A few hints to help you get started in Evolve
Evolve launches on February 10 for Xbox One, PS4 and PC, so you've not got too long to wait until you can get cracking.
If you’ve not played Evolve before, it can be a little daunting being dropped into a match with zero understanding of the classes or how to boss it as a Monster.
To help you get started and find an early edge, we’ve put together a few Evolve tips and tricks.
If you think of any of your own, feel free to add them into the comments below and we’ll credit your genius.
Don't forget to read our impressions of Evolve so far in our extensive Evolve preview.
Evolve Tips and Tricks for Monsters
1. Use the Sneak and Sniff tactic
When you’re the Monster you'll leave footprints and alert Hunters to your location by disturbing or attracting carrion birds.
To mask your tracks and make it harder for the Hunters to find you, don’t forget to press B to initialise Sneak Mode. Using Sneak lets you bypass carrion birds, sneak up on prey and move noiselessly, not to mention leave no tracks for Daisy or the Hunters to spot.
Plus, if you’re sneaking you can launch Sneak Attacks on your prey, taking them out in one swipe, and allowing you to evolve faster.
Sneaking, combined with regular sniffing – done by clicking in the right analogue stick – will highlight the Hunters and potential meals that you can Sneak Attack while you’re hidden.
As Sneaking and Sniffing don’t use stamina, this is a very useful combo for getting some distance on the Hunters while you evolve.
2. Use your footprints to your advantage
If you’re clever, you can use your glowing blue Monster footprints to lead your Hunter entourage into a trap.
So, run off leaving a trail of footprints behind you, then quickly enable Sneak Mode and scurry into your well-chosen hiding hole.
Hunters are incapacitated immediately when taken out with a Sneak Attack, so using your footprints as a lure can be an incredibly affective strategy.
See also: Far Cry 4 tips and tricks
3. Try and take the Medic out first...
When you do meet the Hunters, an affective strategy for incapacitating the whole team is to try and take out the Medic first. You won’t see the Medic label floating above their heads, but you'll spot the green beam of light coming from them as they try and heal their buddies after your first attack.
If you take out the Medic, they won’t be able to revive their companions, which could mean a very speedy route to victory. Or at least escape.
4. ...or the Trapper if you’re inside the Mobile Arena
If you’ve been snared inside the Trapper’s Mobile Arena, you'll want to take out the Trapper first in your Hunter attacks.
Once he or she goes down, so will the Mobile Arena. Then you can try and leg it, or take out their buddies.
5. Think about your starting moves
Although it’s tempting to flee as soon as you start the match, sometimes it's a good tactic to hang back in the spawning area. Hunters and the Monster spawn in the same location, so get yourself to a nice spot using the Sneak button, and lie in wait for the Hunters to arrive.
Then you can rain down hell upon them very early on, giving you a good chance to get some distance on them while they recover from your initial attack.
6. Use the creatures in your vicinity
The planet of Shear is filled with bloodthirsty creatures – and not all of them are player-controlled. As the monster, you can sniff out the biggest and nastiest beasts on Shear and it’s worth leaving a trail for the hunters to follow towards some of them.
Now, not every single animal on the planet is lethal – and some of them are downright docile unless the hunters actively provoke them. But if you lead your pursuers towards a pack of Reavers or into the pool of a slumbering Tyrant, you can unleash a world of hurt on them without even lifting one of your clawed fingers.
The downside to this is that the bigger animals provide the hunters with buffs – Tryants leave health boosts and Crowbill Sloths leaved drop damage bonuses – but it’s a small price to pay if you’re able to leave the hunters fighting for their lives while you slink off to either feed or evolve.
7. Stack your attacks
Each monster has a series of attacks and like the hunters, they all have a cool-down time attached to them. In the heat of the battle, it can be easy to hammer the same attack that isn’t ready yet and end up flailing helplessly in the face of sustained gunfire.
The best tactic to use here is to cycle your attacks one after the other, preferably on the same hunter – and preferably the medic if you haven’t already taken them out. It’s also possible to activate one attack – like fire-breath – and then immediately activate another – like a charge attack – which has the added bonus of stacking the damage of both of them at once.
See also: PS4 vs Xbox One
8. Mix up your movements
While it sounds weird to say it, since you’re controlling a massive lumbering monster, the best way to ensure you have a fighting chance is to mix stealth with the odd power-leap. This not only covers your tracks – making it harder for the hunters to find you (unless Daisy is with them) – but it also allows you to bag prey quickly with stealth attacks mixed up with ground pounds.
In the early stages of each match, it’s important to level up and hide as much as possible. By mixing up leaping and sneaking, the monster can provide a pretty erratic trail that has the potential to throw the hunters of their scent. The longer you can stay hidden, the better chance you have to reach the highest stage of evolution.
9. Eat well and boost your armour
Don’t underestimate the importance of your armour. While being fully buffed makes you easier to spot – just as badly injured makes you harder to find – once your armour is peeled off completely your health can start dropping like digested berries from a budgie’s backside.
Feeding and levelling as soon as possible is a must and to boost quickly it’s worth ignoring the smaller and less nourishing of Shear’s AI creatures. Don’t bother with birds and Obsidian Slugs – the former don’t give you any meat (and they give away your position) and the latter have the annoying habit of disappearing into their shells, making them a pain to kill.
Hit Marsh Striders and Mammoth Birds as they provide more sustenance. If you’re feeling brave, attack packs of more dangerous animals – more risk equals more reward.
10. Max one attack and one perk
At the start of every match players are given three points to assign to one of the monster’s powers and a perk and in our experience it’s worth maxing out one ability and then picking the rapid feed perk. This allows you to toast prey in one quick belch and gorge their remains in record time. The quicker you Evolve, the quicker you become the hunting pack’s biggest nightmare.
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Evolve Tips and Tricks for Hunters
1. Don’t try and make it on your own
Just like in Turtle Rock Studios’ Left 4 Dead, if you’re a loner, you’ll soon be a loser in Evolve. Not only are you making yourself an easy Monster target by wandering off as a lone soldier, but wildlife can also kill you pretty quickly.
You’ll need to stay close to your fellow Hunters. It’ll take all four of you working as a team to take down the Monster.
If, and only if, you’re playing with friends or a team you know well, you might get away with splitting into pairs to track down the Monster, but be very wary.
2. Watch your health
Every time you're incapacitated your max health is lowered by quite a large percentage. Obviously the aim is to try and stay alive for as long as possible, but really watch your health if you’ve been incapacitated before.
You can only be incapacitated twice before you die entirely and the game is over for you.
See also: PS4 vs Xbox One
3. Play to your strengths
Every member of the Hunter team is indispensible, so you’ll need to play to your role’s strengths in order to have any chance of taking down the Monster.
The Trapper is essential for holding the Monster down. Use the Mobile Arena to cut off its escape and then use the harpoons to limit and slow its movement. Then you can attack with your primary weapon to assist the others.
The Support protects the team, allowing them to attack with more force and escape the Monster’s clutches when necessary to flee. They also have one major attack that lets you rain down hell on the Monster’s head.
The Medic does what it says on the tin – keeps the Team alive. They can also deal damage to the Monster, but reviving teammates and keeping them healthy is their first priority.
Lastly, the Assault is your standard attack role. Just shoot quick, straight and fast.
If you try and play all roles as the Assault, your team will fail and quickly be overrun by the Monster. Learn the roles and their various weapons. Only then will you be a valuable asset to your Hunter team.
4. Don’t be quick to fire
Just as one of the Monster’s greatest tactics is stealth, a Hunter pack can also use a few sneak attacks of its own.
If you’ve managed to track down the Monster and he hasn’t seen you yet, wait. Don’t fire straight off. Instead, alert your team, make sure the Trapper has the Mobile Arena ready, and then prepare to surprise the Monster with your attack, giving you the upper hand.
See also: Xbox One vs Xbox 360
5. Daisy is an invaluable asset
Trapper Maggie has a pet Trapjaw, not unlike a large monstrous dog, who's very good at sniffing out the Monster when you’re completely in the dark.
Watch Daisy, especially at the beginning of a match, because she’ll start tracking the foul beast immediately. Above her head you’ll see a yellow diamond with a symbol in it. It’ll be a claw mark when she’s sniffing out the Monster’s trail and change to an exclamation mark when the Monster is nearby.
Sometimes she might get stuck, so you’ll want to watch out for glowing footprints and the sound of birds being startled too, but she’s an invaluable asset for getting you on the right track.
Plus, Daisy can lick you back to health when you’ve been incapacitated, and is sometimes known to help win a match when everyone else is down. If she can stay alive long enough for back-up to arrive, anyway.
See also: PS4 vs PS3
6. Take a hit for the team
A healthy team is a strong team, but there are moments in Evolve where it b players to take one on the chin for their fellow hunters. For example, boosting Parnell’s super-soldier drug shielding him and tackling the team’s quarry can give the rest of the hunters time to get away – even if it’s likely the Assault solder will be toast once his shield runs out.
Similarly, if you’re playing Hyde and he is backed up and cornered, it’s worth telling your teammates to leg it while you call in an aerial strike; you’ll deal a ton of damage to the monster before Hyde checks out. If your teammates are savvy they can split off and regroup in time for you to check right back into the game.
7. Keep the jetpack juiced
All the monsters in Evolve are huge and they can deliver crushing blows to the hunters… provided they connect. It’s worth remembering, though, that the smaller and speedier a target it is, the harder it is to hit. So keep an eye on your jetpack’s fuel; a well timed boost or dash can take you out of a potentially lethal situation and onto higher ground – and the faster you move the harder you are to draw a bead on. Just make sure you aren’t out of fuel if the monster looks set to charge you.
See also: Upcoming PS4 Games 2015
8. Don’t feed the monster
While you track whatever beast the fifth player in your game is controlling across the map, you’re likely to run into myriad creatures – some that are lethal, some that won’t attack unless you actively harass them. There will be the temptation to take down these AI alien animals – particularly those that give players buffs – but pick your fights carefully.
First off, any prolonged battle with the local fauna will gift the monster precious seconds to put distance between them and their pursuers. Second, if the monster player is crafty and uses its sneak ability to lose the hunting crew, it can double back and find corpses to gorge itself on – and it won’t have to waste any time killing them.
9. Pick the role that suits you best
In Evolve, the class that initially looks the most appealing may not be the one you’re the best suited to. For instance, we initially tried out the Support class, since it looked the most interesting – a robot with a detachable head? Hell yes! – but found that we were more a hindrance to our teammates than an actual help.
The Trapper turned out to be more versatile and easier to get to grips with, but the class we excelled at was the one we initially found the most boring – The Medic. Of course, if you’re playing Evolve with mates and no one’s really bothered with the outcome, you should mix things up a lot. But in a pack of strangers, it’s really a better idea to pick the class you’re best suited to – if only to avoid being yelled at.
See also: Upcoming Xbox One Games 2015
10. Use your Trapper’s kit wisely
One of the most versatile – and the most unique – classes in Evolve is the Trapper and each of its three characters offer players oodles of variety. Abe has the ability to tag the monster, which is vital for both tracking it and killing it once the Trap Dome has been dropped. He also comes armed with stasis grenades, which if used properly can be an absolute pain for the monster, since their effects last for a full fifteen seconds.
The value of Maggie’s sidekick Daisy has already been filed and receipted but she also comes armed with Harpoon traps. If you deploy this in a wide spread they can create a bottleneck for the monster, slowing them down considerably and turning them into a sitting duck for the other members of the hunting team. If the player controlling Maggie keeps to the monster’s perimeter and deploys their traps in a timely fashion, they can keep the team’s quarry pinned for a lengthy period of time.
Griffin does his best work on the monster from the rear with his Harpoon gun. It’s got a fairly long range and if the player controlling Griffin can pull off a well-timed shot as the monster charges at another member of the team, they can give their colleague vital seconds to either pour on the pain or escape. Griffin’s Sound Spikes are also a huge asset; laying them down within fifty metres of each other can create a vast area in which the monster will be unable to move without being detected.
There’s more to a Tracker than just their gun and trap dome. Learn how to use your kit wisely.