Evolve is a great game under ideal circumstances. It’s deep, varied and ridiculously fun. Of course, life doesn’t give us many ideal circumstances. This led to us to give Evolve a 7.2 in our review. But have the updates and DLC fixed things and made it all worthwhile? Well, it depends.
The new DLC offers up a new character in every role, so four new hunters and a new monster. While they fulfill familiar classes, they certainly change things up for gameplay.
Monster – Behemoth
Behemoth is the biggest monster Evolve will ever have. That’s a good thing, too, because he takes up half the screen when you’re playing. He’s ridiculously big and clumsy, as well as rather slow. To compensate for this, he has a roll movement ability that makes him feel like the juggernaut as you roll around the map as a giant terrifying ball. Of course you will have to leave your ball movement in order to feed on the animals you run over to evolve, but it’s still a rather quick and fun way of getting around the map.
To compensate for his lack of speed, Behemoth has a ton of health and plenty of shield capacity, making him the ultimate tank. He also packs a mean punch and has some cool abilities. My favorite was Rock Wall. You could use it defensively to throw up a wall and get away from the hunters, or as a way of separating the hunters from their back, creating a hurt locker as you pummel one at a time inside your own private cell.
While Behemoth is capable of delivering a ton of punishment, I didn’t really enjoy playing as him. He is even slower than Goliath and ends up feeling rather cumbersome. Plus, twice while playing as him I glitched into the environment, completely unable to move. This may be limited to specific maps, but it certainly made me wary of playing as him.
Assault – Torvald
Like all the other assault classes, Torvald is built to inflict heavy damage on the monster. I found that I really enjoyed playing with him – his shrapnel grenades deal damage and create weak points on the monster, these weak points are easily exploited by his auto-fire shotgun, dealing a ton of damage. Of course you will need to use your personal shield for this as the shotgun is best as close range. Still, it’s really a lot of fun taking down a monster with this double whammy and teams up nicely with harpoon or stasis slow effects. He also has a mortar cannon which feels similar to Hank’s airstrike – it’s best on enemies that are already slowed or stationary. I didn’t find myself using this often; the other abilities are so oriented towards getting in close and doing loads of damage that I rarely felt inclined to back up and use his mortar instead.
Support – Sunny
Support with Sunny feels rather offensive this time around. Yes, she can offer shields to her team mates, but this is done with a shield drone rather than direct contact. I really liked this for when you get into a big battle – throw down your shield drone and forget about it. With the necessary shielding done, Sunny can switch to a mini nuke grenade launching which deals a ton of damage and feels incredibly satisfying to shoot. She also has a jetpack boost gun which I rarely if ever used – while it’s nice to help teammates fly further and faster, they then get separated from the group, causing new issues.
While she has a bit of a surly face in the promo pictures, she has a distinctly sunny disposition, making airdrops rather cute and entertaining. Of course, she can also become grating overtime, but it’s still nice to see something other than a gruff hunter stereotype in conversation. She is definitely a great choice for those players who get stuck playing support but still like to deal heavy damage in combat.
Medic – Slim
The latest hunter with one of the most interesting character designs, Slim is a unique kind of medic. He has a healing drone which can be sent to other hunters to heal them as needed – it can even revive downed allies. But he is also a rather offensive medic. A spore cloud prevents the monster from smelling and hides the hunters while his Leech gun was my favorite thing because it changes up mechanics. Not only does it do damage to the monster, it also reduces the cooldown on his heal burst. This means that being offensive allows you to heal more quickly. It’s a nice change of pace for the medic and makes him a lot of fun to play.
Tracker – Crow
Crow was easily my favorite hunter of the bunch. First of all, he has a new tracking ability. Thanks to his creature, a Batray named Gobi, he can scout out a few 100 meters ahead in any direction. It certainly takes some getting used to as you send it out looking for the monster in all directions, but it’s still a rather cool new take on tracking. But that’s not what makes him my favorite.
Once you throw down the mobile arena, it’s all about taking down the monster. Here, Crow feels incredibly powerful. His two guns have charged and quick shot options, but it’s the charge that makes it all worthwhile. A charged shot with the Stasis gun significantly slows the monster. This can help with trapping the monster initially, or works well in conjunction with slower damage dealing techniques from your team. The Kinetic Long Rifle is also fantastic – once the monster is slow, charge up some shots with this gun and you can damage the monster’s health bar. That’s right, charged shots from the rifle ignore the monster’s shields and deals direct health damage. Unfortunately, in another sign of weird leveling, the developers have listed the quick shots rather than charged shots in progression.
The biggest issue with DLC is if it adds extra value. While there are certainly plenty of new options here, I’m not sure that most players will find it worthwhile to buy the full set. If you already know the types of gameplay that you enjoy in Evolve, I’d recommend only buying the hunter or monster that you will actually want to play. The lingering issues with Evolve are still apparent – loading times can feel long and you will need to have people to play with who you actually enjoy playing games with. While random matches in multiplayer can be an issue in any game, the emphasis on teamwork in an online environment where people don’t always do it right still undermines the value of the game.
Last Updated: April 8, 2015