What’s that with Vikings and mushrooms? They consumed them before battle to enter the state of frenzy. They revered them for their mind-altering properties. They had even sprinkled them as a condiment over their ham and eggs, with a double serving of that delicious ice-cold ale. However, never in my wildest dreams had I thought that I’ll see someone using them as a magical trampoline. Well, they say there’s the first thing for everything, and Oddmar, a phenomenal platformer by Mobge for iOS and Android devices is nothing if not full of splendid surprises.
The first pleasant bombshell is that it actually had appeared for Android devices just a couple of days ago. For nine long, agonizing months envious Android users were drooling over this fantastic piece of software, and now this colorful, perfectly polished, ultra-glossy game is finally available on Google Play. And it’s completely free, no less. Pass me my biggest tankard, and let’s all drink to the health of gods! And if you can’t quite appreciate my excitement, just think of this: Oddmar is a game that’s worthy of the very best platform games of…well, all times, easily matching legends like Jazz Jackrabbit, Captain Claw, Rayman and scores of others.
Now, if you’ve imagined that you’ll play as some blond, buff, herculean Nordic hero who’s respected by his peers, admired by children and adored by bawdy Viking lasses, I’ll have to disappoint you. Instead, what you’ve got is Oddmar: a fat, lazy, lout who looks like a crossbreed between a village idiot and a complete dunce. However, unbeknownst to himself, as well as his fellow Vikings, Oddmar is actually a favorite of the gods, destined for great things. If only he would quit being completely useless, stuffing his face with prodigious quantities of food and scrounging from his neighbors. One day the village chief had had enough of him and had ordered him to pillage and burn the nearby forest if he wants to redeem himself and become a useful member of the community. If not, he’ll be banished from the village, never to return again. Poor Oddmar was understandably devastated and that very night he had a dream that involved his long lost friend Vaskr, gates of Valhalla (which were off-limits to him) and a forest fairy who gave him a verbal beating and an unusual and magical gift, the one that will help him mend his selfish ways and take his rightful place in Valhalla. But first, he has to do something in return.
The power he got was nothing less than a power to summon magical mushrooms that will help him jump higher than any man before him. This awesome mushroomy power is an integral part of the gameplay, because, thanks, to it, Oddmar will be able to reach all those inaccessible places. With this power, Oddmar will also be able to jump right on the heads of his enemies and squash them to the ground, kind of like our favorite Italian plumber. Both powers (in addition to good ol’ axes and shields) will come in handy when Oddmar’s whole village suddenly disappeared without the trace. It’s up to Oddmar to solve this mystery and prove that he’s not just a big, fat, hopeless oaf everybody thought he was.
It’s actually pretty hard to describe the beauty of this game, as well as a special kind of charm that Oddmar himself, an awkward, unlikely hero that he is, gives off. The wonderful nordic landscapes that you’ll be leaping about on your trail of mushrooms simply defies words. From Oddmar’s humble seaside village, through streams to forests, this wonder of mobile gaming design won’t cease to amaze you. It’s not that developer had taken the trouble only about superficial aspects of the design – each level on its own is full of brilliant little details and original twists, each introduces some new gaming mechanics, each is brilliant as a whole, and at the same time perfectly introduces the next one, so that we have one continuous, action-packed narrative about an ugly duckling Viking on his road of redemption and glory.
Indeed, this is the game you shouldn’t miss for anything in the world and now that’s finally available for Android – completely for free, mind you – you really don’t have any viable excuse not to enjoy this phenomenal, trippy, Viking platformer adventure. We’ve seen many high-quality platformers for mobile devices so far, but, by my beard, Oddmar is a game on completely another level. In fact, I would gladly give it 10/10, but I’m afraid that, when euphoria and all those mushrooms wear off from my system, I would feel a bit stupid. So check out the box below, and see what Oddmar actually got.