You were expecting it, Biomutant has recently been available on PS4, Xbox One and PC, and now our TEST is its turn. So, was it worth the wait? Some think so, and maybe me too … Or not. Although … Anyway!
101 Experiment is a small studio founded by Avalanche alumni (Just Cause) in 2015 and their first game, Biomutant, was announced in the summer of 2017 for a release scheduled for 2018. After a buyout by THQ Nordiq in the crowd, the game will have undergone multiple postponements to finally arrive almost 3 years later. For the best or for the worst ? He had seduced us a lot during a little test on the sidelines of the PGW 2019, will the good impressions be confirmed?
The action of Biomutant takes place in a distant future where humanity, the consequences of its own bullshit of which it has the secret, has disappeared. Instead, multiple creatures genetically altered by the ubiquitous radiation have taken possession of the blue plant, even though they are overall smaller than a certain Godzilla. In the middle of this universe: the tree of life, a sort of guarantor of the health of the remains of this world. And you in all this, you play … a cute ball of fur. The hairball read. The one who had to live outside the city, raised by the wolves, and who returns to the city to fulfill her destiny just like the Prophecy. On his return, no less than 4 “world eaters” are destroying each of the 4 roots of the tree of life, and in addition to unifying all the other clans of “hairballs”, you will have to defeat each of these four critters, and then you’ll have a choice: destroy that tree or save it?
Biomutant includes a lot of scenario choices and existential questions that will change your level of Karma and the destiny of this world. You will even be able, if you have enough persuasive power, to end a conflict without a fight. Everything is supported by a permanent second degree, because if all the inhabitants of this universe have their own language, almost all your actions and dialogues will be commented by a narrator, with a lot of humor. A real wind of freshness that will be reminiscent of some iconic PS2 titles such as Jack & Daxter, Ratchet & Clank or Legend of Kay. The narration is not left out with a lot of dialogues with the NPCs, this time translated by the narrator, with a few multiple choice questions, playable flashback phases where you will meet your mman. The rest of the universe is extremely colorful, from the critters that inhabit it to its rather varied post-apocalyptic settings, with quite a few ruins from our time that seem straight out of a Fallout or Horizon episode. Zero Dawn, and a super stylish soundtrack. Clearly, in terms of design and universe, Biomutant is a real little success, a very charming little game.
And this all the more so since technically speaking, it’s pretty well tied up: the settings are sometimes crude but the colors and the theme sweep it all over, and the 3D models of the characters are very cartoonish and rather well done, especially at the level of their coat. There is a little popping here and there, but playing it on Xbox Series X the 60 FPS was consistent, loads less than 10 seconds, and the artistic design underscores this generally honest technique.
In terms of gameplay, if seeing your avatar jump like Yoda in attack of the clones will always be a pleasure, joystick in hand, it’s a bit less obvious. In combat, you will have mainly 4 options: defense, with dodge and counter, ranged fire with quite delirious pests, often devastating psychic powers and body attacks, with a multiple choice of quite original weapons. And if jumping or dodging while shooting offers a fairly light and fun little family bullet time, body-to-body, that’s another story. The hits seem rather “soft”. They hardly knock back enemies, who rarely stagger, and are also real HP bags. Even with the super “fulguro fist”, it’s impossible not to feel a certain lack of impact. Powers and shots offer a bit more thrill, thankfully. The management of the guns and the aim are rather simple, the various points of view and the powers bring a lot of diversity with various effects ranging from simple zone poisoning to things downright more barred and well in the spirit of the game. It is clearly with ranged attacks you will fight the most.
A few more original passages are in the game, with action phases always out of step, based on QTE, off-set combat scripts and in the spirit of the game, or other unique actions but sometimes poorly introduced and / or explain. Moments edge of sound mecha combat also offer their share of diversity, even if we can make the same criticism on the body body, too powerful, this time. You can’t even really see if you hit something. In front of you, a rather varied bestiary, with often delusional monsters, very cute and ugly at the same time, and 3 challenges offered. In normal mode, we did not have that many problems, we even found the game rather easy despite a few deaths that occurred when falling in the water or a puddle of oil … Clearly, on the action side, despite some lack of dynamism, Biomutant does the job rather efficiently.
In Biomutant, you are going to survey a more or less open and rather vast world. In fact, the game is rather interventionist and more or less forces your hand in a certain direction. On the map, you will come across a lot of NPCs with their side quests, places to explore to loot their wonders, strong enemies to conquer, the map so divided between 6 clans, and something to occupy you during the main quest, which often happens. similar when you have to go fight one of the 4 World Eaters. Either a little preparation with the repair of an accessory and the conquest of the territory of the rival clans to gain support against the beast. With the design of the levels, we immediately think of a small Horizon Zero Dawn, but clearly, it is worse. You will have to look at the map carefully so as not to get lost in a dead end on the mountainside. To walk around, a few mounts, with an almost trollsque behavior and worthy of the Mako of Mass Effect.
Allow 15-20 hours to see the end of it, and throughout, you can have fun tweaking your hero in the menus. With a strong RPG component, at the start of the game, you will have to choose between 5 races and 5 classes, which will influence your statistics, and each level will give you access to statistical improvements, new moves or passive skills, powers or even more. elementary resistance. The equipment is not to be outdone with a good depth, a rather fun crafting system, and there is something to spend a little time on. But given the apparent simplicity of the game, we can also succeed without worrying too much …