Oddworld Collection

Games like Oddworld

The special traits we are looking for 

People fall in love with Oddworld for different reasons. The gorgeous, cinematic vistas and character animations. The non-human characters and the bizarre world they live in. The sense of humour. The messages about environmentalism and corporate greed. The mix of real-time puzzles and tense chase scenes. A unique range of abilities including possessing your enemies and leading other characters with speech commands.

Best picks!

All the 20+ games on this list have a one or more of the above traits and are good games besides. Our top picks have several of the above traits as well as being amazing games. So if you’re an Oddworld fan, any of the following five is likely to be a game you fall in love with.

1. Ori and the Blind Forest, Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Ori approaching Mt Horu in Ori and the Blind Forest

Abe’s Oddysee is packed with high-resolution natural environments and tense chase scenes. The Ori games nail these qualities too: the layers of detail in Nibel forest are unique among 2D games today, just as Abe’s Oddysee’s scenes were in 1997, and the escape sequences will have you gripping your controller as if there is a Scrab behind you.

The cat-monkey-spirit-thing Ori, like Abe, is a vulnerable character who scurries through woodlands and ancient temples to save his land. His game doesn’t have much dialogue but it does tell a good story. It can be light hearted and charming and it can be dark, errie and threatening, and that’s a combination that any Oddworld fan will appreciate.  

Here’s a one minue clip that shows off some of what Ori and the Blind Forest has to offer:

2. Psychonauts, Psychonauts 2

If a psychedelic colour scheme seems like a hundred miles away from the tones of Oddworld, don’t judge it yet. The strange worlds of Psychonauts exist in the minds of the strange characters, and that level of strangeness can’t fail to tickle the fancy of an Oddworld players.

Other than all that, it’s a creatively designed platformer, has a great sense of humour, and a story that will keep you gripped.

Mind-control is a key tool in Abe’s arsenal, and it is much more deeply explored here, with the main character Raz delving into the psyches of various characters where he is threatened by figments of their anxieties, ambitions and past traumas. 

Here’s an quick example from an early cutscene:

3. Another World

Here’s a game that inspired Oddworld! Both Another World and the first two Oddworld games feature challenging puzzles and tense platforming chases that require precision and timing. The games share atmospheric and otherworldly locations, like the eerie alien planet of Another World and the oppressive factory of RuptureFarms in Abe’s Oddysee.

What makes this predecessor to Oddworld even more impressive is that almost ever scene is unique. Challenges and obstacles are very rarely repeated, making the game feel timelessly cinematic. Oddworld takes you to another world, and so does Another World.

Even in this clip from very early in the game, you can see where the level designers of Oddworld were getting some of their ideas from:

4. Inside

What blows me away about Inside, something that few games have managed since Oddworld, is how it makes you feel like you’re in a fully 3D world despite having entirely 2D mechanics. In Oddworld, the camera would seamlessly disconnect from the screen and fly over Mosiac Lines or whichever location you were in, in an FMV sequence that showed off the breadth and detail of the world in which your adventure takes place. Inside also indicates depth, also by clever use of the camera, lighting and background elements. It all looks totally natural. 

The boy from inside hiding from a foe

The gameplay of Insider revolves around puzzle solving and platforming that require creative thinking and precision, similar to Abe’s Oddysee. Both games also have a dark and oppressive atmosphere, with unsettling locations and characters that keep players engaged. Neither game is afraid of a cynical ending, either. 

5. Trine series

There are two game franchises that do detailed 2.5 better than any other, and those are Oddworld and Trine. The latter game’s fantastical setting, with its castles, caves, and forests, creates a sense of wonder and immersion similar to Abe’s Oddysee and Exodus. The aesthetic of both games is utterly charming and that draws players in.

The Trine party cross a bridge passing a waterfall

Both games feature challenging puzzles and platforming sections that require creativity and problem-solving skills. Trine allows players to switch between three unique characters with different abilities. It’s not quite the same as leading Mudokons to safety in Oddworld, but the party-based puzzle solving has a similar ring to it.

Even more

There are 10+ games below that we think have a good flavour of Oddworld to them. For some, this was based on their mechanics, for other on their visual design, and others on their sense of humour. In all cases, we have linked to somewhere relevant (usually the Mobygames page) where you can get an impression of what that game is like.

Classic cinematic platformers

The first two Oddworld games were part of a genre called the cinematic platformer, which most people consider to have started with Prince of Persia in 1989. The first designers of Oddworld were inspired by these titles, and the ones we have selected here

Modern eerie cinematic sidescrollers

It’s not like cinematic platformers stopped being made. Here are newer examples that capture the feeling of creeping your way through an oppressive enviroments, leaving you at risk of Rupture Farms flashbacks:

Single-screen puzzle sidescrollers

Many of the early cinematic platformers were described as “single screen” meaning that the screen did not move with your character, but was static until the player reached the end of it, causing it to scroll. In other worlds, the world was make up of a sequence of “single screens”. Here are some more extremely well designed puzzling adventures in this style: 

Worlds full of strange characters

Point and click adventure games can rival Oddworld in well developed worlds, empathetic characters and comedic writing. Not all of them are as strange and fantastical as the following, though:

Wild cards!

These ones might seem to have only tenuous similarities to Oddworld. Nonetheless, they are great games and they might be the new experience that you are looking for. After all, Oddworld was nothing if not novel!

Played one of these that stood out to you as especially Oddworld-y? Another game you think deserves to be on this list? Let us know in the comments.

Oddworld Collection

What Is Oddworld?

Oddworld started with in 1997 with the 2D cinematic platformer Abe’s Odyssey

There are five major games in the series, the latest released in 2021. 

All titles are set in the eponymous Oddworld, a world of non-human characters and unusual (often deadly) animals and wildlife.

Among other things, the Oddworld series is known for:

1. A world of fantastical and exaggerated landscapes, of natural and industrial varieties:

2. A mix of puzzle and action-based platforming, sometimes involving the ability to control your enemies, and often with the goal of saving groups of other characters:

3. A long-term series plan and development history with twists and turns, including several cancelled games that have attracted fan attention

The mainline Oddworld games cover multiple genres. The series went into a long hiatus after the release of Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath and returned with a reboot of the series.

Release Date
Abe’s Oddysee
2D Cinematic Platormer
Sep 1997
Abe’s Exoddus
2D Cinematic Platormer
Nov 1998
Munch’s Oddysee
3D Puzzle Platformer
Nov 2001
Munch & Abe
Stranger’s Wrath
Jan 2005
Abe’s Oddysee: New ‘n’ Tasty
2D Cinematic Platformer
Jul 2014
2D Cinematic Platformer
Nov 2022

A quirk of the Oddworld series is the plan for a five-game “quintology”.

However, which games are canonical entries into the quintology may not be immediately apparent. 

Abe’s Exoddus, though the second game in the series, is not considered the second entry into the quintology, but rather a bonus game. Similarly, Stranger’s Wrath is set in Oddworld but is not considered a part of the Quintology. Therefore, prior the series hiatus, there were only two games in the quintology: Abe’s Oddysee and Munch’s Oddysee.

This changed with the New ‘N’ Tasty, which was a reboot of the series. Now the series looks like this:

Abe’s Oddysee
Abe’s Exoddus
Bonus Game
Munch’s Oddysee
Stranger’s Wrath
Bonus Game
Abe’s Oddysee: New ‘n’ Tasty
A remake of Abe’s Oddysee and a reboot of the series.
A loose retelling of the story of Abe’s Exoddus


The hero of the majority of the games is the hapless Abe of the humanoid Mudoken species:

However, in two games different heroes have taken the role of protagonist, as per the above table.

Also, the species that work, roam and rule in Oddworld are almost as important characters as the heroes themselves.


The themes present in Oddworld games include:

  • slapstick humour
  • environmentalist heroes vs industrialist villains
  • exploitation and resistance of a slave class.

Oddworld also doesn’t shy away from some gruesome and disturbing imagery, as you will see in any of the game’s “bad endings”.


The first game in the series established a few iconic gameplay features, demonstrated by these short game clips:

Possessing enemies

Commanding helpless (ocassionally helpful) allies with “GameSpeak” and leading them to rescue

Most future games in the series (but not all) used both of these features to varying degrees.

With the exception of Stranger’s Wrath, all games in the series have multiple endings. This started in Abe’s Oddessey, where if you failed to rescue at least 50 out of 99 Mudokens then Abe meets a grizzly fate at the of the game. 

Starting with Munch’s Oddessey, your success at rescuing the unfortunate captives of each level is called Quarma, and sometimes you will not be able to pay the final levels of the games without passing a Quarma threshold. 

The best of Oddworld

The first two games in the series are usually considered the high point in the franchise and the true classics. When it comes to fan-reaction, we would estimate the following (I have not included New ‘N’ Tasty is it is a fairy faithful recreation of Abe’s Oddysee):

Abe’s Oddysee*****
Abe’s Exoddus*****
Munch’s Oddysee***
Stranger’s Wrath****

Oddworld’ best-known creators are Lorne Lanning and Sherry McKenna, and most of the games are developed by Oddworld Inhabitants.

We have said that atmosphere is key to the appeal of Oddworld, and with that in mind we can not overstate the importance of the music of Ellen Meijers and Josh Gabrie that so effectively sets the tone of the series starting with the first game:

Starting with Stranger’s Wrath, Michael Bross take on the duty of creating the Oddworld soundscape, with tracks that are both familiar and distinct:

Everything else

As well as the five main games already mentioned, there are two more minor games that are rarely spoken of:

Release Date
Initial Platform
Oddworld Adventures
Dec 1998
Game Boy
Oddworld Adventures 2
Jan 2000
Game Boy Color

Oddworld community

The Oddworld series has seen moderate success and has retained a following of dedicated fans that commune in the following online spaces:

You can find out more about Oddworld via:

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Oddworld Collection

Oddworld: Strangers Wrath Review

Stranger’s Wrath was too unusual for its own good. That’s probably why EA never advertised it. 2005 was the year of Call of Duty 2 and Indigo Prophecy. Stranger’s Wrath began in an Old West town of chicken-men called New Yolk City.

Stranger himself was weird, a mixture of man and ram and wildcat. Take some hits and he will amass a hide full of arrows — you recover his health by shaking them off like a cat shaking off water. He shoots as you might expect, in first person, but if you want to cover more ground you switch the perspective, Stranger drops onto all fours, and you prance around the lush wildlands at speed. I loved it. If you’re going to have a fantastical videogame, why not control someone that acts and animates like something not of this world.

There was one thing in the game that let me down: “live ammo”. From Stranger’s crossbow he shoots rodents and bugs instead of bullets. The shooting itself is fine, but the instructions describing collecting these as “hunting”. That sounded enticing. I imagined setting traps to catch boombats, and flinging the bats like bombs at the enemies, and the booms would disturb a habitat of stunkz (which are used as smelly smokebombs), which would escape into the level for you to catch. In practice, there’s really no difference between Stranger’s “live ammo” and ammo in any generic FPS — it’s just lying around.

After Stranger’s Wrath, Oddworld went on hiatas. A mere 16 years later, in April 2021, they released another original game (Soulstorm is ostensibly a remake, but there can be doubt it is a new entry into the series, unlike New N’ Tasty). With Oddworld alive again, can there be hope for a Stranger 2 that does it even better? I would certainly love to step back into Stranger’s boots.

Till next time, Stranger