Game Review - by StormDaemon
Hunting game fans around the world can now rejoice. This game doesn't limit you to just stand in a single spot and shoot at 2D sprites. You can actually move around, crouch, and even shoot at 3D birds. You also get a 3D hunting dog that will run around hunting birds or fetching downed ones. Keep reading to see what makes this game stand apart from the rest of the pack.
Surprisingly enough, this game has a number of features that other hunting games don't. In most hunting games you are limited to picking a spot on a map and then just standing there and aiming. In Bird Hunter, you actually can walk away from the map and around in the target range. Another great feature is the addition of a hunting dog that helps you in your hunt-following you around and on command, it can hunt for birds or go fetch ones you've downed. The dogs also come in several varieties, allowing you to choose from either a pointer or a flusher. The 3D graphics are another nice feature of the game that makes Bird Hunter stand out.
Playing Bird Hunter is just like playing any other hunting game: pick your weapon, your accessories, your hunting dog, and you either go out and hunt or practice at the range. What differs from many other games though, is the fact that once you go out to shoot, you can actually move yourself around the environment and explore all over. Adding to the experience are all of the sounds and graphics. The hunting dog that you control will also add to and be a valuable part of the game, as the dog will hunt out birds for you, which doing on your own would be rather difficult. Once you find a bird, it'll be up to you to pick it off on the groundor as it takes off. If you down it, you can get it or your dog can go fetch the animal. You then continue to find another bird, and to be honest, there isn't much more to do within the game. The gameplay is good for what the game is, but it doesn't have that much involved.
Considering that the majority of hunting games available are pretty much 2D, when a 3D hunting game comes out, it is usually worth a look. While the graphics in Bird Hunter have several flaws, The flaws have to do mainly with the engine. The graphics engine still has a few bugs in it-- when you look around, sometimes lines will appear and tress in the distance will only be halfway seen. Other than the little bugs, the engine uses 2D sprites for plants and trees, which doesn't make for a good combination with the 3D land, animals, and weapons. Your hunting dog and even your weapon is also in 3D. The dog even has little animations such as wagging its tail, which help to bring it to life. When you reload your shotgun, you also get some animation of loading shells into the gun itself. The dog brings back the 3D birds, which you can see the bird hanging from its mouth.
The sound effects consist of the voice of the hunter as he does various things like shoot and give commands to his dogs. You'll almost feel like you're in the woods, but most of your attention won't be paid to the sounds. Though the sounds of birds do help you locate them, don't rely on the sounds all of the time. The gun sounds are authentic, as are the animal sounds that pop up.
Bird Hunter Upland Edition isn't just another hunting game clone. Even though it does follow the usual theme of going out and hunting animals, the title adds a few extras such as the full 3D movement and the hunting dog. The graphics needed work here and there and the 2D sprites needed to be tossed out but overall, this is an interesting game that I would heartily recommend to any hunting enthusiast.