by Badger Nimahson
“Ohhh she comes, Watch out boys she’ll chew you up, Ohhh here she comes, She’s a Maneater!” Maneater maybe the title of the game but it is definitely an understatement for this title
Ever since I saw the trailer for the first time I couldn’t wait to get hands-on with Maneater and whilst it does exactly what I thought it would I am also extremely surprised too!
Yes there is the madness, chaos and lunacy that you see in the trailer above but there is also a lot of content lurking beneath the surface…literally, under the water, Maneater is a completely different game than above.
The difference between gameplay inside and outside the water is so different you almost feel like you are playing two different games.
Maneater begins with a sort of faux Discovery Channel Shark Week documentary being filmed where the gruff sailor and shark hunter Scaley Pete catches a massive shark and upon cutting it open discovers it was almost ready to give birth.
Being the loving caring guy that Scaley Pete is he slices the fin of the baby shark twice so he can identify it when it grows to full size and he can hunt it and kill it.
The shark, surprisingly, is unhappy about been mutilated and promptly eats Scaley Pete’s arm before leaping off the boat. And so begins your tale of man vs shark. Only one can survive this epic saga. Discover the Bayou, evolve, adapt and grow and one day maybe you can reunite Scaley Pete’s body with his arm?
As I mentioned above, Maneater is essentially two completely different games running simultaneously alongside each other.
Underwater you have a missions, collectables, and hunts to complete. These are your basic “swim here kill 10 fish” and “swim here kill this elite fish” type of affair but there are plenty of them.
Whilst swimming underwater you can munch on pretty much anything that moves. In fact I encourage you too as you get resources from consuming animals.
These resources are then used to level up the evolution you have unlocked for your shark such as mineral gathering, Health upgrade and advanced sonar.
If a relaxed and leisurely swim investigating your surroundings and growing bigger and stronger is not what you ar are after then why not leap out from under the water’s surface and pull a poor unsuspecting human from a boat and eat them? Or leave the water completely land on the pier and nom down on as many humans as you can before you start suffocating?
Eat enough humans and the hunters will come for you, kill enough hunters and the bounty hunter appears, kill them and you get a sweet body part to power you up!
The best way I can describe the absolute chaos that becomes the fights above water is to liken them to when you are playing Grand Theft Auto and think “Fuck It” and try to get that 5 star wanted rating. Except at the end of this wanted level is a sweet upgrade if you can survive long enough
Both these “game modes” take place alongside each other simultaneously so you can explore the underwater world, dive above and cause chaos then dive beneath the waves and disappear with ease.
Speaking of exploring your underwater kingdom the map is fairly extensive. With eight decent sizes section to explore. Each area is full of license plates, locations and caches to discover.
The only real problem I have with gameplay in Maneater is the lock on/ target function. Quite simply it doesn’t work and can make battles needlessly difficult.
Graphically Maneater is perfectly fine. It’s not gonna blow you away but there really isn’t anything to complain about either.
The colours in the grotto are vivid and almost neon. The collection of junk reminds you of a teenagers bedroom full of weird collections like street signs and out of context posters.
Underwater environment is wonderful to explore and the fact you can’t see thing sin detail until you’re almost upon them is a nice touch.
Above the water again the graphics are perfectly fine. you really do get the sense of a vibrant and busy city sprawling away into the distance even though you cant visit it.
Honestly, after watching the trailer I was expecting jaws meets Just Cause but what Maneater delivered is so much more! Dual environments and more or less dual gameplay scenarios.
With a hell of a lot more content, fun and exploration than I expected Maneater is a great game. Add to that the absolute joy of going to war with hunters and surviving makes Maneater an absolute gem of a game.
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