Predator Hunting Grounds Review
Very few icons of 80’s action movies continue to drive mainstream appeal, but when someone mentions Predator to me. I instantly thing of high action, lush jungles, bullets flying, and Arnold telling me to GET TO THA CHOPPA! Over the years Predator maintains a decent popularity whether in their own films or having some cross overs with Aliens its always a brutal bloodbath of action. Can Predator Huntring grounds capture that same spirit?
Right off the bat you might think that Predator Hunting Grounds is similar to other types of games with this format like Dead By Daylight or EVOLVE. Basically Predator: Hunting Grounds is an asymmetrical multiplayer video game. One player controls the Predator, while four others play as a team of special operations soldiers on a mission to collect intel or eliminate a drug lord. The chief element as the fire team is to either avoid being hunted by the Predator and complete your objective or capture and kill the Predator who in turned will be controlled by another player. As the Predator….you basically want to kill everyone.
Playing as a member of the fire team is pretty straight forward. As you start the game you play as one of four members on your team, you are given some basic customization options and a starting weapon load-out. All of these weapons can be “leveled up” to earn more attachments such as scopes, silencers, extended mags, and so on. There is a decent amount of character customization to unlock and make your character your own while playing. Although as a Ginger, I was offended at the lack of hair color options as I am not represented. Over all there is a minimal amount of weapons to unlock, you have your assault rifles, sniper rifles (which to me seem pointless in this game), shotguns, handguns, machine guns, and then of course….the iconic chain gun. You can also unlock other classes of fire teams focusing on different elements of speed, health, etc. As you drop into the jungle you are given a mission and a marker on the screen of where to go to either hack a computer, find some keys, kill a target and so on. While traversing through the jungle you need to be on the lookout for the Predator who is often found jumping through the trees, while keeping an eye on the NPC enemies to eliminate them as well. The ways you can win as the fire team can vary. If you complete all objectives and at least one person escapes…you win. If you kill the predator and keep the enemies from damaging the body… you win. If you knock out the Predator but they set of their self destruct (yes that’s a thing) you can run outside the blast radius and continue completing your objectives to win. Or you can try and diffuse the bomb before it goes off and save the body. There is definitely a reliance on teamwork in many cases to complete things, you generally don’t want to wonder off on your own, because the Predator will make easy work of you in a one on one scenario.
If you are the Predator, you get to use all the awesome gadgets and gizmos (once you unlock them by playing) to stalk, track and hunt the fire team. You get use of cloaking skills, the heat vision, shoulder cannons, everything. While the Predator is strong and often if played right gives you the element of surprise over your opponents, they are not invincible. NPCs will also attack you as well as the fire team, your health resources are limited for recovery. And of course all of this is going on within a 15 min time limit.
Graphically the game looks good, not great but with online games, I have come to expect that. Gun play I think handles excellently, and even though the missions are repetitive I find a lot of fun in the game-play loop. The matches as stated earlier are only 15 minutes tops so this is a great game to pick up and run a few matches with friends. I had the opportunity to play with a few friends on a few occasions and we generally had a good time. There is some “jank” to the game, sometimes opening crate animations and such were messed up and at launch some of the matchmaking times were very long. However since then I overall haven’t had to wait more than a minute to get into a game as a fire team. Predator takes a little longer on average i was seeing 5-6 minutes. But with this style of game it’s expected. The sound design in this game is fantastic from having to listen to the “clicks” of the Predator stalking you, to the guns, damage and music if gave me the Predator experience I would expect. If the developer continues to support, grow and work on this game I think it’s an easy recommend for groups of friends, fans of FPS games, or Predator fans. Having seen some other reviews out there bashing the game, I think a lot of critics got this game wrong, or only played the beta….this is definitely a game i can easily recommend to folks.