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Ex-Mutants

Genre: Action Developer: Malibu Interactive Publisher: Sega of America Players: 1 Released: 1992

Back in the day, when I had just bought my Mega Drive, and games were expensive for me to buy, I started to rent them from my local video store. It was seven miles on my bike to get there and seven back, but when I was in the video store there where around six shelves full of Mega Drive games! I always spent a full hour looking at such great titles like Splatterhouse 3, Truxton, Home Alone, Deadly Moves, Phelios, Wings of Wor, and many others. I rented there, hoping that my choice that day was a good one, because cycling all the way home with a game that was rubbish… well, that’s a bitch!

One Saturday, I went there to rent a new game, and while in the store I saw the game Superman lying on the shelf and decided to play it for a weekend. However, when I got home and booted it up, the screen said “only playable on a NTSC Genesis,” so brought it back and looked for another game. Ex-Mutants had been lying there for like, a year or so, but I always thought that it was like Spider-Man/X-Men: Arcade’s Revenge (piece of shit that was). Eager to play something, I just took it and decided to test my luck. Back home, I popped the cart in the slot and started to play…

Well, it is a standard platformer, but it manages to be great fun nonetheless. The story goes that you are part of a a group of six Ex-Mutants and four of them are captured by the bad guy Lord Sluggo and his cronies. At the beginning, you can choose from the two characters who haven’t been captured (Ackroyd and Shannon). When you free one of the other team members, they aren’t playable, which is a shame, but I guess you can’t have it all. Ackroyd is slow and strong, while Shannon is fast and weak. Pick the one you like and start the game.

There are six levels in total. You start at the laboratory, then move on to the forest, cave, sewers, skyscraper, and underground. In each level you have to find a battery to proceed to the next round, which is needed for Professor Kildare, so he can provide you with information. At the end of each level there’s a boss waiting for you, and he’s out for blood. The levels themselves look good, with some fine details.

The controls of the game are real good and responsive, but this game will be hard for some players. Enemies are everywhere, and they take a lot of hits to die. The bosses are real pieces of work, too. Some are easy because they have a pattern to follow, but some not, and that can be a pain. The action is fast-paced, and there is always something going on, such as lava pits, deadly lasers, falling rocks, mines, and more. After each stage, there are some scenes of conversation between the good guys and some with the bad guys. Skip that, though. Most of the time it’s boring and not funny at all.

The audio is good enough but not great. It will get you through the game, but when the things are said and done you won’t remember any particular song. That’s a shame, because Ex-Mutants is a pretty solid and fun game despite this.

There’s one thing in the game that I should mention. In the last level, the skyscraper, there is someone waiting for you! A secret character can be found that provides you with lots of money. He’s all the way down at the bottom of that level, so good luck searching!

Overall, Ex-Mutants is good to waste a day with, but when it’s finished, it’s finished. You could perhaps try stretching its shelf life by playing with the other character, but that wasn’t the case for me. I had to make a fourteen mile round trip to the video store and back, and that’s more than I can take for any game on a weekend.

I found this to be a fun title with decent controls, but there’s really nothing here to return to once the game has been finished. Of course, factoring the low price might offer some incentive to play through it more than once. This one is cheap to find, so you can’t go wrong with that, at least.

SCORE: 6 out of 10

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3 Comments

  1. thedecider says:

    I agree with what’s been said in the comments – this is more an 8 for me. I do find myself returning to this game. I got this as a gift and had been asking for the new “X-Men” game for my Genesis. Well, I was disappointed when I unwrapped it, but quickly, it grew on me and I played it over and over until I beat it. Catchy little musical themes, solid controls, and really decent graphics. It’s definitely an underrated game. If you haven’t, try it!

  2. Cobra says:

    Have to agree with gabbamonk.

  3. gabbamonk says:

    Played the game and it is more a 8 than a 6!
    Thats what i think about this game!

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