of the interactions still feel a bit stunted.
The controls aren't always entirely responsive - especially when clambering up onto ledges - and there's sometimes a bit of a delay on gestures.
The use of touch is limited, but convenient. When lobbing an item, you can simply tap the centre of the screen and have the item drop at Abe's feet.
This can be useful in a clinch situation if you're being chased by glibs, or if you're feeling particularly kamikaze. You can also have some fun with coloured lights using the rear-touch screen during loading times.
New 'n' Tasty also looks glorious on the Vita screen - from the cut-scenes to the transition between levels - although we did experience several, noticeable drops in frame-rate during our playthrough.
The textures aren't as glorious as those you'll see on Playstation 4, but the game still looks incredible, and, for the most part, plays exceptionally well.
The Vita version also has extremely convenient button-mapping with the left trigger initiating stealth, the right trigger setting up a lob, and both pressed together allowing Abe to meditate.Should I go and scoff this up, then?
Most definitely. You may even own it already as New 'n' Tasty was a Playstation 4 PS+ title in 2015, and the Vita version is available on Cross Buy.
There'll even be a forthcoming patch that lets you take advantage of Cross Save between the platforms.
This is a very entertaining platformer that works surprisingly well on Vita, whether you're playing it in short-blasts, or much lengthier sessions.
It’s full of heart, dares to be ambitious and different, and will keep you on your toes throughout - whether you're speed-running through to snatch the tougher trophies, or taking the time to enjoy the story and the sights.
Abe’s adventure may not be the newest release on the market, but it still offers some of the best fun you can find on there!