Ahh Mythology, one of my favorite parts of being in fourth grade. I loved the legends brought forward from Greek teachings they were some of the best parts of class, and were always interesting. The God of War series is one of the most recognizable names to use Mythology as its core inspiration, and does so well. When I came across MUJO on the eShop, I was highly intrigued by the fact that it took a much simpler angle on the source material, being a “match three” style game as opposed to a narrative driven action packed epic. My intrigue, however, quickly dwindled away. What seemed to be a cute and unique approach to the genre and inspirations, soon showed its teeth, revealing that it is nothing but a cheap and effortless port, one that keeps its ridiculous micro-transactions while boasting a nearly $10 price tag (contrary to its free-to-play mobile counterpart.)
MUJO’s gameplay is simple to a fault. You play on a 7 x 8 grid lined with various tiles. The main tiles you will encounter are the attack one, and others that give out xp. The non-attack ones serve no purpose outside the xp, becoming somewhat of a filler. This xp is used to level up your support gods, who are gathered along the way when winning key battles. I wish these other tiles had some importance, like those found in 10,000,000, a similarly played game. But no, like the bulk of the game, there is not strategy or point to them. But with these tiles and others, you must match at least three to activate them. The more you chain, the more at damage you deal or xp you gain. The one neat part about the gameplay is that you can stack tiles. With a long press, your tiles will collapse into one instead of disappearing off the grid, which makes their value increase. The more you stack, the more damage you can deal, which is helpful during boss fights where the God regains health after each turn.
These boss fights are the one shallow attempt at making the game somewhat strategic, but it’s done so cheaply and without purpose that by the second or third boss you will openly question why you are even playing anymore. This is because no enemies fight back, what so ever. There is no consequence, no way to lose, no opposition what so ever. It’s just bland, muddled repition. The only obstacle in your way is the health regain, or the bombs that can level one row and column of tiles, which may set you back a bit if you have been working on stacking tiles. But again, whats the point? I will go right back to stacking and eventually win without quarrel. It’s just effortless. To top it off, there are some really lame microtransactions that should have stayed in the free version. Thunderbolts can be purchased or gained through daily play/achievements. These thunderbolts can be used to delete tiles that are in your way, so if you are struggling they essentially are a helping hand. In a paid version, these should be less of a focus on the gameplay without a doubt, especially in a game that offers so little rewards.
What sucks the most is seeing such a good concept put to waste. In the shoddy port, they did not even bother rescaling the game to fit the Switch’s dimensions. So you are treated to a playing field about as wide as a typical smart phone, leaving plenty of blank space on either side of the screen. You can zoom in a bit, but it only does so much. Check out the pictures below to get an idea of what I am discussing. The screen could have been a lot cleaner had they put an upscaled enemy on the right side, and your support characters on the left, making for a flush and livelier screen. Given a bit of challenge, this could have really been something. If enemies would attack back or damage your tiles in certain ways, it would have been loads more fun to strategize using different tiles to gain xp for your squad, attack, or even defend. But MUJO is much simpler than that, and its great concept and potential is dumbed down to a simple cash grab on the Switch.
I am disappointed in MUJO. It could have been special, it really could have been. I sit here writing and can honestly say, this is my least favorite game on the Switch. Its solid visual appeal can only do so much for it, and the same goes for its use of Mythological creatures and Gods. Save your moolah, and say no to MUJO. It’ll damn your wallet and attention to HADES.
*Note: A copy of this game was provided for the purpose of this review.
Final SCore: 3/10
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