Title: Spintires MudRunner
Platform: Xbox One (reviewed), PS4, PC
Publisher: Focus Home Entertainment
Developer: Saber Interactive
Release Date: October 31, 2017
TL;DR: Not quite an abomination but close – very much a game for simulation lovers
Family Friendly? Click here for more information

There’s supposed to be a degree of romanticism attached to long-haul road-trips. Taking in the everyday beauty that a journey has to offer can be a momentous occasion according to film and literature – and we always learn something new about ourselves along the way. Well, that may have been the case before Spintire’s MudRunner released on Xbox One – but now we’re living in a world full of monotonous road-trips, where you spend your time slogging through puddles of muddy water, driving clunky and sadistically slow trucks, and being driven mad by ridiculously out of place rock music for what can only be described as the least rock ‘n’ roll game I think I’ve ever played.

So, what do you spend your time doing? Well, if you’ve ever watched Ice Road Truckers and thought ‘Wow, that looks fun and dangerous!’ good news! Because MudRunner is similar to Ice Road Truckers in that there are trucks – and that’s it. There’s no ice, but there are patches of muddy water and slippery hills that you’ll manoeuvre as you transport goods from one side of town to the other. Have I made you think of a crazy joyride a la Crazy Taxi!? Well too bad, there will be no joyrides in MudRunner – transporting is a bloody serious business which is why you rarely go fast enough to justify the word “runner” being in the game’s title – a degree of twisted irony is most likely at work there.

It’d be one thing if the game’s premise was lacking but it at least looked nice. I even tried to make the most of what the game’s visual had to offer, but – if we’re being honest – it looks like a last gen game, or early Xbox One game at the very best. It does enough to make everything look smooth and offers a fairly expansive environment for you to trawl through. Yet none of it stands out in any particular way – and that’s perhaps the best way of describing the game’s graphics, simply generic.

Now, I’ve been fairly harsh towards MudRunner, but one thing it does offer is a fair amount of gameplay. With a series of single-player tasks that will have you transporting goods throughout the small town that – for some unknown reason – only you inhabit (perhaps you’re playing the role of the lone survivor after a nuclear fallout?) The game also offers nine different challenges, with each offering three objectives. Both the single player and challenges can be played in either the casual or “hardcore” mode. So, whilst the gameplay is on a Groundhog Day level of repetitiveness, the different modes at least allow some change in vehicles and objectives.

Look, I’m sure there are a group of people who are chomping at the bit for a game like MudRunner. My guess is that if you’re fairly into simulations, then MudRunner is probably worth checking out. For the majority of you though, stay away from this game – it’ll bring you nothing but pain; heed my warning stranger lest you fall into the same trap as I once did.


What Rocks?

  • Erm… there are nine different challenges you can take part in.
  • Err… There’s a fairly large selection of trucks you can unlock throughout the game.
  • That’s it

What Sucks?

  • Horribly repetitive gameplay
  • The music choice makes literally no sense
  • The graphics belong on a late Xbox 360 game at best

Family Friendly?

MudRunner is rated Pegi 3 in the UK and E for Everyone in the States. Simulation lovers and their creepy simulation loving children will enjoy this… probably

Disclaimer: This review is based on a retail version of the game provided by Xbox UK for the purpose of this review