I wrote a bit about Biomutant when it first came out. My initial impressions were that the post-apocalyptic open-world action-adventure game was fine. The game wasn't great, nor was it terrible, it was just fine. I thought I'd probably poke away at it here and there when I was really bored.
Since then, I think I've played it every single day. Biomutant still isn't a great game. But between falling for its setting, settling into the gameplay, and being completely shocked by the first boss fight, I think I'm kind of loving it.
Loving the Lush Landscape
I was pretty in love with the world of Biomutant from the start, but I've had the chance to see a lot more of it now. Thanks to me totally misunderstanding what order the game wanted me to do things in, I ended up marching across the entire map from South to North looking for an Oxygen Tank. That doesn't speak too highly of the game's quest system. However, I loved every new area and enemy that I encountered on that trek. The journey was rewarding enough that I almost wasn't annoyed when I wasn't at a high enough level to use the Oxygen Tank.
The world design is the biggest highlight in Biomutant. The map has areas that feel distinct and unique, but are always super detailed and interesting. It seems crazy to say it, but this is neck-and-neck with Breath of the Wild for “best game to crest a hill in”.
That sense of wonder and discovery got even better when I realized I could completely mute the annoying narrator voice!
Figuring Out How to Fight
When I first wrote about Biomutant I didn't understand it's combat system at all. I'm not sure if I'm dense or if the game is poorly tutorialized. I realized that I was button-mashing way, way too much after I heard a few podcasters talking about their experiences with the game. Three-button combos are the crux of the whole combat system. Once I slowed down and started focusing in on three or four reliable sequences, fighting enemies started to feel a lot more fun.
The battles still don't feel very impactful, but my character at least looks cool now while I beat the stuffing out of damage sponges.
Cracking in to the crafting system helped with the combat, too. You can dig really deep into modifying your clothing and weapons in this game. Like, really deep. I think the big, glowing, radioactive pink hammer I'm using right now has 5 different slots of “stuff” that you can add on to it to make the numbers go up. It's overwhelming, but it's worth it to wipe out mobs a lot quicker.
Battling the Jumbo Puff
So yeah, that's a bit about some aspects of the game that have fallen into place for me. But it's not the world or the combat that made me want to write this post. The inspiration for this was my first battle against one of the four World Eater bosses that are a big thrust of the main storyline in Biomutant.
I would like to tell you all about fighting the Jumbo Puff.
I'm going to spoil this battle, so if that's a concern for you, go ahead and stop reading this post. Just know that this battle was absolutely buck wild.
Okay, so here's the deal. In order to fight the Jumbo Puff you first have to get yourself a straight up mech. You kit this thing out with an oxygen tank and a machine gun and then set off to start shooting up the big ole Jumbo Puff. This thing is a beefy monster with three segments to it's health bar.
You battle the Jumbo Puff in an abandoned section of city, where it's knocking over the ruins of buildings as you blast it. In a game that's standard combat isn't super impactful, seeing buildings fall over is awesome.
The Surprise that Consumed Me
Like most enemies in this game, the Jumbo Puff has way more health than it seems like he should. You have to dodge his attacks throughout the battle, but mostly you just blast him a bunch.
The Jumbo Puff started flinging around live powerlines after a third of its health was gone. Fine, no problem. Keep blasting.
Then, when it was down to the last third of it's health, it ate me. The Jumbo Puff wrapped his gob around the top of the mech, sucked my little racoon rabbit out of it, flung me into the air, and then swallowed me.
At this point, the game transitioned to me inside the stomach of the beast. I just stood there, completely flabbergasted. Hacking away at some organ in the Jumbo Puff's guts would have let me beat the thing, but instead, I just sat there. Torrential waterfalls of wretched bile poured down on top of me as I watched in disbelief. After just a few moments, I was flushed out of the stomach in stunned silence.
That's right, the Jumbo Puff ate me and then pooped me out.
And then he sat on me. Then he stood back up, and my character's head was stuck in his butthole. And I died. I lost to the Jumbo Puff with my head in its butt.
A Perfect Podcast Game
This game is weird, y'all. It's so dang weird. The story still isn't doing a whole lot for me. I'm having enough fun wandering the world, beating up baddies, and seeing what bizarre thing is going to happen next that it's kept me playing.
I've even gotten my wife to take the controller. She played for a while on a random quest we set for ourselves to tame a super cool, super creepy-looking mount.
It's not a great game, but it's a lot of fun. This falls squarely into the “podcast game” realm for me. Meaning it's one I can just kind of zone out and enjoy while listening to a podcast.
When the dust all settles, I think this will fall alongside Maneater in the Geek to Geek “Perfect 7 out of 10 Game” hall of fame.