When I first looked at Evolve I was very interested in the concept. I mean come on, who doesn’t want to be a monster that chases hunters. When you watch the trailer you automatically want to buy the game and start wasting your life playing it.
After the trailer the game takes a nose dive.
I got the opportunity to sit down with the Xbox One version of the game and take a shot. It took only a few moments for me to find major flaws with this title, but I will start with the good stuff to kind of soften the blow.
The music and sound effects in Evolve are great. The gun shots and ambient noise sound really well composed. The monster’s roar and other sound effects are enough to really immerse you in the game, especially when you have surround sound. In addition, the graphics are also nothing short of amazing.
Now (cracks knuckles) let’s get to the negative and folks…there are a lot of things wrong with Evolve. While the graphics are beautiful, they end up getting wasted on redundant maps. Every level seems to be an offshoot of the prior map of randomly placed foliage and buildings. The one nice thing is that the environment is pretty deadly on the planet Shear where you are hunting. It’s possible, though rather difficult, to use the terrain to your advantage by using some of the natural hazards against your opponent.
The whole point of this game is to take on the role of either a hunter or a monster. I’m going to start with the hunter, which you play in a team setup. Each member of the team, Trapper, Support, Assault, or Medic has a specialty skill that they can use to do things like heal or set traps. Then you get to try to work with people you have never met in hopes of taking down the monster. Once your team is assembled you start your hunt, which is the staple of this game.
It is also one of the most aggravating features.
Each match takes a little over a half an hour and in all reality only about five to eight minutes of that is actual combat. Combat itself is nothing more than mindlessly shooting at the monster and trying to use your skills to your advantage. Mostly this involves praying that everyone else knows what they are doing while you try and stay alive. If you know everyone you are playing with and they are all great, then you might have a good chance of living. Or if the person playing the monster is really bad, you might also have a chance. But for the most part, if you are randomly grouping up with other players, then the chance that one of them will be either a moron, or simply a new player who knows nothing is quite high. Given that there is no single player game to practice on, it’s a really good chance that someone won’t know what they are doing in multiplayer. Heck, there is a good chance that you won’t know what you are doing when you start out.
Fun for this type of game, for me anyway, lasts about five games before the new and shiny look wears off and the dull, true form of the game shows. Evolve has no campaign missions, no real storyline and truthfully to say there is any story at all would almost be lying. This is nothing more than an EXTREMELY overhyped multiplayer game. Short of an MMO, can we really be expected to pay full price for game which is basically a hunt-the-monster multiplayer jaunt through a few very similar maps?
Monster mode isn’t much better. In this mode you get three monsters (unless you paid for the DLC). That is it folks, just three monsters. Every match is the same which means you run away from the hunters and try to evolve. Every monster has an animal sense that shows you where the hunters are. Your main goal is to eat enough bodies to level up to tier three in evolution and then go kill the hunters. Again, with no single player available and no storyline, why we are playing a monster and what its ultimate goals are is anyone’s guess. A little bit of backstory for the hunters or the monster would have gone a long way. Single player modes would have been even better.
]If you really love multiplayer games, then you might like Evolve. In a way you can compare it to Left4Dead where even the single player modes were basically simulated multiplayer. But, even Left4Dead could be played in single player and it attempted to tell a little bit of a story. Evolve is like one part of a game that has been ripped away from the rest of the title. For most players, it will likely feel incomplete, especially at the full price tag it’s selling for, which does not actually include everything because of the need to additionally purchase day one DLCs to make it “complete.”
So in the end, this is a sad excuse for a major title, and not worthy of the sixty dollar price tag. Honestly this game is barely worth twenty dollars in terms of value. People are paying money for a three mode multiplayer game that has no excuse for its horrific lack of gameplay. Evolve earns an overall of 1.5 GiN Gems only because of its graphics and audio. Truthfully this game should not be bought, not even as a gift.