Simulator games are running wild on the computer scene at the moment, where we are seeing everything from driving airport-trucks to cutting down trees. And in the midst of all these simulators, theHunter has self-proclaimed to be the best hunter simulation out there. In this review of theHunter, I will hunt down the details which makes up game, skin their payment system and with the patience of a hunter show you if theHunter lives up to its own claims.
Before going into the hunting mechanics and if theHunter manages to become the promised simulation game, the scenery and moving around it deserves its own section. I have never played such a beautiful game as theHunter manages to be at some points. They have really gone all out making the nature a great environment to move around in and explore. To be honest, the game manages so good with its environment and calm gameplay, that I found myself spending hours just walking around and enjoying the calmness and the scenery.
I have never hunted outside of games before, so I cannot draw any clear parallels too how well the hunting mechanism is connected to real life hunting. But I can tell you that the games manages very well to give you the illusion that you know a lot of hunting, which in my eyes makes the game a very good hunting simulator. You start the game by choosing the equipment you want to bring with you and what location to hunt in. The hunting is then done by tracking the animal you want to hunt via footprints or droppings, luring it or following it. Then very patiently waiting for the right moment, when the wind is on your side, the animal still doesn’t know that you are there, have it in your sight.
This is not a game for the standard FPS player, this is really a game for players wanting a real life simulated hunting experience. You will have a low amount of ammo with when heading out in the beginning, making every shot count even more. More than that, animals are very scarce in the game, and they are very easily scared away. So firing a shot that you are uncertain about, will lead you to spend an hour finding a new animal. The planning before entering the reserve and the slow moment and patience the game asks for, helps give you the feeling of real hunting.
When looking at the gameplay mechanic’s, it is a very monotone experience, but that is also what makes it so great. There are a myriad of animals to hunt and weapons to use, in a multitude of different locations. And if you want more than the thrill of the hunt, there are a lot of challenges to complete. And everything in the game can be done solo or with up to 8 friends.
Having multiplayer in theHunter may seem like an unnecessary addition, since it may ruin the meditative feeling of hunting which the single player experience gives. Instead the multiplayer experience offers a truer and an even more enjoyable hunting experience. Hunting is mainly a group activity which theHunter shows proof of, sitting in a bush waiting for the prey while whispering with the friend next to you, really heightens the hunting experience. This could have been even better if the implemented an ingame voice option, but with the game released on steam, it works great using their own chat system.
While theHunter may seem to be all green forest and beautiful landscapes, it all falls short with the chosen payment model. The free part of theHunter means demo, a demo where you can have one weapon and hunt one animal in one small area. If you want to do anything else in the game, you will need to pay up. They offer some great starting packs, which will make the hunting experience come closer to what the game really can deliver, but still far from a full experience. If theHunter would have been released a buy 2 play game, where everything was included, which almost all simulation games are, this would have been a game everyone looking for a new experience, or just wanting to feel the excitement of hunting should buy. But by calling it free and having idiotic payment walls, they lower the quality of a perfectly good game in a swap no one should enter.
TheHunter is a great game in so many ways. Spending an hour tracking and following that one animal that you are longing for to mount on you wall at home, and then finally putting a well-placed bullet in its head, is a feeling I have yet to receive from any other game out there. Still, TheHunter is filled with some poor design choices, graphics which makes the world beautiful but the animals really bad looking with some unnatural moment at occasions. It is also a game which can be included in the list of games trying to be free by adding a miserable pricing model. People saying that pricing do not affect gameplay couldn’t be more wrong about it with theHunter as proof. Payment walls are everywhere in this game, making other free 2 pay games look good in comparison. But setting money aside, sneaking around in the wilderness for hours with friends hoping for a kill, and when it happens taking that lovely hunting picture right next to it, makes for the perfect hunting experience.
+ Beautiful landscapes
+ A true hunting experience
+ Hunting with friends
– Payment model…
– Free 2 try…