Cabela's Big Game Hunter 3
Manufacturer: Headgames / Activision (1999)
Genre: Multi-species Hunting
System Requirements: Pentium 200 or faster, Windows 95 or above, 16 MB RAM (32 recommended), 100 MB HDD space (for minimum install), CD-ROM, DirectX compatible soundcard.
Cabela's Big Game Hunter 3 marks the third generation of this series. This offering by Headgames adds more of an adventure atmosphere to the game with the addition of a top-down, scrolling map view where the hunter pitches camp and walks out to the stands in the day to hunt. When in a stand, you scroll around 360 degrees looking for animals. When one is spotted you click on it and it takes you to an actual video clip of the animal, which is where the shot is made. A kill results in a video of the animal going down. A miss shows the animals fleeing. The game is similar to others in the series in that before hunting you browse through a Cabela's catalog to purchase your equipment, which includes everything from tents and flashlights to guns and game calls. You are required to purchasae tags for the animals that you intend to hunt, as well. Each animal kill that you make brings in money from "sponsors" which enables you to buy more and better equipment.
THE GOOD: BGH3 is a fun game. Not a true hunting simulation, but it is fairly fun. The video clips for the different animals are nice, though they do get redundant (see below). I think what I, personally, liked about this game was that it has flavors of role-playing and adventure games in it, which I tend to like. There was no one great thing that jumped out at me, but overall, the game was quite fun.
... .THE BAD: For all the fun, that BGH3 was for me, it didn't last long. The video clip animations for the different animals quickly grow redundant. The same six point buck stepping out from behind the same tree. There is no randomness to it. The "stand" view, where you scroll around 360 degrees looking for animals, is highly unimpressive: the graphics are well below even those found in the first Deer Hunter game. I was able to get past the whole "money for kills" philosophy in the game, but be aware that it is the complete foundation of the game. The animals are not scored Boone & Crockett or Pope & Young. They are scored in some screwy system for money.
THE VERDICT: BGH3 was a nice diversion for a little while, but I really don't think it will appeal to the hardcore hunter (virtual or real-life). The game is much to cartoonish for that. It might be a good way for kids to get into the virtual hunting scene, as the game does do a good job of teaching safety. But when compared with todays games, this one just doesn't stand up.
Reviewed by Tom Shiflet