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87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 67 Ratings

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  • Summary: Owlboy is a vertical platform adventure set in the sky, where the islands of the world have been spread apart after a great calamity. You play as Otus, among the last of the Owls, a renowned race that has produced many of the world's great wonders
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. Feb 23, 2018
    100
    Owlboy is a masterpiece. Plain and simple.
  2. Feb 14, 2018
    92
    One of the greatest indie game of the last few years has arrived to consoles. A great Metroidvania with awesome art and pretty good game mechanics. A very intense story with all types of incredible moments.
  3. Feb 11, 2018
    90
    Owlboy is a three-pronged attack of success: the gameplay is tight, satisfying, and remains fresh throughout; the game’s world is visually stunning thanks to some truly masterful pixel art; and you’ll find yourself really caring about the cast of characters and the world surrounding them thanks to a compelling storyline and background lore. The game could be improved with the inclusion of map to aid exploration, but when that is the only real thing we can pick at as a negative point it is clear that we’re on to a winner.
  4. Feb 28, 2018
    90
    Ten years in the making and certainly worth the wait, Owlboy is a fantastic platform/adventure game that succeeds in making you care about the game's characters through a great tale of an underdog (or owl) wanting to prove himself to those who doubted him. Looking for a new indie game? You'd struggle to find one as well designed as this!
  5. 85
    When that patch comes, Owlboy is absolutely worth checking out, even if just for the pretty artwork and enjoyable story. Fortunately on top of that, the gameplay is also sound, delivering a nice puzzle platforming experience with a wealth of variety and distinctive elements. That being said, the Switch version is rough around the edges right now. It’s still possible to play through and enjoy, but it might be worth holding out for the patch (or even the physical version in May).
  6. Mar 19, 2018
    85
    Owlboy is a game with quality artistic style and music that leaves the ideal mood for fun. In addition to good controls with a quick response, the game makes sure to vary the gameplay.
  7. Feb 12, 2018
    65
    Owlboy has a lot of charm but suffers from a convoluted control scheme and some serious game-crashing bugs. The best way to play it is still on the PC, even though the Nintendo Switch seemed like it would be the most ideal place to play it.

See all 27 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 15
  2. Negative: 2 out of 15
  1. Jun 20, 2018
    10
    A metroidvania game with overwhelming charm, lovable protagonist, and adorable side characters that join you on a memorable journey.A metroidvania game with overwhelming charm, lovable protagonist, and adorable side characters that join you on a memorable journey. Interesting lore that gets you even more intrigued are hidden through out the world, in dungeons that you must challenge. On a down note the game feels too short, and I feel so though it should have been much longer, but never the less this game deserves to be in your library, and I wonder what D-Pad Studio has in store next. Expand
  2. May 22, 2018
    10
    Great game. Sure it's not for everyone but however enjoys classic plattformers with some new touches, great art and music and an enjoyableGreat game. Sure it's not for everyone but however enjoys classic plattformers with some new touches, great art and music and an enjoyable story should get this. The gorgeous music doesn't come far behind. This is one of the very few games whose soundtrack entered my Spotify albums list. Expand
  3. Mar 26, 2018
    9
    People come to Owlboy because of the graphics. It's been often described as the best pixel art ever, and it's certainly amongst the best. ThePeople come to Owlboy because of the graphics. It's been often described as the best pixel art ever, and it's certainly amongst the best. The gorgeous music doesn't come far behind. This is one of the very few games whose soundtrack entered my Spotify albums list.

    The gameplay is hit-and-miss–a liberal blend of platforming and shooting. In classic metroidvania style, you unlock areas in the extensive map as you gain new abilities. The difficulty level is uneven, and Owlboy is probably going to frustrate you at times. Interestingly, however, each player seems to be frustrated by a different part of the game. Some people complain about the stealth sections, or the “bullet sponge” bosses. I was fine with both, but got intensely frustrated by a sequence that most players seem to just breeze through. (Those damn monkeys!)

    All of that, however, doesn't really explain why Owlboy became an instant cult classic. That's all down to the story. So many games try very hard to come up with a meaningful story, and fall flat. Owlboy puts them all to shame by delivering a story and characters you deeply care about–and doing it all so well, it makes it look easy. This game constantly surprises you with its depth and originality. When it courts gaming cliches, it's only to subvert them later on.

    It's quite surprising how much emotional buy-in this game can elicit from you. People talk a lot about the brilliant first few minutes, the shocking ending, or that mid-game tearjerker. To me, the most unforgettable moment came very unexpected. It was an optional sequence that other players might well have missed, where I was made privy to the fate of a minor character. (Non-spoilery hint: that talk about the wife). That dialogue, the vast loneliness of the environment, and the music–oh, my, that music.

    Many games (and movies) aspire to give you moments to remember. That's a though call. That moment in Owlboy, however, I won't forget.
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  4. May 22, 2018
    7
    Owlboy is a work of art that is definitely worth experiencing but it does have some weak points. Crashes were frequent. I am generally not aOwlboy is a work of art that is definitely worth experiencing but it does have some weak points. Crashes were frequent. I am generally not a fan of pixel art but the beauty of it in this game is hard to deny. The art direction is excellent and the quality is consistent throughout. A few sequences in particular have a cinematic quality that I have never seen in a pixel art game before. The sound track is also a highlight and the way it evolved with the story always seemed appropriate and never got repetitive. Gameplay is fun for the most part and there is a good amount of variety but there are some areas that I found to be a chore to get through. The pacing of the game was also a bit weird, key moments felt rushed without much explanation as though chunks of the story had been removed. The story is good but quite simple, for an action platformer it is well above average and certainly better than any Mario story I can recall but I felt that it missed the opportunity to be a great story because it never really dug deep with any of the concepts it introduced. Overall though I liked the story for what it was and it was interesting and had some unique ideas.

    Gameplay 7 - The thing that made gameplay unique is the way you use different team-mates for your special abilities. Rather than upgrading your own attacks you find new friends to carry around and they each have a special skill. The idea is pretty cool and adds a sense of importance to the companions you rely on throughout the story. There are some sections where you lose a companion and you miss them because your abilities are more limited. The control scheme though could be a bit confusing I constantly found myself accidentally dropping my team-mates and then I would have to cycle through them to get the one I wanted. Also aiming with the right stick while moving with the left with the charged ability could be troublesome. Not a big deal but a bit frustrating during fast paced battles or parts where timing was crucial. Another thing about gameplay that was a bit of a pain was the way the camera moved between sections. Sometimes the camera would follow Otus which was fine but when you got to the edge of a new area it would stop before shifting over, almost like swapping between two different images. The transition felt jarring and happened very frequently. Collecting coins in the game was a bit underwhelming. You can spend the coins but almost the only thing you get is a slight health upgrade. It just didn't feel rewarding.

    Story/Progression 7 - The story is quite unique but still follows the typical structure of collecting special objects hidden at the end of dungeons. There are a few things that it does different from most games though. There are some major twists, whenever Otus and his friends go to a new place something unexpected usually happens. Without giving spoilers those moments ranged from tragic to awe inspiring. I found the lore to be a bit underdeveloped but the ideas were good enough to keep me engaged. The final was very satisfying.

    World 7 - Each location has its own identity and all of the dungeons have a unique style and atmosphere. The biggest weakness of the world is the layout. It is a convoluted web of passageways. There is no fast travel system so every time you want to back track you need to go back through a long winding tunnel of obstacles. It didn't bother me at first but by the end of the game I found getting from place to place to be a chore. The dungeons themselves are pretty well designed but it would have been really helpful if you could teleport from one area to another after clearing each one. Teleportation already plays a role in the game so I don't know why that wasn't included as a way of getting from place to place.

    Characters 6 - I did like the characters but very few of them evolved beyond their very basic personality. There are only a few characters who we really get to learn much about beyond their basic description. There were a couple characters who were more than they seemed and those reveals were satisfying but some of the primary characters seemed quite one note.

    Visual Design 8 - This is easily one of the best looking pixel art games I have ever played. The environments are all beautiful and detailed and the sky always seems to look vibrant. The background sculptures actually look three dimensional and have a high level of detail and structure. There are a few scenes that show historic events in the story that are true works of art with a very high level of detail and form.

    Sound Design 8 - The sound track is great. The songs themselves are very good but also the way they are used in the story. Each area has its own theme but the music also changes as the story progresses. I always felt that the music matched the atmosphere and that is pretty rare even in AAA games. The sound effects were also pretty good although they didn't stand out as specia
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  5. Mar 6, 2018
    7
    Good:
    - Breathtaking sprite art and animations
    - Fun boss fights and sequences scattered throughout - Flying around party members and using
    Good:
    - Breathtaking sprite art and animations
    - Fun boss fights and sequences scattered throughout
    - Flying around party members and using them in place of traditional weapons and abilities is a very fun and unique mechanic
    - Solid soundtrack
    - The writing and animations convey emotion very well
    - Great level design with the added bonus of a ton of variety

    Mixed:
    - Very unpredictable narrative but you're constantly waiting for the plot to find it's footing
    - Characters are well written and interesting but the abrupt ending results in some incomplete character arcs
    - Very little incentive to seek out all the collectibles but the cut scenes in the shop were some of the most charming in the game

    Bad:
    - Some puzzle mechanics are more tedious then enjoyable
    - Pacing problems throughout
    - Deceptively linear; not a whole lot to explore in the open world
    - The dev team set their scopes way to wide plot wise, leaving for a sudden and frankly disappointing ending
    - The Switch's problem with precise controls can lead to some frustrating moments
    - Some frame rate issues during boss fights
    XXX
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  6. Feb 20, 2018
    6
    I am a huge fan of Metroidvania and story driven games, and when I heard that Owlboy was coming to consoles, I was really excited after seeingI am a huge fan of Metroidvania and story driven games, and when I heard that Owlboy was coming to consoles, I was really excited after seeing the reviews and praise from the Internet on the game. But ultimately, I am disappointed with the experience.

    The gameplay is very average and dull, where it consists of you flying, shooting enemies (which is very frustrating and consists of awkward controls), and going through temples. There aren't too many extras or unlockables gained by exploring, a staple of Metroidvanias that is missing. The puzzles are mostly simple, and boss battles toward the end become very difficult, with the last one being nearly impossible.

    The story is also marginal, it has some humorous moments and likable characters, but is nothing to write home about.

    Also, as of now on the Switch version, there are many, many game crashing bugs that occur, mainly when the loading screen first appears when traveling to a new area. During the last boss, I was close to the end of the battle, only for my game to crash and I had to start over. Keep in mind, the last boss fight is very difficult and I was finally about to complete it, which was remarkably frustrating.

    The real disappointment here comes from the first couple of hours being great, and the rest of the game being a boring drag. The beginning of the game has a promising story and characters, and the gameplay seems like it will be fun and highly enjoyable. But after the first dungeon, I started to become bored, and barely even made it to the end of the game. I will say that the art and music is excellent, with beautifully detailed characters and environments, and a pleasant orchestral soundtrack.

    I do not understand the critical acclaim behind Owlboy. It is a repetitive, dull game that fans of Metroidvania may enjoy, but absolutely not at full price, I'd suggest waiting for the physical version to come out and drop in price over time if you are really interested in playing. The beginning of the game, art and music are all spot on, but most of this adventure is passable.
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  7. Mar 20, 2018
    2
    This is easily the most over-rated indie game I have ever played. My disdain for it only grew the longer I played. I very rarely have such aThis is easily the most over-rated indie game I have ever played. My disdain for it only grew the longer I played. I very rarely have such a strong negative reaction to a game, but this nearly had me throwing my Switch into the wall. I couldn't even finish it, and I tried really had to motivate myself since Nintendo doesn't do eShop refunds. But I just couldn't get through more than half of it. I am completely baffled by how much praise it's gotten; I've never felt so out of sync with the hive mind.

    First off, the story is dull and unengaging; I could barely pay attention when the text dialogues popped up. Second, it's infuriatingly hard at times, not because it's challenging, but because it's terribly designed. If you get hit you get knocked to the ground, and the way many enemies and sections are designed, it can be nearly impossible to get back up flying and shooting back without getting hit a bunch more times—or dying altogether. There's ridiculous bullcrap like lava that kills you instantly if you accidentally touch it or get knocked down into it. The control scheme is awful; I frequently found myself pressing the wrong button in the heat of battle and never got it down. It's just horrible game design. It's not fun and when it's not infuriating, it's pretty boring.

    The art direction and music are the only positives to a terrible experience.
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See all 15 User Reviews