When a glowing jade comet crashes into Earth and spews green funk all over the vegetation, it’s up to a group of – wait for it – Mushroom Men, to traverse the lands and save their tribe. Set for release on the DS later this year, Mushroom Men: Rise of the Fungi tasks you as one of three spore-bearing fungi and enables you to scavenge your surroundings for makeshift weapons, while beating on mutated baddies. We recently got our hands on an unfinished version, and while a little rough around the edges, definitely provided for an original, clever experience.

You begin by choosing one of three characters, each corresponding to a difficulty setting – easy mode for the melee-fighting Heavy, medium mode for the magic-blasting Sage and difficult mode for the Scout, a master of long-ranged weaponry. We were assured the Heavy would be the best way to go for beginners and reluctantly complied. Beginning in what looked like a microscopic view of a garden, doubling as a fungi village, we noticed small huts and campfires spread throughout the village. Already, we’re gripped by the world’s interesting, yet lived-in feel.

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