Ecco the Dolphin, but you do murders
May 22, 2020 6:32 AM   Subscribe

Maneater [Game Trailer] [13 Minutes of Gameplay] “Maneater is an open-world-action-game with some RPG elements, starring an unnamed shark on a revenge mission. At the start of the game, you play as a big and powerful shark who is captured, then brutally killed and gutted by a shark hunter named Scaly Pete. During the gutting, he literally rips out a baby shark, but that pup bites Pete’s arm off and escapes. For the rest of the game, players take on the role of that baby shark and level up, growing bigger and stronger in the process. The end goal is to kill Scaly Pete and get revenge for what he did to your mother.” [via: Kotaku]

• Solve global warming by eating all the the pesky humans [Polygon]
“Hello, I am Shark. I was cut from my mother’s womb by a shark hunter on a reality television show many years ago. He stabbed me. I ate his hand. I have been told this is my Motive, that I seek revenge. Sure. Maybe. But if I am being real with you, I just want to eat. I don’t need Motive. I am Shark. I always want to eat. Fish. Seals. Dolphins. Other sharks. And, of course, people. One day, I ate a woman in a lab coat carrying a journal marked “Science.” The journal said sharks rarely eat people. I learned that journals are boring, and add nothing to the flavor of people. I eat people, and people are good to eat. I wake in my grotto each morning and begin my daily cycle. I eat, grow, evolve, find new areas with fresh meat so I can repeat that cycle, and then I do it all again. This cycle has been good to me. As a baby shark, I could barely eat a turtle, let alone leap into the air. But the more I ate, the more I grew, the more I could do, and the more places I could visit. Bayous! Resorts! The Gulf! I am big, and yet, the world is bigger. I am Shark, yes, but I am also introspective.”
• Grand Theft Aqua [Critical Hit]
“Imagine Grand Theft Auto but in the briny depths of the ocean, and you’ve just hit the nail on the hammerhead of Maneater. There are plenty of aquatic differences of course, but the gist of it all is that you’re inhabiting a world that doesn’t take too kindly to your rampages and ability to turn an entire human into a bloody wad of chewing gum. Raise your threat level too high, and shark hunters will descend on you, eventually calling in the big guns in the form of an infamous hunter who’s just one reality show away from hitting the big time. At its core though, Maneater is a game about growth and exploration. It’s about discovering wildlife around you…and eating it. It’s about tangling with dangerous predators in the water…and later eating them. It’s about reclaiming the waters around you from humanity…and eating them. There’s a running theme here, but you get the idea.”
• A sea full of creatures with combat as shallow as a puddle. [IGN]
“As neat as the animals are, their ecosystem doesn’t seem as lifelike as those in games like Far Cry or Red Dead Redemption because they – and humans – are crowded together in these waters without ever interacting with or even seeming to be aware of each other. You’ll never witness an alligator chomping on a turtle or a pod of orcas attacking seals, and the legions of shark hunters will never fire a shot at any other sharks. Aggressive sharks and whales might team up against you without noticing how unlikely their alliance is. And you can conspicuously swim right up next to a seal without it realizing that their toothy death is imminent. Given that you spend 99% of your time submerged, it’s a shame that the water effects don’t look all that modern. If you put Maneater next to 2018’s Sea of Thieves, for instance, it’s not a favorable comparison at all: there are no waves to speak of, the surface is flat and muddy-looking, and splash effects are unimpressive even when a multi-ton megashark crashes down after leaping a hilarious 50 feet in the air to snag a pedestrian off a bridge. Underneath, it’s just hazy-looking in a way that reminds me of an older game hiding its draw-distance limitations, without a hint of the light refraction you see in nature documentaries. It’s not terrible but it’s not the least bit impressive, either–”
posted by Fizz (20 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
If you just want to be a shark that eats people & things (and not really worry about story play), there's always the "freemium" Hungry Shark series of games on various platforms.
posted by soundguy99 at 6:54 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]

Let me reassure you that Ecco the Dolphin definitely did some murders in his time.
posted by selfnoise at 7:19 AM on May 22 [4 favorites]

And drugs, Ecco did plenty of drugs. Seriously, your people have been kidnapped by aliens so you have to go to some ancient DNA strand that has mental powers but it doesn't have all it's powers 'cause millions of years ago it lost one of it's orbs so you're sent back in time to retrieve the orb but it turns out you were the one who stole the orb in the first place and now you're on the alien spaceship so you can get your people back and your name is a killing word or something - is not a normal storyline for a dolphin.
posted by KirTakat at 7:24 AM on May 22 [7 favorites]

I haven't dug into the reviews on this yet. But the gameplay I did see was disappointingly... flashy? Glowing chunks of meat, glowing items to collect? I was hoping for a more grounded, "realistic" look to contrast with the silly concept. But still, it is an interesting concept. I'll check it out.
posted by SoberHighland at 7:26 AM on May 22

MetaFilter: not a normal storyline for a dolphin.
posted by Fizz at 7:38 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]

I admit, I was not too impressed with the gameplay until the shark jumped onto the beach, chased down and killed three people.

I mean, I'm still not overly impressed, but I at least laughed.
posted by nubs at 7:44 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]

Also, this is a shark RPG about murdering humans. I go into a game like this expecting it to be weird and probably flawed. This game seems to lean into that and I'm glad it does. This isn't a day one purchase, but it is something to keep an eye out for when it hits a sale and you're looking for a fun distraction.
posted by Fizz at 7:47 AM on May 22

So basically they ported Hungry Shark from iOS to PS4.
posted by gnutron at 7:49 AM on May 22

Why is Pete scaly?
posted by Going To Maine at 8:31 AM on May 22

"Hey Pete? What is that - is that body glitter?"
Yar, no, it be scales! Fish scales! Shit, now I 'll have to buy a boat.
posted by bartleby at 8:48 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]

doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo
posted by scruss at 8:48 AM on May 22 [5 favorites]

So, kinda like Goat Simulator, but bitey. I'm down.
But it needs 1) a better / upgradeable / special bonus CRONCH sound table
2) I didn't hear a Wilhelm Scream - better be in there.
posted by bartleby at 8:52 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]

RPG elements? Cleric shark.
posted by benzenedream at 9:49 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]

Isn't this just a riff on the plot to Orca?
posted by MrGuilt at 10:07 AM on May 22

As a baby shark, I could barely eat a turtle, let alone leap into the air. But the more I ate, the more I grew, the more I could do, and the more places I could visit. Bayous! Resorts! The Gulf! I am big, and yet, the world is bigger.

My, Earth really is full of things. 🌈
posted by zamboni at 11:20 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]

My guess is that by Maneater III, the series will have jumped the shark.
posted by nubs at 12:00 PM on May 22

Does it take place off the coast of Florida?
Because, if so, there's the promise - no, not the potential, the promise - of Florida Man involvement.
posted by doctornemo at 12:12 PM on May 22

Florida man and Creole man have many things in common and from the few seconds I saw of the videos it looked very New Orleans commercial/industrial to me, I bet there’s some shenanigans.
posted by RolandOfEld at 12:32 PM on May 22

And drugs, Ecco did plenty of drugs.

No joke, Ecco the Dolphin was inspired by the works of John C. Lilly: cetacean communication pioneer and ketamine evangelist. All around altered states evangelist, for that matter (the movie Altered States was also inspired by the works of John C. Lilly). The name ECCO even comes from Lilly, for whom it referred to a benign extraterrestrial intelligence that contacted him at the peak of his distance from consensus reality.
posted by atoxyl at 7:24 PM on May 22 [3 favorites]

Live sharks in wombs previously.
5 minutes of Geek Remix playing Shark Simulator, a similar free game on Steam.
posted by polytope subirb enby-of-piano-dice at 10:27 AM on May 23 [1 favorite]

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