OlliOlli World Preview
During a recent closed doors preview of OlliOlli World, the latest entry in the series from developers Roll7, our expectations were all over the place. The obvious changes point to OlliOlli World being a huge departure in terms of looks but still keeping its core – a skateboarding platformer – despite the visual overhaul. Upon playing, it is quite clear that OlliOlli World is the same fun game we’ve come to know ever since it first released back in 2014, all while introducing a brand new coat of paint that portrays its chill and fun vibe, introducing an exciting new world with memorable characters and a story to follow.
The Virtual Hands-On Event allowed us to tackle 2 biomes (Cloverbrook and Sunshine Valley) in the world of Radlandia, each with its own distinct personality and challenges to overcome. A quick comparison of the game with its predecessors will show you just how much OlliOlli has evolved, with this latest installment featuring vibrant and playful visuals that really stand out and is an exciting deviation from its first releases. Each character and world features hand-drawn art that is reminiscent of Saturday morning cartoons, with splashes of pastel colors that bring each object and background to life. Compared to the pixel-style of the previous games, this feels like a step in the right direction.
OlliOlli World does its best to ease players into the game, and isn’t as intimidating as other skateboarding titles out there. What is immediately noticeable though is how much of the charm of the original gameplay is still captured, making it feel like this was Roll7’s vision of the game all along. The previous titles could have been just fantastic technical demos leading up to this moment, with modern improvements that really bring the game to life.
Another big change that the game introduces is the addition of lovable characters in the game, making it more than just another skateboarding title. This makes the game more relatable to a lot of players, including myself, and is just the touch of identity the game needed to be more accessible to a wider audience.
In OlliOlli World, each character you’ll encounter gives value to your every action. There’s someone that teleports you when you mess up, another one to push you to more challenges, and a character that records and keeps tab of your moves. They’re not just faces to talk to, but actual personalities that you can connect with that guide you throughout your journey.
Tricks are a big part of OlliOlli World, and the control scheme of the game has made playing it easy even for newbies. Your character will run through the levels automatically similar to those mobile runner games, and since moving is automatic, your left stick becomes a dedicated trick-stick. Depending on the direction you press, will let you pull off stunts like a heel flip, ollie, and much more. You can also grind on rails and grab onto your board, even letting you pull of manuals to chain more combos together.
OlliOlli World also has levels with branching paths, which you can transition to with the press of a button. This allows you to explore new areas and more opportunities to rack up points.
There’s also a great deal of replayability to OlliOlli World, with each level having challenges that you can complete. Of course, these challenges are called challenges for a reason, and could be quite unforgiving at times, but you can always choose to skip them if that’s not your cup of tea.
In fact, OlliOlli World is something that you can play just to relax and zone out. With its easy-on-the-eyes visuals and chill music, the game can be quite a Zen experience if you just want to pull off some tricks or enjoy the views.
Overall, OlliOlli World may not be that next-gen ultra realistic title that everybody is looking out for because it doesn’t need to be. The game is a fun and chill romp that is easy to pick up and play but also offers up a challenge for those who wish to go down that route. With its laid-back gameplay and relaxing presentation, the game is certainly in our 2021 radar.
OlliOlli World is due out in Winter 2021 for the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series, Switch, and PC.