The Outer Worlds: Murder On Eridanos offers players a lot of what they’ve seen before, which isn’t the bad thing considering the base game was plenty good but it still manages to improve in very subtle ways. Murder on Eridanos is available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. The expansion will release on Nintendo Switch later this year. Murder on Eridanos is also available as part of an expansion pass which includes the first DLC, Peril on Gorgon, for $24.99.
AT A GLANCE
DEVELOPER: Obsidian Entertainment
PUBLISHER: Private Division
RELEASE DATE: 17 Mar 2021
PLATFORMS: PC, PS4(Reviewed), Xbox One, Nintendo Switch(later this year)
FINAL SCORE: 8/10
Just like Peril on Gorgon, Murder on Eridanos starts off as a side story that very quickly branches off into multiple side quests and a meaty main questline. If you’re already midway through the game, you will be greeted with a small cutscene of a space drama the next time you find yourself on the Unreliable and subsequently find out the actress was murdered. Soon after, you get invited to the planet of Eridanos to investigate and find out the culprit behind the murder.
The Outer Worlds: Murder in Eridanos relies heavily on the satire and campy premise that is already established by the base game and the first DLC. A couple of minutes into the DLC and you will start noticing the improvement in both the writing and voice acting. The story is a noir murder mystery that reeks of 80s vibes.
A refreshing change of pace from the rather tighter narrative of the previous DLC is that the Murder in Eridanos allows you to pretty much tackle the mystery any way you want. You are given a list of suspects and must interview them, analyzing clues using the Discrepancy Analyzer. Much like ADA, the Discrepancy Analyzer has a personality of its own and has a range of opinions depending on the context. Even your companions have unique things to say in the middle of investigations. It’s worth replaying the story with a different set of companions for the variety in dialogue alone.
There’s also a handful of side missions scattered around the map, that turns you from a private investigator into a straight-up space sheriff. Eridanos is a lawless and hostile place, and the fans of noir mysteries will enjoy the ambiance that Murder on Eridanos sets up.
The best parts of The Outer Worlds: Murder in Eridanos is where it delivers new and unique experiences not found in The Outer Worlds base game or Danger in Gorgon, and fortunately these moments are scattered throughout the new DLC.
Despite its somewhat predictable plot, the story of The Outer Worlds: Murder in Eridanos remains a pleasant experience, full of numerous memorable characters and landmarks. Most importantly you are completely free to approach the quest any way you wish, with almost no guidance. Sadly the consequences of your decisions throughout the plot don’t really reflect later on in the story, leading to a rather lackluster conclusion.
The environmental design of Eridanos itself is quite impressive, with a unique landscape of floating asteroids and suspension bridges covered with lush blackberry trees and flowering plant fields. It is easily one of the most unique and memorable environments in The Outer Worlds and feels like an improvement over the previous DLC and even the base game.
The base game already featured a lot of different variations of weapons and armor, and Murder on Eridanos just adds to that list. Unfortunately, the difficulty balancing still remains a bit wonky, with encounters being a breeze for anyone who is already running with a high-level character. I was hoping that Obsidian would be able to balance the difficulty better this time around, without forcing players who want a challenge to resort to the frustrating Supernova difficulty.