As a fan of anthropomorphic characters, the moment I laid my eyes on the Biomutant trailer I knew this will be a real treat. The anticipation is brutal since the release date is set as “sometime in 2018” without any further details.

The game by Nordic studio Experiment 101 came to our attention last year when the internet was suddenly overwhelmed by reactions to a leaked ad from the German GamesMarkt magazine. Namely, just a few days before its suspected reveal at Gamescom, a screenshot of the magazine page was posted on Twitter and then quickly spread to Reddit and NeoGAF.

The gameplay looks pretty amazing from the footage presented at various conventions, as well as the story about a post-apocalyptic world which is once again in danger, and you must save it. You play an anthropomorphic animal character with android features who knows Kung Fu. Your main mission is to save the Tree of Life that is dying from the poisonous oil coming from the ground. The tree has five roots that feed the world and you have to beat the creatures at the end of each root in order to save it. As if you don’t already have enough trouble, the six tribes are also divided when it comes to the Tree of Life. Three tribes want to save the Tree of Life while others have a different agenda. You can ally yourself with the tribes and fight against others that don’t agree with your intentions. Additionally, you can try to save the Tree of Life on your own without clashing with any tribes at all. It’s all up to you.

The story depends on your decisions and there is a number of branching storylines; so if you play the BioMutant for the second, third or fourth time, it can be a totally different game. This is an open world environment played from the third-person POV.

The great news is that you will be able to customize your raccoonish character by choosing the gender, body shape, fur, fangs and many other things. Just keep in mind that tweaking certain features can have an impact on the gameplay. Like, for example, if you choose a thicker character it may be slower but more damage-resistant.

Combat in BioMutant is a combination of melee and long-range shooting, and you have to build your own weapon by collecting items in the game and using the weapon crafting system. Basically, you can customize your weapon part by part and create one that will be unique to your character. This is also something that will affect your stats so pay close attention to that as well. Fighting styles will vary and you can choose martial arts or animalistic approach, but it’s sure that you will have a blast trying to develop your technique.

If you are patient enough, interacting with NPCs can help you learn new things that will come in handy for gameplay. You can improve your abilities and change the way you look through mutations and bio-mechanical parts. Having bionic legs, wings and claws can give you quite the advantage over your enemies, while certain areas are only accessible if you have specific body parts. Additionally, you will also depend on the appropriate gear as well as your improved robotic body, so make sure that you packed everything you need to survive.

Exploring the world is done in several ways. You can walk, run and jump, but also you can fly, which makes it more appealing. But developers also thought of how to make it harder and thus more fun by giving the BioMutant a dynamic weather system.

When it comes to NPCs, the game offers a Karma and a companion system which helps you recruit allies, as well as traveling buddies. However, the way you treat them will define their personalities, which will further shape the game’s storyline.

When you go to pre-order the game from the official website, it sends you to American Amazon and informs you that the game will be available on December 31, 2018, for Standard and Collector’s PC editions, while Xbox and PS4 pages state that the product is “currently unavailable”.

However, if you pre-order these versions from German Amazon, the website informs you they will be available at the same time as the PC editions from American Amazon. Yes, it’s not only confusing but can be annoying, especially when you expect a great looking game like this to come out.