Psychonauts (PS2 / Xbox, 2005)

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Retro STrife
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Psychonauts (PS2 / Xbox, 2005)

Postby Retro STrife » June 14th, 2020, 10:33 am

I started playing Psychonauts this weekend. It was originally released on PS2 and Xbox, but I'm actually playing it on PS4 (it is available for digital download). I don't play many 3D platformers, but I've always wanted to try Psychonauts. It's main draw for me was the promise of it having a good sense of humor, and it's lived up to that pretty well for the first few hours. (It's directed by Tim Schafer, known for working on many other humorous games like Grim Fandango, Day of the Tentacle, Secret of Monkey Island, Brutal Legend, etc., and the style of humor is similar here.) The game is about a kid who goes to a summer camp to learn how to become a "Psychonaut", only for things to eventually take a more sinister turn, and many of the levels take place inside the minds of other people that he enters with his psychonaut powers. The levels inside people's minds allows for some unique level design too.

I'm having fun with it so far - not sure if I'll finish it, but I plan to play it for at least a little while longer. Despite good reviews, it didn't sell well when it came out in 2005. But it still seems to be well-known among retro gamers, because of it's reputation as a fun and unique game from that era. It's generated enough interest that they are finally doing a sequel, expected to be released in 2020. Anyone else tried this or looking forward to the sequel?

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VideoGameCritic
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Re: Psychonauts (PS2 / Xbox, 2005)

Postby VideoGameCritic » June 14th, 2020, 10:40 am

I decided to finally bite the bullet and purchase the original Xbox game. I've heard so much about it over the years, it clearly deserves a review.

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Retro STrife
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Re: Psychonauts (PS2 / Xbox, 2005)

Postby Retro STrife » June 14th, 2020, 10:55 am

Good call. I went to check your review after I started playing it (figuring this kind of game was up your alley), but was surprised to see you didn't have one yet. I'll be interested to hear what you think. Not sure if you'll love it, but it's a solid game at least, with good characters and a humorous tone.

And I think you made the right choice getting the Xbox version. The two versions are fairly identical, but the Xbox version is known to have a bit of a graphical upgrade over the PS2 version.

I actually have the Xbox version as well, but I've never been motivated enough to set up the Xbox long-term to play through it. But I saw the download for cheap on PS4 ($5 or less), so that was the motivation I needed. It's nice having the physical edition, but it's more convenient to play on my PS4.

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velcrozombie
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Re: Psychonauts (PS2 / Xbox, 2005)

Postby velcrozombie » June 14th, 2020, 9:12 pm

It's been almost a decade since I've played Psychonauts but I'd say I had a positive experience. I will say that it's a case of average play mechanics being overcome by everything else (story, characters, dialogue, humor, imagination, art direction) bringing the A-game. There's a lot of variety to the worlds and scenarios - one world had you as a kaiju version of yourself stomping around a city populated by talking fish, another world put you in this twisted 50s suburbia where every character was played by the Men in Black. I made it over halfway through the game but at a certain point the collect-a-thon aspects wore me down and I quit, although it's been long enough that I'd give it another go.


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