Hands On: High On Knife - A Fantastic Add-On For A Divisive Xbox Game Pass Title

When High On Life released on Xbox back in December 2022, it ended up proving one of the biggest Game Pass launches of all time, but the game itself was still a divisive one - with review scores ranging from the 3s all the way up to the 9s. In our own review here at Pure Xbox, we acknowledged that you were "either going to love it or hate it", and in my personal experience, I warmed to High on Life pretty quickly. Now, with the mini-sequel DLC known as High On Knife making its debut this week, I've played through the entirety of it over the past few days, and the best thing I can say is that I've actually found it more enjoyable than the main game itself.

High on Knife is set two years ahead of the events of High on Life, and is centered around Knifey's quest to track down a mysterious package from his homeworld. That adventure takes you to the slug-infested planet of Peroxis, and eventually into the parasitic depths of Muxxalon. Just like in High on Life, the story isn't really much to write home about, although it definitely still has its moments, and it's still jam-packed with naughtiness and utter absurdity as you'd expect. Your mileage will vary when it comes to the humour, but expect maybe a few laugh out loud moments, plenty of wry smiles, and a couple of instances that perhaps fail to hit the mark.

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Hands On: High On Knife - A Fantastic Add-On For A Divisive Xbox Game Pass Title 2

Where High on Knife really excels is in the weapons department. This new DLC comes with a few new weapons, a couple of which are probably the best we've seen to date. B.A.L.L, which takes the form of a gun with pinball-like features, allows you to time your shots so you can keep rebounding your little metal ball off various enemies until it explodes. The extra ability even allows you to throw pinball bumpers into the battle zone so you can bounce the ball off them into multiple enemies at once. There are multiple guns at your disposal in High on Knife, but don't be surprised if you end up favouring B.A.L.L for pretty much the entirety of it.

Harper is another new gun, voiced by Sarah Silverman of SNL fame, but admittedly it's a bit more of a generic pistol that didn't command my attention as much. The third new weapon relates directly to Knifey's mysterious package, and while we don't really want to spoil it here, rest assured that it's an awesome upgrade that feels super satisfying to wield and actually interacts with the environment in an inventive and well-designed fashion. It ends up playing a big part in the conclusion of the DLC as well, specifically in the final boss fight.

Speaking of conclusions, it's worth mentioning that despite all the "spooky" mentions you've probably seen about High on Knife in the lead up to release, it's really not that scary at all. It's only the last half of the game that takes place in a creepy setting, and while it's definitely a great location and arguably the best part of the whole DLC, you're not going to be crawling under the covers aside from perhaps one or two little jump scares. The rest of High on Knife takes place in the outdoors with a mixture of exploration and a few shootouts with various enemies, although in the case of the latter don't expect anything too taxing - I didn't die once on the normal difficulty in my playthrough.

Hands On: High On Knife - A Fantastic Add-On For A Divisive Xbox Game Pass Title 3

Something that you'll probably notice throughout High on Knife's duration is that developer Squanch Games clearly put an equal amount of care into developing this DLC as they did with the main game. Nothing about this add-on feels like it was an afterthought, so you can rest assured you're not forking out for a lesser experience here. There are a couple of real standout moments as well, including one that involves a ridiculous parody of a popular TV show from the '80s, and an ending that'll either leave you amused or bemused... some will absolutely love it, while others might be somewhat sickened by it. Either way, you'll have an opinion!

The big question is whether High on Knife is worth the money, and that's a hard one to sum up at the moment as we still don't know what the price will be at the time of writing. The big thing to keep in mind is that its duration is only around three hours (at max) if you want to beat the campaign without searching for too many collectibles, so you can complete it all in an evening. It's a great three hours, but it feels like a push if it's anything more than £20 / $20.

Ultimately, High on Knife is a worthy mini-sequel to High on Life, and if you really enjoyed what you played of the main game last year on Xbox Game Pass, it definitely needs to go on your wishlist. It's a short and sweet experience, but one that'll stick in the memory, and you'll hopefully get a few laughs out of it along the way.

Will you be picking up High on Knife on Xbox this week? Tell us down in the comments below.