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Hunt Showdown: Alpha Impressions

Well, this is a very interesting game that we have here. Hunt: Showdown is not a game like any other seen in the industry. This has been thrown around a lot recently with games like PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, but with Hunt we have something that has actually never been done in a video game.

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Impressions

This game is based off of an interesting concept. You have four teams of two who are all fighting for a common goal of killing either the spider or the butcher, and using any means possible to get there. After the monster is finally killed, there is a three minute banishing process where your location is revealed for everybody to see, and they can kill you and take the bounty. You then have to escape using an extraction point. This creates some very tense and interesting gameplay. As the game is permadeath, your character is gone forever after you die, and you have to level your character to even have them stand a fighting chance against some higher level players. I spent the first few hours of my playtime leveling up a hunter I really liked with the perfect weapons, and then going to get that sweet, sweet victory.

The whole time hunting the monster, banishing it, and then extracting, I was on the edge of my seat, knowing that the character I worked so hard on could be gone just like that. This game takes the common problem in permadeath games, and adds a sense of level progression throughout the characters with something called the bloodline. When your character dies, half of his XP is transported to the bloodline, which lets you recruit better hunters and buy better weapons from the start, so you do not have to spend hours grinding every time you die. It is great to see a game of this sort take the major grip that I had with the genre and turn it into a rewarding sense of progression. It is great for everyone playing that looting enemies is not a part of the game, as all of the items you get are bought from the shop with bounty you collected.

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Speaking on bounty, the last thing that caught my eye about the game is that the more you have done as a character, the higher HIS bounty is, and if someone kills you in a match, they fulfill the contract against you, and collect LOTS of money from that on higher level characters. While I was still in my grinding phase, I got tons of currency because I got a lucky shot on a level 20 character, and I got thousands of dollars just for that contract alone.

Optimization

How a game runs is very important to the overall enjoyment of the game, and right now the optimization is the biggest problem. The game is locked at “ultra” graphics settings, which is only for the beefiest of computers, forcing players to turn down there resolutions to get a steady 30. On a $2000 gaming PC, the game barely scraped 30, and fell down into the 10s during high action parts. This is not due to the quality of any PC, but more to Crytek’s optimization, which has to continue on longer before you can fairly analyze it.

This game is currently littered everywhere with bugs, but is also due to it’s second wave of testing, the first being the “stress test” that only a core few individuals in Cyrtek’s community groups could get into, myself included in those few. The game fails to launch lots of times, and after 10 minutes of frustration, you finally get into the menus. Once in the menus, there is a high chance that the game will not let you recruit or matchmake, sending you back to trying to open the game, and making it a 15 minute experience or so to just look for a match.

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The games load times are very long for everybody, no matter what SSD and how much ram you have. Render distance is very close up, and in a stealth game is a big problem, as you have to maneuver around enemies without them seeing you, or you will be in big trouble. Lastly, the game is not compatible with most streamers. On both OBS and XSplit, the audio in my headphones acted janky for the first 30 seconds, and then my WHOLE COMPUTER fell into a hard crash, and I had to turn off my power strip and reboot. The only streamer that really works is GEForce experience, and that is not an optimal choice for those looking to have some overlays on it.

Graphics

When the game is running fine, the graphics are very pretty. It looks almost exactly like it does in all official gameplay and E3 trailers. The lighting is the best aspect, and is jaw dropping on some of the daytime hunts. The shadows are a little heavy, but aside from that this is one of the best looking games we will see all year, but I would sacrifice some graphical quality for a little higher of a frame rate.

Controls

These controls are very hit and miss with people, and I myself love them. The reason some people are so turned off by them are because they resemble more of the Arma style of gameplay more then something like Call of Duty. It is more tactical than the average game, and with the heaviness on stealth, and the very limited ammo, it is better to avoid fights altogether then rather use precious ammo.

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Wrap-Up

These are my thoughts on the 1/31/18 update for Hunt Showdown, and I will continue to put out updates for every update with new things that were added. The Loot Gaming will be the place for all future coverage on this game. Thank you for reading this article, and I hope all of you have happy hunting.