The original Xbox only had a handful of memorable titles. Of those one of my personal favorites was a little-known platformer called Voodoo Vince. Receiving moderate praise and recognition when it originally released, Vince was quickly forgotten, much like the original game box from Microsoft. Fast forward to 2017, things have changed. The platformer has died and is slowly being resurrected, so it is only fitting that Vince get a second shot at fortune and fame.
Voodoo Vince is an action platformer with a smattering of puzzles, all revolving around his ability to harm himself. Boss fights include the mechanic as well, and for the most part it is all novel and unique. Vince has a plethora of regular attacks, but the most interesting are his voodoo powers. There are plenty to pick up throughout the game, but sadly they cannot be selected. Whenever I pulled the triggers Vince would randomly choose one to dispose of his enemies.
Platforms: XB1 (reviewed), PC
Price I’d Pay: $14.99
The puzzles are all based around Vince’s unique mechanics and platforming clichés. Find this item to unlock this door, or light Vince on fire to spark a massive explosion. I also love Vince as a character. His personality is well performed and genuinely funny at times. I like that he pokes fun at being in a video game, even if it is a bit cliché.
Each level is broken down into a mini sandbox of sorts, with progression leaning on the player’s ability to solve all the tests in each area. The downside is that progress is only saved when Vince reaches a major milestone, or moves on to the next area. So losing all my lives (yes this game uses that archaic system) meant I had to reload the entire section. I also had to complete each section before quitting if I wanted to save my progress.
Vince can travel between levels via a trolley system, which is useful for mopping up collectibles. These include health upgrades, and the ability to store more voodoo powers.
As for the port itself, the game looks sharp, definitely better than the original did. The frame rate is also rock solid. It doesn’t come without issues though. For me, the biggest was a synching issue with cut scenes. Oftentimes during conversations the audio would be off, like the game buffered the animation a bit too long, and characters lines were being voiced before the scene was ready for them.
There are lots of antiquated systems in Voodoo Vince – it is a product of its time. I could complain about how the developers should have taken the time to fix these issues, but I am a realist. This game is $14.99, and by all intents and purposes, likely would never have gotten a second chance without some love from a few big name executives at Microsoft. That said none of its issues deterred from my enjoyment. Vince is a great character, and for the price this game delivers exactly what I wanted from it: a chance to play it again without digging out my original Xbox.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.