Addition of checkpoints; variety of control options; solid design
Not having more additional content over 3DS game; no run button
Classic games never go out of style. It’s why we keep going back to them, and why their design influences the cutting edge games coming out in the modern age. Mutant Mudds Deluxe– a Wii U port of a 2012 3DS eShop game– may seem like an anachronism, as it doesn’t appear to be any sort of recent game at all. It looks, plays, feels, and sounds just like a title at least 20 years older. However, it holds the retro gameplay and aesthetics up as its foundation, and is a great modern game. Renegade Kid has made its console debut with a dependable title that’s right at home on the Wii U eShop.
If you’re familiar with the original Nintendo 3DS version of Mutant Mudds, then you know what’s up. Evil mutant mud monsters have come to Earth, and its up to Max to save the day. Armed with a water gun, a jetpack, and the ever-watchful eye of his Grannie, Max has to platform through many levels to stop the muddy menace. Mutant Mudds Deluxe keeps every bit of the nail-biting platform goodness intact from the 3DS version, with some notable additions and changes. You can read Evan’s review of the original release for a more in-depth look at the gameplay, but suffice to say that everything remains intact. This is hardcore platforming, and you will die. Don’t let the bright candy colors mislead you.
So, what’s Mutant Mudds Deluxe got that the 3DS version doesn’t? The Wii U version of the game adds an entirely new mirror world, with darker versions of the game’s main 20 levels. These worlds feature ghost enemies that are unkillable (without the aid of a special gun that has limited shots) and must be dodged. It adds yet another layer of difficulty to the already tricky terrain featured in Mutant Mudds, and augments the main game a good bit. The special levels featuring Grannie from the DLC of the 3DS game are also available in the Wii U package (they are stupidly difficult). All in all, there’s about 80 levels to conquer, an impressive amount of content.
One little thing that also makes a big difference in Mutant Mudds Deluxe is the addition of checkpoints to the levels. Mutant Mudds is an often brutally hard game, and the original release made you restart the entire level over if you met an untimely death. The checkpoints in the Wii U version really helps ease frustration. But if you are the masochistic type, you can always turn them off from the main menu.
But some improvements in Mutant Mudds Deluxe aren’t in the actual content; it’s all in the delivery. Deluxe enjoys the inherent benefits of being on a console, such as improved control inputs and better visuals. When playing the game on the television, the pixel worlds have flawless detail with the high definition. This also allows the visible game display to be much larger than the 3DS screen could offer, so you can see much farther around your character, which makes some of the challenges a lot more manageable.
Renegade Kid also added a plethora of control options in Mutant Mudds Deluxe, allowing you to control the game with the Wii U Gamepad, the Wii U Pro Controller, the Wii Remote with or without Nunchuk, and the Wii Classic Controller. The off-TV play is also a nice feature that we’ve come to expect in most Wii U games, and it’s here as well. The only caveat is that screen view on the GamePad is as just small as the 3DS version.
On the whole, Mutant Mudds Deluxe does everything right. This is the definitive version of Renegade Kid’s game. The only advantage I could say that the 3DS version has over this edition is the portability factor. There’s also something lost in not being able to look at the cool 3D depth effect when Max jumps from foreground to background, but that’s just the limitation of the hardware.
Now, if you’re not already a platforming fan, Mutant Mudds Deluxe probably won’t change your mind. But if you just want some good old-fashioned jumping challenges, this is a great game to play. It can indeed become repetitive when you get stuck, but the compelling gameplay wins out in the end. Going for the 100% level completion doesn’t feel like a chore at all, and Mutant Mudds consistently raises the bar in terms of difficulty as you advance. If I had to nitpick one thing, I’d ask for a run button. Sometimes Max feels like he’s walking terribly slow, and there is a time limit on the levels.
For new players of Mutant Mudds, I would wholeheartedly recommend Deluxe. However, if you already have it for 3DS, you have to ask yourself if the addition of checkpoints and the extra ghost levels is worth buying the game again. It might not be, but it’s a good game on both platforms. Either way, the Wii U has gained an excellent and unabashedly retro platformer in the form of Mutant Mudds Deluxe.
Nintendojo was provided a copy of this game for review by a third party, though that does not affect our recommendation. For every review, Nintendojo uses a standard criteria.