When I was told that Maneater was available for review, I jumped into my shark costume, and Maneater is a game that, despite having PS3 graphics and a simple gameplay, is a very fun RPG, with lots of missions and a simple but effective plot that will hook you from the first minute of play.
I'm sure that its creators, Tripwire Interactive (known for games like Red Orchestra, Killing Floor or Heroes of The West), wondered one day over drinks: What would happen if you put together the Jaws movie, the "River Monsters" program and the Moby Dick book, and if the main character was a shark? Well, nothing could go wrong.
More than just an RPG with fish and extreme violence
At first glance, the game is presented as a kind of "Karmagedon 2.0" in which you control a huge shark that devastates marine life, bathers and fishermen, with a background narrator who comments on your exploits in the purest "TV documentary" style, but the plot goes beyond that.
At the end of the prologue, a fisherman with a very bad temper called Pete, ends up with you and leaves your calf abandoned in the sea, but not before losing his hand to the bite of this one
Here begins our story, a story of a baby shark that seeks revenge and is that "when an animal tastes human blood, it abandons its natural prey in a stubborn and lethal search for danger".
An accessible gameplay and an infinite number of missions
For our little shark to be able to kill all his enemies, he must first grow, evolve and learn enough skills. To do this we will use the map to find missions of all kinds such as controlling the marine fauna, find boat license plates, get rid of swimmers, kill other fishermen .... It's up to you to follow a pattern of missions, but I recommend leveling up a lot because it is easy to die in the jaws of enemies of higher levels. Use stealth and learn to use your skills like jumping, ramming or sonar and you will end up becoming a real Megalodon.
In short, Maneater is a sandbox in an open world with missions of all kinds in swamps, rivers, estuaries, lakes, beaches and part of the ocean. All these areas are connected to each other through a system of sewers and canals that you must explore thoroughly to find chests and secrets.
The missions are quite similar, in the end you have to devour a lot and "break everything" but, be careful, fishermen are not your only enemies, orcas, sperm whales, alligators and other predators will be waiting to sink their teeth into you.
Equip your shark with electric teeth, change its skin, anything is possible
Maneater is an extremely violent game but it doesn't become a horror game thanks to its sarcastic humor and all kinds of easter eggs. The criticism of pollution, the number of tourists on the beaches or some missions narrated by a commentator as if it were a documentary, makes playing with the audio or subtitles activated a must
On a technical level the game has managed to take advantage of the Unreal E4 engine quite well, allowing us to enjoy an open and quite populated world but with a somewhat long loading times between area and area (at least in the Switch version which is the one I have at hand) but it does not become eternal. The characters, fish and flora are well designed and have nice animations, just enough to distinguish them and laugh a little at the way they flee from humans.
As for the audio we can say that it is made with very good taste, it lacks music, which is not missed, but you can tell that they have put a lot of care choosing the sound effects and voices.
- Simple gameplay although it is a bit difficult to get used to it at the beginning
- Entertaining, funny, nice graphics
- The documentary style narration is brilliant
- An ideal game to eliminate stress
- Some evolutions don't do much to improve in the adventure
- Missions become repetitive
We conducted this review thanks to a code of Maneater for Nintendo Switch provided by Koch Media.