NYCC 14: Bandai Namco Games – Outcast Odyssey

The past weekend at New York Comic Con (NYCC) I had the chance to stop by Bandai Namco’s game booth and check out a few of their games. One such game was Outcast Odyssey which just launched this week on the iOS platform. Let me start by saying that this game is complex, but in a good way. When most people think of mobile gaming they think of things like Words With Friends, Angry Birds and Candy Crush Saga. Simple games that don’t eat up a lot of time, but become addictive in their simplicity. The thing that stood out to me about Outcast Odyssey is that while it’s simple to play, its complex in what it contains. It has elements of a lot of popular mobile games, some of which I mentioned previously, but then also elements of console gaming as well. For instance dungeon crawling and RPG grinding.

Outcast Odyssey is very much so an RPG, but one that’s played with cards. You stack your deck with your player card and pick up other cards along the way. From there you set off to explore/dungeon crawl. That’s where you’ll run into creatures to fight, treasure chests to open and items to discover. They’re quick battles which is good because that never means you’ll never have to put life on hold to finish a battle.

The cards are what I found really interesting. They’re all illustrated and as I was told, by comic book creators. They definitely have a Zenescope cover look to them and I mean that as a compliment. We all know that Zenescope produces some of the best covers, but whereas Zenescope drips sex, Outcast Odyssey has fantastic fantasy based art. The best way I can describe it is soft. There aren’t any sharp edges and everything is colored wonderfully making it look three dimensional. The cards themselves move around in that fake kind of 3-D, which is actually pretty cool.

Since the cards are the primary focus of what you’ll be doing in the game they have a lot of things you can do with them. You can enhance them by using other cards to power them up, you can evolve them if you manage to get two of the same cards and you can equip things like weapons to them as well.

OutcastOdyssey_DEMON_QUEEN_byChuckPiresI was able to see a full evolution of the Demon Queen card and it’s rather cool. Each time the card evolves the character changes slightly and so does the background. In the case of the Demon Queen she becomes sexier and sexier, but her little minion that’s with her also goes through some changes and it’s pretty funny.

That last thing you can do is battle your friends or other people with your deck. You can do this in real time or like Quiz Up fight after the fact and see who the victor is. Because we were on a convention floor with only one demo model I didn’t get to see this feature in use, but it sounded cool.

Obviously with it being mobile there’s two ways to play the game. You can grind it out and earn cards the way the game intends or you can boost and buy cards. I actually found it really easy to just play the game. Sometimes micro-transaction games can be annoying because they’re geared to get your money more than they are to be played and enjoyed, but I didn’t find that to be the case with Outcast Odyssey which was really refreshing.

It was also mentioned to me that they’d like to do more card packs and get more comic book artists on the cards in the future which would be awesome to see. Currently they’re starting with 300 hundred cards and each card has four evolutions so you do that math. They’re also trying, but this isn’t confirmed, to get character from other Bandai Namco games to be cards as well. I think that will depend on the popularity of the game, but I’m hopefully since that would be cool to evolve those cards.

The big take away I had from this game is that there’s a lot to do, but it’s fun doing it. Having just started playing it on my personal iPad I wanted to keep going. I wanted to get more cards and evolve the hell out of them. In my personal opinion the team managed to take a lot of popular elements from other mobile games and successfully combine them into a new game that’s fun for console gamers and even comic book fans.