Voodoo Vince Remastered Xbox One Review
Hurting yourself to harm enemies is an interesting gameplay element
Soundtrack isn’t so bad
Tries to be humorous but comes off as awkward
Jerky camera and play control
Punching Yourself In the Face
Back in the PS2, original Xbox, and Gamecube era, Sony was and Nintendo were flourishing in the platformer genre with Jak and Daxter, Super Mario, and Ratchet & Clank while Microsoft struggled by testing out Blinx and Voodoo Vince. Never receiving recognition to the level of the competition, Microsoft’s platformers have been long forgotten until Microsoft and Beep Industries decided to give Voodoo Vince another shot with a remastering on Xbox One. However, sometimes things are better left in the past.
The gimmick behind Voodoo Vince is unique but ultimately can be viewed as a missed opportunity. Each level has Vince harming himself in order to defeat enemies or solve an environmental puzzle. For example, Vince can light himself on fire to destroy some talking gas pumps or can run a chainsaw through himself to cut enemies in half. On the other hand, the main form of combat revolves around two attacks: punch and spinning punch. Shouldn’t Vince punch himself in the face to defeat enemies? This makes combat and level progression a little awkward by sending a mixed message.
Speaking of awkward, the plot, characters models, and dialog is supposed to be funny but just comes across as awkward. The main villain is this nerdy, crackling voiced enemy that is more annoying than terrifying. Also, the entire visual presentation looks like a Tim Burton movie and basically looks like a spiritual successor to The Nightmare before Christmas. Negatively, Voodoo Vince Remastered is more a port than a full remastering as the edges are still dull, textures are still muddy, and the camera is actually a joke. In fact, I was unable to complete Voodoo Vince Remastered because the camera gave me horrible motion sickness. To me, this game is unplayable.
From the few hours I put into this game before I started puking, each stage usually involves solving an environmental puzzle to progress forward. This is fine but the level design is cumbersome at best and Vince moves sporadically especially with the quirky camera motion. Sometimes Vince will grab a ledge and pull himself, sometimes he won’t. Want to plan your next jump down that hill? Well you can’t because the camera doesn’t move that way. This game was originally released in 2003 and nothing has been updated in this remastering to make the game more playable for a 2017 high def audience.
When a game makes me physically ill, it is difficult to recommend. But even if the camera didn’t make me all pukey, the overall gameplay still isn’t that fun as there are many other platformers that play so much better. Creative sure, but there is a reason Vince was forgotten to history.
Not As Good As: Conker’s Bad Fur Day
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