Tatem Games released a PC port of Carnivores to the iPhone, a game that pits you on locations brewing with dinosaurs. You are equipped with a variety of weapons that you chose depending on how many points you have earned. Points are earned through killing dinosaurs, although the Gallimimus, Dimetrodon, and the Moschops do not count as “dinosaurs”.
There are also a total of 5 locations to hunt in, and each one varies with what type of dinosaurs there are and how big the hunting grounds are. You also have the choice to pick between day, dawn, and night; the night bringing more of the carnivorous dinosaurs into play, while the dawn brings in the more herbivorous. And of course, the day mode brings both in at the same time, although there seems to be more herbivorous during the day than the carnivorous.
You have the choice to pick between 9 different types of dinosaurs, ranging from Parasaurolophus to the mighty T-Rex. The herbivorous dinosaurs are a great place to start before starting to hunt the meat-eaters, since the meat-eaters can pounce and kill you, leading to a no-point round, even if you killed other dinosaurs.
Along with the Hunt mode, Tatem Games included a Survive mode for a short, quick session of gameplay. You have a wave of dinosaurs coming at you, and you must shoot all of them before they reach you. If you happen to miss and the dinosaurs reach you, it’s game over. You can then post your survival score to Facebook, and it will be uploaded to the Plus+ online leaderboards.
And with the Plus+ leaderboards comes a variety of achievements to achieve, so the game won’t feel as repetitious as it could be. They range anywhere from killing your first dino to killing the T-Rex with the X-Bow, and the only way to kill a T-Rex is by shooting it straight in the eye.
But enough with the explanations, let’s get to the chase.
Controls: The first-person shooter genre has finally, somewhat taken off on the App Store. And with that, controls for a first-person shooter have also been somewhat perfected, which in this case happens to be Carnivores. Controls seem to be one of the most important aspects of the game, and Tatem Games did a solid job of getting the sensitivity of the controls perfect, and although it would have been nice to have the ability to customize them, the current ones accomplish the job well. I would be surprised if someone didn’t like the controls; to me, they’re perfect.
Variety: The arsenal of weapons each have their own, unique identity. The X-Bow is powerful and accurate, but it’s distance is limited. The double-barreled shotgun has great power, but distance isn’t one of its strengths. The rifle is quite average across the board in terms of power and distance, while the sniper rifle has great distance and power. The different locations are also very different in terms of size and what type of dinos dwell there. The dawn, day, and night mode varies this game even more, making this experience a new on every time you play it.
Go at your own pace: One thing I like about this game is that it doesn’t progress in difficulty; you chose how difficult it’s going to be. You can hunt for herbivores as long as you want until you decide you’re good enough, as the carnivores are quite difficult. Going at your own choice and giving you freedom to go easy or hard makes this game quite appealing to both hardcore and casual gamers.
Replay value: There’s a ton of replay value to be had in this game, whether it be to try and unlock the next weapon or the next dino. To hunt the T-Rex, it’ll take a few hours of good hunting to reach, and you also have Plus+ achievements to help out in this area.
It’s a lot of walking: I’m not a huge fan of virtual walking… it just takes away time to actually get into the action. But I guess it tries to augment a dinosaur hunting experience, or any hunting experience for that matter, as all hunting requires walking. But it is virtual, and it just seems to be a waste of time to me.
Last second kills: It’s impossible to get a “last second kill” on a carnivore. If they jump in the air to eventually pounce on you, and you shoot them in mid-air point blank, they won’t die. It’s just impossible, and it won’t happen.
I’m stuck: There are some areas on the maps in which you get stuck and cannot get out. Some areas include between rocks and in a valley, and you’ll have to escape and restart to get out of it. And no, this isn’t a problem with my hunting skills, as I’ve spent almost 15 minutes trying to get out of an area only to be denied.
Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunter is the premier hunting experience on the iPhone, and it’s just the perfect game for a wide variety of people. Sure, dinosaur hunting doesn’t sound too appealing to the more feminine race, but once you get into it, you’ll put your cooking and other girly things aside and wield your double-barreled shotgun with pride. And because of this unique gameplay and awesome experience, Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunter easily takes home the Must Have award.