Metascore
84

Generally favorable reviews - based on 55 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 55
  2. Negative: 0 out of 55
  1. May 10, 2011
    100
    It's a visually striking game, combined with a beautiful soundtrack and challenging platforming and the pacing of the new abilities and moments between boss fights is pretty well executed.
  2. Apr 28, 2011
    100
    Outland is an outstanding game, easily one of the best examples of its genre to emerge on the console download services. I think it's a far better, more dynamic game than something more single-minded style-over-substance games such as Limbo or Braid.
  3. May 16, 2011
    92
    Ultimately, Outland harks back to a time before celebrity voice-overs and glossy cutscenes, before the industry exploded into the multi-billion-dollar behemoth it is nowadays. It's straight-forward but intelligent, occasionally bastard-hard but never impossible, repetitive but never tedious and, though Outland might not make much sense story-wise, it more than delivers in every other department.
  4. Oct 20, 2011
    91
    One of the best downloadable titles of 2011 offers beautiful visuals and atmospheric andventuring, reminiscent of classics such as Super Metroid and Ikaruga. [May 2011]
  5. May 9, 2011
    91
    Both unique and well-developed and will leave you wanting more. If the seven-hour main campaign isn't enough, you can go back and play any number of Outland's inspirations.
  6. May 5, 2011
    91
    A masterful game that grasps players from the start and doesn't let go until the final battle.
  7. Apr 28, 2011
    91
    You could easily fill an entire review with the grocery list of games from which Outland cribs its gameplay elements -- Ubisoft's own marketing specifically calls out Ikaruga and Prince of Persia as "inspirations," for heaven's sake. But doing so seems unnecessarily reductive to me, because Outland manages to take those "inspirations" and create something that feels like genuine innovation.
  8. Apr 26, 2011
    91
    Outland is fast, it's fluid, it's unbelievably gorgeous, and it's got some of the finest level and boss design I've seen in a long time. If you fondly remember the days of sitting down in front of your NES or Mega Drive or Amiga with a new platformer, or if you recall Flashback, Strider, Castlevania, Metroid, Ninja Gaiden, or anything else I've name-dropped in this review, you shouldn't hesitate to pick this up immediately.
  9. Oct 16, 2011
    90
    With its smooth controls and challenging game world Outland comes in as a cool to play concept game that is going to be considered a simplistic throwback classic that intermingles with the gaming worlds of today.
  10. Jun 29, 2011
    90
    Regardless of whether you're an old-school platform fanatic or someone who has never picked up a platformer in your life, Outland is a game worth checking out. An impulse buy with retail production values, it's hard to go wrong with this one.
  11. 90
    An ambient platforming essential. [July 2011, p.102]
  12. Jun 5, 2011
    90
    Outland is a well-done sidescrolling action game that integrates its bullet hell mechanics well. It brings a little something new to an old genre, giving it a bit of fresh life. When looking at a genre where it's so easy for companies to cut corners and make one just like any of the others, seeing a game that really goes the extra mile is a good sign and worth supporting. It might not have as much content as some may want, but it's still an worthwhile experience.
  13. May 27, 2011
    90
    Outland has a lot to offer: A great combination of gameplay styles influenced by other games, astounding controls, and a simple and effective aesthetic. In short it has everything a game needs to be great.
  14. May 10, 2011
    90
    Though the difficulty spikes steadily once you get through the early portion of the game, frequent checkpoints save you from having to replay lengthy stretches of challenging turf.
  15. May 9, 2011
    90
    While I'm not a huge fan of the online co-op, Outland is a tremendous game overall and should be purchased by anyone who enjoys Metroid-style romps, 2D platformers, or even bullet hell shooters. For $10, you'll get one of the best action platformers, and one of the best-looking, sounding, and controlling games available.
  16. May 6, 2011
    90
    Outland has enough virtues to be remembered as one of the best platforms games of the year. If you like the genre this is a must-have.
  17. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    Its impetus on platforming, combat and collecting will intrigue players that like any number of genres, and that's a good thing, because Outland does just about everything it does exceptionally well.
  18. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    Exciting gameplay packed with clever mechanics and framed by a compelling artistic vision make Outland a superb experience.
  19. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    Something old, something new, something red and something blue, Outland stands as another fine example of how old-school platforming can be brought triumphantly into the modern era with tight gameplay and an interesting twist on an old staple.
  20. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    A visually awesome game, with a demanding but highly satisfying gameplay. If you aren't afraid of an unforgiving and old school flavored experience, it's a strongly recommended buy.
  21. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    Outland is the third great game from the clever guys of Housemarque. This incredible cocktail of Prince of Persia, Metroid, Ikaruga and Castlevania is as crazy as awesome. The game can be bought for a bunch of Euros so... Buy it, you'll love its essence!
  22. Apr 28, 2011
    90
    Fast, fluid, challenging, alluring, a visual and audio treat, Outland utilises classic inspiration, modern sensitivities and innovation to create the best original platformer in a generation.
  23. Apr 27, 2011
    90
    Outland is a phenomenal game that doesn't so much innovate, as much as it perfects. The polarity aspect is genius and the platforming is top-notch. Adding in co-op only sweetens the deal, making this a must-own title.
  24. Apr 27, 2011
    90
    I would have loved a more meaningful or full-bodied story in Outland, but at least the mystical narrative maintains the unreal vibe that the rest of the game exudes. Beyond that, the action-packed platforming, hypnotic music, and striking aesthetic make Outland a must-play. I am always astounded that more developers don't create 2D exploration games. With Outland, not only do we get a great new entry in the genre, but a unique variation on the theme unlike anything else on the market.
  25. Apr 26, 2011
    90
    Adding Ikarugas colour matching mechanics to a Metroidvania-esque game was a stroke of genius, and feels so intuitive that we're almost shocked that it hasn't been done before. Estetically beautiful, Outland contains smart level design, tight controls and excellent online coop. Don't miss out on this game!
  26. Apr 29, 2011
    87
    When it comes down to it, Outland is very much one of those artsy games with an impactful artistic side that can be just amazing. Don't be fooled by this game's classic look: This game is cleverly filled with great combat, puzzles and platforms.
  27. 86
    There is very little replay value in the game, but that doesn't really matter. Your first time through is so much fun, and the co-op challenges are a real treat. You can't get much better for ten bucks.
  28. May 5, 2011
    86
    A great game, plenty of funny puzzles and platforming. Visually stunning and with some enjoyable boss battles, Outland sometimes lacks in rhythm and narrative depth.
  29. Jun 4, 2011
    85
    Top stuff. [July 2011, p.87]
  30. 85
    Outland is a great platformer that brings together a unique artistic visual style with well-crafted and perfect feeling gameplay. It's just a little bit of a shame that it feels a tad shallow compared to other titles on the market. Still, at 800 points, this is an absolute steal that every platforming fan should pick up.
  31. May 10, 2011
    85
    Even though I was only interested in Outland for its looks at the onset, playing the game gave way to one of the more memorable gaming experiences I've had in recent months. From the growing complexity of the level design, to the vibrant and simple presentation, to the way in which developers Housemarque were able to create a universal mythology that truly speaks to the hero inside all of us, Outland has set the bar for downloadable titles in 2011.
  32. Apr 28, 2011
    85
    Not perfect, but it does so many things altogether well that you shouldn't miss it at any cost. Play it and spread the word, so the franchise may grow in greater chapters.
  33. Jun 14, 2011
    83
    Outland is a beautiful, challenging platformer.
  34. May 3, 2011
    83
    There's no mistaking Outland for its marvelous presentation or its curious conglomeration of elements, which quite possibly amount to the freshest take on action platformers in a good long while. At 800 Microsoft Points, it's a journey well worth taking.
  35. Aug 1, 2011
    80
    Metroidvania. Ikaruga. Shadow of the Colossus. All the influences are there, but don't mistake it for those. Outland is a game all its own. It doesn't oversell.
  36. Jun 28, 2011
    80
    The premise transfers comfortably enough. [Issue#73, p.101]
  37. Jun 13, 2011
    80
    Outland is a unique platform game. The gameplay can be really hard but manages to find a good balance between difficult and nearly impossible. It has a great visual style which adds up to the fun.
  38. 80
    Whether you work together or dive in solo, this unique journey is worth taking. [July 2011, p.79]
  39. May 11, 2011
    80
    Outland will put your skills to the test, but strikes a pleasant balance between frustration and triumph. It's not the easiest game in the world, but the effort it takes to master is well worth it.
  40. May 10, 2011
    80
    Pretty, dense, nerve-challenging, immersive, innovative... Outland is easily one of the gems of April 2011. Combining with talent several influences (Limbo, Castlevania, Ikaruga), it goes back to the rules of 2D platformers, with an added twist. It's an enticing tribal journey, with a soul, at a small price.
  41. May 6, 2011
    80
    It's a game which is fun to play simply for the joy of playing, and when you throw in the ability to play through the story with a second person, along with some additional challenge areas designed exclusively for co-op play, Outland is highly appealing, highly enjoyable downloadable title.
  42. May 4, 2011
    80
    A tightly designed downloadable game bursting with demanding traversal, surprisingly deep combat, and lush visual design. You can't be a fan of 2D action games in 2011 and not give this game a look.
  43. May 4, 2011
    80
    Style and substance creates a very solid game. The core platform mechanics are right up there with the best, and the added element of switching between "hot" and "cold" creates just that much more frustration and fun. The different but pleasing visual presentation with a good library of dependable sounds fleshes out the strong gameplay foundation quite well. Download the trial and if your first impression is positive, the 800 MS Points will be well spent.
  44. 80
    An excellent and highly original platformer that mixes elements of Prince of Persia, Metroid and Ikaruga of all things. Quality of this kind is rare among download-only titles.
  45. 80
    A solid and enjoyable platformer, and one of the best Metroidvanias available for Xbox Live Arcade. Fans of the genre will note the repetitive strain later into the experience, but anyone else is bound to have a blast throughout.
  46. Apr 27, 2011
    80
    All quibbles aside, though, there's a worthwhile experience waiting to be unearthed for lovers of aesthetics and adventure alike.
  47. Apr 27, 2011
    80
    Developers! If a battle has several clear stages of pattern recognition, there had better be checkpoints between them.
  48. Apr 26, 2011
    80
    Don't play Outland because you expect it to be charming and filled with personality, then: play it because of the swooping, speeding cleverness of its design. Play it because of the craft.
  49. May 2, 2011
    75
    Boss battles are another highlight, a great example being a robed figure who can unpredictably cause colored rubble to come whizzing by from any direction.
  50. May 10, 2011
    70
    Outland is without a doubt a good game. The switching between light and dark works well in this platformer, and gets assisted by great smooth gameplay. Include the cooperative elements and you've got a game that belongs at the top of downloadable titles. That Outland doesn't belong to that elite is because of the sometimes very artificial and stale level design.
  51. May 10, 2011
    70
    Proposed as an encounter between Ikaruga and Prince of Persia, Outland disappoints most of the expectations. The excellent graphics package, the opposition between light and shade, isn't enough to hide a gameplay often understated. Outland conflicts with a level design unable to enhance the gameplay. A good fighting system and memorable boss battles help a little.
  52. 70
    Borrowing so obviously, from so many classic games, was always a risk but this stylish platformer pulls off its theft with some élan.
  53. May 2, 2011
    70
    Outland mixes many many influences together. It may not be as surprising as you could expect but it does a great job though and all in all this is an adventure worth playing.
  54. Apr 27, 2011
    70
    By no means a classic on those terms, Outland is nonetheless a well-executed game that - hopefully - lays the groundwork for future iteration upon its central ideas.
  55. May 23, 2011
    60
    As it stands, it's a fairly empty, unfocused experience that will find a number of fans regardless thanks to the power of the truly killer visuals.
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 17
  2. Negative: 2 out of 17
  1. May 12, 2011
    10
    Outland is a beautiful game. As a single player adventure it borrows elements from so many games, yet it feels like a very satisfying and new experience. The controls are spot on, but there's one complaint and its quite simple, it needs offline co-op to be a true masterpiece. For the price Outland is just a steal. I highly recommend that this game should be put in the top of anyones list. Full Review »
  2. May 1, 2011
    10
    Once again the critics prove to be pretentious morons who fail to realize what fun is. This game is pure gaming goodness. Its clever, has plenty of charm, excellent level design, an insane amount of collectables, and an excellent idea of what fun is. COOP opens up additional gameplay mechanics...brilliant! Full Review »
  3. Apr 28, 2011
    8
    Paying homage to vintage games such as flashback and metroid, outland delivers oldshool gameplay with new graphics and style. While the game will not blow your mind, its fine tuned gameplay and original gameplay twist will have you spark a grin. I never want to ruin game stories for anyone so I won't go there but I can say that the story is neat as well. For only $10, the game is well worth it for anyone that wishes to timetravel back to the good ole genesis days in a modern fassion. The game is also a pretty good lenth. Bottom line is that outland rocks socks. Oh yeah, so does the music. Follow me on twitter @thetruthbites for live behind the scene tweets, picture, and videos from E3 2011. Have v.I.p access and I wanna share the love. Full Review »