2BGC Ep. 8 – M.U.L.E.

The Eighth 2-Bit Game Club game will be M.U.L.E. for the Atari 800 and NES (1983).

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You and your three friends (read: enemies) must battle cooperate to make the colony on Irata as profitable as possible for the good of all interstellar peoples (who are you). Combing the elements of shared screen play, a blend of co-op and competition, and giving classic board game style play with action packed auctions, M.U.L.E. is a timeless game. With rules that are immediately understandable to the player, using numbers small enough for players to crunch in their head, and by emphasizing player interaction over stylish presentation, M.U.L.E. has all the makings of a great game like chess or go.

Developed by Ozark Softworks, M.U.L.E. is a significant game in the history of the medium. It puts a play experience forward that is free from violence, engages up to four people in cooperative play, teaches players meaningful lessons about economic systems and negotiation, and so managed to be a commercial success despite being released amidst the 1983 Video Game Collapse.

To find a copy of M.U.L.E. try your friendly retro game store or use other means. Join in the discussion about this piece of video game history and share your thoughts with us. You can find the 2-Bit Game Club around the web at the following:

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You can find past podcast episodes here. For more info about the 2-Bit Game Club head over here.