Old MacJinbe had a mole...
Holey moley! Muddy Mole's entire family has been abducted by that malvolent mole-napper, Jinbe! It's a terrible predicament for the mild-mannered mammals, but the scene is set for the most challenging puzzle-action game since the Adventures of Lolo series for the NES. As Muddy Mole, you must use your sharp sense and expert mole hole-digging ability to clear the many rooms that stand between you and your anxious family. Time's running out—dig in!
A Game Boy
game developed by what is now Pax Softnica, and a mostly unknown work of Shigeru Miyamoto
Muddy Mole and his family normally live a quiet life, with Muddy doing the daily raid of crops for food, but an evil farmer known as Jinbe decides he's had enough of moles ruining his land. As a result, Muddy returns home one day to find that his wife and seven kids have been kidnapped, and Muddy must fight Jinbe to get them back.
The game uses a top-down view and amounts to an action-puzzler. Muddy can dig holes through soft ground and throw/push/pull objects to proceed. Despite his simple arsenal, Muddy finds himself working his way through seven levels of Jinbe Land to take down the bosses, which is naturally full of spikes
and other dangers that shouldn't be plaguing a cabbage farm.
It was released with little notice (for different reasons) in both Japan and the USA, leading it to become one of the most obscure-yet-enjoyable games of its time, though its Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console
release gives it a wider audience.
This game contains examples of:
- Accessory-Wearing Cartoon Animal: Muddy with his tie and sunglasses and his wife with her bonnet.
- Animate Inanimate Object: Funton, among other bosses.
- Asteroids Monster: The snowlem
- Badass Normal: Muddy. He's killing things with cabbages and throwing bombs the same size as him over his head.
- BFB: Used by the final boss
- Big Ol' Unibrow: as you can see
- Block Puzzle:Sort of behaves like them at times but the objects come in many shapes and can be thrown and pushed down holes with impunity, as well as block enemies.
- Boxing Kangaroo: Kangaroon, the World 1 boss. He doesn't punch you directly so much as throw boxing gloves at you, then jump around for a bit.
- Boss Rush: The final level.
- Cool Shades: Muddy wears a pair of them.
- Critical Annoyance
- Denial of Diagonal Attack
- Efficient Displacement: MacJinbe leaves this behind through a wall.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Apparently to Jinbe, since they are stomping around the levels; but not to Muddy, who has to deal with them.
- Everything's Better with Penguins: They are also your enemies, some of the first encountered ones.
- Excuse Plot: More or less. You're fighting a farmer with seven ridiculous henchmen, who kidnapped your family because he was pissed from all the crop damage.
- 100% Completion: Each of the levels keeps a score (out of 100 points) based on how many cabbages you collect, items you collect, rooms you visit, and whether you beat the bonus game. Getting 100% on the later levels amounts to sheer hell.
- Improbable Weapon User / Improvised Weapon: You can kill Mooks with cabbages lying around the stage. Jinbe also uses a garden hoe. It does make sense against a mole though.
- Moral Dissonance: In World 5, you face off against Big Mama and her children, which appear to be hedgehogs that can go underground like you can. Muddy is obviously going through all of this to save his family, and chances are you're killing another family to do just that. Something's not right about that.
- It's also heavily implied that Muddy and his family were stealing cabbages from Jinbe's farm before the game starts (with a cutscene showing Jinbe kidnapping everyone save Muddy and Grandpa Mole). Granted, Jinbe holding the rest of his family for ransom is a dick move, but the moles aren't completely in the right.
- Never Smile at a Crocodile: Actually, they are alligators.
- Nice Hat: Won Ton Fun wears a cowboy hat.
- Papa Wolf: Holding Muddy's family hostage is a bad idea.
- Player Versus Player: In multiplayer mode the two players take turns playing as Muddy trying to steal cabbages and as Jinbe trying to stop him. Each round lasts a minute unless Muddy's health is depleted or all of the cabbages are taken.
- Puzzle Boss: All of them, natch. What else do you expect from a puzzle game?
- Puzzle Reset: It's pretty important to be able to do this, since digging holes in the wrong places can make rooms impossible to finish.
- Rolling Attack: Used by the snowlems.
- Spikes Of Doom: You start encountering these from World 2 onward; Muddy can't cross them above ground. However, they don't affect pushed or thrown items. You also use spikes of doom to defeat a couple of bosses.
- Spin Attack: Used by Won Ton Fun, making him bounce around like a curling iron on ice.
- Three-Quarters View
- Tunnel King: Not all surfaces can be dug through, solid rock being the first of them.
- Video Game Pestering Punishment: Go ahead. Keep bugging Grandpa Mole.
- Wrench Whack: One boss throws wrenches at you while you adjust the plumbing to your advantage.
- Wrestler in All of Us: Muddy can suplex throwable items, though not enemies directly. It's the only way to move throwables across a single hole.