Four hunters team up to take out the mighty monster. You can play one of the four, or play the villain and shred the puny humans to pieces.
If you play the monster, you need to keep your distance from the hunters at the beginning of the game.
As you hunt and eat wildlife, you will evolve into a more powerful version. At level two, you have an equal chance of beating the hunters. A fully-evolved level three monster will usually win the game.
The hunters must communicate and work as a team to beat the monster. Trying to take it on with anything less than a full team is almost certain to end badly.
The best thing about Evolve is the need for hunters to work together, with each hunter fulfilling a specific role, for the team to succeed.
Beginners should start with the Assault character. The Assault is the easiest to play because his job is simply to use his firepower on the monster.
He can sustain and inflict the most damage. And he has a personal shield that makes him temporarily invulnerable.
The Medic is tough to play. He or she needs to heal the hunters. In some cases, he can even bring dead hunters back to life. A team lacking a good Medic is almost certain to lose the game. It is tough to play the Medic because he is always the monster's first target.
The Trapper scouts out the monster and traps it with harpoons and a gigantic electric dome from which the monster cannot escape. This allows the rest of the team to destroy the monster.
The Support has some cool skills to help his allies, depending on which support hunter you play. Hank the dwarf, for instance, has a shield that can protect allies briefly from harm. With a powerful orbital bombardment ability, he can unleash a gigantic fireball from above.
There are three characters for each hunter class and monster. You need to play several games to level up your initial characters before unlocking the second and third ones.
Playing the monster is great fun if you manage to successfully evolve to level three.
You can breathe fire and leap into the fray, create a gigantic impact on the ground as Goliath, shoot lightning bolts while floating in the sky as the airborne Kraken, and become a ninja monster as the Wraith which specialises in stealthy speedy attacks.
I couldn't get a friend to join me in Evolve because most of my clan mates are still glued to Destiny. But teaming up with strangers through the online matchmaking system was effortless and smooth.
If you hate dealing with strangers, you can always play the Solo mode, where computer bots will take over the roles of the other characters. As a multiplayer shooter, Evolve is very satisfying. I had hours and hours of fun as both monster and hunter.
However, the absence of a single-player campaign is a big letdown - just as Titanfall was - and the game feels overpriced when it lacks an extensive single player story.
- $61.90 (PC), $74.90 (PS4, version tested), $74.90 (Xbox One)
This article was first published on March 4, 2015.
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