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Play This! Murtop

Beautiful bum bombing bunny brilliance! – David Darling, probably.

I’ve been looking forward to getting my hands on Murtop since the press release landed in my inbox a while back. These days with only having a small audience and not much energy I rarely push to play something early but I’ll admit, Murtop had me tempted for a while. Luckily, I managed to distract myself playing Zaga 33 for a ridiculous amount of time so the wait for Murtop’s release could have been worse.

Good news though! I’m happy to report that Murtop hasn’t disappointed me in the slightest. I kinda love it.

It’s Dig Dug x Bomberman, not in an abstract sense or a tenuous comparison, it is pretty much that. If you’re familiar with Dig Dug, the stage set up is instantly recognisable, just rather than having a lead with an inflation fetish, the main character in Murtop is a bunny who craps bombs (this is canon btw) and the bombs explode as they would in Bomberman. Dig Dug x Bomberman!

It’s a crossover that really works for me. I like but don’t love Dig Dug because I find the inflation stuff slows things down a wee bit too much for my impatient tastes and I like but don’t love Bomberman because it’s a wee bit too chaotic (or at least it is playing it with my kids). Murtop finds a nice middle ground between the two by taking the bits of each game I like the most and cobbling them together, slowing the parts that are a bit too fast and speeding up the bits I find too slow. And putting a bunny in it, obv.

Took me a few goes to get used to the timing (it’s tight) and to stop blowing my bunny up with its own arse but now I’ve settled into a nice rhythm on it where I’m dying correctly now – by my own complacency and daring rather than my own exploding anus – I’m starting to chalk up more points as I go and we all know what points make, yeah? (Prizes, it’s prizes)

Also, it’s really gorgeous. I’m rather fond of additional palettes in new arcade games on the best of days but the ones in Murtop are especially nice. The first couple on offer are fairly standard inclusions but the latter half of the palette choices do a great job of echoing a bunch of different arcade vibes. Good enough that I’m finding I enjoy switching them up between games rather than settling on just the one favourite as I invariably do.

Look, I don’t get to say this often enough but this is Locomalito levels of fantastic new arcade fun. Honestly, I haven’t got any greater praise than that.

I’m playing on Switch, other versions are available. Go play.

Murtop – Flynn’s Arcade Publishing

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Top 5: Things that could go wrong with Nintendo’s follow up to the Nintendo Switch.

A fancily dressed skeleton with a fine pipe and hat introduces the top 5, an occasional series of lists of 5 things not to be taken entirely seriously.
  1. It’s filled with lizards.
  2. The game cards are 100% edible this time round.
  3. Nintendo add a little flap on the rear that occasionally comes loose and pours nuclear waste onto your lap, immediately zombifying you and bringing everyone one step closer to both the zombie apocalypse and having their brains eaten.
  4. Entering the Konami code on the home screen irreversibly increases the price of videogames on the eShop by ten pounds each time and airdrops a random U2 album onto your SD card.
  5. The joycons take design inspiration from eXistenZ and due to EU regulations around the right of repair, it is possible to fix joycon drift at home using your own teeth (or someone else’s teeth, may void warranty if incorrectly sized teeth are used in place of Official Nintendo Seal Of Approval Teeth™. Nintendo does not encourage or condone the acquisition of teeth by illegal means). Key resellers add organ marketplaces to their websites for other replacement parts and the new USBI intestinal charging cable leads to an intestine shortage.

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A screenshot of the game Mixolumia. It has a minimalist pixel aesthetic against a black background. A series of small colourful diamonds sit at the bottom of the board. In the centre of the board, mid drop, is a larger diamond made up of 4 diamonds the size of the ones at the bottom of the board. Two are red, one is yellow, one is black with a white border.

Surrounding the board is a display showing time, level, blocks cleared and the current score.

Look, I’m not going to lie here, I absolutely bought Mixolumia because someone jokingly described it as “Lesbian Tetris” and I am genuinely that easily convinced.

Now, I’m severely underqualified to tell you how lesbian a Tetris it is but I can tell you that it’s a wonderful block dropping videogame with some fantastic music that had it been released on the GBA as part of the Bit Generations series, would be spoken of in revered tones. As it is, it’s somewhere around 2023 and the GBA is long gone so we’re just going to have to pretend it was, if only so it saves me on explanations.

So. It’s pretty good, right? I’ve been playing it for a half hour or so here or there since I grabbed it and I’m having a great time just trying to beat my previous best scores. 


The thing is, it feels so nice to play and the pretty damn fine visual effects, sound FX and music work so well that I kinda just enjoy matching colours up enough that I forget there’s any scoring at all. 

Luckily, the game has me covered there because nestled in amongst its handful of game modes is a chill endless mode that lets me just sit there happily matching stuff and making nice noises at myself as I go. It’s turning out to be one of the best fidget toys made videogame I have and yes, these days I’m so tired I go looking for that sort of thing.

Most of my time is spent on the opening mode that tasks me to clear 450 lines and get the best possible score as I do so. I’ve found Mixolumia takes just a little more concentration than the block droppers I usually go for (but not too much so as to exhaust my easily exhausted brain), as a result I’ve found myself more able to drift into the game and tune everything else out. Something I’ll admit a combination of age and easily distracted person living in a house where the distractions come thick and fast has made a lot more difficult to do these days. So that’s really nice!

It’s somewhere between ten and twenty quid on Switch depending on whether there’s a sale on or not, it’s really good and makes some lovely noises too. There’s a PC version on Itch and Steam if that’s more your thing. It’s gorgeous, loaded with tweaks you can make to shape the game around your own ability (again, handy for me these days!) and is pretty much in the spirit of Bit Generations. I can’t really offer a higher recommendation than that.

Well worth a buy.

Mixolumia – Home
Mixolumia is an entrancing musical puzzle game.

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