theHunter:Call of the wild PlayStation 4 review

Developer:Avalanche Studios.

Playing the Hunter Call of the wild has taught me many things over the weekend. The main thing is that I have no problems whatsoever mowing down humans one after another, in a game world of course but the guilt I felt after shooting a rabbit while it was playing with others left me repeating, "It's only a game, It's only a game" as I looked down at the said bunny!

I'm not a hunter but I've been curious about these games from the PlayStation 2 days. Sure you can get them easily now with multi region and access to the other stores but they are mainly sold over the water. I'd seen the screens and previews before but you can easily be fooled by pre-launch hype shots and tarted up movies. When I first spawned into the game world I completely missed what the narrator was saying to me and I had to start again. You see I was distracted by what was before me.
This distraction has not stopped hours and hours into the game. The world you are dropped into is the most gorgeous, beautiful, HUGE open world I've ever seen. Yes I know, even more so than Horizon Zero Dawn my favourite PS4 game. PlayStation 4 has a new benchmark, it's Call of the Wild!

The view you're greeted to when you start the game.

I honestly can't tell you how good this game looks on my 4K TV. No screens nor youtube movies can prepare you for 50" 4K greatness. Trees blow in the wind, particles of even dust blow through the air, seed clocks glide past you realistically as they would on a hot summers day, leaves, it's just brilliant. Water reflects the trees, sun, moon at night and anything that passes or overhead clouds passing or even building to let rip an almighty storm. My wife has zero interest in games, she walked into the front room and said, "wow, is this a game?" I think I've spent more time wandering than anything else. It's vista is second to none. "Is that a bridge over there? half an hour later you've walked to it and forgotten what your task was. On the way you've stopped to take yet another screen shot of the beautiful landscape.

Day to night transition and back to morning can get very Friday 13th around the log cabins.

On top of the visuals is the sound. What transforms this real would into real life is the use of sound. I have lost count of the amount of times I've been strolling about and a bark of a deer has made me jump. Birds tweet, wind rustles the leaves and bushes. Water laps at the edges of lakes and the pitter patter of water bouncing off muddy paths all adds to sucking you in to this living, breathing world. I'm playing with surround on and a wireless base speaker. Starting up the ATV just has to be heard with 5.1. The gunshot itself rings out around the room and during a hunt when silence is golden, pulling your own trigger can really startle you. Sound in key to the game too. You listen intensely for the direction of a mating call or growl from a bear. Once I lay in fear as I'd lost my way lying down and a bear walked past me, I was holding my breath for gods sake. Like I say, this game really does immerse you like I've never had before.

So this takes me to the game itself. All the looks and sound mean jack if the game sucks right?
I've never played anything like this before. I guess the closest I've got is Call Of Duty MW. The sniping mission in Russia. That was scripted, the Hunter is not. In fact every time I've turned it on, saying that it's hardly been off in the last two days, you could go off hunting and every time it's different. What is brilliant is the way the developer has tried to make it interesting by giving it a kind of story mode to keep you interested and this works so well. You receive calls on your mobile asking you to help out or visit certain parts of the map. When you bring up the map and pan back with the right stick you'll be amazed. The map is huge. I started in the US but to my shock there is also a European map with a female narrator. You get a ATV that has brilliant physics to get you about quicker. You even get a tent to pitch for over night stays in the wild. Mission structure is perfect and the game gets a little bit easier as you unlock better guns, bullets and bows. Everything is put together so well. It's worth pointing out that rifles have certain bullets and this led me to a search on the net to see why my gun wouldn't load. I was not alone as I found many people with the same problem as me. That is the only thing that needs to be made clearer to people like me who've not played a game like this before.

You will stop to admire views like this over and over again.

The Hunt itself can be done at any time, anywhere. Hunting is tense and time consuming. As it should be. I found myself hunting down a pack of deer taking over 40 minutes as I crept, crawled and then executed the kill perfectly. It was night and I took out 4 deer in one go as they panicked not knowing where I was. I hunted a bear but just scrapped it. I then followed the trail until I found it and took the reward. I'm no hunter in real life but it turns out I'm quite good.
Multiplayer can team up to 8 players with some co-op or challenges.

The Hunter Call of the wild has everything.  It's jaw dropping at times with tight gameplay that all comes together brilliantly. Sure hunting in the real world is not for me. I just don't like it. So a game that lets you do something that you don't want to do in the real world is what playing games is all about. If you want to use this as a walking simulator then you'll have a blast walking about in some of the most beautiful countryside the world has to offer, you can do so. As open worlds go this is the new benchmark for me.

Horizon set the benchmark for open world on PS4, theHunter has toppled it.


Please note:I've played for hours and due to the size of the game the review is ongoing. I'll update with any worth while notes.

 Your ATV gets you from A to B faster but you can use fast travel but in a game world this pretty why would you want to?

Deer Gameplay PS4 PRO

Reviewed on a PlayStation 4 PRO with 4K 49" TV with surround sound.


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