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Out of This World – SNES

Out of This World – SNES

outofthisworld

Platform: SNES

Developer: Delphine Software

Publisher: Interplay Entertainment

Release Date (NA): 1992

Genre: Action-Adventure, Cinematic Platformer

Nerd Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Reviewed by: InfiniteKnife

Out of This World (also known as Another World outside the US) is one of the games I remember stumbling across when I was a kid while looking through a friend’s SNES cartridge collection. I was about 10-11 and up to that point, I had played mostly first-party classics like Super Mario World and Super Mario Kart, so when I booted this bad boy up, read the opening (Star Wars-esque) scroll, and watched the intro cutscene, I was pretty blown away. This was the first game that used solid-color shading similar to cell shading found in later 3D games. It also utilized rotoscopic imaging to capture motion, which takes real video footage and draws over it to make more realistic animations. This is really noticeable when your character runs, and also in a small cinematic when he first picks up his pistol.

The game stars Lester Knight Chaykin, a physicist who is going to work in his underground lab that houses some kind of particle accelerator. He begins to run the system and outside a storm rolls in, lightning strikes his building, and in a flash, Lester (and his entire desk) are fiercely pulled from their stationary location and transported to a strange alien world.

The game begins abruptly as Lester (and his desk) appears in the middle of a pool of water. Suddenly, he is pulled down to his death by some strange tentacles, and I see the Game Over screen for the first (but definitely not last) time. Restarting and mashing some buttons, I find out that Lester needs to quickly swim to the surface to escape the immediate threat. As he crawls out of the pool, I take a moment to examine the environment around me, which includes mountains that stretch far into the background and routes that appear to go both left and right. As I survey the land, I don’t notice the tentacle slowly rising out of the water next to me, but as soon as I do, it pulls me under and it’s Game Over once again. I restart and begin to move right, finding some strange slug-looking things sliding across the ground. I try to walk by but am interrupted by a cinematic showing the creature rear up, bear a single white fang dripping with a viscous liquid. It then lunges and leaves a small scratch on my leg. About 3 seconds later, I fall to a heap, dead from the ridiculously deadly venom.

ootwshot2Come back. I just want to be friends!

The point I’m trying to make here is that starting out playing Out of This World, plan to die…a lot. The game involves a lot of trial and error, but this is cool in a few ways. First, it’s great when you’re able to figure out the trick to passing each area. Second, it’s fun to see how many ways Lester can die, and believe me, there are several. He can be impaled on spikes, crushed by falling rocks, and vaporized by lasers, just to name a few.

This game is classified as an action-adventure, but it has a few really neat cinematic elements, like changes in music at key times depending on what kind of action is happening, and a few points where you can use the environment in a unique way. A few examples of this are swinging on a vine to dodge a pursuing creature and kicking an alien in the nards to give yourself a few seconds to pick up your dropped pistol to take him out. Out of This World could even be classified as a puzzle, because it has a set solution to complete it. You have to untie the knot, so to speak, and the more familiar you are with the solutions, the more quickly you can untie it.

The game is split into different areas that kind of act like pseudo-levels, but the whole thing is intended as one continuous adventure. On the SNES version, each area has a code that you can enter to go back to later if you can’t play through the whole game in one shot. There is only one code per level because there is no inventory or health system; you carry only one item, no health bar (if you get hit once, you’re dead), and you’re armed with a pistol that shoots lasers.

The pistol has 3 firing modes: a single tap of the Y button fires a straight laser that vaporizes enemies, holding the button for a few seconds and releasing causes a force field that blocks enemy lasers for a short time, and a longer hold shoots a huge laser blast that can blow through force fields and walls. This combat system offers some varied options that allow you to take a few different tactical approaches such as how many force fields to make to allow yourself enough time to take out your enemies once theirs have timed out.

Out of This World was pretty well received and still holds up pretty well after I dusted off my SNES and play it from time to time. If you like games such as Prince of Persia, it’s definitely worth checking out, even if you just want to see how many ways Lester can meet an untimely demise.

Written by InfiniteKnife

InfiniteKnife

My personal favorite games are those in the Survival Horror and Sports (baseball) genres, but I can find at least a game or 2 in just about any category that I love to play.

I grew up on Nintendo consoles (NES and SNES) and have been an Xbox guy since the first one was released in the early 2000s. It’s hard to stay away from the classics as the 16-bit era is probably still my favorite overall.

 
 

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One Comment

  1. Excellent review my friend! This sounds like a pretty cool game. Im a fan of anything 16 bit so i might have to snatch this one up.

     

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