These days it’s really hard to surprise gamers. That’s why indie market offers its wildest, most unpredictable and unconventional experiments with the gameplay. And, the developers would do anything to stand out from the rest. Naturally, this leads to the development of truly extraordinary games. Today, October 15, 2015, one such game is being released on Steam - Mushroom 11, developed by Untame.
Mushroom 11 is a quest of destruction and survival. This game will give you an unforgettable experience and allow you to feel what it’s like to be a new biological species. You can also call it a mushroom puzzle or a mushroom platformer. Here, it’s all about self-destruction and shape-shifting, which allows you to manipulate things around. You take control of a new fungus, which is capable of immediate regeneration. Due to this ability, you can move, absorb objects, and change your structure and size.
The events of the game take place in a post-nuclear world, and apparently, people are long gone. But being an indestructible mushroom with your ability to regenerate, you can transform into infinite number of forms and thereby modify your body for the purpose of the most comfortable and successful navigation through the game levels.
Here are the first five chapters with tips and tricks how to go about the most difficult parts in the game.
The first level is really simple, as it introduces you to the game mechanics and can be finished really quickly. You begin in the hole in the ground and make your way through a desolate city, both over and underground. The scenery consists of destroyed buildings and tunnels, with a few bits of lava here and there.
All you need is two mouse buttons to be able to control and manipulate the structure of the green fungus blob. The left button is an eraser of a bigger size and allows you to quickly move and shape yourself. While the right mouse button is a much thinner eraser and is needed for finer cutting and distribution of the body mass.
On your way, you can collect blue fluorescent mushrooms and activate checkpoints that gain more and more importance as you progress through the chapters. Each level has a boss fight at the end and this introductory chapter has one, as well, which is probably the only challenging part. Here are a few tips how to beat it:
- As it shoots fireballs everywhere, try to get at least a little bit of your mushroom’s body mass onto one of its arms and quickly erase the rest. This way you can get from one arm to another collecting all the blossoms.
- At the end of the fight wait for it to drown in the lava and then you have to carefully sneak into the tunnel below the ground to be able to finish the chapter.
This chapter is already much more difficult than the first one. As you start playing, the first tunnel becomes a huge problem from the get-go, and then as you progress the challenges become even harder.
You also meet some new species around, such as spiders that can destroy your structure, unless you absorb them from above. Spiders also indicate the presence of a certain boss at the end. Here are some tricks how to get there and finish him:
- Up to the half point of the level, you will encounter numerous tunnels that will require the use of the right mouse button – the fine eraser. The real fun starts afterwards, when you get to the huge pool of purple acid. The only way to the other side is a fence-like structure. Here you need to be both very fast and very precise, otherwise you can easily fall down into the acid. Apply a constant pressure on the mushroom with your left button and constantly support it from below.
- At the end, you do encounter a giant spider where you have to swallow his eyeballs that appear below and above him. So you will have to move upwards on his legs to get them and go back down. At first it seems pretty easy, just like the boss from the first chapter, but this one is actually much more aggressive. Here, you need to use the teeter-totter to get to the top of his head. Erase yourself to the minimum size and wait at the other side, so the boss launches you into the air with his legs. From there on it’s really easy to go back down and grab the last eyeball.
The third level introduces both the new scenery – a countryside with clean water, and new mechanics – spraying. Also, you need to use other objects to destroy walls made of haystacks, which is quite easy.
The problems begin with moving platforms and spraying machines. Here are a few ways how to deal with them:
- When on top of a moving platform you need to be patient and apply just enough pressure on the sprayer and at the exactly right time. As soon as the small part of the chopped fungus lands in the right place, quickly erase the rest to shift the focus.
- Later on you will encounter hanging garlands. And, these things are tricky. Again, it’s all about precision and patience, so use that right mouse button well. You need to squeeze through one bid at a time and that’s how you progress on top.
- The boss at the end spits exploding balloons. You need to shape up yourself in a way that prompts the balloons to explode near the boss’ limbs. As you beat it, go on top of the boss and make your way up through another garland, and then you’re done.
We go back to the industrial environment with all sorts of machines. They become your main obstacles here – some are simple, but others will make you spend a lot of time thinking and trying things out.
The most difficult parts are the ones with the rotating gears that require some serious shape-shifting from your behalf. Here are a few tricks how to go about these hindrances:
- The whole point of dealing with rotating gears is in becoming a proper medium. So, make that fungus of yours shape up in a way that it initiates the gears to rotate in the direction and with the speed that you need. Think like an engineer and you should be fine.
- The boss at the end of the chapter is another rotating machine that shoots rockets. Here, you need to go up by using a hook and the platforms. As it shoots its rockets, quickly push forward into the gaps left by the rockets and a tiny explosion will damage the boss. Do it a few times until it stops and get inside its “belly”. Then, you need to move the blob inside this machine to be able to move it forward through the pool of lava towards the finish.
Chapter number five rehashes some of the elements from the previous levels, but this time it makes them much, much more difficult. Later on you will be introduced to the rail cart and its specific mechanics, involving velocity and momentum.
The hardest part comes when the cart speeds up, the mushroom loses its grip and falls on the electric rails. If you want to survive, then follow these simple tips:
- When inside the moving cart, consistently erase the fungus and shape it up in a way that the mass pushes itself in the opposite direction of the momentum force. In this way you will not fall out of the cart.
- As you move forward, you will encounter upward flows of steam. You can use them to lift yourself up in the air. But this is a bit tricky, as the steam gives you more speed the smaller you are, but if you get too small you will fall down. That’s why keep your size just enough to be able to go up and don’t overdo with the erasing when being already in the air.
- Also, stay away from fire-spitting worms – these will kill you real fast, or just absorb them by falling on top of them.
- In order to kill the boss, let's call him the Lava Worm, you need to accomplish two things. First, you need to get rid of the four smaller fire worms hanging on the walls and the ceiling. This will make the big worm to show itself from the top of his hiding. Second, you will notice that his body structure resembles that of a garland, which means you have to get to the top of the ceiling and absorb the isthmus that keeps him hanging. This will cause him to fall down into the lava pool and free the tunnel above. Get in that tunnel using the steam flow and move upwards to finish the chapter.
Mushroom 11 is hard and it’s great – puzzles should be hard. It’s also very original and nothing like this has ever been done before. Developing skills and staying mindful are the two main keys that will allow you to beat the game. So, if you’re looking for a smart, inventive, challenging puzzle with great physics that also looks good, then give Mushroom 11 a try.
On top of that, the game is scored by one of the most influential electronic music bands in the world – The Future Sound of London. The soundtrack perfectly fits the mood of the game and helps you keep calm and focused. If you want to hear more of their genius creations in the same vein, check their albums “Lifeforms” and “Dead Cities” that have probably influenced the Mushroom 11 themes.
The world created by the Untame developers has a lot of potential for growth, and the set of unique mechanics introduced in this game could be taken even further. So, the sequel is definitely welcome with more of that Future Sound of London goodness.
Let us know what you think about Mushroom 11 and its fantastic soundtrack in the comments section below!