It’s not exactly a secret – I’m in love with Evolve. It’s an incredibly fun and diverse game with plenty to offer for people of all play styles. I got more hands on time with it during Gamescom, but most interestingly I learned some tidbits about the game during an interview with Denby Grace, Executive Producer on Evolve.
According to Grace, there is a lot more coming that he couldn’t share with us because it’s still a big secret and whatnot. However, we did learn that during the game the player will be able to progress and advance their own skills. Additionally, within each class/role that players can choose (Assault, Medic, Trapper, Support and Monster), there is also a levelling system. This means that when you first start to pay Evolve you won’t have access to the entire roster of hunters and monsters. This way, new players won’t be thrust into playing a character that requires a bit more nuance and expertise – you will already have quite a few hours of gameplay under your belt before you can unlock the higher level monsters and hunters.
Shown off at Gamescom was the new map, Distillery. This map was said to feature some more violent weather systems in the form of blizzards, as well as more aggressive wild life. Seeing as I’d played the game a whole bunch, I thought that was all a load of nonsense and instantly dove into the game. Of course, it was awesome when a blizzard rolled in – I was playing as the monster at that point and was able to happily hide in the lowered visibility. However, when I switched to the hunter role, I found the map much less forgiving than other experiences with the game. Wildlife knocked out a bunch of my companions – it was much more difficult this time around; while it was still tricky to hunt for the monster, the added obstacles in the form of malicious animals and plant life added to the experience in a whole new way.
For the first time at Gamescom, players could actually choose which character from the class they wanted to play as. This meant completely different gameplay styles – Lazarus is a radically different medic, something we already realized during the gameplay at E3. However, there are all sorts of powerful combinations that can change the experience, helping to keep the gameplay unique.
Speaking of keeping it unique, Grace promised that there are more gameplay modes that they aren’t currently discussing, as well as a whole bunch of new characters and another monster. His favorite hunter hasn’t even been revealed yet, and the other monster (the third) is yet another whole new experience. While he couldn’t share much as far as inspiration goes, he did say that as different as the Goliath and Kraken are from each other is how different the third monster is from both of them.
I am continually impressed by Evolve. It’s probably the pre-release game that I’ve had the most time with this year, and I have never had a boring or lacklustre game. It is fresh and unique every time I’ve played – not only do the different hunters and monsters mix things up, player styles are also key in making the game a whole new experience. I’ve played a bunch of games with the same people, but depending on player choices, hunter selection and other key decision, the entire game can go in a completely different direction. I know some people were worried that it would lose it’s allure over time, but after so many games (even on these earlier builds) I still continue to play with a gleeful smile glued on my face.
Here is the interview we did with Denby Grace. Unfortunately, the microphone died as the interview continued, but here’s as much of it as we could salvage: