Oddworld Stranger: First shots

Oddworld Stranger is the latest in the platform puzzler series but has surprisingly mutated into a first-person shooter. These first screenshots of the game provide visual proof that the series has shifted direction but, befitting the Oddworld tradition, this isn't your run-of-the-mill shoot-'em-up.

The central character is Stranger, a rootin'-tootin' bounty hunter. As such, he takes on assignments to bring in individuals dead or alive. Seeking enemies across the Oddworld landscape will include traversing western-styled environments but will also feature industrial locations and even verdant jungles.

The most interesting element to the game that has come to light is Stranger's ammunition, which takes the meaning of 'live rounds' to a whole new level. Forget gunpowder and lead - animals are the new bullets. Savour such delights as chip-punks (chatterboxes to distract the enemy), skunks (paralysis-inducing stench critters) and, our favourite, personnel-seeking porcupine missiles called fuzzles.

As can be clearly gleaned from the ammo descriptions alone, Oddworld may have changed direction in style of gameplay but it remains a very, er, odd world.

Oddworld Stranger will appear on PS2 and Xbox in 2005