A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Hunt: Showdown is an online first-person shooter/survival horror game, available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Windows-based PCs. Players take on the role of supernatural "Bounty Hunters," competing with other players in a race to track down and defeat horror creatures, then escaping to safety with the bounty. The game features intense scenes of violence, with players using a variety of firearms and explosives to kill enemy creatures and other players. Blood and gore are prevalent, with graphic visuals of death and dismemberment. Players should also be aware that, while profanity isn't included in the dialogue, online chat could still leave the door open for exposure to profanity and other offensive conversations.
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What's it about?
HUNT: SHOWDOWN is an online first-person shooter/survival horror game that pits players against each other as well as hordes of inhuman creatures that have risen to take over. It's the closing twilight of the 19th Century, a time when dark forces have crawled from the shadows and threaten to overwhelm the world as we know it. The only thing standing between this encroaching evil and the annihilation of all mankind are the Hunters, members of a secret society charged with tracking down and killing these horrors … for a price. Hunters each have their own motivations for what they do, be it power, fortune, or sense of duty, but for each of them, the risk is worth the reward. Alone or with a fellow Hunter, you set out to the Louisiana swamps to investigate a swell of supernatural activity. You'll seek out the sources of this disturbance, trudging through the depths of the swamps, avoiding and eliminating the walking corpses that stand between your and your prey. You'll also eliminate your prey and banish it from this world forever, then collect your trophy or the proof of your kill, and make your escape. But be aware that other hunters have also accepted the same contract as you, and they're just as likely to skip the hard work and simply pry the bounty from your cold, dead hands.
Is it any good?
There's no shortage of first-person shooters out there, and there's no shortage of survival horror games to keep you on the edge of your seat waiting for something to leap from the shadows. But Hunt: Showdown manages to take both of these genres and blend them together seamlessly into an original experience where you're always both the hunter and the prey. Silently skulking through swamps to avoid gaining the attention of everything from bloated undead corpses, pack of rabid dogs, and giant man-eating spiders is challenging enough. But knowing at any moment you might wind up in the crosshairs of fellow Hunter makes the tension so thick you might need a machete to cut through it.
Hunt: Showdown gives players a lot of tools to help out with in their hunts. The guns feel sufficiently powerful, but also show their age. These aren't modern day assault rifles you're dealing with. Ammo is also in limited supply, and enemies, both of the undead and the living varieties, can also zero in on the sounds of shooting or explosions. This encourages players to use a more tactical and sneaky method to slip past foes unnoticed. All that goes out the window, though, once you zero in on a boss. Even beating back the beast isn't enough, as you're usually at your most vulnerable here and other players are always eager to swoop in like vultures and pick at your bones if given the chance. It's usually a frantic race to escape in one piece, and it can be an adrenaline-fueled way to finish a match. If there's one gripe to be had, it's that matches quickly can get a bit repetitive. There's a very limited selection of maps available, with day and night variants, and they all take place deep in the swamps. These aren't small plots of land by any means, but an occasional change in the scenery could definitely help. But if you're looking to dive into the shadows and track down monsters, you can't go wrong joining this hunt.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about horror in entertainment. What is the appeal of being scared for fun? What are some of the ways that movies and games use to raise the tension and fear? What are some ways to get a good scare without using extreme depictions of blood or gore?
How can playing with friends change a gaming experience versus playing alone? What are some good ways to work with others as an effective team?
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One
- Price: $39.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Crytek
- Release date: September 20, 2019
- Genre: First-Person Shooter
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Misfits and Underdogs, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- ESRB rating: M for Blood and Gore, Violence, Users Interact
- Last updated: October 18, 2019
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