E3 2017: Hunt: Showdown Preview – A Nightmarish Twist on the Battle Royale Arena

Track, Kill, and Survive in Hunt: Showdown

Not many games can command the suspense I felt while watching a detailed playthrough of Hunt: Showdown. The team at Crytek has the makings of an intense survival shooter with PvP and PvE elements, one that not only has a bone-chilling theme but is visually stunning too. Players will have all of their survival senses tested in the murky bogs of the late Victorian era as they take on the role of a “hunter”. These unsavory characters possess some special connection to something called the “darkness” and use that connection to seek out to banish particularly large spawn of the darkness, all in the name of profit.

Hunt Showdown sniper

As you and a friend set out into the arena to find this big baddie, an unknown number of other players are attempting to do the same thing. You will never know exactly how many other players are in your game, meaning you never know how many to teams to plan for as you move about hordes of rotting flesh and abominations spawned from the darkness. Tactically the PvP aspect of the game plays out similar to a battle royale where you need to make split, rolling decisions about whether to engage an enemy team or to simply let them pass. What sets Hunt apart from just another royale is the objective based goal of the round. Killing other teams can help you achieve this goal, but ultimately you still need to seek and destroy the target (or targets) and exit the map alive. Sometimes it might behove you to let another team do all the dirty work and snatch the bounty from them after they are wounded from the boss. Sometimes you just might need to know when you’re out-gunned and make a dash for the exit since that’s the only way to leave a match alive. There are all sorts of crazy scenarios that can play out meaning each round will be different from the last. Targets will rarely be in the same location twice and the number of enemy hunters could pose even more of a risk.

Hunt Showdown house fire

To raise the tension even higher, hunters are subject to permadeath. Players will be allowed a roster of hunters they can choose from to take into the bog. That way if you want to hop into a round with a friend who just got the game you don’t need to risk your most valued hunter. Any upgrades you purchased for that hunter, like weapons and other gear, will be lost when that hunter dies. Some of the skill upgrades, though, will carry over into something called the bloodline that will affect all of your future hunters. I wasn’t able to get to many details on the full extent of this system, just that it was added as a way to soften the blow of a hunter’s death without completely ruining the consequences of falling on the battlefield.

Hunt Showdown hive

Hunt: Showdown is still fairly early in development so there isn’t a confirmed release date yet, but it is something we’re eagerly awaiting to get our hands on it as soon as possible.