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Jurassic World Evolution is a simulation management game where you are running a theme park. Where the main attractions are dinosaurs or the guests depending on how things go!
As a Jurassic Park fan and someone who played Dinopark Tycoon growing up this game certainly caught my attention. Who would not want to mess with dinosaur DNA and release whatever they created into a hopefully secure area to keep parks guests safe. After all those guests have lots of shopping to do while you lure them in with the giant man-eating Tyrannosaurs among other things! Along the way you get to send teams out to gather up fossils for DNA, conduct research and hopefully create environments that keep the dinosaur content. Thankfully if all else fails you can send teams out to tranquilize and capture while everyone else is hiding in bunkers and hopefully not sitting on a toilet to be eaten.
While there is a little similarity to what I recall of Dinopark Tycoon you won’t be creating dozens of tinny little pens to hold your creations in. The game has you set up viewing platforms for your guests to view into each of the pens; along with, a place to birth dinosaurs. An top of that all the dinosaur have needs that if you don’t keep in check they will break out and start causing trouble. Which might be fun is not so great for the bottom line.
Campaign And Contracts
The game starts you off on one island and from there you can unlock others by ranking high. The player can also take on mission contracts for science, entertainment and security divisions. Throughout gameplay they give the player random quests while also allowing you to request a mission if you prefer to work for one of the dividends.
The game's campaign itself has 6 islands including ones like Nublar, Pena and Matanceros. Some of them I’ll admit I’ve never heard of them. I never did watch Jurassic Word so that might be the case. While the game does have some lore between the movies and the game itself it’s not something you should expect to see a whole lot of for at least the older ones. The voice-overs by Jeff Goldblum for Dr. Malcolm was about as much nostalgia as Jurassic World Evolution has for me.
There are jealousies between the three different divisions all fighting for your attention and time. Accepting one mission reduces your reputation with others. If you go for too long neglecting one of them, in particular, they will sabotage your park by shutting off the power among other things.
They do however give you money for accepting the contracts and are trying help drive the player towards increasing the parks overall ranking in an area you might be lacking. Thus hopefully increasing the bottom line and making you want to work with them again. This I found to be an interesting way to get the player to do quests like missions.
Many of the mission where quite basic and things like build x building, raise dinosaur and sell it, go hunt for fossils and so on. The real challenge came when you had a high enough reputation and took on a multiple part contract. They each were a bit different and I found gave the player a point where it felt like you were now done with the island and could move on. They also unlocked research and other stuff which would make the game a bit easier to progress if you did so.
One thing that was quite fun while playing the campaign is research and progression on dinosaur DNA was shared between the islands. Sometimes I found myself jumping back to an older one to upgrade the walls I had for my pens, or competing for a challenge that I had failed with better options to use. It was nice not having to reset all over again from that standpoint.
Overall I felt they gave me direction or money if I needed it. More times than not I preferred to ignore the contracts or whatever reason I was even on that particular island. One could in “theory” just spend quite some time watching a Tyrannosaurus attack other dinosaurs and the park guests. Not that I would know anything about that at all. Neither does Rex Wimud The Third isn’t that right?
For those looking to add more gameplay time and are up for a more challenging environment. There is also this mode to play. You are rewarded with different dinosaur patterns if you happen to score five stars in time.
You get to replay on all of the six islands like you have in the campaign. This time around you gets to choose how hard of a difficulty the islands are. You are also timed for how long it takes you to reach five stars.
I myself did not play too much of this as I had already beaten most of the campaign and I usually get interrupted far too often to try and set aside some time for a speed run. I think that’s great this game has such a feature. It was just not for the kind of playstyle or time I had to look further into.
Let’s face it you are not playing Jurassic World Evolution to set up a shopping center so rich people who can afford to travel to your island have a great shopping experience. You are here to mess with dinosaur DNA, discover fossils and hope your creations don’t escape and end mankind as we know it. Some of these things were great and others I felt where not as fun as I was hoping.
The premise of sending teams out all over the world to dig sites to bring back fossils and rocks sounds great at first. As you progress along to different island more and more sites unlock where the big boys can be found. After a while, it just felt like a grind as you are trying to get enough dinosaur DNA to extract and reach 100% for all the options on each one.
You did not get to go to the dig sites yourself. So every couple of minutes you had to manually click and choose where to send your teams when they got back. Once you have done that a hundred times over and have $30 million in the bank the novelty wore off.
While it was somewhat cool to play around with the DNA makeup of your latest dinosaur in the Hammond Creation Lab from which you birth them. Modifying the genome by filling in the gaps with different DNA become more of how many ratings can I get out of choice and what are the odds it survives incubation. You also could not just go and make your own thing it was just playing within the template if unlocked dinosaurs.
Granted there was more to that than just focusing a single stat. Your dinosaur can, in fact, dies from old age which is a stat you could increase. This along with getting illness which if unchecked will spread and cause death and become quite a costly endeavor to deal with which again had a gene to reduce that chance. Along with the fact, some dinosaurs are better of not being given an aggressive trait where they go around killing everything else off in the area you set up for them. This did leave to some interesting experimentation and fun on my end.
After all that you get to the fun part watching your dinosaurs roam around in the areas you have set up for them to fit different needs. Some of them want massive and open grasslands while others prefer more forest mixed in. Depending on what you ended up breeding some are quite social and want to have a lot of their own species or they feel lonely and escape. Meanwhile, others don’t play so well with but the guests love the big ones with sharp teeth! They do make quick work of fences so there wishes of a selfie with one could happen at any moment.
Some of the biggest fun I had was just watching different dinosaurs for the first time be released.
I have so many glamor shots those itself could be a post.
When everything was going smoothly dinosaurs had no reason to escape and any illnesses that broke out where easy and quick to contain. On the other hand, when careful consideration was not in mind you could have almost endless and expensive problems to deal with. While you could send guests to shelters for safety you also were not making much money off them either when the park is on lockdown. So you could only have so much fun before you bankrupted the park!
Flesh Bags Of Cash
Speaking of the guests there was a whole other part of the game tending to their needs and I must say they are quite lazy! Thankfully there was more micromanaging of the dinosaurs than there was of the guests so it was not that bad.
As you can see in the screenshot above I set up a nice little shopping area for them to enjoy. Where they can eat, drink, buy stuff out of gift shops, and even go bowling. You could even set up a hotel and there where around nine places to build for shopping. Sadly for whatever reason, there were no bathroom buildings. Rex Wimud The Third was a bit heartbroken over that last part.
On top of all that the guests don’t like to walk long distance. So in the design of your island, you would want to leave enough room to set up a monorail. I often just shuttle them in from the shopping area to the couple different dinosaur pens I have set up. It does make sense with how big of an island you would need to house so many dinosaurs.
You also needed to plan for disaster to happen. Sometimes a storm would come in, other times something escape, or you might even have to deal with sabotage. As such, I really liked the fact they gave us the option of building and enabling emergency shelter when they were needed.
You would think the guest where in for a bit of an adrenaline rush. Turns out having a giant metric ton of a creature charging full bore at them was not on their bucket list. I guess they did not want a selfy so bad with dinosaurs after all. Even when they were tranquilized it’s clear I was not going be setting up a petting zoo. Perhaps all the thrill seeing people had already been to my park before things went sideways. There will always be another time.
I did have some of that nostalgia feeling while playing for Jurassic Park and even what I remember of Dinopark Tycoon. One of the things I did do that I didn’t write about was taken a Ranger’s Jeep around and drive around see things more close up.
While I wish things where a bit deeper I’m also willing to admit I have not played a game quite like this in a very long time. It was much better than just some tycoon game and there was some depth to it. There where at least quite a lot of dinosaurs to have.
I have around 30 hours played which is a little short for games I tend to play. There is that whole challenging mode that I never put much time into. I’m sure that would add a few more hours. I’ve also not 100% complete everything either. I had my fun and I would play it again as it was outside of something I tend to play.
Time to help Rex Wimud The Third escape and forget to unlock the shelters again.
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Screenshots were taken and content was written by @Enjar about the game Jurassic World Evolution. If you are thinking about getting this game and are looking to support me further consider using my Epic Games creator code: enjargames at checkout or using this referral link to be sent to the store's pages.
Disclosure: As a creator in the Epic Games’ Support-A-Creator Program, I may receive a commission from certain purchases.