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    Default Review: Carnivore: Dinosaur Hunter, by Tatem Games

    Carnivore: Dinosaur Hunter, by Tatem Games
    $2.99, ****


    • A nicely designed first person hunter
    • Good interface and graphics
    • Incredibly vast 3D world

    • No way to “win”
    • Some of the graphics end up having glitches (trees growing out of a dinosaur, for example)
    • Survive game mode aren’t as “interesting”

    Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunter is a fun, first person hunting game along the lines of the various “Big Game Hunter” games. However, in this game, you are hunting the biggest game of all – dinosaurs.

    In the game, you start off by selecting the game mode. Now, right off the bat, I found the best game mode was “hunt”. The other mode, survive, had limited appeal for me. Basically, you are standing your ground as wave after wave of dinosaur comes after you. It was fun for a few minutes, but rapidly became boring.

    The hunt mode, however, is much more fun. In this mode, you first choose the type of dinosaur(s) you’re hunting. Then you chose the weapon or weapons you want. All of these choices are based on the credits you have accumulated – the more powerful a hunted dinosaur is, the more credits you get. With the credit, you can “unlock” a total of 16 different dinosaurs, 6 different maps or environments, and 6 different weapons; there is a lot of variability in the game. And moving around in the world, tracking your dinosaur, trying to approach upwind, you can really get into the feel of the game.

    The graphics in the game are very impressive. The world really feels like a virtual 3D world, and it feels huge! In fact, it was so large at time I got a little lost – it would be nice to be able to use a GPS “wayfinder” option to track back to various locations. The dinosaurs moved and were drawn very well, although I did notice some graphical glitches on occasion (like a tree growing from inside a dinosaur). The dinosaurs also have a pretty good AI – running away from you at the right times, for example.

    Unfortunately, there isn’t really an ending for the game. The hunts just go on and on, you can’t “win” by collecting all the various trophies (which can be viewed in the interactive trophy room), you can’t “win” by beating a friend, it is just one hunt after another. The game is a universal binary, although I much preferred the iPad version of the game – the iPhone screen was just too small to really use with any skill (maybe I just have big fingers). Note, the pictures below are from the iPad version of the game.

    All in all, this is a fun, adrenaline packed hunting game that delivers pretty strongly. While it is missing some elements (a way to actually beat the game, or a way to challenge friends/multiplayer mode), I found myself picking this game up to play more than I thought I would have. The graphics are very nice, and you can easily find yourself immersed in the world of dinosaur hunting. For $2.99, if you like FPS or hunting games, this is a no brainer – go out and buy it today. Four out of five stars.

    Rating scale:

    * = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
    ** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
    *** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
    **** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
    ***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.

    Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating. 

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