Look at this man. Isn’t he a rugged, handsome, well-learned individual? He’s not the new Miyamoto, he’s not going to predict the future of videogames, and he wont try to sell you a graphics engine. He’s just a guy who wanted to make a cool game. Mutant Mudds is that cool game.
Mutant Mudds is a 2D platformer on 3DS. You play as a little nerd with a jetpack and a gun, and it’s pretty easy to figure out what to do. The controls are precise and simple as you jump and hover across platforms, avoiding bad things and shooting enemies. Jump, hover and shoot is all you need to know, and the game doesn’t waste time with a tutorial for this. The first level of the game just has signs in the background with buttons on them and that’s it, you watch them scroll by as you play the level. The action is never paused for a tutorial or cutscene and the game respects your position as a player.
Such a simple game concept would be nowhere without great level design – thankfully this is where Mutant Mudds really delivers. You know that one level in every Indie game where the developer turns into a self-indulgent dick? Mutant Mudds doesn’t have that; just quality. It’s challenging and it uses solid platforming to bring out weaknesses in your co-ordination. Each stage has a bonus stage inside it that can only be accessed and played with a specific powerup that you get later on. These include an extended hover, stronger gun, and a huge vertical jump that shoots you straight up into the air. You can only equip one at a time but it’s cool having individual stages designed around each ability to really flesh out the challenge.
The 3D effect is used really well to add layers to stages, and hopping between different layers of the background and foreground keeps the levels feeling fresh all the way through. The game is coming to PC too, but I really can’t imagine playing it without the 3D effect; it’s playable but not nearly as cool. The graphics look amazing and colourful, with a style that suits the gameplay by not trying to be too artsy. There are no grey areas in the design: 100% of the time you’ll land where it looks like you’ll land. Catchy original music really adds to the experiencel; it’s upbeat and has some really cool riffs. Hopping along to the cool music makes you feel like you’re doing really well, even when you’re not.
Everyone with a 3DS should have this game. It’s fun, fair, creative, challenging – everything that’s great about games. There’s a free demo on the eShop if you’re indecisive or cheap. Give it a try!