Remember Evolve? I bought that s*it for 60 samoleans. That and Battleborn – that one on day one. I’m a fool who should be shunned and watched 24/7.
Take the Monsters of Evolve…
Moving on, Evolve did get a few things correct in the initial offering of its ill-fated concept, mostly having to do with dem monsters. The beasties were visually striking hulks that were sadly never given the life they deserved, not unlike the rest of the game. Their variation on attacks lent to those designs to add the only shards of classification they’d receive.
Paying homage to its title, Evolve also nailed the concept of evolving to take on the monster and vice versa. Monster players could feel empowered by their own skills at taking down smaller animals, avoiding patches of birds, and the mobile hunters all at once. That, in turn, made things that much more dangerous for the hunters for a visceral, meaningful gameplay loop.
Evolve did its best to use the environment and character chatter to give you stories surrounding the wildlife, so it follows that a more informed world could lead to more classification.
Add the World of Monster Hunter
While I didn’t care for Monster Hunter World when it originally slammed into my system, I do love the world because of the interconnected ability to keep life living. You tick off a big monster? Then it’s going to rampage through the environments until it finds its nest. The ripples were felt beneath the superficial in a satisfying, vivacious way.
To bring Evolve’s monsters into this type of world is to inject the world with a presence both powerful and punctuating. You and up to eleven other players enter this wide area, each with your own class specialty and smaller assigned groups for one section of the map. Meanwhile, the monster – again, mixing the power and mobility needed to be a viable threat – lurks in an attempt to feed and heighten his own power.
The twist on top are the abilities of the monster itself and how they mix with the environment. Say, for instance, you have a flying monster that has the ability to camouflage against certain surfaces and you run across those similar to your species. A friendship could be formed to where you can order the smaller animals to take on one of the groups of hunters, keeping them split from the main pack while you make your move. You could also incorporate pits and traps, weather conditions, and more into the control of the monster for subterfuge.
On the side of the hunters, they’re main change would be adding one pregame option: do you take the monster alive or dead? There would have to be fair compensation for taking he added risk of a live capture, but either option could create an engaging chess match. For many, the main problem was never how long the matches of Evolve took, it was how little they feel they engaged with the monster and world until it was fighting time.
This idea takes away that worry as the world would be a constant flow of signs of monster activity and nervous, threatening wildlife. Maybe this would be closer to what Turtle Rock had in mind for Evolve, or maybe they never considered something this ambitious as an option. In either case, it seems to me that this would be a far more engaging game of cat and mouse.