Excellent artwork and layout. There's not a lot of fluff--the developers knew what to put in and what to leave out. The rules are easy to understand and not intimidating to new RPG players. First session went excellent! The Mutant: Year Zero is perfect for game masters that are pressed for time; players are involved in world creation from the start, rather than passively waiting to see the world as presented by the GM. Also, during character creation, players define initial relationships between the other players and some non-player characters. This really got the game off to a quick start! I was able to start the first encounter with the players picking sides in a deadly conflict. Players justified their reasons for doing so with a quick peek at their character sheets.
We played without the specialized dice and cards that are available with the boxed set, no problem. Regular d6 dice works fine.