An ichorous green meteor plummets through the Earth's atmosphere, fracturing and showering the earth with glowing green space dust that affects all forms of life nearby. Some plant life - mushrooms and cacti - acquire sentience while, the meteor twists and mutates other life forms, transforming insects and animals into semi-intelligent, warlike communities.
The story of Mushroom Men is told in Acts, each Act occurring in a completely unique environment. Each version of the game (DS and Wii) tells different portions of the history of the Mushroom Men universe. The DS and Wii versions are completely different stories from one-another. The DS version, Mushroom Men – Rise of the Fungi, is the first release and shows the development of the Mushroom Nations, starting very early in Mushroom Men history. The early days of the Mushroom Men were simpler times as the Mushroom Men were just learning to walk, communicate and interact with their world. As the Mushroom Men learn how their world works, they take the player with them, developing their skills, abilities and histories up to the start of the Spore Wars.
The Wii title, Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars, picks up during the escalating war between the mushroom factions. The world is more hostile and combat is more complex. New tools and weapons are developed to assist in the escalating battles. The player takes on the role of a misfit and unexpected hero destined to bring about the conclusion of the Spore Wars while solving his own personal quests. The game presents the story simply, providing a strong sense of continuity to the single-player game without intruding on the gameplay.
Mushroom Men and their other sentient neighbours neither speak nor understand human languages such as English. But they still communicate, and to the human playerit sounds like mumbling.
Some among the four Mushroom Men tribes believe that the secret to winning the Spore War lays in uncovering the facts about the Mushroom's origins. As the myth states, the Mushroom who discovers the truth of this mystery is promised the power to change the entire course of evolution, putting the Mushroom species at the top of the evolutionary ladder. The tribe that claims this prize can reshape the world any way they see fit. The Amanitas Empire and The Lepiota Order see the myth as a chance to not only defeat the other nations (the Bolete Tribe and the Morel Brotherhood) but also wipe out all of their enemies and put their tribes at the forefront of terrestrial evolution.
The Spore Wars Boss Fights
Bosses as Mechanic Reinforcement
Several of the bosses and mini-bosses reinforce a specific mechanic, such as the Telekinesis-Throw (whereby Pax uses his Telekinesis ability on an object and tosses it back at the enemy). Players have the option to use this ability during the game to get the upper hand on an opponent, or could let Player 2 perform this to help them out in the midst of battle, but it is never enforced (didn’t want to force the player if they didn’t want to). However, Red Fly used the bosses as a chance to make a puzzle and encourage players to use different Spore Powers. Several of the bosses require this Telekinesis-Throw attack to beat. One of the mini-bosses actually acts as a tutorial for the Spore Punisher maneuver, flying out of the player’s reach until they can successfully execute it.
Boss as Action/Puzzle
Red Fly created action/puzzle battles with some stand-alone boss encounters. For example, the player will need to use the environment components and specific game mechanics to take out bosses they can’t reach directly or might just be too strong. This frames these specific boss fights as puzzles to be solved, not simply a skill exercise (although there is some of that, too!).
Bosses as the Level
In the Parking Lot, the player will face not one but FIVE bosses. The entire area is centered on these encounters and each of the bosses use their environment in interesting and unique ways closely tied to them.
Even while the Spore War rages, a great quest amongst all four tribes begins: a race to uncover the truth and reshape the evolutionary course of the Earth. As for the humans, they continue to bumble their way through the world completely unaware of the diminutive forces rising against them. Pax, a Bolete mushroom from the outskirts, doesn't yet understand his place in the events to come. He'll have to learn, and fast, that he’s unwittingly been thrust into the middle of this situation.
The Wii version of the game picks up where the DS leaves off. The Spore Wars rage fully across the miniature landscape. The societies have advanced to a point where theology and metaphysical pursuits have developed. Pax does not yet understand his place in the world of Mushrooms, when he accidentally absorbs a meteorite while training with the Bolete Sage. Pax is then banished until he can bring back another of the life-giving rocks that the Sage believes made the Mushrooms sentient.
Along the way, Pax encounters more than he expects. It becomes obvious to him that there is more to the Mushroom world than a meteorite for his village. A war that Pax doesn't understand moves closer to his home and Mushroom races and others race toward self-destruction. Along the way, Pax begins to understand more about what he must do to help the Bolete and the rest of the world. Throughout the adventure Pax will change from an awkward misfit to a species-saving hero.
The Wii version of the game has a very personal feeling to it; being tied so directly with the hero via the Wii control scheme, the player bonds with his on-screen avatar. Goals tend to be more personal and direct.
Mushroom Men : The Spore Wars for Wii & Mushroom Men: Rise of the Fungi for DS will be available across North America & Europe from Nov. 11, 2008.