Developer: Machineworks Northwest LLC
Price: free Download on the App Store
For all of you guys that enjoy hunting a variety of animals like deer, elk, caribou, and bears; Hands-On Mobile has cooked up something just for you. Trophy Whitetail 3D Hunting is a game that places you in the shoes of a hunter with several weapons available to kill your targeted game.
The premise behind Trophy Whitetail 3D Hunting focuses on testing your skills on terrain all across the country. There are two primary modes of play — Action Hunt and Hunt — in the game.
Action Hunt is a mode that places you in scenarios to kill a certain amount of animals over the course of ten timed rounds. You’re in a stationary position here with the ability to rotate up to 180 degrees while shooting animals that can’t resist walking back and forth in front of your weapon. The weapons you unlock here (variety of rifles and a bow & arrow), become available for use in the Hunt mode.
Hunt mode is the meaty portion of Trophy Whitetail 3D Hunting and it opens up full movement within a 3D environment. Upon selecting this mode, you have to select one of the fifty states to travel to by tapping the state on a US map. When you’re in the state, targets are spread out all over the map, and it’s your job to take them all out. Whenever you take out a target, a snazzy pop up notification details stats (e.g. type, region, weight, etc.) and your virtual trophy room (accessible via the main menu) gets a new addition
Regarding gameplay, a first-person perspective is used with on screen buttons controlling everything from movement and shooting. Other complementary gameplay options allow you to select things like making faux animal noises, applying an animal scent or viewing a map of your targets. I would have liked to see a bit more distinction between mechanics for shooting the different weapons. For example, the bow & arrow could have used a hold and release mechanic that would have been perfect for the iPhone’s touch screen. Generally though, the controls work fairly well as I didn’t have many issues getting around.
The eye and ear candy within Trophy Whitetail 3D are hit and miss. On the positive side, the 3D engine is stable as it successfully renders a relatively large area. I was impressed by how realistic the ambient sounds in the environments were.
Unfortunately, there are a variety of glitches and bugs going on visually. Targets run through rocks and trees like they are relatives of "Casper The Friendly Ghost." Collision detection needs some work too as I’ve had plenty of accurate shots not register. I was also disappointed by how homogenized the environments looked from state to state. Finally, the targeting reticule should also serve as a visual indicator detailing if a target is within shooting range. Far too many times, I’d clearly shoot a target only to have a “Out of Range” message pop up. Frustrating.
I’d label Trophy Whitetail 3D Hunting a promising work in progress. With a few updates aimed at cleaning up the overall experience, I can see many shooter fans feeling satisfied with their one dollar investment. As a side note, I’d be remiss not to touch on the sporadic crashing issues Trophy Whitetail 3D Hunting has. The early word is that a fix is already in the works, so things should get better. Overall, there is some good entertainment and fun to be had here if you can overlook some of the technical shortcomings.