Primal Carnage | Available Now
PC | Publisher: Reverb Publishing | Developer: Lukewarm Media
One word: Dinosaurs. That’s really all I need to say. But, since it’s expected that our reviews are longer than one word, I will elaborate further. Mother. F**king. Dinosaurs.
Okay, okay. Primal Carnage is a multiplayer-only FPS style game very much in the vein of games like Team Fortress 2 or Planetside 2. In this game, you join the side of the Humans or the Dinosaurs and compete in deathmatch glory until only one team is left standing at the end. Of course, the biggest hook of this game is the fact that you can assume the role of multiple different dinosaurs and wage combat against those filthy humans. But allow me to elaborate further.
The game is simple: You join a server (even quickmatch if you like, though I recommend joining a server with a good number of people already playing), choose your team (unless the sides are balanced, in which case you may be locked into a side for the duration of a match), and then choose your spawning class. Every time you die, like most games of this nature, you can choose your new class type and rejoin the battle.
On the Human side, you have the Commando, a very typical and balanced automatic-weapon using gunner; the Trapper, a utility class that can completely trap smaller dinosaurs and even briefly incapacitate larger ones before finishing them off; the Scientist, a sniper-class with the ability to tranquilize targets or pick them off at range; the Pyro, a flamethrower and chainsaw-toting class that provides excellent wide-spread damage as part of a team; and the Pathfinder, a shotgun-wielding Native American who can also drop flares to blind incoming dinosaurs, one of the most effective utility roles on the Human side.
For the Dinosaurs, you have the Pteranodon, a flying dinosaur useful for map control and even swooping attacks, or they can snatch and carry off a Human target; the Dilophosaurus, a small pack of weak dinosaurs that can incapacitate and swarm an enemy target as well as blind them; the Carnotaurus, a large bi-pedal dino with a lot of brute force and battering-ram style offense; the Novaraptor, my personal favorite and the quick DPS member of the group with the ability to tackle and rip apart a target; and the big boy, the Tyrannosaurus Rex, easy to spot but difficult to take down and can consume enemies to regain health and deal massive damage.
For such a simple game, it’s also nice to know that the classes are pretty well-balanced. This is a team dynamic so not every class can match up one-on-one with every other class, nor should it. But as a team, you can usually control, incapacitate and take out a target with a good group. Beyond that, however, the game is a bit shallow. As fun as the Deathmatch mode is, I look forward to having a few more options to play in the future, as this is the only mode in the game. Fortunately, they do plan to add a new mode in a DLC release. Additionally, the map selection is a bit sparse, albeit a bit interesting. The nighttime rain level was really unique and made spotting your enemies much more tricky, but most folks tend to play on the shipyard stage, which is very diverse in terms of areas to explore and attack from, but you’ll learn it pretty well.
Beyond that, the game is still extremely fun and finding new ways to take out your enemies makes it way more interesting than a typical run-and-gun FPS.