mutant year zero
Mutant Year Zero: Road To Eden brings strategy (and a duck smoking a cigarette) to Xbox One
There’s a new tactical, turnbased combat title on the way, and it features stealth elements, a postapocalyptic world and an angry pig-man. If this sounds like an amalgamation of other games… well, maybe it is, but the result is an intriguing new adventure, and it’s looking surprisingly polished for a game coming out later this year.
Mutant Year Zero: Road To Eden combines the turn-based gameplay elements from games like XCOM with a cast of unique mutant characters, each with their own personalities and set of upgradeable skills. “It’s an unusual label for a game, but tactical adventure really fits the bill, no duck pun intended,” says executive producer Ulf Andersson at developer The Bearded Ladies. “Our goal is to blend the deep and tactical combat of XCOM with a branching storyline that unfolds as you explore overgrown forests and abandoned cities with your team of Mutants.”
The game world that Andersson is describing here is looking especially good. The polished graphics and lighting system already seem to be creating levels that look lush, overgrown, and rife with cover. Postapocalyptic worlds have been done to death in movies and videogames, but in MYZ the graphics may help set it apart.
Andersson also stresses that this isn’t a simple case of running from battle to battle, either. “Mixing that with real-time stealth gameplay gives you a unique way to approach or avoid combat situations you encounter while exploring,” he says. The stealth system will allow players to creep into new areas in real-time, avoiding enemy sight-lines to take up the most tactically advantageous positions on the field. Get spotted, and the battle will erupt, but remain undetected and you can place your fighters in the best positions before the battle begins, giving you an instant advantage.
To give you even more of an advantage you can also unlock new mutations for your characters, including the ability to fly during battles to increase the chances of hitting enemies, or turn a character’s skin to stone, presumably to decrease damage. Moisturising must be a pain.
We know about three main characters already – Dux the (you guessed it) duck, Bormin the boarman (okay, this is silly now), and Selma, who appears to be human. These Mutants are just a few of the characters you’ll encounter over the course of the adventure, but they all have special abilities – that is, even more special than being human-sized, holding weapons, and talking, which they can all do as well.
Perhaps the most surprising news here is that The Bearded Ladies have announced that the game will be coming to Xbox One this year – despite only just being announced. The fact we’ve already seen some brief gameplay leaves us feeling more positive about the chances of the game landing before the end of the year. Check back in future issues for more on MYZ.
“The stealth system will allow players to creep into new areas in real-time”
Above The wastelands of Earth contain all kinds of abandoned buildings to explore. right Creep up on an enemy and you’ll get a tactical advantage.