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  1. #1

    Jurassic World Evolution

    Playing this on XboxOne.

    Ploughed (not in a Witcher 3 way) about 5 hours into this now.

    As expected, it’s Theme Park with dinosaurs. There are several islands to play, but as far as I can tell, you’re limited in the order you can play them.

    You start off with the basic outline of a park. It’s important to get money flowing straight away. This is best achieved by sending dig teams to various sites in order to excavate fossils and amber. The fossil facility studies them to extract more of the genome of a dinosaur. Other times your scientists come back with a mineral deposit you can flog for cash. Once your genome is above a certain percentage, you can incubate an egg. The higher the genome percentage, the higher the chance of success. The second island presents the difficulty that you don’t start with a research, fossil or expedition centre, so you don’t have access to that income immediately.

    Once you have your first dinosaur, the visitors begin to arrive. Various shops are worth constructing to raise income. Your enclosures need viewing areas and watchtowers in order to raise customer satisfaction.

    The animals themselves need care. They need food (requiring regular restocking by despatched ranger teams), medication when ill (researchable in the lab and implemented by ranger teams) and comfort. The latter can be achieved by expanding the enclosure area, adding similar dinosaurs and adding shelter.

    Dinosaurs can eat other dinosaurs. The starting area has them all in one area, resulting in a massacre when my ceratosaurus went berserk, before being felled by a pair of plucky triceratops. Consequently, my first park consists only of herbivores. The second has separate paddocks.

    Security is important. I installed electric fences to prevent bored animals from breaking out (which results in a costly waste of time, switching on the alarms to get the public to shelters while you get your ACU chopper to tranquilise and transport the escapee). I’ve since installed tougher fences after a Ceratosaurus terrified by a tropical storm smashed its way out of the compound and ate several visitors. You can see this in relative close up. It’s both hilarious and wince-inducing.

    One nice touch is the ability to control the chopper and ranger jeep. The jeep handles well and you can get really up close to the animals, bombing around the paddocks taking photos for cash. It really gets you up close and personal to the action in your own park. You can set the rangers to restock food and repair fences manually, or drive round to the problem yourself.

    Challenge is issued through contracts from the security, entertainment and science divisions of your park. You need to balance these out to be successful. I’ve had to reload twice due to leaning too far towards one aspect, and haemorrhaging money during storms, or when animals started to die during a disease outbreak that I hadn’t researched a cure for.

    Contracts can be things like researching a genome about 60%, or making sure you don’t allow any members of the public to be eaten for 10 minutes, or securing a certain profit margin in your shops, or getting two dinosaurs to have a fight. I figure they’ll get tired and samey rather quickly, but I find the construction and maintenance of the Park compelling enough anyway, so it’s just added interest for someone like me.

    Research is useful for developing new dinosaurs. It seems that you can splice genes in the creation department. I’d like to think you can create a new species, but I don’t know yet. I’ve just researched a monorail, so I hope to build that soon. The hamster balls aren’t available yet, but they’re alluded to.

    I’ve really enjoyed it so far. It’s quite unforgiving insofar as that you’re punished severely if you’ve neglected something for too long, which makes the reload and success all the sweeter. Lessons learned and all that. The weather effects are atmospheric and visuals generally good. The animals are fascinating to watch and I’m looking forward to continuing tomorrow.
    Last edited by prinnysquad; 25-08-2018 at 11:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Second park has blossomed today, but I’m getting increasingly frustrated with the fences. You’ve got to be very careful with the comfort level of the animals, especially their social demands. Too few companions, or too many, and they kick off and charge the fences.

    Several times this morning the fence was smashed up and I had to get rangers over to repair them, while sending the ACU chopper to tranquilise escapees and other choppers to transport them back. It’s a right faff on. It was particularly spicy when 4 raptors broke out and went on a rampage, picking off herbivores that had also broken out of their compound.

    I’m coming to a tough bit where I have to put a raptor and a frilled-headed ink-spitting dinosaur (that got Nedry) into a compound at the same time as an industrial sabotage event where someone cuts all the power to the fences and buildings. It’s going to be bedlam.

  3. #3
    Post 3 in the thread nobody reads.

    Spent hours earlier trying to balance contracts with bloody fence breakouts. At one point I had 5 raptors on the loose during a tropical storm, with bust fences and empty feeders. Then a saboteur took out half my power grid network.

    The controls are easy yet fiddly. I keep finding myself pressing the wrong shoulder button and jumping into a jeep when I don’t want to. The procedure for taking out an escaped raptor is:
    Right shoulder to bring up rangers.
    Click down to assign task.
    Hover cursor over fence to repair.
    Left shoulder to bring up ACU.
    Click down to assign task.
    Click on raptor to fly over and tranquilise.
    Organise transport to pick up raptor.
    Assign release point for raptor.
    Organise transport to pick up any dead dinosaurs.

    Imagine doing that over and over, and all the potential for a fumbled order.

    There’s some relatively creative thinking required for some contracts. One required me to release theee dinosaurs from the same creation lab and into the same enclosure. A raptor, a frill head and an anklyosaurus. They have to live for at least four minutes. Trouble is, frill heads fight with raptors.

    The solution involved building an enclosure in stages. First I released the anklyosaurs and herded it to the left of the enclosure using fences. I helicoptered friends in for it so it didn’t kick off, added a gate to the exterior fence for ranger access, and ensured it had food and water. Then I moved the fences around the release door of the laboratory so that the paddock was secure, but still part of the overall enclosure.

    Next, the frill head. I managed to coax it to the south part of the enclosure with a food dispenser and fenced off the area across the water hole, so it split it between the frill head section and the empty section for the raptor. Once again, a ranger door wad added.

    Finally, a raptor was released and another food dispenser and exterior door added.

    Essentially, I’d built a huge enclosure and split it into three in stages, manipulating fences to herd animals and creating distinct paddocks, each with food, water and doors. The raptor kicked off immediately because it was alone. I had to develop pen-mates for it pronto, but in the meantime the rangers were having to repair the fences it broke and tranquilise it. The frill head was ok on its own but kicked off because it’s paddock didn’t have enough forest.

    The comfort factor for the animals is a real balancing act and I’ve learnt that the hard way. Anklyosaurus’s have a social group demand of 2 individuals or more, but a population rating that’s quite low. As such, they demand mates, but if you release them into an enclosure with 14 other herbivores, they kick off. You have to pay very close attention to the comfort criteria or you’re constantly chasing your tail.

  4. #4
    I'd like to let it be known that I am reading this thread. Been interested in this game for a while and it sounds really good actually.

  5. #5
    Having played a bit of it, I think anyone who loves the movies will really like it. You do end up in similar situations.

  6. #6
    This is the best review of JWE I've read so far. Definitely piqued my interest in the game after it waned somewhat as I didn't realise how hands-on it is.

    Wife will probably enjoy it, too(JP audio/subs ftw).

  7. #7
    This game interests me, can't resist the JP franchises allure, it's having the time for something like this. Definitely an interesting read through so far, sounds like you


  8. #8
    Well I’m glad these ramblings have been of some use.

    I’m about to go to the third island. I reckon sabotage incidents will be more common and there’ll be more challenges involving releasing antagonistic dinos in the same pen.

    You reach a point on an island where the money means nothing. At the beginning you’re scraping around for every penny, and one wrong decision can spell disaster. Once it comes rolling in, you find yourself spending without concern. I’m at something like 70 million on my second island.
    Last edited by prinnysquad; 30-08-2018 at 04:57 PM.

  9. #9
    Onto the third island.

    You start off in negative balance, with no enclosures, no dinosaurs, and no power. You have to flog existing structures to build up enough to restore the power, built fences, and buy a couple of dinosaurs to entertain the punters. By this point your cash flow is feeble. You have no research centre, no expedition centre, no fossil centre, no ranger station and no ACU station.

    You must think very carefully about how to spend your cash. It’s best to wait before buying fossil centres and whatnot. Instead, I decided to focus on building up a paddock of herbivores, restoring power, building a few shops, and establishing a ranger station to replenish feeders and repair fences.

    I’m fully up and running now. I’ve got 5 shops, 2 ranger stations, 2 power stations and the expedition/research gubbins.

    My herbivore paddock contains a stunning brachiosaurus, 4 of the one taller ones with the soft horn protruding backwards from the top of the head, and a variety of animals from previous levels. I’m about to release a torosaurus into the mix too. The triceratops started to kick off due to the sheer number of animals in the paddock, so I created a narrow enclosure just for them running parallel to a path. They’re happy enough.

    My carnivore paddock is newly constructed, and at the end of a disused monorail track that I have to patch up. I’m about to hatch a Tyrannosaurus Rex. I need to find out how it’ll react to raptors, spitty frills, baryonyx and gallimimus. I may have to built several carnivore enclosures with moveable fences. The ceratosaurus exist ok with raptors, but they fought baryonyx to the death.

    It’s intriguing trying to plan out these different scenarios with limited space, while taking on the contracts from your science, security and entertainment divisions.

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