Mutant Dreams: Reactive Mutations In Shrooms

Had I chosen my own mutations, I probably wouldn’t have gone with astigmatism, Raynaud’s phenomenon, and a leaning towards alcoholism. Them’s the breaks, though. Roll with it. I wish more games took this tack, giving you attributes you didn’t ask for, builds that can’t be honed and optimised, only dealt with. Roll with the punches and see where the journey takes you, man.

Shrooms [official site] talks big talk of mutations and evolution driven by infections, morphing your body to suit what happens to you rather than following your whims. I, obviously, dig that idea.

“In the world of Shrooms, your body will get infected and start mutating according to what you eat, where you live, what attacks you, etc.” explains a recent dev update. Lovely. Splendid. That sentence sounds fab and I would like to see that idea in a game.

Unfortunately, Shrooms puts all this in a multiplayer crafty-explore-a-survive-a-sandbox – a genre that simply isn’t my bag. It does sound like they’re aiming slightly beyond being Just Another One Of Those Games, mind. Plans include co-op crafting, like one player holding a sword while another wails on it with a hammer, PvE raids, and changing weather.

But back to unchosen attributes. Rogue Legacy had some fine mutations, both good and bad, giving you characters who might be dyslexic, monstrously strong, giant, a bit farty, and so on. I always liked the idea of combat scars in Fable games, but one could remove them. Rather than list examples myself, I’ll turn it over to you: what else, gang?

Me, I’m more fascinated by the idea of reactive, unchosen mutations than Shrooms itself, but here’s a glimpse at an early version if you are curious:


  1. televizor says:

    Does anyone here remember Evolva? 2000’s ?
    And while we’re at it, I miss Giants: Citizen Kabuto as well

    • XhomeB says:

      Upon seeing the first screenshot, I immediately got some heavy Dreams to Reality vibes – that flying pose and all that – but you’re right, when you actually read what the game’s about, it’s quite similar to Evolva.

    • Kirasath says:

      Yeah remember Evolva well, been thinking if something that reminds me of it is gonna come along and it was the first thing i thought of when i saw this. :D

  2. Wret says:

    I’m imagining Middle Earth: Shadow of Murder where you’re an Orc, terrible traits and all. Hope you don’t roll a vulnerability to stealth. That’d be terrifying, always having to look and consider every raised ledge with paranoid terror…I guess death by sudden headshot is worse.

  3. jeeger says:

    Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup as well as ADOM do have mutations, beneficial as well as uh… unbeneficial. However, aquiring them is mostly random, so it doesn’t really use the whole “adapt to your environment” system. That would be kind of awesome though — One of the many things Spore should have done that it didn’t do.

    • JB says:

      Characters being rolled in UnRealWorld also have stuff like poor eyesight, fear of dogs, poor hearing, randomised height & weight, and so on. I must get back to that game and finish my lovely cabin.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      Also in the Roguelike (yes, really, honestly) stable is Cataclysm DDA, which has a surprisingly deep mutation system wherein continuing to mutate will tend to push you more and more towards certain categories – if you already have cat mutations you’re more likely to get more cat mutations than cow ones, and so forth. Alas, a high-level character can generally just stock up on a bunch of targeted mutagen and turn themself into whatever they please, but it’s still worth a mention.

    • April March says:

      Your post just makes me wish for a sandbox survival Spore, in which you adapt to everything you survive and eventually become a completely new species.

  4. mashkeyboardgetusername says:

    That armadillo was adorable. I want armadillo rolling powers.

    Ahem. Er, yeah, looks interesting. Though I’d prefer a single player option the multiplayer thing might be interesting, maybe people will band together based on ending up with similar mutations, maybe they won’t. Could be a game that interesting stories come out of.

    • TimePointFive says:

      Or people play together with their friends in a TS and murder everyone else.

  5. 9of9 says:

    I was afraid at first this might end up being Corruption of Champions of 3D. Fortunately not though, it does actually look quite decent… I don’t think my sanity could have survived that!

  6. noodlecake says:

    The character models and textures are nicer than most games of this type. Hopefully the game will match up. :)

  7. raiders5000 says:

    Who’s sponsoring this game, Kim Kardashian?

  8. MrFinnishDude says:

    I have seen enough interwebs to know that there is a sexual thing behind the mutations. Trust me, there’s probably whole communities for that shizz. Why else choose a half naked lady for the default player character?

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      Oh sweetie, EVERYONE’s “seen enough interwebs” to know that there’s a kink community for pretty much everything. Nobody else is trying to make a big deal out of it or point fingers at folks. Just let it be.

  9. physys says:

    Now I know there’s a name for the fun times when some of my fingers refuse to warm up after being outside in the cold. Thank you, Alice, for teaching me that I’m a person that gets to say, “I thought I was the only one that had this!”.

  10. cshralla says:

    “Had I chosen my own mutations, I probably wouldn’t have gone with astigmatism, Raynaud’s phenomenon, and a leaning towards alcoholism.”

    What the hell, were you playing as my mom?