Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars

Developer: Red Fly Studios
Publisher: Gamecock
Release Date: Dec. 2, 2008
Systems: Wii (Reviewed), DS
ESRB Rating: E10+
Official Web site

In a nutshell: Not the best platform game to feature mushrooms, but possibly the best to feature a mushroom protagonist.
0:00 It's not very hard to get me to try a new 3-D platformer, and this one had enough low-level buzz to put it high up on my list of vague interest.

0:01 The preview screen has some odd drum beats and a bunch of glowing eyes looking out from the blackness behind some tall grass. I'm already hooked!

0:02 After a bunch of animated logos, a bare title screen features some multicolored glow bugs on the walls of a cavern. Story time: "From the depths of space, a giant meteor hurtles towards planet Earth." It lands and casts green dust across the countryside. "Conventional science says it has no effect on terrestrial life: But science ... was wrong!" SCIENCE! *shakes fist*

0:04 Hidden amongst the gameplay options are a bunch of mini-games. I decide to use them to ease into the experience a bit. "Pachinko" is like a poor man's Peggle, with a percentage counter that goes up as the small ball hits metal pegs on the way down to a few point buckets. Cute, but I don't think it has any real staying power.

0:08 "Catapult" features some overly touchy slingshot pull-back controls to attack some ambulatory mushrooms. A "mine cart" game reminds me of Pipe Dream, in a good way. The others are just cheapo versions of Memory and Peg Solitaire, so I don't even bother. These were good little appetizers all around. Has me excited for the main game.

Read the full review at Crispy Gamer

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