Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil

Game review by
Jeff Haynes, Common Sense Media
Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil Game Poster Image
Grim expansion ramps up difficulty of apocalyptic strategy.

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The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Survival and uncovering what's behind mysterious attacks are central to the plot, but every problem is resolved with gunfire and explosives.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The Stalkers fight their way through every situation in a world that's constantly trying to kill them. The newest character, Big Khan, is just as jaded and rough edged as the characters from the original title.

Ease of Play

Seed of Evil manages to take the difficulty of the original and ramps it up even higher. New enemies, more powerful creatures, and trickier battle sequences, along with a limited amount of healing items means that players can quickly be overwhelmed if the odds don't go in their way.


Players engage in frequent combat against ghouls, robots, mutated creatures and other threats. Firearms, lasers, explosives and other mutant powers are used to eliminate targets that scream when killed, spraying blood across the environment. Bodies and other detritus are shown in the environment, as well as during battles.


Swearing occurs in dialogue sequences and in random comments in combat, including “f--k,” “s--t,” and other more colorful phrases.


This is the expansion to 2018's Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, based on a tabletop role-playing game. The Nintendo Switch includes the expansion and the original game.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One location is a bar, which serves as a place for upgrades, but no drinking is ever shown during play.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil is a downloadable strategy role-playing game for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Windows PCs. The game is an expansion of 2018's Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, which is based on a tabletop role-playing game set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. The Nintendo Switch version includes the original title and the expansion in one Deluxe Edition. Characters, which are mutants themselves, fight ghouls, robots, and other creatures to survive and keep a community living through extreme circumstances. Combat's central to the gameplay, as players use firearms, mutant abilities, explosives, and other attacks to destroy their opponents. Characters bleed when wounded, and cry out in pain when struck down. Swearing is frequent, with "s—t" and other harsh language uttered in cutscenes and during combat. While some character upgrades take place in a bar, no alcohol is shown being consumed.

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What's it about?

MUTANT YEAR ZERO: SEED OF EVIL is the latest expansion of the Mutant Year Zero franchise and builds on the events from the first game. Shortly after the Stalkers discover the surprising secrets of Eden and the Ark, they stumble across a new threat to the wasteland that could potentially change life as they know it. Tangles of roots suddenly wrap themselves around the Ark, which is terrifying. But even worse, some of the inhabitants seem to be acting completely different than normal. It's not localized to the ark; many of the wasteland's creatures seem to have also been infested and taken over by these spores and plants. There are even reports of raiding parties of mutants attacking and taking over cleared territory. But the Stalkers won't just face these new threats by themselves – the legendary Stalker Big Khan returns to lend his help to the team. The squad will also gain new mutations and new enhancements to their skills to take on the monsters across the land. Can the Stalkers travel across the land, keep the peace, find the source of these roots, and stop the attacks before things get worse?

Is it any good?

While the original game was packed with challenging battles, this expansion pack is crammed with fights that will test even the most skilled tactical player. Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil picks up two months after the original game left off, and presents a new threat to life in the wasteland. But don't think this is just a simple expansion – Characters need to be at least level 65 to access the first new location, but even that won't guarantee a chance at success. The monsters you face have new abilities, tactics, and larger numbers in battles. It's basically like fighting the last battle of Road to Eden across every stage, only against steeper odds. Plus, you'll also get desperate requests from the Ark asking you to return to previous areas and eliminate roving bands of enemies taking over new territory. It's an incredibly challenging set of circumstances you'll fight through, but it imparts a sense of pride (and luck) as you claw your way through each stage, even if it takes multiple reloads to figure out each fight.

Seed of Evil doesn't allow players to expand their squad size at all, which could've made things easier. Instead, it introduces a new Stalker known as Big Khan, and gives him ground pounding and fire breathing abilities. His skills are very useful to clearing out enemies that cluster in groups. Your old group of stalkers aren't left out either – some of their abilities have evolved to meet the challenges of this difficult new world, like trapping opponents with thicker vines or healing without taking turns. Unfortunately, the number of medkits that you'll find or be able to purchase are extremely limited. Since enemies hit harder and cause more damage, you'll easily burn through your healing supplies and be unable to proceed in later battles. This can even force you to have to reload older saves to stockpile these kits for the difficult battles of Seed of Evil. It's a double-edged sword: the difficulty will make you a better strategy player, but it may take lots of time to recover that progress. If you want to test your skills, plant Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil in your console or PC and see what kind of challenging play grows.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Mutant Year Zero: Seed of Evil affected by the bloody and violent battles that happen in each area? Would the impact be lessened if there wasn’t as much blood or gore shown?

  • Why do you think post-apocalyptic stories or dystopias are popular in science fiction? Do you think there are lessons or warnings that can be learned from these stories? For all of the despair, do these tales also highlight hope and goodwill?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love strategy

Themes & Topics

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