Since my initial hands-on with Turtle Rock Studios’ new cooperative shooter Evolve back in February, there’s been a lot of buzz in the media surrounding the title. After all, since it’s being developed by those who made the Left 4 Dead series, there could be worse titles to have in your repertoire.
Dropping by 2K’s booth – complete with their own life-size monster, no less – I was excited to see how much the game had progressed. After being assigned the role of the Trapper and getting a small introduction to one of the newly announced characters Maggie, I sat down with a set of journalists, as we faced one player-controlled monster.
Aside from meeting a range of new hunters, one of whom was a robot with a British accent, I also got a chance to play against the new type of monster, named the Kraken. Closely resembling that of an Octopus, the Kraken can hover around the map in short bursts and also cause huge amounts of damage with its homing projectiles. Since I was tasked with hunting down and trapping this new monster, I certainly had my work cut out for me.
As Maggie, I had a few new tricks in the Trapper class. Instead of using sound spikes to track the monster’s movement, I now had the use of Daisy, a lovely little Trapjaw companion that would run off and sniff out the scent of our prey. Unfortunately for us, by the time we had caught up to the monster it was already at level three. For those who don’t know much about the game and its structure, once the monster gathers enough energy to reach level three, not only does it have a huge amount of armour, but it can also go out to destroy something known as the generator. Your task, aside from killing it, is to keep it away from the generator and try to stop it from reaching its level three evolution.
Coming face-to-face with the Kraken was no small feat. Once I got close enough I was able to place down harpoon traps that would latch on and limit its movement. Keeping track of my team and being vocal about the monster’s position was absolutely vital to our success. Unfortunately for us, we were destined to fail. While my team scrambled to take control of the level three behemoth, its flying banshee mines and lightning strike attacks were obliterating everything sight. Since most of the team ended up dying and waiting to drop-ship in, myself included, most of the time it was the support bot left on the battlefield. Armed with a handful of sentry units, British robot Bucket was mostly seen in a corner, staying alive until our arrival.
Amidst countless deaths, I decided to instead bask in the glory of my surroundings. We were playing on the newly announced Dam level, and it was clear that the game has come a long way graphically. With crisp visuals throughout, Evolve seemed like it was ready to ship. There may have been some slight troubles with animations clipping through scenery, but apart from that everything looked silky smooth and certainly felt a Next-Gen experience.
I may have ended up losing the game, but my extra time with Evolve helped me realise how much of a great game it is. With so much more to be revealed (including new monsters) I’m excited to see what else Turtle Rock has to offer. I can’t wait for all of the Start Replay team to form a team and take down a monster. On the other hand, it might be fun playing against my colleagues, especially as I’m such a bad ass as the boss.