Evolve is the new IP from Turtle Rock Studios who brought us the classic zombie shooter Left 4 Dead, it promises fans something ground breaking, but does it deliver on it’s big promises?
In a way yes it does, but for many, it will fall along way short!
I will admit it, the first time I loaded Evolve up and jumped into the tutorials, I was blown away by the scale. Taking control of the almighty Goliath felt oh so powerful, just as the developers promised.
Feasting on wildlife to evolve my monster to a stage 3 killing machine, setting ablaze to all in sight with Goliath’s fire breath ability felt amazing!
The controls are intuitive, easy to learn and most importantly feel natural.
After the tutorials were finished up I couldn’t wait to dive into a multiplayer match. On the class selection screen I chose Hank, the support class, not for his abilities (which by they way are amazing) but because of the aesthetic of his character, his large cigar and bushy beard endeared me to him.
To begin with the game allows you to choose your preferred hunter class.
Assault, whose main objective is to deal as much damage to the monster as possible. You will jump into matches with an assault rifle, which works a treat when you catch a glimpse of the monster at a distance.
Other weapons include an electric gun, great when up close and personal with the monster and mines, which can be scattered all over the map, after all it is in the monsters interest to see most of it as it tries to avoid the hunters and evolve.
The support class, which sees you head into battle with a laser cannon, which deals out huge damage up close. You also have a protective shield for you and your team mates.
And my personal favourite, the orbital air strike. Once you get the monster trapped in an arena, raining down death from the sky is a very vindicating feeling indeed!
The medic class is self explanatory really, health bombs and bonuses. However you are armed with a pretty useful sniper rifle, again great if you spot the monster at a distance. Medics though are imperative to the hunters survival, without them, even a battle with a stage 1 monster would be a death sentence!
Now the trapper class is something fresh. Using the arena trap ability to cast up a huge dome to keep the monster locked in as the hunters do their very best to blow it to hell is such a fantastic and original idea.
Also some of the traps the trapper can set are really clever pieces of game design, and if used properly, they can really turn the tide of any hunt!
You will dive into the hunt with some of the best abilities in the game as a trapper.
And a trusty sidekick to boot!
Daisy, a half pig half dinosaur and all round badass…if she worked properly. Daisy is tasked with sniffing out the monsters whereabouts and following tracks to lead the team of hunters directly to the monsters location.
But in my experience she does nothing but lead you on a merry go round of the map, and you may stumble upon the monster by chance.
But, and it is a big but, I can’t see me playing it for more than a few weeks then getting bored of it.
The progression system is very restricting and stops you from enjoying all of what there is to offer. It will require a lot of grinding, which is great, if the game gave you a reason to keep coming back and play, but it doesn’t.
You realise about an hour in that every match generally plays out the same, drop in, run around, see the monster, fight the monster and win or loose.
I will admit it, some matches are truly amazing, you see the monster early, a huge scale battle ensues and everything becomes very hectic and tense. It is Evolve at it’s best!
But too much of it becomes too boring too quickly.
If you are the monster things can improve for awhile, but it also quickly becomes stale.
Another huge gripe I have is with how underpowered Goliath feels. If cornered by the hunters early (which can easily happen as Goliath does not posses the stamina to evade for very long) the hunters will make light work of him.
On the other hand, the Wraith monster feels incredibly over powered, with having the ability of flight, it is easy for it to avoid confrontation until it has evolved to stage 3 when it is completely unstoppable.
Overall Evolve is a fantastic idea, which falls short of being an amazing game. Longevity is a concern that may be too big to overlook the full price tag though.
A blast to play with friends, carrying a great fun factor early doors.
Only time will tell if players keep on coming back for more. I’m just not certain I will be one of them, I feel the game has some evolving to do of it’s own before I make that commitment.
Up to now though I am having fun with it, just in small doses.
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