Xbox One Review: Outbuddies DX

Prime Metroidvania?

Enter Bahlam, a sunken city of the Old Gods, located deep in the South Atlantic Ocean. Following a shipwreck, adventurer and maritime archaeologist Nikolay Bernstein regains consciousness 36.000 feet under the sea. He’s severely wounded and unwillingly connected to a supernatural Buddy-unit. Searching for answers about his displacement our main protagonist digs deep into the lost undercity, gradually realizing an ominous presence hollowing in its shadowed caverns.

Outbuddies DX is a retro indie game that clearly takes inspiration from the original Metroid and Castlevania games, though more Metroid in its appearance. The game is a challenge and finding where to go is never as simple as it would seem, but it works, and it works well. The thing that makes Outbuddies DX stand out from other Metroidvania games is that it was designed by a single person, Julian Laufer. The fact that a game of this scale could be made by one person is just insane and definitely worthy of appreciation. Overall, it’s a blast to play and will definitely please fans of the genre.

The locations are nicely detailed considering they are just 2D sprites and pixels at this point, while combat is also well done and challenging. It runs smoothly as you would expect for a retro-inspired game running on a system like the Xbox One X. The soundtrack is also impressive and the sound effects are classically retro.

The Verdict

Outbuddies DX is a superb love letter to Metroid and Castlevania, something made more special when it’s done by a single person. The game design is on point and will please fans of either series, especially those of us waiting for the next Metroid, wherever and whenever that will be…

Score: 8.0