Evolve Review (PC)

Hunt or be hunted with Evolve

Have you ever wanted to smash the good guys for a change and help all those poor hunted beast and monsters take revenge against these pesky human gamers who are so full of themselves? Well, the good people at Turtle Rock Studios just decided that hey, its time for the big bad monster to have its day.

Enter the one of the most anticipated game of the year with a hype train that can makes the Airbus A380 look like an ant. Winning over 60 awards and seeing a crazy queue for an alpha build at GameStart Asia 2014, you can be sure everyone has been counting down the days till Evolve goes live online.

Evolve gives players a chance to go PVP in a 4 versus 1 mode in either a quick match setting or a short campaign where every win or loss can affect the next map settings. Choosing either to the monster to wreak havoc on the world of Shear, a distant planet located in the “Far Arm” of space or the brave group of 4 hunters to stop the monster, players have their work cut out for themselves.

Evolve PC Review Assualt vs Monster Goliath Screen Shot

Enter the Monster

Playing the Monster was the first thing I did as the idea of playing the big bad monster always had this certain attractiveness since the game was announced. Going solo also meant you only need to depend on yourself as you aim to evolve to level 3 through eating all the poor unfortunate wild life while evading detection by the hunters. For most part this felt clockwork as I sneaked from one place to another, moving randomly and avoiding smashing things up too much.

Even when engaging the hunters, being big and huge always gave this sense of false security of being indestructible especially when the hunters have poor teamwork which is usually the case for a random team online. This also resulted in a few deaths because I got too complacent but overall still very satisfying playing the Goliath class monster. That is until I decided to give the other 2 monsters, which required a totally different skill set, a try. From planting mines and lightning zapping with the Kraken to going into ninja mode with the Wraith, each required a new mind set to effectively play to the monsters strength.

Evolve PC Review Huntes Screen Shot

Welcome to the Hunt

The hunters on the other end are a totally different breed of play style as not only must you work in a team, a good amount of anticipation is required as the action can get very fast paced especially with a monster that knows its strengths very well. This means that random teams online can be an issue especially for new players. All it takes is for someone to not know how to play his class and for the monster to isolate this one hunter; the result usually ends in defeat for the hunters.

It is not uncommon to hear about medics who forget to heal or worst, supports who think they are the main damage dealers with their air strike. I myself had a game as a trapper where no one bothered about the traps I placed or worst, to follow Daisy, the AI hunt beast. Yes, as with every online multiplayer game, you have to be prepared for such tunnel vision players. But of course, there are also times when everything falls into place like clockwork and the monster goes down very quickly thanks to experienced players leading the team.

Unlike the monsters, each class of hunter also has 3 “sub-class” or characters to choose from after you have levelled them up. They also play differently which can be a double edged sword. Take the trapper for example, the base character has Daisy, an AI controlled hunt beast to look for footprints while the next Trapper has to rely on sound detection. While both still aims to locate the Monster, both plays differently and variety is always good.

Evolve PC Review Huntes vs Monster Screen Shot

Bringing PvP to a new Level with 4v1

Overall Evolve brings a very interesting concept to the multiplayer PvP genre and looking at the buzz created in social media space, you know Turtle Rock Studios have a winner on their hands. The combat is fast paced where anything can happen to turn the tide of the battle which keep things really interesting. You could be pinned to the wall with the shield on the assault looking for the final blow and a lucky shot to the support knocks the shield off and gives you an opening to kill the medic. Without the medic, the support panics and down he goes with a quick furry of attacks. From a potential win for the Hunters, it has turned a desperate run for them and suddenly the monster feels invincible again. Yup, this is the kind of excitement that awaits you in the world of Evolve where the hunter can become the hunted.

Ratings: 4 out of 5 stars

by Kenneth Wong
© POPCulture Online 2015, All Rights Reserved.

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