CO-OP REVIEW: ‘Journey to the Savage Planet’s First DLC “Hot Garbage” (Xbox One)

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Hot Garbage

At the start of the year, publisher 505 Games released Journey to the Savage Planet from developers Typhoon Studios. A first-person adventure, Journey to the Savage Planet puts you in the position of an explorer under the employ of the fourth-best interstellar exploration company in the world, Kindred Aerospace. In the base game, you progress through areas of the planet, AR-Y 26, learning its secrets, scanning life, and making your own way. With no real objectives and the ability to continue it after you beat the “final boss,” this game puts adventure and exploration first. Now, with “Hot Garbage,” the game’s first DLC, fans are receiving three to four hours of brand-new content to an already expansive game.

The first DLC is always a hard one, with a lot of expectations to live to but Typhoon Studios takes the challenge head-on and executes a fun and immersive addition with “Hot Garbage.” The DLC includes a new alien planet and storyline with never-before-seen gadgets, enemies, and of course, much more cosmic humor. If you were a fan of the humor in the base game, and its insane commercials, you’ll be blown away by the three new ones that the developers have created.

In “Hot Garbage,” your new mission is to scout the proposed home of a new Kindred waterfront resort: Boomerdale (best name ever). Like last time, you uncover the source of some mysterious pollutants, meet some new robotic adversaries, gather new upgrades like infinite stamina and report your discoveries back to your employers at Kindred Aerospace. So, like last time, we decided to work through this DLC as a couple, just to see how this new addition plays for co-op players like us.

Hot Garbage

The new planet in “Hot Garbage” is just as expansive and intricately designed as the base game’s AR-Y 26. The location for Boomerdale is also has a completely different environment that pushes you to learn new platforming skills and adapt to take down new aggressive creatures – when you’re not admiring the new toucan variant of the pufferbird. With new toxic gas that pushes you towards new suit upgrades, an environmental flight course-like, and more, there is more than enough to keep you engaged.

Specifically, the introduction of environmental purple rings that boost your jetpack to allow you to fly for short amounts of time adds not only difficulty to the platforming mechanics of the game but a fun competition between you and your co-op partner. In some areas, there are multiple rings which can make up multiple courses, as we each took one to see if we could progress to the next spot, we began learning the mechanic and competing with each other to see who could find the fastest way to the next area.

Now, there is a large learning curve to this new addition, and even after doing it multiple times, the controls are extremely hard to master, which can be frustrating to players, and would have been for us, had we been playing solo. That being said, Typhoon Studios did leave ways for you platform your way to the next area by utilizing the new feature in a minimal way. The catch is that you have to experiment with the environment, finding out which new plants can function as platforms like the the mushrooms did on AR-Y 26. Even though this can make progressing through the environment daunting and longer than it intended, this evens the playing field for players who just can’t get the new mechanic.

Hot Garbage

Additionally, the new storyline calls for you to investigate areas that have been taken over by a rival company which introduces a new AI voice that injects the game’s notable dark and irreverent humor. Coupled with three new advertisements and Journey to the Savage Planet’s “Hot Garbage” DLC brings in the charm and parody that many fell in love with to begin with.

But our favorite addition to the game isn’t the new mechanic, upgrades, or animals, it’s the new lock-on target. In “Hot Garbage” you’re introduced to many new flying enemies. In the base game, flying enemies were the hardest to kill given the very rudimentary shooting system. While this game is exploration and adventure first, the shooting issues were a point of frustration for the both of us. Now, you can lock onto moving, flying targets and take them down in an easier fashion – which helps for the beefier enemies in the game which require you to use different projectiles to remove their shields. Similarly, one shot can kill a lot of the flying animals in the wild that make your adventure through future Boomerdale dangerous.

When it’s all said and done, “Hot Garbage” is an amazing addition to Journey to the Savage Planet and offers up an entirely new world to explore. With new collectibles and even the ability go underwater, Typhoon Studios built out a comprehensive new planet that adds more to the game in a way that makes it well worth the $7.99 it costs. In fact, while the game is only promoted as offering three to four hours of play, players looking to get collectibles or who simply decide to explore the new planet’s flora and fauna will get even more playtime out of it, especially in co-op mode.

While on paper, the new additions seem small, in play they far surpassed our expectations, making “Hot Garbage” a definite must-buy for players.

Journey to the Savage Planet and the “Hot Garbage” DLC are available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows via the Epic Games Store now.

Journey to the Savage Planet's "Hot Garbage" DLC
  • 8.5/10
    Rating - 8.5/10
8.5/10

TL;DR

When it’s all said and done, “Hot Garbage” is an amazing addition to Journey to the Savage Planet and offers up an entirely new world to explore. With new collectibles and even the ability go underwater, Typhoon Studios built out a comprehensive new planet that adds more to the game in a way that makes it well worth the $7.99 it costs.