Mukaka was one of the many Nintendo indie titles I was able to check out at Pax West 2017 and while it was interesting, I felt the console honestly wasn't the best presentation for it. When it comes to these early demo experiences the graphics aren't finalized and neither is the gameplay, but visually it was very jagged. The presentation there certainly could have been better as it came across as too basic though I did enjoy using the Joy-Cons for this particular title. The core gameplay is a simple brawler type game that's been mixed with animal spirits to switch up the gameplay.
You mostly walk around in a regular geometric based human form and then transform for moments that are needed. The environment carries the same geometric look and while this soft look can be charming, it didn't really blow me away in the demo. Mulaka was however very focused on respecting the adapted culture which was nice and the developer was very passionate in telling this type of story which is something I always appreciate when being guided through a game. I did see many elements that really brought the culture to life and I feel that the rest of the game will carry with that.
The game comes across as simple, but with some interesting puzzles. I hope there's more complexity to it all and imagine it was just for the demo that everything was easy. I moved through an open valley swaying with the winds as a bird and then going to solve puzzles. The main focus for these were water flowing rocks that you would swat to fill end posts. It wasn't difficult and this was bridged by some minor platforming elements. The occasional enemy fight was also thrown in as I would be cornered into a circle of death and needed to eliminate my opponents.
These creatures came in regular versions and in a spiritual way which you can switch into as that gives a different perspective during battle as well as in puzzle solving. The basics of a potentially interesting game are certainly there with a graphic style that I do enjoy. I'm looking forward to seeing something that's more cleaned up in the future as I can see this possibly being an intriguing look at a culture that's rarely represented in gaming. You can expect Mulaka on Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4 and PC in Early 2018.
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