I’m Buddy Sola, Community Manager at Akupara Games. Last year, Akupara published Die Gute Fabrik’s Mutazione — a mutant soap opera where the mundane meets the supernatural — to rave reviews both from fans as well as critics. We’re now delighted to release our first big content update: Garden Mode, which is available to play today.
Mutazione has always been a very story-driven game, but interwoven with the story is the magical musical gardening mechanic. You explore the island to gather seeds to plant in gardens to help heal the community around you.
Each plant carries the song of a specific instrument; those instruments are bound together into moods. Planting gardens that align with those moods will help you accomplish your narrative goal, as you build beautiful procedural ambient compositions.
In this update you will now be able to access a standalone Garden mode, where there’s only a garden, the seeds, the music, and you. We always intended for players to have more room to experiment with the musical toy at the heart of the gardens, but to make the storytelling effective, we needed to link the gardens to progress through the plot.
That’s why Garden mode was the very first major update we wanted to release for the game.
In Story Mode, there are restrictions to help keep the storytelling effective. In Garden Mode, the plants, composition, and timescales are entirely up to you. What’s more, the gardens will evolve on their own over time — you can set up a composition and watch it change as new seeds blow in, old plants die, and the composition evolves before your very eyes (ears!). It’s designed for you to play with, but also to leave running as part of your life, as you cook, or work, creating unique ambient soundtracks over time.
The significance of the Cloud Garden will be clear to keen-eyed players who have completed the game. It will support any of the seeds you find in Story Mode (if planted in the correct soil with sufficient space), as well as some new seeds we’re adding to the game for this update.
This update includes hundreds of new music clips as well, so the possibilities for you to create your own ambient music are even greater. My favourite combination so far is Crab Tree, Neejon Palm, Hobble Berry and P-lily, which are: surf guitar, trumpet, bassoon, and piano respectively. It reminds me of tucked-away jazz clubs.
I spend a ton of my time as Community Manager talking with fans of the game about what they loved in their Mutazione experience. What I hear, constantly and consistently, is how moving the musical gameplay of the gardens is for them.
“All the different songs in this were able to perfectly portray exactly what the characters are going through,” one user wrote in a review of the game. Another reports: “The best part of the game was the gardening; it was fun to arrange and grow the different plants and explore the island to find new seeds.” If you’re a player like this, who likes to sit back, relax and take in the ambience of it all, then we made Garden Mode for you.
More Mutazione news will be coming over the course of the year. After releasing the game in September, the soundtrack in October, and now Garden Mode, we’re humbled by the response we’ve gotten so far, including the four nominations Mutazione just received from the Independent Games Festival at GDC. If you haven’t picked up Mutazione yet, you can find it for the PS4 on PlayStation Store.
We can’t wait to hear what you make of it.
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