PO’ed Definitive Edition (PC)

PO’ed Definitive Edition is a recent remaster of 3DO and PSX game PO’ed (funnily enough). Released originally in 1995 on the 3DO and then a year later on the Playstation, the original released had very polarizing opinions even in the early 3d gaming spectrum. Nightdive take the reigns here and have made it much more accessible for modern audiences. Lets see what’s been cooked up.

PO’ed sees a simple story laid infront of us, a chef’s spaceship has crashed on an alien planet and needs to escape. It’s very simple and there’s not much more given to that you’re just placed into the game and off we go. PO’ed is meant to be a bit of a less serious take on a shooter, where as previous games like Doom and Star Wars: Dark Forces are much more story heavy (to an extent), but PO’ed doesn’t have any of that. The game’s humour is very of the age, enemies will include “farting butts” like someone had not long watched Beavis and Butthead or Ren and Stimpy. Obviously this is very of the age, but PO’ed offers nothing too offensive like other revisited retro titles.

Gameplay is very simple, a very typical retro FPS with lots of reused repeating textures, with horizon and vertical planed maps. Combat is a bit more frustrating, with some very precise aiming needed for some weapons, especially where enemies can have more erratic movement, or worse still your ammo is either extremely short range or extremely small. A good example of this is your first weapon, which is your trusty frying pan. A melee weapon immediately in a shooter isn’t ideally a great start as you want to get a feel of how a games going to play, you literally have butts firing at you whilst you’re trying to hit them with a pan. Later on you’re given your meat cleavers which are a throwable but some precise aiming can really let you down. Obviously in 1996 there wasn’t any ADS so focusing can be a bit tough.

Levels are a bit of an unintentional labyrinth, where the games original developers had some outside thinking with a more polygonal based level design. However level design is a bit of a mess it can difficult to figure out where you need to go, not even that the levels are big and maze like, however even the smaller maps can be a struggle to figure out where to go. Visually the levels are a bit of a hot mess too, lots of textures with big contrasts, the level Core for example is a simple tube shaped map, whilst dull looking originally but jump off the first platform and the entire “ground” is a neon pink mess which can be a bit jaunting.

Visually there’s not much too say here, pixel art mostly look decent but the art style in general is a bit messy. I can deal with the firing butts but general texture work is very dull. Weapon sprites look fun and detailed however, the frying pan gets more damaged as the game goes on, the throwing knives are covered in blood and the more alien weapons also look cool.

The audio presentation for what it’s worth is a bit lackluster, no real soundtrack apart from the intro and the ending songs, sfx is all ok, apart from constant fart noises.

Moving on to the “remaster” part of the game, and without sounding like Nightdive have phoned it in, it doesn’t seem to have been given as much love as the recent Star Wars: Dark Forces or even Turok 3. We’ve obviously had the game ported to the pc for the first time which is nice, and controlling on keyboard and mouse is decent, with full support for controllers et al. Visual options don’t offer much, the usual video resolutions, v-sync options and some enhancements which only change things like head bobbing and hud messages. That’s pretty much the jist of it. Obviously the port followed to consoles too, so Xbox, Playstation and Switch owners also get to try this out with I’m sure a similar array of options, I would hope with the visuals this would be a title that is able to run at 60fps on the Switch too.

I don’t honestly think this really deserved a “definitive edition” tag added to it, it’s hard to recommend PO’ed in this climate, a £17 price tag where games like Selaco and Mad Mullet Jack have both dropped in May, to extremely positive reviews, it gets points for being a playable game with a lack of bugs, but this is a very bare bones re-release where things like No-one Lives Forever are still waiting to be revisited.



I was a bit PO’ed playing this

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