Game Review: Omori (PC)

Posted October 15, 2022 by Angie in Video Game Reviews / 0 Comments

About:

ESRB Rating: Mature (Blood, Strong Language, Violence)
Publisher: OMOCAT
Release Date: June 17, 2022
Single Player
Nintendo || Steam || Xbox

Story:

You play as Omori, a troubled young boy. His home life is unpleasant (we slowly learn why), so he spends a lot of time in his Headspace. In this space, he hangs out with his friends. At least until Basil goes missing. Now, it’s up to him and the rest of their friends to track down their missing buddy! Then in the real world, Omori is dealing (or not) with moving in a few days.

This story deals heavily with depression, anxiety, grief, and suicide. You are not guaranteed a happy ending either.

Visuals:

Omori uses pixel art and sketch type drawings, making for a unique visual experience. The game takes place in two different worlds: the real world and inside Omori’s mind. Plus the White Space. The real world looks…well real-ish for a hand-drawn world, and the dream world within Omori’s mind is a brightly pastel version of the real world. The White Space is white. All look great.

I love the colorful pastel world where Omori goes adventuring with his friends. It’s a unique color palette, mostly centered around pinks, purples, and greens. It kind of looks like candy. I’m sure that’s a weird description, but that’s just how the colors look to me. On the other hand, Omori’s White Space is all black and white, just like his character sprite. We aren’t introduced to the real world outside of the house until several hours into the game, but just as much care went into its toned-down design as the dream world.

I also like how the text boxes look like chalkboards. It added to the whimsical feel of the game. The use of Polaroids was also a nice touch. This is just a generally great looking game with a lot of variety in backgrounds, enemy design, and all the little details.

Omori is mostly played in a top-down perspective. There are a few sections that are straight on like a side-scroller. The battles takes place in little windows, with Omori’s party being in the corners and their enemies in the middle of the screen. Everything is very easy to see, and there’s never too much happening on screen.

There are some disturbing images in Omori. Actually, one of the first things you see when starting the game is Omori’s sketchbook, full of gruesome drawings. This definitely sets the tone of the game, despite the first gameplay location being a colorful forest and playground. And there are several minor jump scares and not always where you’d expect one. There are also multiple suicides including hanging and by stabbing.

Sound Effects + Music:

I adored the music in Omori. It’s upbeat and fun and has a kind of 80s-feel to it which matches the candy colored world. Captain Space Boyfriend’s battle music is A+! I didn’t even mind repeating that fight a handful of times, because that song is great.

The sound effects are equally effective. I can’t think of any that were annoying or overstayed their welcome. Although the squelch of Omori stabbing himself to get out White Space was a bit disturbing, especially when matched with the visuals.

Gameplay + Controls:

Omori seems to be a mix of point-and-click adventure and RPG. When you’re in White Space, you have to click around to interact and figure out how to leave. Then you go out with Omori’s friends (in Headspace and the Real World) and it becomes an RPG, complete with cutesy monsters to defeat, objects to equip, and skills to learn.

The battle system has several moving parts. The basics are easy to grasp. You have the typical Attack, Skills, and Items. But as you move along you pick up new tactics, like Emotions. Some Skills change based on what emotion the character is feeling, and the emotions also affect the monsters. You’ll also get follow-up attacks, which I did have trouble getting the hang of without a guide. Using them is no problem, but knowing what they do and when you can use them was a little confusing.

Omori also has a ton of side quests and optional activities. There’s no way I did them all during my initial playthrough. Some things you’ll just stumble upon during exploration, and you won’t know if it’s something that progresses the story or not until you’ve completed it. Mostly these are fetch quests from residents of the various areas, who will give you special items for helping them. In my opinion, they’re worth doing, but not stressing over. Omori can also take part-time jobs in the Real World to earn money for items and other activities around town.

When I first started playing, I was concerned about there being no autosave and no way to save on demand. Instead, you’ll have specific save points. Omori’s sister, Mari, will be sitting on a picnic blanket where you can grab some food to heal your entire party and then check her basket to save the game. However, these picnics are quite generously distributed. There were only a couple of times where I had to play much longer than I expected in order to be able to save. There are also a few other  activities scattered throughout the game that will heal your party, but without the ability to save.

Boss battles are also very generous when you lose. You have the option to try again or restart from your last save. I mostly chose try again unless I was out of time. When you do retry, you regain all of your Health, Juice, and any items you had used in the losing battle. That latter point was very surprising, but very welcome! It allows you to try different combinations toward victory!

Replayability:

Omori does have two main routes with different endings, so the game is definitely replayable. And should be replayed to see where the story goes. I made multiple save points, so I can jump in where the story the branches to see some of the different endings. I did screw them up a bit, so I won’t be able to get the “Normal” neutral endings without replaying everything. But those endings are suppose to be very similar to the “Hikikomori” endings, which I would like to play through some day.

Overall:

I did have a little trouble getting into Omori. I liked it right away, but it just didn’t hold my attention for very long. So I’d have to play in very small chunks. But once I got into it, I was into it! There’s a lot going on in this game from the complex, dark story to the variety of side quests and mini games to the in-depth battle system. There’s something here to keep a variety of players engaged.

Sharing is caring!

Tags:


[convertkit form=2051772]

Leave a Reply