Remember Evolve, the four-versus-one multiplayer shooter that came out earlier this year? If not, don’t worry; you’re not alone. Evolve had a healthy beta, in which players participated in 2 million monster-hunting matches, and launched to decent reviews, but it’s not exactly a runaway success. By now, most players have moved on.
Evolve’s developer, Turtle Rock Studios, isn’t done just yet, however. In an attempt to bolster Evolve’s dwindling player base – at this point, the game’s struggling to hit just 1,000 concurrent users per day – the studio released a brand new DLC pack featuring a new game mode. The DLC is available right now, and it’s completely free.
According to Turtle Rock developers, Arena mode takes the “hunt of Evolve and turns it on its head.” Arena mode drops a team of hunters and a monster into a small, enclosed combat space, and forces players to duke it out in a high-stakes firefight. Monsters start at Stage 2 (the stage at which Evolve’s monsters and hunters are most evenly matched), and rounds end with either the monster or all the hunters are dead. Whichever side wins two of the three rounds walks away the champion.
Battlefields are built from Evolve’s 14 existing maps, which are home to five arenas each, leading to 70 total arenas. Arenas are randomly selected each round to make sure that neither side has an unfair advantage.
Thanks to its asymmetrical combat, Evolve is still an unusual game, but Arena mode sounds like it eliminates one of Evolve’s characteristic features: monster evolution. In the base game, the monster player starts at a low level, and gains strength as he or she hunts down prey. It’s up to team of hunters to find and kill monsters before he or she grows too powerful. Arena mode might get to the action a lot quicker, but in doing so it sacrifices a lot of what makes Evolve unique.
On the other hand, it’s free. When it came out in February, Evolve generated a fair amount of controversy, due to Turtle Rock’s aggressive DLC practices – the game launched with $136 dollars’ worth of DLC add-ons. Fan outrage didn’t stop Evolve from racking up over 2.5 million sales, and Take-Two boss Strauss Zelnick was probably right when he said that controversy was a good thing.
However, the abundance of paid DLC hurt Evolve’s reputation, even if the healthy sales mean that there are many potential Evolve players out there. While Turtle Rock hasn’t proved that they can lure that audience back, a piece of free DLC sure isn’t a bad place to start.
Source: Game Spot