|Game Name:||Mutant Crops||Published Year:||2017|
|Game Publisher:||Atheris Games||Player Scale:||2 – 4|
|Game Designer:||Sebastian Koziner||Run Time:||15 -30 mins|
If you pick up this game and you are not immediately reminded of Rick Moranis singing to a giant man-eating plant that is screaming “Feed me, Seymour! Feed me!” then you are probably under thirty, and well basically you missed out on a great film (Little Shop of Horrors 1986). In this light-weight, face-paced worker placement game you are growing and selling giant, mutated crops that need both water and meat to grow, flourish and reach their full potential – in other words; make the most money.
Each player will have a number of farmer meeples (depending on the number of players) that they will place upon one of the available actions from a communal spread of action cards. At the start of the game this is a spread of six Stage One cards (giving you twelve possible actions), and each subsequent turn another card is revealed, first from the pool of Stage Two cards, and then finally the Stage Three. Across these snappy seven turns players will attempt to gain the required resources to buy new crops (Seeds), water the crops they already have (…with water, obviously), and of course you’ll need to feed these fruit and vegetables too (with Meat). Players will need to take actions to gain these resources, sow new plants, feed and/or water them, or even just mix up the current crops available.
The artwork (by Rocio Ogñenovich) and mutant theme work really well together making for a fun varnish on this otherwise well-tested farmer troupe. Important to note that this is a tried and tested game, and is, in fact, the English version of the game produced, by OK Editions, an independent game and art design couple producing comics and tabletop games in Argentina. As with many worker placement, resource management games the player versus player interaction is on the lighter side. In Mutant Crops, the ability block and horde particular actions/resources is a really nice flourish which can cause a satisfying amount frustration for your opponents when you pull it off well.
This is a very light, really stripped-back Euro-style game, based on a farm about growing crops; yes this is the mutated pocket version of Agricola that you didn’t even know you were waiting for. This game makes a great introduction to the worker placement mechanic, it is really light on resources and components means it packs a punch far bigger than its small box, or cartoon vegetable theme would suggest. With a quick set up time, streamlined, easy to understand rules, and quick gameplay this is a great game for newer gamers, and a brilliant, fun filler game for more serious players, or if you fancy a worker placement, farmer game but only have thirty minutes to play this will scratch that itch nicely.
Mutant Crops is live on Kickstarter now for only $19 or £19 (including EU friendly shipping), and you should definitely check it out!