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hauntii combat

Xbox Game Pass Its Own Super Mario Odyssey, It’s a Delight

86 / 100

Introduction Of Xbox

The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X might boast superior hardware capabilities compared to the Nintendo Switch, but when it comes to games, Nintendo holds a unique edge. Despite some recent filler releases, Nintendo consistently delivers high-quality games each month. The exclusivity of titles like Super Mario Odyssey on Nintendo consoles remains a significant advantage.

However, the influence of Nintendo’s iconic design has permeated the industry, allowing gamers to find similar experiences on other platforms. Microsoft, in particular, has capitalized on this through its Xbox Game Pass, curating a selection of games that echo the charm of Nintendo classics. One such game is Hauntii, a delightful new addition that captures the essence of a great Nintendo adventure.


A Visual and Gameplay Treat

Released last week across multiple platforms including Xbox Game Pass, Hauntii is a stylish adventure game that immediately stands out with its unique art style. The game features a hand-crafted, black-and-white world reminiscent of titles like Genesis Noir and Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon. This distinctive aesthetic creates an eerie yet serene atmosphere, drawing players into an otherworldly adventure.

The real charm of Hauntii lies in its gameplay, which echoes the best aspects of Super Mario Odyssey. The core mechanic involves possessing various objects, each providing different abilities. Inhabiting a tree lets players shake out currency, while possessing a ladybug allows for flying and climbing. This mechanic encourages players to interact with their environment creatively, much like Mario’s cap-throwing antics.

A Satisfying Collect-A-Thon

Hauntii also excels in its collect-a-thon gameplay loop, another hallmark of Super Mario Odyssey. Players collect stars in each biome, which can be placed in a constellation to earn upgrades such as health and speed boosts. These stars are hidden behind various activities and events discovered through exploration. For instance, haunting a glowing tree may reveal a hidden star, or participating in a race could yield another. This design ensures that even short play sessions are rewarding, with plenty of bite-sized activities to keep players engaged.

Room for Improvement

Despite its many strengths, Hauntii isn’t without its flaws. The striking art style, while beautiful, can make platforming challenging due to confusing geometry and difficult-to-discern spatial relationships. This issue becomes particularly pronounced during a late-game boss fight centered around a spinning vortex, which may frustrate players to the point of putting down the controller.

Capturing the Nintendo Spirit

Even with its imperfections, Hauntii captures the spirit of a Nintendo game better than many of its peers. It understands that an inviting digital world should feel like a playground or amusement park, filled with attractions that players can explore and enjoy at their own pace. The adventure’s best biome, coincidentally designed like an amusement park, perfectly encapsulates this philosophy.

While Xbox gamers may never get to play Super Mario Odyssey on their console, Hauntii offers a delightful alternative. It builds on Nintendo’s groundwork, delivering a creative and engaging experience that is well worth the time.

Hauntii is available now for PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, and PC. It’s also available through Xbox Game Pass.