Field and Stream Trophy Hunting
Manufacturer: SierraSports (1999)
Genre: Multi-species Hunting
System Requirements: Pentium 200 or faster, Windows 95 or above, 32 MB RAM (64 recommended), 350 MB HDD space (for minimum install), CD-ROM, PCI or AGP 3D accelerated video card highly recommended, DirectX compatible soundcard.
... DESCRIPTION: Field and Stream Trophy Hunting is the follow up to the somewhat popular, though buggy Trophy Buck released in '98. This version is more stable and bug-free, but it is more than a bug fix. The game adds elk and moose to the whitetail and mule deer populations, 8 hunting areas (larger than those in TB), and generally upgraded performance in all areas. Trophy Hunting is a nice from Trophy Buck, but Sierra still hasn't caught up to the competition in the areas that really count.
The best thing about Trophy Hunting is a wide variety of hunting gear to equip for your hunt. There are multiple varieties of calls, scents, and firearms at your disposable. It is a wider selection than is available in some of the other games, and plenty for most needs.
The hunting areas in Trophy Buck are not as claustrophobic as they were in Trophy Buck, at least not in terms of where the edges of the maps are. The thick trees in many of the maps give the best representatin of thick woods that I've seen in any hunting game. The performance while wandering these thick forests does not degrade as it does in many of the other hunting games.
Overall, the graphics are well done (note the exceptions below). The landscapes are nicely rendered, distance fogging including.
... .THE BAD:
While the terrain in Trophy Hunting hunting looks fairly good, the animals look fairly bad. I laughed aloud the first time I saw the robotic motion of a whitetail deer. The other animals looked equally bad. They are rendered in 3D, but the coloration of the animals seems washed out in most cases and the animation very rough.
The scope and binocular implementation is still using the entire black screen with the small scope or binoc view. No one seems capable or willing to implement the widely preferred of overlaying the scope view with "peripheral vision." It was also quite curious that the fog in the distance disappeared when I was looking through the scope or binocs.
The game offers tree stands, but they are at preset locations to which you are notified by a button that lights up on (not shown in the full screen mode). The stands aren't shown on the map view, which it blind luck to find them until you get quite familiar with one of the maps.
I thought the worst part of the game was the AI. There were a few good things about it, such as the tendency for like species to congregate into herds. But overall, the animals were mostly unresponsive to calls until they were very close, they didn't seem to truly interact with each other (except that they tried to be near each other), and they seemed to not have any thing to do but walk around and get shot. Compared to other hunting games out there, it just doesn't quite measure up.
THE VERDICT:Personally, I wouldn't really recommend Trophy Hunting to the hardcore hunter. It is a decent game but not a good sim, if you're into realism. The game does feature an Multi-player mode that has good performance (probably the best around), so if your prioriy is MP, this might be the game for you. But for single player hunting, there are better choices. Field and Stream is a legend in the hunting and fishing world...I have to wonder if they really have any input into games with their logo.
Reviewed by TomShif