When the word “dinosaur” is spoken, what often comes to mind? Turok, Jurassic Park, or even Dinopark Tycoon for us. Dinosaurs seem to be portrayed as either cute and friendly or ferocious and deadly, and more often than not their portrayals err on the side of ridiculous. Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunter– a port from an old PC game– takes a surprisingly more multifaceted approach, but it’s marred by various flaws.
There are two modes in Carnivores: Hunt and Survive. Survive mode provides the requisite ridiculous side of dinosaur games, and pits wave upon wave of them at your unmoving person. Armed with nothing but a shotgun and unfailing courage, you fight until a dinosaur takes you down– and then post it on Facebook! A strange contrast, to be sure, but no stranger than the multitude of zombie games that do the same.
Now would be a good time to drop the binoculars and run.
The Hunt mode is the one that surprised us with its complexity. There are five maps, nine dinosaurs, and six weapons to choose from. Additionally, camouflage, cover scent, radar, and tranquilizers are available for you to use. Dinosaurs can see, smell, and hear, meaning that you need to take extra care not to run downwind of a dino while firing shots into the air. Different dinosaurs have different behaviors and sense abilities. Some can’t see well, while others don’t mind a tasty human blundering through their forest.
One of our complaints with this game is that even though the maps are expansive, the graphics are mediocre. The dinosaurs don’t look too bad, but the environment is blocky and not even close to what the iDevice can handle. Added to our disappointment with the aesthetics of the environment, you’ll find technical flaws while traversing it. Your hunter cannot climb over small rocks, nor even ankle-high mushrooms. They stop him dead in his tracks, which is very frustrating.
How they really went extinct.
Our last issue with Carnivores is the steep difficulty curve. The maps are varied, and the weapons are fun to experiment with, but the game has a point system forcing you to start with a pistol on the first map and work your way slowly upwards. What, you’ve never hunted a dinosaur with a pistol? You simply must try it.
All in all, we think fans of hunting games will get a kick out of Carnivores and its variety of features that keep you on your toes. Non-hunting fans may enjoy the fantastical setting but find the price a bit too high.