Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt Review
Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt
Developer: Digital Dreams Entertainment
Publisher: Digital Dreams
Genre(s): Simulation, Sports, First-Person, Action
Platform: Nintendo Switch (also available on PS4 and Xbox One)
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Release Date: 01/06/2021
A code was provided for review purposes
Land before time!
Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt is at heart a hunting simulation. It sees the hunter, i.e you, entering multiple ecosystems while hunting one of the many different dinosaurs to take down and claim as your trophy. In the process you earn gems, which is one of main currencies in the game. This will allow you to purchase guns, upgrades and perks. Each environment is slightly different from the last. Some take place at different times of the day with some slightly different effects, like fog for example.
Different dinosaurs roam freely around islands. There are no fences in this park and you can move around the island at your own pace. While most of the Dinosaurs in the early part of the game won’t provide too much of a challenge, as you accumulate gems and trophies you’ll unlock new stages to explore and new equipment to use against stronger dinosaurs.
However you can’t freely shoot anything you want at first. You’ll need to earn and unlock licences for each new dinosaur, allowing you to swap between them on your hunting device (more on that later). Using three unique weapons, a wealth of perks and upgrades you’ll have everything you need at your disposal.
Hunters paradise – upgrades, perk, guns!
You maybe surrounded but you’ll never be outgunned. There are some devices that all hunters should never leave home without, such as the gadget which allows you to monitor your surroundings on the map in real time, so you can see where dinosaurs are currently roaming. You can also swipe through multiple breeds once you’ve purchased that dinosaur’s license, allowing you to see their location on the map. In addition, you can turn the gadget into a handy pair of binoculars. This allows you to see dinosaurs in the distance as well as telling you their current distance from you, which is helpful when lining up a shot.
The gadget can also help you call in your drone that can pick-up your trophies and evac you at any time. It can also deploy decoys when the ability is unlocked and has many other uses. Talking about weapons, you can hold one main weapon and purchase a small secondary weapon (perk). But you’ll mainly be focused on your main fire-arms, of which there are three: rifle (starter), bow and sniper that need to be unlocked through collecting gems in the campaign.
Gems can only be earned by downing dinosaurs on the field, some grinding will be required to earn enough for all guns, perks and upgrades for both guns and upgrades for yourself. Nothing is cheap. Perks are definitely useful but can take a certain percentage away from your current trophy earnings, so I’d say use them sparingly during hunts.
In the early stages, hunting can feel fairly easy and most of the early dinosaurs don’t provide any real challenge. However, once you start unlocking more stages and new licences there is definitely a change in trying to hunt each of the breeds available. For example, the stegosaurus is known to be quite slow. It will flee upon seeing you while the triceratops, once shot, will circle around you and if you’re close enough it will try and target you; definitely succeeding. If a dinosaur approaches you in close proximity, death is immediate. So, keep your distance and flee if you see any dinosaurs moving closer to your position. Especially if that dinosaur is a meat eater – you won’t stand a chance.
You really need to be accurate during hunts to down dinosaurs quickly and efficiently. A certain perk can prolong the following effect; you can look through your gadget and it allows you to see the creature’s x-ray view, which shows their lungs and heart for a few seconds. The same goes for while aiming down the sights of your gun, holding your breath. Once you shoot the dinosaur it will react. If shot in the lungs, it may continue to run until it collapses or it may require additional shots to bring it down quickly. You could go for the instant kill shot straight into the heart; this is more challenging but the rewards are far greater.
Different dinosaurs have different abilities, like the ankylosaurus has additional armour and the parasaurolophus can run really quickly. Things only increase in difficulty when you start to unlock more aggressive dinosaurs. Especially the tyrannosaurus rex as they smell you and have sharper eye sight, so different approaches in hunting will have to be considered in the field. Ammo is also limited, you’ll need to evac if you run out of all your ammo by calling in your drone.
Trophy Room and Online Leader Boards
Dinosaurs can be hunted as many times as you want and each creature you take down has its own weight, size, and score which can then be displayed in the trophy room. Here you can display your dinosaurs in all their 3D glory as 3D models which actually look pretty cool. You can display them on your drone in variety of different places, remove them freely and place them elsewhere.
If you approach a trophy and place your gadget over it, it will display their score, weight, size etc. This is also combined with the online leader boards which show your total earnings and each dinosaur you’ve killed in a single shot. It’s a nice way to play with others in a passive way as you try to score the best kill and climb the ranks. I did strive to hunt dinosaurs again and again to get the best score I could possibly muster.
My biggest issue with Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt was the constant crashes that occurred randomly, which can be annoying as it’s so inconsistent when it happens. I did contact the developers and they are aware of the issue after I posted about it on Twitter, hopefully a fix is in the works.
After playing for four hours straight I encountered one crash then I played second time and the game crashed twice. Other than that there are a few little issues. For example, there are only six dinosaurs to hunt and one non-trophy dinosaur which feels a little limited considering first title on mobile had nineteen to hunt. While the six dinosaurs selected aren’t bad at all, it just feels limited – especially considering this is a remastered version.
Even though there only six dinosaurs to hunt, I can’t deny that I am still enjoying playing Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt on the Nintendo Switch. At first, the controls can feel little slippery and the game does have its flaws. I can only hope the developers add additional dinosaurs and fixes in the future.
If they do, this could be great. Although at moment the game still needs some more love. I am still having fun regardless. As long as you don’t mind hunting the same six species over the course of nine stages, the grind required to purchase all the licenses, perks and upgrades, there’s still plenty of fun hunting to be had in this prehistoric world.
Rapid Reviews Rating
3 out of 5
You can buy Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunt from the Nintendo eShop here.
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.