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[ REVIEW ] - Oxenfree

A Strange, branching story of friendship, loss, love, and the paranormal. - PS4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Linux, iOS and Android

We're a little late to the party, but here is what we thought of Night School Studio's "Oxenfree".

In Oxenfree, you play as Alex who is one of five main characters in the story. Along with Nona, Ren, Clarissa, and Jonas you will learn each characters personality and backstory as you tour an island where strange events begin to unfold and impact each individual in different ways. The game is well thought out complete with some detailed conversation trees and reactions that you choose to custom tailor your relationships within the game with the other characters. There are some shocking moments, and the outcomes and consequences of your actions are all up to you. You are given a radio and you use this as a tool to hone and discover items and signals that you will encounter around the island. This is an interesting tool in the way that the walkie talkie is in say, Firewatch if you've experienced that in the past. It gives another way for the player to uncover secrets and discover new information that may not be visible or available to find otherwise.

"The overall ambiance of the game is downright creepy at times, and I recommend not playing alone."

Some of the interactions and twists in the story are very entertaining as well. This can be shaped along your journey and your actions will dictate some of the plot, and overall ending of the game. This means your ending experience can be different from someone else's ending experience. The music helps keep the mood high and tight. Scntfc is responsible for this exceptional soundtrack. The same mind behind the Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP game. Which happens to be one of my personal favorites. The overall ambiance of the game is downright creepy at times, and I recommend not playing alone. In the dark. In a quiet house. It's kind of scary. Not scary in the way a Resident Evil title is scary, but there are a few story portions that are pretty chilling.

All in all I really liked Oxenfree's engaging tale. If there was one recommendation I could make, it would be that in some instances, it seemed like the travel was somewhat cumbersome and a bit of a time waster at times. The map wasn't the easiest to navigate, but the few confused mistakes I made here and there were easily corrected. Overall, the story was the glue that bound this fantastic game and I recommend Oxenfree if you are into the linear story telling type games. Try it out now for yourself. The copy I played was on Xbox One where it's been out for quite some time, and as we mentioned at the beginning we realize we are a little late to the party. After stepping up to the plate for Oxenfree we wanted to let you know that we thought Night School Studios hit a home run.

-Randy Lunsford

Sr. Content Producer / Bad Yeti Media 

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