Have I mentioned how much I love OlliOlli World? Turns out, it’s quite a lot, as you can find out in my review for the main game here, as well as its first DLC, Void Riders, here. Whilst it’s not exactly the most engrossing of stories to spoil, it might be worth reading them first to bring yourself up to speed before continuing this one. If you know the scoop already (or aren’t too bothered), Finding the Flowzone continues on after the journey to rub elbows with the skate gods.
Taking to the skies above Radlandia, Finding the Flowzone sees our protagonist meet a new bunch of eccentrics. This lot are seeking the lost city of Radlantis (not to be confused with the sunken Atlantis), taking you along for the ride. This means new courses, new game mechanics and, naturally, new skate-deities to meet.
It also comes with an insane level of challenge too, which we should come to expect by now. So, is the final DLC to the beloved OlliOlli World worth it, or is it too out of reach? Let’s go onwards and upwards to find out.
Come With Us Now On A Journey…
So far on our little journey to become the next skater-god liaison, we’ve been across the biomes of Radlantia and outer space. Lands filled with pedestrian-unfriendly walkways, pipes, rails and crazy tricks to pull of in-between. The base game kept it simple-but-hard, with each area and level getting progressively harder. Void Riders stepped it up, adding courses half-broken by tractor beams, with said beams catapulting skaters to new heights when engaged properly.
Finding the Flowzone takes us skywards, up into the clouds above with The Radmospheric Three. This bunch; a pirate, a scientist and a hipster, are on the search for Radlantis by piecing together a broken map. Broken by B.B. Hopper, the eccentric frogman, players are tasked with finding these pieces as they skate the skies above the familiar zones of Radlantia.
It’s another light-hearted affair, following another colourful cast of characters as they seek out fabled lands. OlliOlli World is a skateboarding game first, but the story adds to the fun, with Finding the Flowzone continuing that. Everyone uses radical vernacular, there’s some bright and weird folk to meet, and no-one’s ever unhappy.
It’s A Breeze
With each DLC, there’s a gimmick. Void Riders had tractor beams, Finding the Flowzone utilises the wind as its mechanic. But whereas the tractor beams only lifted the player in the direction they were going, the high winds are much more powerful. They’re also not set in one direction, either.
So, you could be heading right on a rail, only to see one of Gail Force’s wind traps steering you back to the left. It doesn’t sound too technical, given the game has players going both directions, but with wind comes speed. With speed comes faster reflexes and even faster obstacles coming at you in either direction, ramping (no pun intended) the challenge up significantly.
It doesn’t change up the formula too drastically: the course principles are still the same. But the element of wind, and therefore speed, are now part of level traversal. It may sound tough… and it is. These levels are intended for more practiced OlliOlli World skater.
High Sails, High Challenge
I’m not exaggerating when I say “practiced OlliOlli World player”. There’s quite a skill ceiling, ironically for a game in the open skies. In fact, some levels will politely tell you that you should have certain skills and/or levels done to be able to handle the new ones. It won’t stop you, but it won’t be easier if you don’t know how to Firecracker.
It’s very much geared towards endgame DLC, but the challenge of just reaching Radlantis isn’t the end. For example, players don’t need all 36 map pieces to reach the last levels. But you do if you want those 100% completion trophies. And let’s not forget those level-based challenges either.
There’s three per level, assigned to each Radlantic Three member: Squid, Licht and Professor Plank. They’re the same as Mike’s challenges; hit or avoid X amount of things, only grind twice in a level, do specific tricks in certain areas. It’s more of the same, but much harder. And that’s before you unlock Gail Force’s challenges.
Some of them are insane, to put it bluntly. But then, if you read my main game review, you’ll know that completionist-levels of challenge are par for the course.
No Limits In This Skies
Normally when a game is so cute or twee, or even fun/frustrating to play, it’s hard to criticise some part of it without sounding like a right bastard. Fortunately, and unsurprisingly, Finding the Flowzone has zero faults that I can think of. No really, there’s nothing that made me go, “Wow, they really dropped the board on this one”.
Again, not surprising given that OlliOlli World and Void Riders got a ten and a nine, respectively. Everything is the same, not better or worse. Just that same skateboarding, humour, brightness and challenge. Would I argue that there’s an unfair skill ceiling in here? No, absolutely not, because anyone that tries a late-game DLC before reaching the main endgame deserves to be punished.
I suppose my only grumble would be that some of the more jazzier clothing options are locked behind harder challenges. But then, I haven’t changed my little green avatar’s outfit in a while. If I were a sidewalk-surfing fashionista, then I might be more annoyed.
On Cloud Nine Out Of Ten
So yes, OlliOlli World: Finding the Flowzone is, in essence, more of the same. The crew might be different, but they’re all that Roll7 brand of wackiness. The deity may have a new gimmick over the aliens last time, but they’re still one lawsuit away from Adventure Time cameos. There’s nothing new here, but here’s the genius bit: there doesn’t need to be.
The only thing new to me is getting a new TV, and with it a 120hz refresh rate. Given that I reviewed the PlayStation 5 version and it’s supported, it made things slightly brighter, a little less lag when things got faster. But even running at 60fps is still a treat, with very little interference or slowdown at any time. Could I, under the scrutiny, tell the exact differences between the old and new TV’s performance? No, probably not, but I’m justifying my new one and the game’s 120hz supported feature.
To conclude, Finding the Flowzone is the perfect final installment for one of my personal games of the year. A new setting over familiar gameplay, much like Void Riders, it adds more of that chaotic-yet-addictive 2D skateboarding fun. Will I ever 100% the game and its DLC’s? Hell no, I know my limits. But I’m going to have fun incrementally chipping away at the challenges and faultless runs.
A perfect swansong of a DLC, Finding the Flowzone is a beautiful little finale to OlliOlli World. New locales, more eccentric friends and a gusty mechanic, it only enhances the formula already established. Have fun, get frustrated, go back for more in this high-flying adventure.
OlliOlli World: Finding the Flowzone is available now on PlayStation 4 & 5 (reviewed on latter), Xbox One and Series S|X, Nintendo Switch and PC via Steam.
Disclaimer: In order to complete this review, we were provided with a promotional copy of the game. For our full review policy, please go here.
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