Players will be able to explore the open world of Biomutant freely. It boasts many different kinds of environments ranging from industrial wastelands to mountainous snowscapes, from luscious forests to mysterious loot filled caves. Doubtless, THQ Nordic’s description of Biomutant as a “post apocalyptic Kung-Fu fable RPG” will induce many good memories of older games. Biomutant’s world design almost feels like an homage to classics like Jak & Daxter or the original Banjo Kazooie. How we explore it will make it all the better as Biomutant offers all kinds of vehicular travel from mech-suits to speedboats to hang gliders. Just to add a quirky twist, we’ll have an omniscient narrator following us around, commenting on the world and translating its inhabitant’s “nonsense” language.
Mix up Ratchet & Clank’s strafing gunplay with Devil May Cry’s melee action and you’re about there. If you don’t think that’s a good thing in a game like this, you may want to get your head checked. While combat demonstrations so far have been received with scepticism and risk of repetition, there is huge untapped potential for variety. Not only do we have an infusion of melee and gunplay (always a winning formula in my eyes) but massive loadout customisation is on offer here. It’s not explicitly explained to us, but we do know mutant abilities like telekinesis powers can be achieved, offering a Half Life 2 Gravity Gun kind of option. This is just one mutation players can take advantage and there is, as yet, no telling what else we can expect to mix things up with. Different enemy types will require different approaches to take down. That will likely play into infusing your weaponry with varying status effects. Leading us nicely onto our next segment.
We’ve seen footage of the player exploring the world of Biomutant and opening all kinds of chests and lockers. Plenty of loot and crafting materials can be dug up, paving the way for what looks like a potentially huge offering of variety in weapon creation. Physical attributes like spikes and barbed wire can be added to weapons. If you want to get a little jazzy, we’re assuming from released footage so far that these weapons can be infused with status effects like poison and lightning. It’s unclear so far whether or not the vehicles we’ve seen so far are custom made by the player. What we do know is that our character can be customised from the start with physical attributes that change throughout the game. We’d expect nothing less in an open world RPG but just how much we can mix and match our arsenal is what gets me excited.
The wider context of Biomutant’s world remains unclear. We can see a post apocalyptic setting but also “real world” items lying around, like cars for instance. This begs the question if this used to be a human world or if Biomutant’s world was more akin to Zootopia. Either way, we’re loving it and hope to find out in the final game. On Biomutant’s official website, we have learned that a plague is ruining the land and slowly killing the tree of life. It’s up to us as the player to unite The Tribes or bring them all down to ensure the planet’s survival. That may sound a bit like Avatar but in a game as stylish as this, I honestly don’t mind. We’re also told “it’s your actions and choices that’ll decide how your story of survival ends”, which hints at a multiple ending set-up to Biomutant.
If you’ve got time, why not check out IGN’s twenty five minute gameplay session with Biomutant? In its current state, it remains a little rough around the edges where animation and texture resolution is concerned. On its unveiling at this year’s E3, what we saw was pre-Alpha footage. When that’s put in perspective, it’s easy to see how well Biomutant is coming along.
Biomutant has no fixed release date as yet but we should expect it some time in 2018.