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Carnivores: Ice Age Review
developer: Action Forms Ltd.
P200, 32MB RAM, 200MB HDD, 2x CD-ROM
|ESRB rating: T
release date: Jan 16, 01
|» All About Carnivores: Ice Age on ActionTrip|
Whoa, I've been reading the reviews around the net, and it seems that this game has received more flack lately than Al Gore's hairdo... Call me wacky and pour gasoline over my shitty apartment, but that might have something to do with the fact that Ice Age publishers, Wizard Works are responsible for the most notorious series of PC games of all time - the ever popular Deer Hunter series! But hold your horses, folks! Although it's not without its fair share of drawbacks, this little sucker at least provides a fraction of a thrill you get from hunting, and what's more, it pits you against some very dangerous mammals from the Ice Age. And that can't be all bad. (Note to the IGNPC reviewer -- a dinosaur is a prehistoric lizard. A wolf, Mammoth or a rhino, do not lay eggs. They actually give birth to little babies that suck milk, and are therefore called mammals and not dinosaurs.)
Carnivores: Ice Age is the third installment of the venerable hunting series, which originally gave players a chance to battle the mighty T-rex and a host of other prehistoric lizards. This time around though, Carnivores is set in the Ice Age - the age in Earth's history that came AFTER the dinosaur age. So, calling this game a dino game is like saying that Christ was born on 3456BC according to the Christian calendar, which is rather silly you'd agree. Anyways, the Ice Age was, as some of you avid Discovery viewers know, the very reason why dinosaurs left their mortal coils in the first place. This evolution in the flora and fauna brought on a whole new set of dangerous species, which must've been considered a pain in the ass by our fore-fore-fore fathers... Hey, back then, you could club women with a large bat and get away with it, so I guess it wasn't all that bad...
The players are once again put in the role of a trigger-happy thrill seeker on Dino Hunt Corp.'s payroll, who is eager to fill up his trophy room with as much stuffed corpses as possible. The whole hunting system is points-based -- it awards a number of points depending on the fierceness of the animal or the amount of artifacts used for the hunt. The mean-ass mammal-slaying weapons include: Pistol, Shotgun, Double barreled shotgun, X-Bow, Rifle, and Sniper Rifle; with which you can slaughter a host of herbivores, like: Megaloceros (giant deer), Mammoth, Wooly rhinoceros, Brontoteriy, Hog, and a number of vicious carnivores, like: Smilodon (saber-toothed tiger), Wolf, Diatryma.
Believe me, killing some of them nasty carnivores is no walk in the park, so you'll definitely need some of the aforementioned "artifacts," like: cover scent, camouflage, radar, double ammo, or supply ship...
But using these artifacts comes at a price - radar will take off 30% from your total kill score at the end of the hunt (3 points off for a 9 point kill). On the other hand, hunting without radar is like dancing in a Smilodon cave blindfolded and with bloody steaks tied around your neck. Yeah, you'll probably have a mean ass double shotgun, but I fail to see how that might help when you're completely relying on your sense of hearing, and maybe some hidden "feel the force, Luke" abilities to kill the nasty beasts. The maps in this game are freking huge. Most of the time you won't even see the animal (just like in any real hunt), and you'll have to rely on the compass, tactics, various calls, and most importantly hearing to lead you to the beast. It goes without saying that you'll be better off with a radar, and I was more than happy to use it to locate the prey, until I've read a small notice that said: "30% points off when used."
Good hunting experience (attention to detail, tactics); atmosphere. Outdoor environments, sound, and AI;
Just gets tedious after a while -- too much walking, waiting, and listening without any action. Nothing essentially new to the series.