Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden (Early Impressions)

Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is a mid-budget videogame from developer The Bearded Ladies Consulting which was released December 2018. Set in a post apocalypse world after a global outbreak of a deadly plague, Mutant Year Zero is a turn based tactical RPG, which is very reminiscent of the modern XCOM games.

These are my early thoughts based on a few hours playtime and reaching level 20 in-game. I played the game on Xbox One via Game Pass.

What it does well:

  • Love the real time movement. Game allows you to move your party around in real-time before switches to a turn-based mode for any combat encounters.
  • This balance works really well and gives the game a very accessible feel, as you have to scavenge around the world exploring for loot and resources to upgrade or buy weapons. So although loot and gear appears to be in fixed locations it provides an incentive to explore.
  • The characters are fairly unique.
  • The turn-based combat is fun.
  • The way the story is told well early on.
  • Characters provide some humorous dialog in missions.
  • Controls work brilliantly on the controller.
Screenshot of Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden on Xbox One

Things I didn’t like:

  • There are 3 difficulty levels, and even playing Normal, the lowest of these and the game still feels quite difficult.
  • It essentially rewards you for stealth and picking off enemies stragglers first. Even going onto other areas on the map to level-up before coming back to tackle the earlier encounters. It feels like the game is meant to be played one way and if you deviate from stealth you are quickly overwhelmed.
  • Medbots feel cheap as they revive fallen enemies from a long way away, potentially from earlier fights and after only one turn.
  • Enemies very quickly ramp up in Health Points.
  • A very minor point but the game isn’t Xbox One X enhanced.

Overall I do like the game although in a similar vein to Ashen and We Happy Few which I also played on Xbox Game Pass this might be one I put down for now to venture on to some of my backlog games. A fun and pretty interesting game though.

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