There is no doubt, the Nintendo eShop continues to get more popular every single week. With great additions like Splasher and Battle Chef Brigade, I want to keep coming back for more and Mutant Mudds Collection by Jools Watsham’s Atooi Games is no exception. Mutant Mudds Collection is a nice nostalgic side-scroller created from full 8-bit art.
The Collection includes Mutant Mudds, Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, and the brand new Mudd Blocks puzzle game. Although two out of three of the games have been released on about every platform from the 3DS to mobile devices, and even most consoles, there’s still plenty of fun to be had for old and new fans alike.
The first game in the collection, Mutant Mudds has you play as a young boy named Max who sets out to destroy the mutant mudds from taking over the world. Equipped with both a water gun and a water jetpack, he’s ready to take on any monster that gets in his path. Originally when this title came out of for the 3DS it made great use of the handheld’s 3D effects. Fortunately, Mutant Mudds looks just as great playing on the Nintendo Switch, and in fact may be the best way to play due to how amazing the graphics pop on the screen and best use of the chip-tunes soundtrack.
The main gimmick is how Mutant Mudds always featured a foreground and background with Max being able to jump between the two on specific launch pads. This is a really neat experience, mainly because you can sometimes see secret areas and places you need to go before traversing between the planes. It’s also a great way to see where the hidden Wonder Gems are located. These Wonder Gems are used at the end of the game to destroy the Mutant Mudds.
Controlling Max is fairly simple and harkens back to the NES and SNES days with pixel perfect precision platforming which never felt unfair. There are really no faults to the controls, although I wish there was more variety to the gameplay as you are basically doing the same thing in each level with possibly some new enemies or obstacles to negotiate through. It would have been nice to have had the ability to unlock new outfits or clothing for Max and different abilities with Max due to only being able to use his water gun and jet pack throughout the whole adventure.
Once you are finished with Mutant Mudds you can hop into Mutant Mudds Super Challenge, which is basically the Lost Levels of the base game. You are immediately thrust into some of the toughest challenges with everything being turned up to 11 and there are no training wheels, no hand holding, and no mercy. A new addition is the kill counter which tally’s up your deaths, and trust me, there are many deaths to be had in this version. Fortunately, all levels are unlocked from the start, so if you get extremely frustrated at one stage you can easily move on to the next.
There are built in leaderboards for all three of the games and this makes for some great speed-running and collect-athon challenges to pursue. This isn’t just a challenge against the game itself, but also a race against your friends to attain the highest score in the fastest time possible. In the later levels the challenge can be frustrating, but for some reason I just wanted to keep coming back for more and that shows just how great the design of Mutant Mudds Collection is.
Also included in the collection is a nice little match-3 type of puzzle game called Mudd Blocks. In this title, you try to line up blocks of the same color and then blow them all up with a special water bomb that randomly appears. Your goal is to not let the blocks rise to the top, so block placement and strategic bomb dropping are key to success. There are several modes to choose from, each with slight variations on the core concept, and a multiplayer mode to battle your friends for a high score. Mudd Blocks is definitely a delightful addition to the Mudds universe and a clever puzzle game in its own right.
Overall, Mutant Mudds Collection is a great addition to your Switch library and with the budget price tag is well worth picking up. This is a love letter to retro gaming fans and features a bevy of gameplay modes and options. The tightness of your character’s controls and the neat gimmick of jumping between the different layers, breathes freshness back into the platforming genre. While these games may be super tough, they are addictive and pure fun.