Preview: Hands on with the Predator Hunting Grounds Trial

Available at the time of writing on the Epic Games Store on PC and the PlayStation 4 as a Playstation Plus exclusive, You can play the Predator Hunting Grounds trial. Choose to be the Marines and take on missions and the Predator or become the Iconic Predator and take down the Marines anyway you deem necessary!

Pros:

  • Official Predator license carrying likeness and soundtrack. 
  • Deployment cutscenes are inspired by the movie. 
  • 22.84GB Download size. 
  • Can play as a male or female Predator. 
  • Gameplay-four marines vs one Predator. 
  • Predator goal-kill everyone. 
  • Marine goal-complete objectives then evacuate via the helicopter. 
  • Ai is on the map aside from the players. 
  • Private matches-can also be played solo and still earn exp and loot. 
  • Choose deployment location. 
  • Veritanium-pick up in-game for expanding used to spend on loot boxes (field lockers) or weapon skins. 
  • Loot boxes-use in-game currency and grant customisable items and weapon skins. Duplicates give more Veritanium. 
  • Can ping loot/ammo/health/weapons/enemies. 
  • Earn EXP and level up to unlock new loadout slots, equipment etc. 
  • Earn EXP on guns to unlock attachments. 
  • The tutorial that has you play a scenario as the Predator. 
  • The predator can be customised from mask to skins. 
  • Hidden OWLF recordings to find. 
  • Crossplay-on/off. 
  • Invert axis and sensitivity sliders. 
  • Control layouts-standard/alternate and custom with key bindings.
  • FOV slider. 
  • Marine classes-Assault/Recon/Scout/Support. 
  • Predator classes-Hunter/Jungle hunter/Scout/Berserker. 
  • Marine loadout slots-primary, melee, secondary, 3 gear slots and 3 perks. 
  • They balance perks and gear by each item having a slot cost from 1-3.
  • Quickplay-random team placement. 
  • Play-pick to spawn as Predator/Marine/random. 
  • Beautiful looking map with iconic locations within.
  • Can cut down plants and trees. 
  • Missions randomise. 
  • EXP pops up as you collect items/revive/kill enemies etc. 
  • Minimap. 
  • Alarms-enemy AI can trigger an alarm with reinforcements. You can disable alarms. 
  • The predator can predator (Parkour) up trees, leap, change vision type, go invisible, throw decoys. 
  • Shooting the Predator means he bleeds green and leaves a trail behind and can have a red outline. 
  • Destructible parts of the level. 
  • Find ammo and health piles. 
  • The predator can set the self to destruct sequence. 
  • Satisfying kill noise on enemies. 
  • Mission objectives/placements/Varitum and ammo, health caches are random. 
  • Can see teammates outline through walls. 

 

 

Cons:

  • Performance is terrible. Not sure exactly what it is but it plays like it would with bad lag, this happens even when playing a solo private and in the tutorial. 
  • The Predator is way to fast in terms of attack and can easily down everyone. 
  • Can’t skip the cutscenes and death screens. 
  • End of level breakdown is timed with no way to quit or skip. 
  • Slow to unlock anything. 
  • The pool of items in the loot crates is bad with me having countless full crate box duplicates and usually in a row. 
  • Feels like all the cool stuff and work went into the Predator, marines are basic and clumsy. 
  • Long matchmaking times. 
  • A lot of games started with only 2 or 3 players. 
  • Weapon skins are not that desirable. 
  • Hard to make out objectives. 
  • Guns are hard to use until you grind out attachments. 
  • Loadout slots are unlocked. 
  • Gun EXP is definitely the slowest to earn. 
  • With randoms, the game is just a shooting gallery and people running around everywhere. 
  • Grenades don’t have the aiming reticle or any help in determining where they will land. 
  • The screen feedback on hits makes you feel like your taking more damage than you actually are. 
  • Got stuck in the scenery a fair few times. 
  • Marines can’t stick to walls or do any cool tricks. 
  • Predator gets the most EXP even if they don’t play the game and just idle! 
  • Can’t see teammates or indeed the Predators player level. 
  • Long loading times. 
  • Pings are all over the place and no network options for servers etc. 
  • Winning as a marine is not that rewarding or even special, just a cutscene of an angry Predator. 
  • None of the pre-order now buttons work despite popping up after every game. 
  • I get it sound is important but all footsteps are way too loud and sound like a drunk Camel attempting to ballet. 

Summary

As a huge Predator fan, I have been waiting so long to finally get some hands-on the play of this game. Ever since I first played Evolve, I knew a game like that needed a license in which to grab players and get the genre out there. Predator is a dam good fit for the 4v1 genre. I’m not going to go over all the stuff I have listed above like the gameplay, mechanics and progression. Instead, I will merely say that performance of this title is not very good at all and this seriously hindered my fun, seeing all the work that went into the Predator character, its extremely sad that the Marines are so generic, basic and devoid of anything particularly helpful or cool. The game has serious potential but as we near launch it’s not looking like it will get any substantial work put in. Maybe having this license can carry it forward but I fear it may go all Evolve and players will leave shortly after launch. I want to like it and I want to play it but I need a reason to care, I need a reason to keep returning and for me, the trial confirmed my doubts. I will remain optimistic and look forward to seeing the launch state of the game. I urge you to try the trial if you have any desire to buy the game.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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