Welcome to the year 5000 – a future in which humanity has moved on to the planet Mars after Earth became unlivable. Unfortunately, much of humanity’s history has been lost, but Henry Dijon and his colleagues plan to change all that with their expeditions to planet Earth. Unfortunately, things soon go awry when their professor, Totel, is kidnapped on what should be a fairly routine exploration.
It’s up to Henry and co to follow the clues and figure out where and how to save Totel. Is his disappearance related to the mysterious lost city of Mutropolis? Why the heck are Egyptian gods involved?
Application Systems Heidelberg has a pretty enjoyable catalogue, and their last release was one of my favourites, so when I received a key for this first game from the small (but obviously talented) Pirita Studio, I knew it would be worth my time.
The first thing that caught my attention was the fantastic art – bright, detailed, and softly coloured, Mutropolis is a joy to look at and explore. It’s filled with fantastic references and nods to pop culture and history that are fun to catch (and not so intrusive as to ruin the fun if you don’t recognize something). The sounds and music are the extra cherry on top. Atmosphere is everything in point and click games – afterall, they’re a game style that requires the player to interact extensively with the world around them and its inhabitants. Mutropolis brings a bright, fun, and engaging world to life and makes it fun to turn every stone and peek into every corner.
The characters are likable and entertaining, as well as unique. The witty writing brings them to life perfectly, and I genuinely felt sad at saying goodbye to them by the end of the game – they’re a crowd I’d love to go on another adventure with. Even better, the game is fully voiced, and well-done for that matter. It’s a nice detail that not only helps make the game a little more accessible, but adds a lot of life to the characters and their dialogue.
As far as gameplay, I mostly enjoyed it from start to finish. The puzzles were fun, and often made sense. However, the game probably could have benefited from some kind of hint system – there were 2 or 3 steps where I got so stuck I finally had to refer to the publisher’s walkthrough. In one case, I thought it made sense and was a clever solution that I could have eventually gotten. But there were a couple where I feel sure I never would have guessed on my own. With a couple reviewers commenting that at times they had to click extensively or guess, I feel like I’m not alone in this. However, I’ve come to expect this from a lot of point and clicks, and I’m not sure I’d hold this against Mutropolis. Overall the puzzles are fun, clever, and interesting. It was fun to play with the items to figure out unconventional solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems.
So is Mutropolis worth it?
If you enjoy classic point and click adventure games, I definitely think so. While I’m not a big fan of numerical scales to classify something as “good” I’d give this one a solid 9 out of 10 – I had a blast playing it, and it rekindled my love of point and click games after a long dry spell. From start to finish, this quirky historical adventure took probably 4-5 hours, but of course I also got massively stuck at a few points and was moving my way through slowly. Even with getting stuck and occasionally needing a short break, I really enjoyed every moment. Mutropolis is gorgeously crafted, with a lot of fun and laughs to uncover while you search for answers in the ruins of the once-great civilizations of Earth.
Order Up! is a weekly column featuring indie-focused reviews, news, or interviews! We like old games just as much as new ones and are always looking for something to check out. Have a game recommendation, a project, or a company you want to talk about? Email me at [email protected] or find me on Twitter @ArcanaChance