Look, OlliOlli World is kind of amazing, and Finding The Flowzone gets that. After a pretty damn good campaign and one more expansion, the skate ride is coming to an end, and that’s the kind of role this DLC plays- it’s the ribbon at the top of the OlliOlli World package.
Just like its predecessor, Finding The Flowzone contains no hooks to drive in new players. Instead, it coyly shuffles up to people who’d already played the game prior, leans into their ear and whispers: “Hey buddy. Wanna skate?”
I do, OlliOlli World. Let’s go.
The Hunt For Radlantis
The plot for Finding The Flowzone makes about as much sense as the rest of OlliOlli World. This time, our Skate Wizard has ditched their group of friends to join three explorers on a quest for the fabled Radlantis- found only by gathering fragments of a broken map scattered throughout the Flowzone.
Unlike Void Riders which used the same main map, Flowzone instead has a whole new map, with 4 distinct areas. Each stage in Flowzone contains 3 Map Fragments, and new zones will require a minimum number of map fragments to access. I never particularly noticed the amount- being competent at the game will easily net you enough map pieces to get to the next area. It’s good since that means the game never feels like a chore- you never feel like you’d need to run back and sweep up all the map pieces on any stage.
It’s when you actually reach Radlantis that the game gets misty eyed. There’s no unique new challenge like Void Riders- instead, it’s a celebration of OlliOlli World overall, with stages centered around the different mechanics you’d been taught earlier. Sadly the finale stage feels like it could have used a little more kick as a result. Don’t get me wrong- it’s a great level, and definitely up there for the OlliHall of Fame. But considering how Void Riders framed its final stage, the lack of any deceit in Flowzone’s finale makes it feel underwhelming just by comparison.
Of course, it wouldn’t be OlliOlli World if there weren’t new mechanics, too. Chief of these are the Skate Winds- a refreshing new mechanic that makes you rethink the way momentum works.
On the surface level, it’s simple. Passing through a patch of Skate Winds increases your speed in the direction they face. But doing certain actions when passing through like jumping increases the rate at which you speed up- and the game even throws you headwinds to have you going the opposite direction in some levels.
This is really the sort of tiny gameplay decision-making I love from this skate game- while you can certainly clear levels just using the Skate Winds as a regular speed boost, you’re given just a taste of how much more advanced you can get with them constantly. As an unrelated aside, the map fragment hidden right behind a headwind will likely haunt me for the rest of my waking years.
On top of that they’ve added a new feature- Burly Routes. These exist as the pinnacle of difficult routes, vastly exceeding the game’s Gnarly Routes. They’re impeccably well-hidden, but they’re definitely a draw for those of you who found OlliOlli World’s difficulty wanting. Admittedly, giving them a whole new name altogether felt more like marketing than anything else- but hey, more options is always fun, and the alternate paths of Finding The Flowzone feel way more intense to reach than the base game.
OlliOlli World is a game about high-execution platforming set against a backdrop that’s just utterly weird. Finding The Flowzone is just yet another note in that game’s bizarre song, making it a great add-on for anyone craving more OlliOlli World. It’s absolutely not meant to hook people in- in fact, it even tells you if some levels are going to contain advanced mechanics in case you jumped in there from the game’s earliest jumping-on point- instead, it’s just the next peak for the skate-addled playerbase to climb.
Admittedly, you might find the campaign rather short- 5 zones with about 3 stages per zone isn’t a lot, and more discerning viewers might see that as an issue.
What stages you do get, though, are some of OlliOlli’s finest levels, chock full of alternate routes and reasons for you to go back and replay them. It’s a great way for OlliOlli World to go out- but only if you’re already so thirsty for more skate platforming that you’re chomping at the bit for more.
DLC Reviewed on PC, with early access provided by Private Division
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