ByTim Horton, writer at Creators.co
Business Development Manager at Universally Speaking. @TimHortonGame | Email: [email protected]
Tim Horton

We have been getting close with Evolve, we have collected screenshots, gameplay and numerous assets from around the web to give you the complete guide to the upcoming shooter from the creators of Left 4 Dead who claim to offer an evolution of multiplayer gaming.

2K and Turtle Rock Studios, creators of the cooperative shooter classic Left 4 Dead have banded together to create an all-new multiplayer shooter experience. Evolve will be available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC.

A monster movie is only as good as the monster, and that’s often the case with games. In Turtle Rock Studios’ upcoming shooter Evolve, up to four players battle against a powerful player-controlled beast on an alien planet. The company has unveiled the first such creature, the hulking creature known as the Goliath. Read on to learn more about him and some of the behind-the-scenes stories behind his creation.

Evolve's Plot: What's it all about?

In Evolve, up to five players battle it out in four versus one matches. If you didn’t know the makeup of the teams, you might think that’s an unfair split. The reality is different. Four of the players take on the role of hunters, who are tasked with defeating monsters on the planet Shear. The lone player is one of those monsters. He starts off in a weakened form, eventually growing in size (and power) by eating local wildlife. You can learn more about the game by watching our video feature "What is Evolve?" The first of the creatures that Turtle Rock has revealed is the Goliath.

So, Evolve is Turtle Rock Studios' four-versus-one monster-hunting game for PS4, Xbox One and PC. In it, players team up with three friends to take down a large beast or can opt to take on the hunting party as the single monster. Our video preview of Evolve discusses the shooter's four character classes as well as its jetpacks and other tools that make the game's combat interesting.

Evolve expertly blends cooperative and competitive multiplayer experiences as a team of four hunters face off against a single, Players experience Evolve as a first-person shooter when playing cooperatively as the four hunters, while they control the monster in the third-person perspective, providing a gameplay experience unique to Evolve.

“Our philosophy is to build incredibly fun game experiences that we can’t find anywhere else,” said Chris Ashton, co-founder and design director at Turtle Rock Studios. “Evolve’s co-op vs. lone wolf formula has created some of the most intense multiplayer matches we’ve ever experienced.”

Four hunters versus one alien — that’s the setup of Turtle Rock Studios’ upcoming next-gen shooter Evolve. Only a human is in control of each character and the giant extraterrestrial.

The hunters each have their own class-based abilities, and they work together to combine those skills to take out the enemy lifeform. The alien, meanwhile, is capable of performing devastating attacks and is difficult to kill.

“Evolve will be a generation-defining multiplayer experience,” said Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. “As our first new IP for next-gen systems, 2K is working with Turtle Rock Studios to deliver a game that’s instantly entertaining and impossible to put down.”

Classes and characters

Evolve is founded on the fun and thrill of the boss battle. In most games, boss battles are visually enthralling moments where players study patterns and exploit them to survive. But in Evolve, that dynamic has shifted. Four players work cooperatively as hunters to take down a fifth player who fills the role of “boss” — a gargantuan monster. With human players powering both sides of the conflict, Evolve ruptures into heated, richly strategic fights that require serious teamwork.

Players on the hunters’ side select between four classes. Each class is vital to the success of the team, in varied ways. To that point, every match must include one of each class — hunters can’t roll into battle with only two or three members.

Griffin the Trapper:

Pinpoints the monster’s location and keeps it from escaping. Sound Spikes planted in the ground will ping the team when the monster’s movement is detected. Once found, the Harpoon Gun keeps the monster from jetting. The Mobile Arena encases a section of the stage in a colossal dome to keep the action focused and the team together. Griffin’s submachine gun gives him moderate firepower when needed.

Markov the Assault:

Distributes extreme volumes of damage at a high rate. Markov’s Lightning Gun deals tremendous hurt at a close range, while his Arc Mines provide more tactical punishment around the map. A Personal Shield keeps him safe during particularly close encounters. His Assault Rifle enables him to attack from afar.

Val the Medic:


  
  
  Evolve: Val the Medic
Evolve: Val the Medic

The angel of the introductory team, Val heals up the other hunters with a mid-range Medgun. This device can also revive downed teammates from a distance. Val’s Anti-Material Rifle pierces the monster’s armour to expose weak spots, while her Tranquilizer rifle slows and weakens it. She can also pop a Healing Burst for fast healing in a small radius.

Hank the Support:


  
  
  Evolve: Hank the Support
Evolve: Hank the Support

Good ol’ Hank! The Support’s Shield Gun is an invaluable asset to the team, protecting a fellow hunter from harm. His Cloaking Device provides temporary invisibility for stealth tactics, and his Laser Cutter deals a bit of damage. For those desperate opportune moments, Hank can call an Orbital Barrage down to obliterate the unfortunate matter waiting below.

Here is a little gameplay and a few thoughts from our 'hands on' with Evolve

Footage from our friends at Gamespot! We managed to get a hands on session for Gamertag Gaming but were unable to record it but here is what we made of our time with Evolve late last year.

Evolution is key to winning as the monster, which is played from a third-person perspective. In the test build shown, only one monster was playable: Goliath. This intimidating brute begins with two player-selected abilities, and gains another with each level of evolution gained. Goliath is relatively vulnerable when each match begins, but once maxed out at level three, he becomes a terrifying threat to the hunters. For monster players, careful navigation and battle management are required.

The Goliath - Meet the Beast

The Goliath is, simply put, an absolute beast. He’s a massive creature that’s able to pull boulders from the earth one moment, before sprinting off and springing dozens of feet into the air. He’s at once familiar and deeply foreign, relatable but strange. As it turns out, that’s no coincidence.

“We knew we wanted him to be the first monster that would ever be revealed, and the first monster that players would have access to, and the first one the media would see,” says Turtle Rock Studios head Chris Ashton. “So we wanted it to be recognizable and not too weird.”

The Goliath is their jack-of-all trades, a bipedal powerhouse who crouches into a simian sprint and maintains his balance with a spiked tail. Even in his smallest form, he’s intimidating; at stage one he’s about 10 feet tall, and he only gets taller with each of this three evolutionary forms. “If he stood fully up, he’d be in the 30s,” says character modeler Brandon Yanez. “He’s really big.”

Even though he does have a recognizable form factor, you probably won’t be looking at his back for a zipper. “We didn’t want him to feel like a dude in a costume, we wanted him to feel as believable as possible, and that transcends into a lot of our theory,” says Yanez. “We exaggerate stuff as long as it feels believable.

“It’s not like a Silent Hill kind of horror, but it’s more of a James Cameron, Aliens style, where it just looks cool.”

“We knew we wanted him to be the first monster that would ever be revealed, and the first monster that players would have access to, and the first one the media would see,” says Turtle Rock Studios head Chris Ashton. “So we wanted it to be recognizable and not too weird.”

The Goliath is their jack-of-all trades, a bipedal powerhouse who crouches into a simian sprint and maintains his balance with a spiked tail. Even in his smallest form, he’s intimidating; at stage one he’s about 10 feet tall, and he only gets taller with each of this three evolutionary forms. “If he stood fully up, he’d be in the 30s,” says character modeler Brandon Yanez. “He’s really big.”

Even though he does have a recognizable form factor, you probably won’t be looking at his back for a zipper. “We didn’t want him to feel like a dude in a costume, we wanted him to feel as believable as possible, and that transcends into a lot of our theory,” says Yanez. “We exaggerate stuff as long as it feels believable.

“It’s not like a Silent Hill kind of horror, but it’s more of a James Cameron, Aliens style, where it just looks cool.”

“Usually in games, there’s a concept artist who concepts things, and then then it’s given to the modeler like, ‘Build this, just build this,’” says Ashton. Instead, Turtle Rock says it takes it’s taken a more collaborative approach to Evolve’s character design.

Yanez says he immediately began modeling the Goliath after seeing a few concept sketches. From there, he and the concept artist – or anyone who had an opinion to share – would bounce ideas back and forth. “We’re all really good friends and we all get along really well, and there’s no ego,” Yanez says. “If somebody came by and said ‘I don’t like it,’ nobody is going to get offended.”

If you look at these sketches, you can see some of the details that made it through from the very start, as well as some ideas that were scrapped. “In the concepts he had four arms, for example, and that was just a lot of extra that you don’t really need,” Ashton says. “Two arms is enough to realize that he’s going to punch you in the face.”

Goliath won’t win any beauty contests, but he has his share of fans at Turtle Rock. His face is a ruined wreck of bone, teeth, and tissue. When his mouth is closed, his face is like a bony, crested helmet. Get him mad, and things change. “The idea is that when he screams at you, you get this wet grossness with all these bony protrusions,” Yanez says.

He’s had some dental work as well. Originally, the Goliath had symmetrical, almost human teeth. “For whatever reason, I remember going with Goliath and thinking those teeth are too perfect, and we have to tweak the angles and make them much more chaotic,” recalls Ashton.

The result is a ruined-looking maw. “If you got bit by that, it wouldn’t be clean like shark bites,” Yanez says. “It would be like a grinder.” If you’re playing as a hunter and you get that close, odds are you’re doing something wrong. Players can get a better look at the Goliath’s mouth if they’re unfortunate enough to get incapacitated around the beast and it decides that hunter is on the menu.

Goliath also sports an impressive arrangement of spikes on his back and body. “When we started, he didn’t have any of the spiky stuff,” Yanez says. “As we were hammering on it, we tried as a test to see what spikes would look like. It looked really cool, and we only had a couple. I kept putting more and more all over him, and he looked like a mace, like something with so much muscle and bone that if he landed on something it would be like a bramble bush. You would not survive it.”

The Goliath is an innately strong and powerful creature, but players will be able to buff him up as they play. As the game's name suggests, he can evolve through three different forms by feeding on kills and storing energy – provided the hunters don't kill him first. Players can choose two of Goliath's four abilities when they start, and they're able to select another with each additional growth spurt.

His flame breath is a great way to punish hunters for getting too close. Once a character is alight, they continue to take damage. The pain inflicted isn't as great as some of his other attacks, but the DoT effect compounded with the panic it can create makes it invaluable.

The Goliath's leap and charge attacks are versatile maneuvers that can be used offensively or defensively. The charge is an effective way to close the gap between fleeing opponents, or it can be used to create some space between you and the hunters when you’re feeling pinned down. Similarly, the leap attack is a tool that’s useful to pounce on unsuspecting hunters from above, or to make it tough for them to draw a bead on you.

The rock throw is an attack that speaks to the Goliath’s raw power. The Goliath digs its claws into the ground, extracts a boulder, and chucks it at the nearest pest. It only takes one hit for new hunters to learn to respect this attack. It delivers a punishing, disorienting blow that can take precious seconds to recover from. The rock throw was added to address one of the issues the team discovered in playtesting. Before he had a longer-ranged attack, the hunters could lay mines and play a straight defense – effectively forcing the Goliath player to participate in his own inevitable demise.

The Goliath is only one of several different monsters that players will battle – and battle as – when Evolve ships this fall. If he’s any indication, hunters are going to have their work cut out for them.

Update: Evolve Pushed Back to 2015 - February to be precise

The launch of Evolve has been delayed to 2015, Take-Two indicated in the company's fiscal first quarter 2015 financial report. The game will now launch globally on February 10, 2015.

Evolve was previously expected to arrive on October 21.

Take-Two President Karl Slatoff said during the publisher's financial call that it "primarily decided the title deserves and should have more time to be polished so it can reach its absolute optimal state before we release it," and that "historically, we've benefited from giving the creative teams more time to polish the titles, we've never regretted it."

Slatoff also stressed that he views the delay as not being a "meaningful amount of time," given that Evolve will still launch during Take-Two's fiscal year, and that February is a "pretty terrific" release window. "It's not at all crowded, and we will benefit from the fact that there are a lot of holiday sales of consoles. The install base will be bigger," Slatoff said.

But this does however free up time to play the other big hitters set to release at the end of the year! Comment and Tweet us your thoughts! @Gamertag_Gaming

For much more Evolve and big gaming title news go to www.Gamertag-Gaming.com

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