Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues is the best of the hunting games out there. The graphics are superb, the player models are extremely realistic, and the overall game structure is wonderful.
From the initial menu, you can see that Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues is a quality game. Picking your player model is fun, and allows you to put your own personality into the game. There are approximately five different player models (one female) and numerous camouflage outfits for you to pick. From there, you get to choose what your arsenal will consist of.
All of the different weapons and various other items are fully explained for you so you need not choose items unintelligently. There are guns and bows, and you can pick whichever one you please.
After setting up your hunter, you get to choose what type of game you wish to play. There is either the quick hunt option, which allows you to hunt wherever you please in whichever season you want. True hunters will choose the season option, in which you hunt through a season's worth of locales.
Game-play is really quite a treat. Although hunting is inherently slow-paced, Wizard Works does their best at making the long waits between deer-sightings bearable. The graphics are just short of fantastic, especially when using the magnifying options that some of your weapons or sights. The deer look just as they do in real-life and the backgrounds are fully interactive. In fact, I was able to find a car in which I could move around the entire grounds in no matter of time at all. It's these small details that make Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues an experience for all of the senses.
The season mode is cool because it really gives you a variety of different things to do. Going around to different locales is interesting and really gives you a feel for the place that you are hunting in. In the winter you will notice snow and ice. At other times there are leaves falling or changing colors.
I did have some minor gripes, however. One problem I found was that although most of the time the deer look realistic, at others they move in a ridiculous manner. Sometimes it appears that the deer are running right at you, only to stop a few meters short of you. Then they start grazing on the grass in front of you, waiting to be killed.
Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues is very realistic in most aspects of game-play, and that will satisfy the hunting enthusiast. Others may have trouble adjusting to a game of this nature, but it may be worth it, especially for a person that enjoys a strategy game.
Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues is the latest incarnation of the best-selling (and record-breaking) franchise from Wizard Works and thankfully, there's quite a leap between its predecessors in light of gameplay, graphics and multiplayer support.
For the uninitiated, the premise behind these virtual hunting games is fairly straightforward: the goal is to hunt game with a wide selections of weapons and by using gear such as buck and doe calls, cover scent, deer bait, and often a hearty dose of patience and luck. Bagging the biggest buck for bragging rights (now, that's alliteration, folks!) is always the ultimate objective as the animal's head will be proudly mounted on the wall in your cozy den or lodge, complete with a crackling fireplace. Alternatively, you can upload it online to many of the fan sites to compare who's is bigger (men will be men!).
In Deer Hunter 3, the game engine is completely new (unlike Deer Hunter 2) and fans of the first couple games in the series will see this change right off the bat. First of all, it's now possible to move around in all directions, using a Quake-like keyboard and mouse interface and familiar first-person perspective. Electronic Arts' Deer Hunt Challenge also opted for this open-ended, and welcomed, freedom. Secondly, the graphics are much more detailed than ever before. 3D accelerator cards are optional (but recommended), which add much more realistic environments, hunters and animals. Translucent water flickers in the sunlight (exposing schools of fish), while dragon flies and leaves drop from trees. Lastly, gamers can now use a variety of accessories to aid in the hunt, or even cooler, a number of vehicles such as motor boats, snowmobiles and trucks! I must admit, it was pretty cool to catch a deer wading in the water as I took the boat over to the other side of the pond to get a cleaner shot. Unfortunately, I scared him away in the process...
Gameplay modes have also been beefed up considerably. There is still the self-explanatory "Quick Hunt" option to dive into a few locales (with customizable seasons and equipment) but the real solo-player fun is in the new "Season Mode". For the first time in the series, gamers can hunt an entire season with the aid of a calendar which tells the dates that are open for hunting and what methods are allowed. If you don't bring your hunting tag or follow all the local laws your precious catch will be poached from the Trophy Room. Seasons change over time, as does the deer's behavior.
Another first in this series is the multiplayer option, and it's quite robust at that. Gamers can hunt against other online players in the competitive mode (up to eight players maximum); the person who bags the biggest buck in the shortest amount of time, wins. There's also the option to play cooperatively, with two deer hunters roaming the digital landscapes alongside one another. Players can chat during gameplay or use any of the pre-set audio commands such as "hey, did you hear that?" or "I'll call -- you shoot". I found this to be most enjoyable. There was very little lag/latency for the most part and proved to be a fun experience. Wizard Works also inked a deal with GameSpy to effortlessly find games currently played over the Net with low ping times.
As a side note, fan of these kinds of games should check out Planet Deer Hunter ? it provides real-time chat rooms, tournament information, a trophy room showcase and downloadable map editors to create all-new, custom environments.
A minor drawback is there's only one weapon allowed per hunt. OK, so I play a lot of Unreal Tournament and Quake 3: Arena and want a full arsenal of toys to annihilate the wildlife...
All in all, though, fans of this genre will definitely feel Deer Hunter 3: The Legend Continues offers the most bang for their buck.
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Deer Hunter 2: The Hunt Continues, Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2004, Deer Hunter, Rocky Mountain Trophy Hunter 3, Championship Bass, Front Page Sports: Trophy Bass 2, SEGA Bass Fishing, Big Game Fishing
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