Fear the Wolves isn’t your typical battle royale and that makes it all the better.
I was completely wrong about Fear the Wolves. I’m also very glad I was wrong about this game, because it’s fun and different and challenging. Initially I wasn’t entirely enthusiastic. I’m not a huge fan of battle royale style games, which this one lists as one of it’s components. My initial foray into the game was somewhat stunted and uncoordinated, disjointed, and confusing. I was underwhelmed to say the least. I was also very wrong. As I played again and again, I realized the depth it presented. I found additional challenges adding to the enticing and interactive play. Even when you don’t go for the best gear you can still win. The game is less about battle royale and more about the challenge of quick movement and decisions. It isn’t simply find and kill everyone else before they kill you.
First, there are wolves, deadly wolves. I only occasionally ran into other people playing. As bad as I am at PVP I survived most of the time when I did run into them. That’s better than I usually do in these types of games. Maybe that will change as the game becomes more popular and better players move in. Either way there is so much more to this game than just killing everyone else. The premise is fairly simple. It is set in a post apocalyptic world, with lots of buildings to rummage through for guns, gear and maps. You’ll run into wolves and they aren’t easy to kill. It is usually the black wolves but occasionally a white one will be hanging around. The wovles present a challenge especially because they respond quickly to noise. If you don’t have a silencer on your weapon you’ll attract more wolves.
The gear options are quite plentiful. If you are lucky enough to find a large backpack you can carry a lot of gear. In short, the gear is everything you would need to survive in the wild with deadly animals; Weapons, ammo, optics, magazines, grenades, medical supplies, protective gear, and maps. Everything offers multiple types to add variety. You even have levels of protective gear and the interface tells you immediately if it’s better than what you already have or what the difference is between what you have and what is laying in front of you. Maps are valuable and worth the trip every time, except for perhaps in radiated areas. Your job is to grab gear and survive to make it to the helicopter, or kill everyone else before the helicopter arrives. Simple instructions, but a complex execution of those instructions in every game.
Next is the visuals. The landscape is very nice with beautiful rendering available. Sometimes the in-game weather limits your visibilty. I admit to occasionally stopping just to look around a bit at the beauty of the landscape. Set in an area ravaged by radiation reminiscent of Chernobyl, the buildings are accurate portrayals of those found in Russia and former Soviet era countries. I like that simple but important detail, and this emphasis on detail shows through out the game.
In addition to the standard controls for PC shooter and movement games the menu allows for changes to some response time variables. Sight pictures for shooting are pretty standard with variations depending on the optics attached to your weapon. I always have a bit of trouble with the Unreal engine’s movements in games, but I know that’s me and not the game itself. Selections to personalize your character are initially limited but as you move through the game and earn rewards you will have access to more options. Rewards seemed fair to me, with the required amounts to purchase additional personalized options within reach.
Also, the games weather conditions also affect your capabilities in the game. Wind affects long range shots. Rain affects vehicle handling. Fog affects visibility. The music does a good job of inspiring caution or fear at times when you least expect it. The howls. Yes the wolves howl at you and it’s a bit unnerving when they do. Be ready to face them when you hear the howls.
Overall the game adds a nice niche to a genre of over played and overburdened battle royale suite that don’t offer anything particularly new. It’s well made, has a lot of play options, is enticing and offers excitement. If you like a challenge beyond just being the last one standing against everyone else, you’ll like this game. As someone who does not like PVP or battle royale style games, I like this game. I recommend it without hesitation for it’s play-ability, unique take, stunning and accurate scenery, and options within the game.
Finally, you must move quickly or you’ll be empty handed when the wolves or another player find you. And they will. Be ready for incoming from anywhere, at almost any time. Gear up and run. Don’t stop if you don’t have to. The radiation is coming and so is your rescue, so keep moving. Run. Kill. Survive.