Outcast – A New Beginning Review – PC

Outcast: A New Beginning is a highly anticipated open-world action game that brings back the beloved franchise after a long hiatus. With a focus on providing both new and returning players with an engaging experience, Appeal Studios’ game, which is published by THQ Nordic, seeks to encapsulate the spirit of the original Outcast. Back in February, I had an opportunity to try out Outcast through various intervals with varying degrees of gameplay. There were a few gleaming issues when I first tried Outcast, but for the most part, it appears those issues are a thing of the past.

One of the first things that strikes players when they enter the world of Outcast: A New Beginning is the stunning visual design. The developers have gone above and beyond to create a lush and vibrant environment that feels truly alive. From towering treetops to sprawling mountains, every aspect of the game world is meticulously crafted to immerse players in the experience. The game takes place in Adelpha, a place filled with strange and fascinating creatures. The attention to detail in the creature design is exceptional, with each species having its unique characteristics and behaviors. Whether encountering the two-fingered Talans or the majestic Yods, players will be captivated by the diversity and beauty of the alien life forms in the game.

Outcast: A New Beginning reintroduces players to the protagonist Cutter Slade, a character from the original game. Slade is a former Navy SEAL with a sarcastic and quippy personality, making him a memorable and relatable protagonist. While his backstory as a Navy SEAL adds depth to his character, his search for his long-lost daughter adds an emotional element to the story. The story of Outcast: A New Beginning revolves around Slade’s mission to help the Talans defend against high-tech invaders. As players progress through the game, they will uncover the secrets of Adelpha and discover their role in the fate of this alien world. While the main story may suffer from pacing issues and too many menial fetch quests, it is the toybox of weapon modifiers and movement abilities that truly shines.

The ability to customize weapons is one of Outcast: A New Beginning’s most notable features. Gamers may add various improvements to their weapons to create a genuinely customized fighting experience. The options are infinite, ranging from splitting projectiles to rapid-fire capabilities. This degree of personalization guarantees that any player may discover a playstyle that works for them while also giving the gameplay more complexity. Apart from allowing players to customize their weapons, the game provides a unique set of mobility skills not seen in other open-world games. Because of Slade’s jetpack, traversing becomes an exciting airborne experience in and of itself. Players may feel liberated and excited as they explore the expansive open-world terrain by boosting, gliding, dashing, and hovering.

Outcast: A New Beginning offers a non-linear approach to storytelling, allowing players to tackle quests and problems in any order they choose. This freedom of choice adds replayability to the game, as players can explore different paths and outcomes. However, it’s important to note that the quests themselves can sometimes feel repetitive, relying on familiar tropes such as kill quests and item collection.

Adelpha is expansive and diverse, featuring a variety of environments ranging from jungles to deserts to snow-covered landscapes. Each area is beautifully realized, with attention to detail in the flora and fauna. Exploring Adelpha is a rewarding experience, and the game does a commendable job of guiding players through the world without feeling overly handholding.

Combat in Outcast is a mix of third-person shooting and melee combat. While the shooting mechanics are serviceable, they lack the impact and weight often found in other games of this genre. However, the game makes up for this with a variety of enemies and challenging encounters. Players will face off against invading robots and corrupted creatures, requiring strategy and skill to overcome. The difficulty of the game can be adjusted to suit individual preferences, ensuring that both casual and hardcore players can find the right level of challenge. However, it’s worth noting that enemy AI can sometimes glitch, leading to less engaging encounters. Boss fights are relatively sparse, and it would have been nice to see more variety in these challenging encounters.

Outcast: A New Beginning is not without its flaws. Performance issues, such as frequent stutters and frame rate drops, can detract from the overall experience. While the developers have promised optimization patches, these issues were present in the review build. Additionally, the game’s quests and dialogue can sometimes feel repetitive, lacking the sense of permanence and evolution seen in other RPGs.  While the dialogue can be lengthy at times, it’s worth paying attention to the conversations, as they often contain humorous and chuckle-worthy moments. The voice acting, while not groundbreaking, is solid and adds depth to the characters. However, it’s worth noting that lip-syncing and character animations can sometimes feel outdated compared to modern games.

Despite its flaws, Outcast: A New Beginning offers a fresh take on the beloved franchise. The stunning visuals, engaging customization options, and exciting traversal mechanics make it a worthwhile experience for fans of open-world games. However, the repetitive quests, lackluster combat, and performance issues keep it from reaching its full potential. With a few improvements and refinements, Outcast: A New Beginning can be a true standout in the genre.

Outcast: A New Beginning successfully captures the essence of the original game while offering a modern and visually stunning experience. The world of Adelpha is a joy to explore, and the customization options provide depth to the gameplay. While the game has its flaws, it still manages to deliver an enjoyable and immersive open-world adventure. Whether you’re a fan of the original Outcast or new to the franchise, Outcast: A New Beginning is worth checking out.

Author: Josh Coffman

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