Mutant Mudds Impressions- Caught In A Retro Wonderland
The developers behind the bloody Dementium series go E-rated with this charming NES inspired platformer.
Had the privilege of spending the weekend with Mutant Mudds, which debuts on the 3DS eShop this Thursday (Jan. 26) at $8.99. It's from Renegade Kid, which I find intriguing, since this is the same group that scared gamers with the very M-rated first person adventure, Dementium: The Ward and it's sequel. For this title, the company switched gears to an E-rated romp that would fit perfectly on the Nintendo Entertainment System.
As such, this is one of those games that appears deceptively simple, and why not? You control a pipsqueak named Max and guide the youngster through a 2D world with easily recognizable enemies, fireballs, spikes and platforms. Besides, the kid can hover temporarily, thanks to an H2O-powered jet pack, and he has a gun with unlimited ammunition. Forget about Mario. This is a piece of cake.
At least that's what I thought before the beginning of each level. Then I proceeded to die and came to the harsh realization that the game's hard. Hard because you only have a limited amount of time to complete each stage. Hard because dying automatically sends you back to the beginning of the level. Hard because it's tough gaining a foothold on ice, or avoiding enemy projectiles. The game's far from impossible. Stick with it, and you'll eventually reach the end of a board. It just has that old school difficulty that I absolute love.
The coolest feature, by far, is the ability to jump between the background and foreground (up to three planes, based on my experience) by accessing specially marked platforms. Doing this lets you pick up Golden Diamonds (the game's currency) and marvel at the stereoscopic 3D effects, which look super cool, despite the fact that Mutant Mudds is technically a 2D NES style experience. It's what ultimately separates it from similar platformers over the past three decades. The Saturn's Guardian Heroes lets you jump to different planes, but not on this grand a scale.
Unfortunately, I've yet to acquire enough Golden Diamonds to unlock the game's three power-ups, but that'll happen over the next few days.
For now, I can't think of one reason why 3DS owners (especially diehard Nintendo fans) would feel let down by Mutant Mudds, aside from the price. This is exactly the type of downloadable game the system needs, and with 40 levels, players should have plenty of good times ahead.
Review coming this Thursday.