Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is a tactical turn based strategy game set in an intriguing post-apocalyptic world with stunning graphics. The game is based on a pen and paper RPG game from Sweden in the 1980’s. It offers a combat style that is unique compared to other tactical turn based games. The fantastic story draws you in from the very beginning. In conjunction with the story and gameplay, the superb graphics make Mutant Year Zero a game that is worth every minute of your time.

Use cover to your advantage.

Mutant Year Zero allows you to explore the post-apocalyptic environment filled with ghouls, robots and wild dogs. This is a change from most tactical turn based games. You not only can you explore, but you can also set up ambushes in combat. This is what the ability to explore adds to the game. In other turn based games, battles are usually initiated by choosing where to fight on a map, or by responding to an alert. In Mutant Year Zero, you choose when and where to take the fight to the enemy.

Stealth plays a big part of the combat in Mutant Year Zero

In Mutant Year Zero,  you can use stealth to move one character at a time to different positions before a fight. I really enjoyed this feature. By using a combination of stealth and silenced weapons, you can take out one enemy before engaging the rest. This particularly useful early on. If there are a dozen enemies in a given zone, the ability to take them out piecemeal is very useful.

The combat system in Mutant Year Zero is very similar to other tactical turn based games. The battle area is set up in a grid with each character limited a certain number of squares. In addition to moving, characters can attack, throw grenades, use mutant abilities and reload their weapons. From my experience, reloading weapons isn’t common in RTS games, but I could be mistaken. This adds a layer of complexity to planning your moves each round. You have to look a few steps ahead in this chess match. Using cover and the high ground to your advantage is also important to increase your odds of victory.

Each character has access to several abilities that help with movement, special abilities and passive abilities. I didn’t use many of the abilities since they either didn’t seem beneficial or didn’t work. One movement ability  that supposedly lets the character move to hard to reach didn’t work.

Mutant Year Zero has a story that draws you in from the get go

Mutant Year Zero draws upon an old pen and paper RPG as it’s inspiration. Set in a post-apocalyptic world years after the “Red Plague” eliminated much of the human population. The game tells the tale of a squad of mutants called “Stalkers” on patrol. Their task: to find a squad of stalkers that have gone missing. Along the way, more and more details emerge about what happened to the missing stalkers as you find the members one by one. As you progress through the story, it’s clear your ultimate destination is a fabled place called Eden.

While playing, you will encounter items that are common place today. However, they are treated as rare antiquities in Mutant Year Zero. I was so drawn in by the story that I was excited to find  out what happens to Dux, Boormin and the crew.  I really enjoyed the story and I hope there are plans to add more to it or add a sequel in the future.

An ancient tool used to test if fruit spoiled

Mutant Year Zero is visual masterpiece

The artwork in Mutant Year Zero is top notch. The terrain and character models beautiful. In fact, I don’t think I have ever seen anthropomorphic characters so perfectly executed in a game as they were with Dux, Bormin, and Fallow. They look natural. The building, plants, and terrain are all high quality as well. Overall, the game is beautiful and the models look realistic. Visually, Mutant Year Zero is an impressive game.

Overall, Mutant Year Zero is an excellent game. The story, gameplay and graphics all combine to make an immersive world that I want more of. I did notice some slowdown in gameplay at times on the PS4, but that wasn’t often. If you haven’t given Mutant Year Zero a chance yet, I highly recommend that you do. In my opinion, it is one the best made and most captivating games of 2018! I give it a 4.25/5 and is on my must play list.

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