First of all this is my first review, and it's about some games no one cares about, but bare with it if you may.
It seems as though every year Cabela's (a fishing and hunting and camping and what-not store) throws out yet another hunting game. Now, there are two preliminary problems with this: hunting is boring in person and in general the gaming community does not hunt. Now don't get me wrong I enjoy freezing my toes off in order to blow some random bunny to hell as the next guy (yes, I hunt) and yes, I own every Cabela's game.
In the Original console versions of Big game hunter you just hunted animals for no apparent reason; you just wanted to do it. I wasn't bad and the AI was, well mediocre at best. Then came 2005 Adventures and Dangerous Hunts and some overworked, sleep deprived designer with a hangover and no memory of last night's happenings had the bright idea of putting a STORY into the game. Hence it was no longer mindless killing of innocent animals, you wanted to be the best hunter ever by killing mountain goats that just ran in place or bears that could see through mountains. Then along came Alaskan adventures and Dangerous Hunts 2; which contained a final boss battle against a yeti, and thusly threw caution and realism to the wind.
The games AI is CRIPPLING, with the original having one of the best the best. It's sad when a series goes backwards instead of forwards but it happens a lot, it's even sadder when an already painfully average game goes that very same route. The animals were both so smart they knew where you were from the other side of the map and promptly charged you or being so stupid it's as though they are animatronics and your can literally walk right up to them while they go about their business of just standing around until shot at. Should they act "normal" and be shot at they will proceed to run around in circles. You can only shoot when you're standing still which is incredibly annoying while hunting bears and the ever majestic moose that tend to attack you. In dangerous hunts anything and everything attacks you, but their presence is given away by the ever annpying heart meter who's sole purpose is to annoy the crap out of you with the constant *thump thump...thump thump...thumpthump thumpthump thumpthump* you get my point. In both Dangerous Hunts you were aloud to fire your gun while moving, as well as Alaskan adventures. In Alaskan adventures you were aloud to fish as well but it was absolutely horrible and not worth the text. Oh yea, and apparently there are laws, like you can't fire your weapon from dusk to dawn, even if you're stranded out there and getting your ankles gnawed off by a wolverine, you can't fire your weapon within 50 feet of a building, your bullets can't go within 50 feet of them and should you break these laws you will get a warning, a fine, and then get kicked out of the hunt. Apparently the designers at Activision thought this would be fun; its not. If an animal you don't have a tag to hunt attacks you and you shoot it, you get in trouble. That's not fun. That's reverse Darwinism at its fullest. And the stamina bar is the dumbest game mechanic known to man. I don't mean the ones in Star Wars Battlefront 2, no, THIS stamina bar goes down when you walk, swim, crouch walk, or draw your f-ing bow! You can only walk about 50 feet before you have to stop and they kept this in every game.
Alaskan Adventures may have the best AI, which is vastly improved, however, that's not saying much. The bears and wolves are no longer the only animals to attack you, ammo is no longer unlimited, you can move and shoot which you admittedly don't do in real life but this is a game, and your foot is being eaten by a caribou. There is ammo in the maps, and you can reuse arrows Turok style. There are small game animals you can hunt too, which are fun and the bullet cam is useful for "greenhorns" (easy mode) but it's also annoying. There is also "hunter Sense" which slows down time iteslf! Oooooohhh! F.E.A.R with deer anyone? This mechanic just seems out of place in a hunting game but does come in handy wilst a lynx is chewing on your arm. Also, each part of your body can take injurys, which effects gameplay and makes that shear cliff over there much less inviting (you can't hold your gun steady as long, you walk slower).
Yes, I am going to give each game a score out of five. And I will summarize it up. I can see who they thought making the games more action packed and putting boss battles would seem more appealing, but in a series that attempts to pride itself on realize, it becomes redundant. Cabela's Outdoor Adventures is so horrible and buggy it's not worth mentioning. When they introduced a story they changed it from pointless hunting to a sad attempt at...well I really don't know but in the end the series is just a money making attempt and if you have ever been to Cabela's you would know. The bottom line is they should stick to over priced beef jerky and lighters that look like guns.
Cabela's Big Game Hunter-3/5 rent
Cabela's 2005 Adventures-2/5 play at a friends if you're that bored and he actually has it
Cabela's Dangerous Hunts-1/5 don't touch!
Cabela's Outdoor Adventures--.5/5 BURN IT
Cabela's Alaskan Adventures-3/5 rent
Cabela's Dangerous Hunts 2-2/5 play with someone you only like out of pity
Gotta disagree about Dangerous Hunts 1, I loved that game. I can still remember fighting a rhino with a compound bow and wooden arrows... God that thing was a pin-cushion when I was done with it. Not exactly the most realistic of hunting games, but it was still fun. Aside from that, not a bad review. *High-fives fellow hunter*