Save the story
It’s perhaps sheer coincidence on the developers part, that the light narrative blends so well with the minimalist approach of the rest of the game. Regardless, it’s a refreshing change to not be spoon-fed unnecessary storyline; a method deployed so successfully in the likes of the similarly subdued Ico & Shadow of the Colossus.
Platform for success
Outland, if you hadn’t guessed, is a side-scrolling adventure game in much the same mould as classics such as Metroid and Castlevania, and more recently its fellow XBLA title Shadow Complex, as well as Hudson’s quirky Wii title A Shadow’s Tale.
Expect to be leaping to distant platforms, battling enemies with both wit and sword, and discovering new abilities in order to facilitate progression, often involving the backtracking through old stages to find new routes.
Red light district
The game’s hook is the hero’s ability to adopt the powers of light and darkness, instantly drawing parallels with shoot-em-up Ikaruga. In Treasure’s classic, rapidly switching polarities from white to black ensured protection from same-coloured incoming fire, while maximising damage against oppositely coloured hostiles.