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Video Game / Hunt: Showdown

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Monsters have overrun our world, and their flesh will be your bounty.

"When two Hunters risk everything, and evil waits unseen, the Hunter becomes the hunted."

Hunt: Showdown is a horror and Western-themed FPS set in a late 19th century Louisiana bayou, developed by Crytek and released on PC through Steam Early Access on 22nd February, 2018.

A rather unique take on the multiplayer shooter and sandbox genre; Hunt puts players in the shoes of monster-killing Bounty Hunters and pits them against up to ten other players, either solo, or in teams of two and three, in a large sandbox map. Players must utilise a wide arsenal of weapons and tools to fight undead monsters, track down clues to locate their target, kill the boss (or bosses), then escape with the Bounty - and, more importantly - their lives.

While the game's world is full of hostile creatures, it also allows players to freely kill each other to eliminate competition, and encourages them to fight over the Bounty once the boss monsters in each map have been killed. Unlike many shooter games, however, Hunt has a very minimal UI, with no minimap, radar, player icons or even kill notifications; there's practically no way to tell how many other people are in the map with you, apart from keeping an eye and an ear out for them.


Oh, and did we mention that this game has permadeath?

Players must hire and outfit Hunters before starting a match, and while Hunters can level up after each successful match, a Hunter that dies or fails to extract before the mission timer ends will be lost forever, including any gear they were holding and any levels they had. Players have a “Bloodline” level that will always gain XP, even when a Hunter dies, but keeping a Hunter alive until the end of a game is far more rewarding than letting them die, for obvious reasons.

Hunt: Showdown began its life as a game called "Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age", which was quite a different game; originally being a third-person, over the shoulder co-op shooter similar to games like Left 4 Dead. However, with the close of the Crytek USA office in 2014, the project was moved to the Crytek headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, and in May of 2017, the newly re-imagined Hunt: Showdown was announced. The game became available for Early Access on Steam in February of 2018 and was fully released on August 17, 2019.


Tropes found in the game include:

  • Ace Custom: While many of the weapons in the game are based on real world examples, there are several that have been modified by the Hunters for various uses. These include more mundane examples like a lever-action seemingly outfitted entirely for bludgeoning enemies, or the “Nagant M1895 Brawler”, which consists of a knuckle-duster welded to a revolver. To more out-there examples like the “Caldwell Conversion Chain Pistol”, which is a revolver that's had its cylinder replaced by a 17 round ammo belt, and the “Mosin Nagant Avtomat”; a prototype machine gun made from a converted bolt-action rifle. Both of which, we should point out, have actually happened in the Josselyn Chain Pistol and Huot Automatic Rifle conversion of the Ross Rifle. The idea of a revolver with a knuckle-duster also actually happened, with one example being the even more ridiculous Apache revolver, which had a knuckle-duster for a grip, instead of simply having one attached to the gripnote .
  • A.K.A.-47:
    • While several of the weapons in the game share their names with their real-world counterparts (such as the Mosin Nagant M1891, the Vetterli 71 Karabiner and the Nagant M1895 pistol) there are several which are based on real weapons, but have fictional names to avoid copyright problems. In general this trope seems to often be averted with the weapons for whom the original manufacturer no longer exists.
    • The Caldwell Conversion Pistol is based on the Colt Model 1851 Navy pistol, but with a fluted cylinder and chambered in a different calibre.
    • The Dolch 96 is almost a 1-for-1 copy of the Mauser C96 pistol, which was one of the first commercially available semi-automatic pistols.
    • The Romero 77 and Caldwell Rival 78 shotguns are based on various break-action single and double barrelled shotguns
    • The Winfield M1873 is a lever-action rifle based on the the Winchester Model 1873, with its name being a combination of “Winchester” and “Springfield”, both prominent American gun manufacturers.
    • The Specter 1882 is an early pump-action shotgun, based on the Spencer Model 1882.
    • The Crown & King Auto-5 shotgun is almost identical to the Browning Auto-5, one of the first semi-automatic shotguns.
    • The Sparks LLR is based on the famous Sharps 1874 rifle, a big-bore hunting rife.
  • Apocalypse How:
    • Seems to be a Class-0, with at bare minimum the rural Louisiana area having been affected by some kind of demonic invasion which has caused a massive collapse in infrastructure and society, and has rendered almost all living creatures in the area into mutated, undead monsters. However, other parts of the country, and presumably the world, seem to be faring okay. There's enough of a civilisation around that hunting the new monstrosities is a lucrative business, complete with organised groups of Bounty Hunters who make routine trips into the Louisiana bayou to hunt the biggest and baddest monsters in exchange for cash. The in-game journals seem to indicate that the affected area is essentially "flyover country" and the undead outbreak is only of interest to Hunters and other similar esoteric explorers.
    • Based on some scant hints from the in-game and supplementary lore, the demonic invasion has been going on for quite a while, with the game taking place towards the end of the 19th century when there are reports dating back a fair few decades.
    • It is worth noting that much of the game's lore takes place from a modern Researcher's perspective. The events of the game seem to have been contained, at least in this event, by the American Hunter's Association, and while the in-game lore makes mention of other events possibly occuring, the focus of the Researcher's lore is on the events in Louisiana.
  • An Axe to Grind:
    • The player can find huge wood-chopping axes littered across the map, which can be picked up and used as weapons or as tools to break down doors. While they're quite slow, they hit incredibly hard and deal Rending damage, which makes enemies bleed.
    • There's also the “Romero 77 Hatchet”A sawn-off single-barreled shotgun with an axe blade bolted to it. Functions just like a regular axe, with the added ability to fire shotgun shells.
    • And of course, there's the classic Combat Axe. It's not quite as big as the wood-axes the player can find around the map, but they still hit hard.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Despite the harsh and intense gameplay, the game is extremely noob friendly and has a number of these to make sure that basic gameplay is kept fun, fair, and interesting.
    • When booting the game up, the player is asked to participate in a detailed tutorial section to run them through an average bounty hunt match at an easy "Basic" difficulty with fewer monsters and no enemy hunters. They get rewarded a modest amount of Blood Bonds for their trouble, and if they can handle the "Advanced" and "Professional" difficulties, they get even more Blood Bonds. The tutorial also makes certain obscure mechanics clear to the player, like the intricacies of Dark Vision.
    • In order to prevent players getting an unfair advantage if they happen to spawn close to a boss, and also to speed up the pace of the gameplay, an announcement is made to the entire match when a boss starts being banished, and the banishing location is broadcast to all the other players. In addition, picking up a Bounty will highlight your location on the map and make your general position easily visible through Dark Sight.
    • Conversely, if you start the banishing process, your team is completely healed meaning that you're not put in as much of a disadvantage now that everyone knows where you are.
    • It's not necessary to actually kill a boss or claim a Bounty in order to earn XP or money; finding clues and discovering boss lairs all have monetary rewards, while almost every other action grants at least some level of XP, meaning Hunters can play it safe or extract early and still reap rewards. The game's progression system is also quite fair, dealing out a healthy amount of money, XP, and a modest amount of Blood Bonds for every match.
    • Players can extract from missions whenever they want, so if a situation seems too dangerous or if a player deems the session too hot for their tastes, it's always possible to cut and run to preserve your earnings and keep your Hunter alive.
    • Staying in a mission for over an hour will result in death via time-out, so players can check their map at any time to see how long they have left in a match and plan accordingly.
    • Additionally, once the timer reaches 5 minutes, a global notification will show up for each remaining minute so that players can run to the nearest extraction point.
    • If the game disconnects unnaturally, your Hunter won't be killed and is returned to the main page, potentially even getting to keep any progress they made during the match.
    • The first few ranks of your Bloodline have a special trait that prevents any hunters in your employ from dying permanently until you pass level ten. This prevents a Disaster Dominoes downward spiral from happening while the player is just learning the game and also doesn't punish them for trying to learn how to play.
  • Anti-Hero:
    • Most of the Hunters appear to be this, with the lower ranking ones being down-on-their-luck civilians turning to hunting as a means to earn a quick buck, and the higher ranking ones implied to be literal murderers and psychopaths, some of whom even wear human skulls as accessories!
    • Gameplay wise, there's just as much motivation to gun down fellow Hunters as there is to hunt the monsters themselves, as anybody but your partner (if you even choose to have one) is potential competition standing between you and your paycheck.
    • With all that said, however, the Hunters still earn the “Heroic” status simply by virtue of being less evil than the literal demons they're hunting.
  • Animalistic Abomination: The Spider crosses squarely into this territory. Despite once being human, it’s now an arachnoid, demonic, tangled mass of human limbs rivalling an SUV in size that can spit poison, rapidly climb ceilings and walls and can take some nasty punishment before finally dying.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • Intentional in most cases; most of the enemies are blind and will only react to sound stimulus. Otherwise, they will simply patrol around semi-randomly and won't actively seek out players.
    • The Meathead enemy in particular is not only blind, but also deaf. The only way it can sense you is if one of its leeches attacks you first, or if you're foolish enough to get too close to it. Justified in that the Meathead, ironically enough, doesn't actually have any real “head” to speak of, and thus, no eyes or ears to detect you with.
    • Averted in the case of the boss monsters, who are smart enough to retreat to cover when attacked from outside their arenas, and will often utilise flanking, environmental obstacles and ranged attacks during fights.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • Several of the items in the game tend to fall into this category, often intentionally. Given the game's setting and time period, many of the newer weapons and tools are hugely expensive, experimental, situational, or all three.
    • A notable example is the Mosin Nagant Avtomat – A prototype automatic drum-fed rifle made from a converted bolt action. While it certainly looks scary, and is absolutely a force to be reckoned with in a gunfight, it has quite a few flaws that come from being a 19th century prototype weapon: it has no select fire, and will shoot two bullets for every trigger pull, which can be problematic seeing as its ammo is quite scarce in the game world, and its reload mechanism is incredibly awkward and slow. Additionally, it boasts the highest price tag in the game! All of this makes it highly situational and somewhat complex to use effectively. Also, it has an anemic ammo reserve of 10, which is only half of its total magazine capacity. Taking all these problems into account, it can easily end up doubly Awesome, but Impractical for anyone expecting a standard assault rifle while using it. It also paints a massive target on your back, as the entire server knows where you are when you fire it, and if you have it your loadout (which can be looted from your corpse) is technically worth considerably more than the actual bounty boss itself.
      • Patch 1.3 drove the Avtomat further into the Impractical part of this trope. It now fires three shots per trigger pull and has increased recoil, additionally there was a quirk of the firing mechanics where if a player switched weapons right after the first shot the other shot was not fired. This has been 'fixed' now so that it will automatically remove the three shots from the weapon and thus preventing people from sniping with it. It's still a monster in close quarters but at range it's threat has been diminished substantially.
    • Another fairly impracticable weapon is the Nitro Express Rifle. While it isn't a prototype or experimental gun, it is incredibly expensive for what it offers. It's a double-barrelled, big bore elephant gun with the highest damage stat in the game, but it has major flaws: pathetically small ammo reserve of 4 spare rounds (not to mention the only gun that uses the ultra-rare “Special” ammo), massive recoil, awkward ironsights, and a blast that can be heard half a mile away. All of this in a very expensive package makes the Nitro Express a seldom-used weapon, despite being the only weapon guaranteed to kill a fully healthy rival player with 1 shot to the upper torso. Like the Avtomat, it's also worth more than the actual mission bounty and may attract players looking to kill and loot you for it.
    • The Flash Bomb consumable is a surprisingly cheap experimental flashbang made from a chemical compound of mercury and magnesium. In theory, it can be a useful tool in a firefight to blind and disorient foes. But in practice, it is generally outclassed in every way by more conventional explosives. Especially since it uses up one of only 4-5 valuable item slots when equipped. Most players forgo this and just take a stick of dynamite (or five) instead.
    • The Poison Bomb is incredibly useful... in very specific situations; as an example, it can tear through the HP of the Butcher boss, who is normally quite the bullet sponge. But beyond that, the Poison Bomb is generally outshone by the much simpler and cheaper Fire Bomb which has a much larger area of effect, is much more threatening in PvP, and has more overall uses.
    • The super long-range Sniper scopes allow you to see an incredible distance, but come at the cost of reducing hip-fire accuracy severely and making mid and close-range combat incredibly difficult due to the frankly absurd amount of magnification.
    • The crossbows that fire shotgun-shell-tipped arrows or explosive-tipped arrows deal massive damage with a direct hit, but have limited ammo and you cannot replenish ammo for them in the middle of the mission.
    • With the introduction of dual-wielding, you can now dual wield Dolch 96 semi-auto pistols, able to throw out a massive wall of medium-caliber bullets that kill in 2 shots. However, this loadout suffers from the same drawbacks as a single Dolch (using rare special ammo), combined with the inability to use iron sights while dual-wielding. Plus, at a cost of a whooping $1500 dollars, you might as well just bring an Avtomat instead.
    • The Bomb Lance is a modified whaler harpoon with an explosive dynamite charge attached. It kills bosses in 3 shots, which can be done in well under 30 seconds. However, you'd better hope you find the boss first, ideally with it spawning right next to your start location, because otherwise you're in for a rough time as the Bomb Lance is virtually useless for PVP (the projectile is way too slow and also falls to the ground after only a few dozen feet), so you'll be limited to your secondary weapon for fighting other teams for the boss bounty.
  • Awesome McCoolname: Given that the Hunters have randomly generated names, which can include titles and nicknames, you can sometimes find Hunters with names like “Captain Jack Justice”, “Sheriff Butch Howard” or “Vance “Babyface” Malone”. The name pool also includes names from various nationalities, so this extends out in multiple lingual directions.
  • Badass Longcoat: Several of the tier-2 and tier-3 hunters sport these in various styles. Given the game's setting, it's only natural.
  • Black-and-Grey Morality:
    • There is no real room for mercy, virtue or honour in the world of Hunt. Even though the undead monsters are the default “bad guys” of the story, what with being, you know, demons and everything, the Hunters themselves are hardly pure souls.
    • At best, Hunters will deliberately avoid each other and operate on an uneasy “live and let live” system, and at worst, Hunters will actively hunt down each other either to eliminate competition for the valuable Bounties or for the sheer thrill of it.
    • Even the more passive Hunters will usually become hostile the moment somebody picks up a Bounty, because that means someone's taken the risk and time of clearing out a boss, and that makes the Bounty holder an easier target.
  • BFG: The Nitro Express rifle is an elephant gun that kills any player or normal enemy with one shot and can even kill the Spider with just 2 headshots. It still takes 8 shots to kill the Butcher since he has no weak spot, and the damage drop off over distance is considerable so it is outclassed by real sniper weapons at long range. It's also so loud it can be heard clear across the map.
  • Body Horror:
    • The standard Grunt enemies are walking, rotting, groaning corpses, many of them with large sections of flesh missing and some wearing metal cages on their heads for extra creep factor. It says something that these guys are the least disturbing examples of this trope!
    • Hives are reanimated women whose bodies have been gruesomely bisected by demonic beehives, leaving the upper-half of their bodies bent unnaturally to one side.
    • The Armored enemies are bloated corpses covered in thick, grotesque boney growths, giving them an almost tree-like appearance as they lumber awkwardly around.
    • Hellhounds are large, vicious dogs with exposed flesh and bones and glowing red eyes wearing rusty, spiked iron collars.
    • Meatheads are massive, misshapen brutes whose bodies are so deformed, their heads are practically nonexistant.
    • Leeches are fairly tame compared to some of the other monsters, but that doesn't change the fact that they are cat-sized, blood sucking parasites that screech at you!
    • The Spider boss is a particularly noteworthy example, being a skittering, chittering, arachnid abomination with a disturbingly human face in obvious agony and twisted, elongated limbs.
    • The Butcher boss shares many similarities to the Meathead enemy, but minus one arm and plus one superheated meat hook with a severed pigs head worn on top of its misshapen body. The pig's head doesn't even seem to serve any purpose, as it can be knocked off and abandoned for the rest of the fight, to no effect on the creature's mobility or lethality.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • Several of the more reliable tools are this. Either through virtue of being cheap, effective, simple to use, or a combination thereof, they tend to make up the “bread and butter” of most players' kits.
    • The basic Winfield rifle doesn't have any especially cool variants, and is incredibly cheap even in its higher level versions. But the one thing it has going for it above all else is simple reliability: even the base version has a fairly good ammo pool, good accuracy, and is effective at short and medium range. It uses “Compact” ammo, which is the most common kind found around the map, and is shared with most sidearms to boot. While other guns may be cooler in how they work, hit harder, shoot further or have some other benefit to them, the Winfield rifles are still the most commonly used primary guns in the game.
      • Patch 1.3 has made the Winfield and it's variants even more practical with a buff to the damage of compact ammunition and a less severe damage drop-off over range. On top of that the new perk Levering allows hunters to rapidly fire lever-action rifles from the hip in the same manner that Fanning allows people to hip fire single-action revolvers quickly, turning an already easy-to-use, cheap bread-and-butter weapon into a potential horror in close quarters combat.
    • Dynamite is this, at least compared to the other kinds of explosives that the player has access to. While there are fragmentation grenades, poison gas bombs, flashbangs and firebombs all available to use, simple dynamite is still one of the most reliable items to get. It comes in three forms: Single stick, Bundle (three sticks) and Big Bundle (five sticks). All it does is blow things up, but when it comes to blowing things up? Nothing does it better.
    • The humble knife; it's almost always a good idea to outfit a Hunter with one of these, unless they're already carrying a larger melee weapon or they have a firearm with melee capabilities. The knife has two attacks, quick and heavy. A charged heavy strike will kill Grunts in a single head or torso strike, and will stagger even tougher enemies like Armoreds enough to be a viable tactic. There's no cool tricks involved with the knife, no crazy flips or added bonus effects. It's just a handy, reliable melee weapon that's always good in a pinch.
    • Decoy Fuses, they make the same sound as dynamite charges but don't explode. Hunters can use them to flush out people hiding in buildings and in general cause confusion without risk of injury. They also come in packs of three.
  • Cold Sniper: Given that the Hunters don't vocalise at all beyond the occasional grunt or scream, the player can become this by using one of the scoped weapons and actively hunting down other Hunters during the match. Bonus points for doing it while solo.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Probably one of the most reliable ways to play. Honour has no place in the wilderness of the game's world, and players are encouraged to take each and every opportunity given to them in order to succeed. Justified given that the world itself is unrelentingly hostile, and not even other humans are safe once you enter the bayou!
  • Competitive Balance: The effective range of each firearm is balanced around being extremely effective in their element at the cost of being ineffective outside of it.
    • Short range weapons, like shotguns, rapid-fire pistols and melee weapons control close-quarters combat with ruthless efficiency. The long cycling times of mid-range rifles and the extremely lengthy reload times of one-shot rifles are not suited for combat within tight spaces- meanwhile, Shotguns can empty their entire ammo supply in the time it takes for a rifle to cycle a few rounds, while rapid fire pistols are able to spray down enemy hunters in seconds. Melee weapons are also surprisingly viable, due to their high-damage and fast swing speed often being enough to down an enemy hunter in one shot- if you know your enemy has a rifle that's slow to reload and they just ran out of ammo, you can whip out a knife and go for a good old-fashioned charge, which can end the fight instantly if it connects. Consequently, close-range weapons have poor accuracy at long ranges, are very loud, and force their users to close the gap if they want to pose a threat.
    • Long range weapons control the outdoors with single-shot rifles, scoped repeaters, and powerful high-caliber pistols. While many of the long range weapons have lengthy reloading times, they make up for it with their absurdly high damage and extremely fast bullet travel times. A hunter with decent accuracy and an understanding of bullet travel time can become an unseen terror, picking off their enemies without them even knowing you were there. Long range weapons are the tools of choice when fighting enemies out in the open, as their massive sightlines make it very easy to keep enemies pinned down. Unfortunately, long range weapons lose pretty much all their effectiveness in close quarters, as their long reload times become a liability rather than a weakness to be worked around.
    • Mid range weapons like revolvers, repeating rifles and bolt-action rifles make up the bulk of the weaponry in Hunt, and are generally Jack-of-All-Stats tools to use in any situation. Their large ammo capacity, decently fast firing speed (for Hunt, anyways), solid accuracy and respectable damage make for weapons that are consistently reliable no matter what mess you're in. It's often recommended to build a loadout that has a mid range option in it somewhere, as the constantly changing ranges of combat make it so that a build based around pure long range or close range combat has a major weakness for your enemies to exploit. However, the slow cycling speed and lack of damage in mid range guns make them a poor choice for long range and short range combat. Thus, it's better to carry a dedicated option for fighting at those ranges to help accent your mid range weapon of choice.
  • Confusion Fu: The Spider boss employs this to a terrifying degree; capable of scaling walls and ceilings and moving much faster than anything else in the game, half the battle when fighting it is trying to figure out where it is! It doesn't help that most of its arenas are large and sprawling, with lots of different corridors and passageways that the boss can use to get the drop on players, literally!
  • Crapsack World: At least the area that the game takes place in is this. The Louisiana bayou has been reduced to a nightmarish, overgrown ruin, infested with undead monsters and littered with the dilapidated, run-down remains of civilisation. Half the buildings are on fire, long since rotted and collapsed, or in the case of one northern area, Scupper Lake, have literally sank into the swamp. Beyond the other Hunters in the area (who are just as much of a threat, if not moreso than the actual monsters roaming around) the only friendly signs of life are the extraction points, and even these are devoid of any visible human life.
  • Cursed With Awesome:
    • In-universe, according to the lore, all the Hunters are suffering from this. Their Dark Sight ability is described as being unpleasant to experience, as it's essentially a way for the Hunters to “sense” the presence of hellish energies. And while they can use it to track down their targets by finding “clues” across the map, these clues come in the form of holes in reality, from which hellish energy radiates. Uncovering a clue, according to the lore, briefly puts a Hunter's consciousness in the mind of their target, forcing them to feel everything that the twisted, deformed and monstrous bosses are feeling. While this is good for locating said monsters based on their surroundings, the experience is described as being quite traumatic for obvious reasons.
    • In-game, however, Dark Sight has no downsides other than preventing you from using your weapon while it's active and limiting your normal vision. But considering it's an ability that can be switched on and off with the simple press of a button, it's seldom the cause of problems, and offers more benefits than otherwise.
    • In an earlier build of the game, uncovering a clue would actually play a brief cutscene for the player from the boss's perspective. However, this was eventually cut due to it making players too vulnerable during the animation and breaking the flow of gameplay.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Literally every single AI creature in the game is capable of ruining your day in some form or another! Even the ones that don't directly damage you like the ravens, downed horses, chickens, and caged dogs are all major sources of noise if they're approached, which can alert any nearby Hunters or monsters of your location. Speaking of which, the other Hunters are often an even bigger threat than the monsters that roam the map. The undead horrors may be terrifying, demonic mutants with a thirst for blood, but at least they don't carry guns and bombs with the intelligence to use them.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin:
    • The Spider and Butcher bosses have accurate names, which unfortunately do not do either of them justice.
    • One of the enemy types is called the Armored: An undead covered in large, chitinous growths which is, appropriately, nearly impervious to most forms of damage with the exception of fire.
    • Hives are walking corpses grusomly bisected by a demonic beehive.
  • Giant Spider: A particularly horrific example present in the Spider boss, which will give any arachnophobe a serious case of the heebie-jeebies. Capable of skittering up walls and on ceilings, spitting poison and jumping on Hunters from a distance.
  • Griefing: Since friendly fire is a core part of the gameplay, there's currently no solution to the problem of partners team killing other than to not match up with people you don't know. The game doesn't encourage team killing (you can't kill your partner and get double the reward after picking up the bounty, for example) but it doesn't punish it much either (you lose a modest amount of experience for killing your partner, which doesn't matter to a freshly rolled player character).
  • The Gunslinger:
    • Most of the Hunters will be some variation of this, given the setting and the available weapons. Can be taken up to eleven by selecting the “Fanning” trait, which allows single-action revolvers to be fired rapidly.
    • While not originally in the game, the ability to duel-wield pistols was eventually added.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Given the importance of sound in this game, it's only natural that the audio design is on point, and incredibly creepy! All the monsters have unique sounds, and all of them are various shades of terrifying. Some standout examples include the clicking and chittering noises of the Spider boss and the squealing, screeching groans of the Butcher boss.
    • The regular enemies are nothing to sniff at, either. Standard grunts make hissing, wheezing, coughing and groaning sounds, and let out hoarse screams when they lock on to a target. The Armoured enemies emit low, rumbling moans, reminiscent of a large animal in pain, while the Hives constantly moan and wail while idle, and will let out bloodcurdling screams when aggravated. Hellhounds are slavering, growling dogs that bark and snarl when attacking, and the Meatheads sound like a cross between an angry elephant and a wild boar.
  • Heroic Mute:
    • For the given value of “Heroic”, the Hunters are this. While they will let out grunts of pain and scream when killed, none of them so much as utter a word in between.
    • Somewhat justified and zig-zagged as the game's integrated voice-chat system broadcasts the player's voice into the game world, meaning that not only do you need to be close enough to your allies to hear them, your voice chat can also be heard by anybody else in range! Effectively this means the Hunters’ voices are, in fact, the voices of those playing them.
  • Hollywood Silencer:
    • Played straight in the case of the Negant M1891 Silencer variant, which reduces the normally loud revolver to an almost silent whisper. Bonus points for this version of the gun being real, but anachronistic by several decades. In real life, a firearm needs both a suppressor and subsonic ammunition in order to truly achieve this effect.
    • Curiously, even though this weapon shares its ammo type with several others, it ''does'’ have a much lower effective range, which is what actually happens when using subsonic ammunition.
    • Averted in that, while silenced weapons do sound muffled, they're still audible up to about 70 meters away. They also make a relatively realistic loud "thump" sound like an air compressor, rather than a more Hollywood "pew pew" sound. Using high velocity ammo also makes silenced weapons louder, though they're still inaudible past about 100-150 meters.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted:
    • Quoted word-for-word in one of the game's taglines, and a notable game mechanic. While the players themselves are Hunters, ostensibly tracking down undead and demonic monsters, they can also hunt other Hunters. Many players prioritise this over going after the boss monsters, in fact, as eliminating your competition early before they get supplied and entrenched is a good strategy. Given the game's minimal UI and lack of traditional enemy radar, you need to literally track down your enemies through the use of sound clues and evidence that they leave in their wake.
    • In terms of game mechanics, picking up a Bounty from a slain boss monster will illuminate your general position on both the map, and through Dark Sight. Not only that, it will also broadcast a message to everybody in the map that the Bounty is on the move. Picking up a Bounty literally turns the Hunter into the new target, as other Hunters can now track them down easily and try to kill them to steal the Bounty for themselves.
  • Hunter of Monsters: You play as one. Hunters are hired before matches, where they can be outfitted with different gear and weapons before being taken into matches. They can also level up (assuming they get out alive) as many as 50 times. Hunters who reach level 25 or above can be “retired”, which returns all their gear to the player's arsenal and gives the player a large amount of “Bloodline” XP, which contributes to them unlocking new items and better Hunters.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game:
    • A valid strategy, considering that other hunters often pose a threat in the form of competition. Killing hunters also brings XP rewards anywhere from 100 to 1000 depending the tier level of the hunter. And the “Hunting” aspect of this trope is played completely straight, as there is no traditional “Radar” system or kill notifications, meaning other players must be tracked using sound clues and trails of evidence.
    • When a hunter picks up a bounty from a slain boss, their position is highlighted on the map on the map and they become illuminated in Dark Sight, immediately making them a target for anybody else in the map. Unless a player is confident that they've already eliminated their competitors, or they're incredibly confident, picking up a bounty is usually followed by a dead sprint towards the nearest extraction point.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: What makes the semi-auto Dolch pistol one of the best (and most expensive) weapons in the game is that it's above-average for pretty much every combat scenario other than long range sniping. It uses the equivalent of medium ammo, so it kills reliably in 2 shots even at a few dozen meters away and can penetrate light-to-medium cover, it has a very high semi-auto rate of fire, and it holds a generous 10 rounds in a full clip. It works well for basically any range engagement other than compound-to-compound sniping, but is just barely beaten out by a dedicated weapon at specific ranges (i.e. a shotgun will have the edge over it at 10 meters, while a long ammo rifle will do so at 100 meters).
  • Kill It with Fire:
    • One of the most useful strategies when dealing with most monsters, as well as other players. With a few exceptions, fire will kill most AI opponents within seconds, and when used against players, fire damage will burn away permanent HP if not dealt with quickly.
    • Averted in the case of the Butcher boss, who is not only immune to fire, but also uses it against the player!
    • Functions as a kind of Double Tap when used against fallen players; if a player dies, but still has some permanent HP chunks left, then they can be revived by a partner, if they have one. Oftentimes, if one player of a pair dies, their partner will lie low until the enemies leave and then rush forwards to revive their friend. In order to prevent this, a good way to ensure a dead Hunter stays dead is to burn their body, which will slowly destroy any remaining HP chunks they have, eventually killing them for good.
  • Lightning Bruiser:
    • In a nasty twist, none of the Hunters can be Lightning Bruisers, with even some of the regular Mooks qualifying instead. Although it's most exemplified by the two bosses, the Spider being more toward the “Lightning” side while the Butcher is more of a “Bruiser”. Make no mistake, though, both bosses are fast, durable and capable of dealing a lot of damage very fast. Taking them on without being adequately prepared is a recipe for disaster.
    • Hellhounds are surprisingly durable for their size, are incredibly fast, and can often throw players for a loop by moving unpredictably. They also hit very hard, and usually attack in packs! Four or five Hellhounds can easily spell death for even veteran players if they're not careful of where they tread.
    • Meatheads lumber about slowly for the most part, but will rush headlong towards anything that gets their attention. And of all the more common enemies, these guys are easily the most dangerous in a direct fight; they hit like trucks and have bucket loads of health, to boot. This essentially makes them a Boss in Mook's Clothing.
    • The Armored enemies often seem slow and ponderous when initially encountered, but they can get a frighteningly quick turn of speed when aggravated. It's not on par with some of the lighter enemies, but it's still easily fast enough to take an unwary Hunter off-gaurd and cause some serious trouble.
    • Even the regular, basic Grunts can become this depending on the circumstance. Due to the slow nature of most of the game's weapons, and the fact that Grunts are surprisingly resilient when not hit directly in the head, these guys can often kill Hunters that are caught off guard or in the middle of reloading. They move quick, too, able to match pace with a running Hunter at full tilt, and they often appear in groups. Suffice to say, it's best not to underestimate these guys.
  • Luck-Based Mission: The spawn points are randomly assigned, and some of them are much more dangerous than others.
    • The two spawn points in the southwest corner of the Stillwater Bayou map (on the west side of Davant Ranch) are literally 10 seconds apart from each other, so if a team spawns at each spawn point it results in an instant fight and death literally 10 seconds into the start of the match.
    • The northwest corner of Stillwater Bayou (known by players as "the corner of death") has a whopping 4 spawn points crammed into the same compound area (Alain & Sons Fishery), virtually guaranteeing a firefight if you happen to spawn at one of them. The spawn point north of the Fishery is the worst, as you spawn in sandwiched between two other spawn points with no good cover anywhere near you.
    • Conversely, the spawns at Maw Battery and C&A Lumber in Lawson Delta (and to a lesser extent, Blanc Brinery) are relatively safe, as the nearest other spawn points are much closer to other compounds than normal, making it extremely unlikely you'll run across other hunters before retrieving the first clue.
  • Mercy Kill:
    • If the supplementary lore is anything to go on, this is the case for most of the enemies, and especially the bosses, all of which are implied to be in constant, unending agony. Given the way they look, it's no surprise. Even the least severe examples are literally rotting, festering corpses, while the more extreme cases have some truly horrifying implications...
    • Subverted, however, at least in the case of the bosses, as the next step after killing them is to banish them back to Hell. It's unclear if this happens to the regular undead that roam around, but the odds aren't in their favour.
  • More Dakka:
    • Despite being set in the late 19th century, when the only automatic weapons were early, experimental machine guns that could only be effectively used on tripod mounts, this is still possible to achieve in-game! The easiest and cheapest way is to simply upgrade your Hunter with the “Fanning” trait, which allows them to rapidly fire single-action revolvers from the hip. While the unmodified pistols don't really allow for too much, there is one sidearm that shines with this trait - The Caldwell Conversion Chain Pistol – a revolver with its cylinder replaced by a long ammunition belt, allowing it to store a whopping 17 rounds! Paired with the Fanning trait, this gun essentially becomes an old-west style machine pistol.
    • The Levering trait allows lever-action rifles to be fired rapidly from the hip, which turns all Winfield variants into machine guns up close. Bonus points to the swift version for turning the normally slow reload into a much quicker affair and thus allowing you to return to unloading many shots just as fast as weapons with stripper-clips.
    • On the other side of the spectrum, there's the Mosin Nagant Avtomat; a prototype automatic rifle built out of a converted bolt-action gun. Easily the most fearsome weapon in the game when used in a gunfight, despite its Awesome, but Impractical nature. In some cases, the mere sound of this monster letting off rounds is enough to make Hunters turn tail for the nearest extraction point, rather than face off against it in a firefight.
  • Improvised Weapon:
    • Several of the gadgets available to the hunters are homemade or experimental, especially some of the explosive weapons, but with a few other examples.
    • The Frag Bomb, Flash Bomb and Poison Bombs are all essentially sticks of dynamite rigged to various items in order to create makeshift grenades that would otherwise be anachronistic; the Frag Bomb is simply a tin ball of metal fragments, while the Flash Bomb is filled with mercury and magnesium to create it's titular effect. The Poison Bomb on the other hand has a glass vial filled with a volatile toxic liquid, which vaporises on impact and creates a cloud of poisonous gas.
    • For a more traditional example, there's the Fire Bomb, which is a tried and true Molotov Cocktail.
    • A more unique example comes in the form of the Concertina Bomb: A spring-loaded coil of razor wire which violently unfurls when activated, creating a large area of twisted, razor sharp barbed wire that causes Rending damage to anything foolish or unlucky enough to get caught in it.
    • Several of the modified weapons are implied to have been designed by the hunters themselves, such as the “Talon” variants of the Winfield rifles and the Romero shotguns, which include blades attached to their stocks, allowing them to function as both firearms and melee weapons.
  • In the Hood: A few of the tier-3 hunter outfits sport these, often paired with ragged trenchcoats or cloaks to really hammer home the look.
  • Nerf:
    • The Avtomat, the most powerful and expensive weapon in the game, has received numerous nerfs throughout development, as listed under Awesome, but Impractical above.
    • The expensive, semi-automatic Dolch 96 pistol was also extensively nerfed, such as being changed from using medium ammo to very rare special ammo, and decreasing its handling and increasing its recoil. Buffs to compact ammo also mean that cheap guns like the Winfield and especially the Nagant Officer Carbine have a better chance of contesting a Dolch 96 at close-to-medium range.
    • The Nagant Officer Carbine and Bornheim No. 3 pistol, both semi-auto weapons with a high rate of fire, have had their prices increased significantly relative to similar tier weaponry (i.e. the Winfield and the Nagant Officer pistol) due to their popularity in the meta. The Officer Carbine also had its recoil increased in a later update.
  • Nice Hat: Plenty of them across the many hunter outfits, including the traditional ten-gallon cowboy hats, boater hats, slouch hats and many others. Often paired with bandannas and long jackets for maximum style points.
  • Nintendo Hard: Initially, the game had very limited matchmaking, essentially only enough to make sure you weren't matched against veterans within your first few hours of play. After that it was a free-for-all, and the game's relatively low player base made it so that relatively new players were being pitted against some of the best players in the game on a fairly regular basis. The devs have since implemented a much more forgiving matchmaking system to try to pit players against opponents closer to their skill level (this has been somewhat contentious, as the game's hardcore playstyle attracted a sizeable Social Darwinist fanbase who preferred the free-for-all system). The game's core gameplay still makes it a lot more challenging and tactical than the likes of Call of Duty or Battlefield, however.
  • One Bullet Clips: Averted, since most of the guns are 19th century firearms and actually would function by "topping off the bullet reserve" in real life. The only gun this doesn't apply to is the derringer, which does lose all remaining bullets still in the gun when you reload it.
  • Only Mostly Dead: Hunters HP bars are divided into “chunks” of either 25 or 50, with a minimum of 50HP and a maximum of 150HP. Whenever a Hunter’s HP is reduced to 0, they are downed and will lose one of their health chunks. However, as long as a Hunter has at least one health chunk left, they can be revived by a partner.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The Flesh Eating variety appear as the most common enemy type, Grunts. Rotting, reanimated, flesh-hungry corpses brought to life by the same demonic force responsible for the rest of the nasties in the game. While the Grunts do play this trope mostly straight, there are a few twists on the formula: certain Grunts carry around large knives or flaming torches, and will inflict Rending and Burning damage, respectively. And while the Grunts normally shamble about slowly as most “Romero-style” zombies do, they will break into a sprint that's easily capable of matching speeds with a player when they become aggravated. Lastly, while they do die instantly to headshots, it is still possible to kill them by hitting the rest of their body.
  • Permadeath: If a Hunter is downed and fails to be revived by a partner, or if the player fails to extract from a match on time, then the Hunter is permanently lost, along with any gear they were carrying. Players still receive Bloodline XP and money for anything they accomplished before dying, but the XP points are halved, and the player will be forced to hire and reequip a new Hunter in order to keep playing.
  • Scenery Gorn: The Louisiana country sides are filled with twisted trees, dark swamps, disheveled buildings and rotting corpses in every direction.
  • Scenery Porn: The rural landscapes glowing in Louisiana sunshine can be really enchanting.
  • Short-Range Shotgun: The single-shot Romero shotgun has an effective range of about 30 feet, which is about average for most FPS games. Sawed-off or double barrel shotguns have much higher pellet spread, with an effective range almost half that. The Romero hatchet and the shotgun barrel of the Lemat pistol are by far the most extreme examples, only working at effectively melee range.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The cabin from Evil Dead can be found in the Stillwater Bayou map, just north of Cyprus Huts.
    • The Lawson Delta map has a few Back to the Future-related Easter Eggs. A locked shack contains the DeLorean (under a tarp) and Doc Brown's scale replica of the train plan from Part III, while elsewhere on the same map you can find a copy of Gray's Sports Almanac from Part II stuffed into a trash can.
    • The Mountain Man legendary hunter seems to be one to an identical appearing minor character from True Grit, a bearded frontier man wearing a bear's head for a hat.
    • Instead of functioning like the real-life version, the LeMat pistol in Hunt is based off of the Man in Black's Weapon of Choice in Westworldnote .
    • On the DeSalle map, Fort Bolden holds a swamp hut uncannily like the one seen in Shrek
    • To the East of Shrek's hut is a polished steel monolith in a desert canyon, a nod to a similar mysterious structure that was found in the Utah desert and removed by unknown parties some time later.
  • Simple, yet Awesome:
    • A few examples exist, with one notable one being the Concertina Bomb; a spring-loaded coil of razor wire rigged to a basic impact trigger. When thrown, it violently unwinds into a massive tangle of barbs and edges that causes Rending damage to anything unfortunate or foolish enough to run into it, and clearing it requires a lot of time and the potential of exposing your position to enemies. The Concertina Bomb makes for the perfect area-denial tool, and can also function as a particularly nasty grenade for active combat situations. All of it in a very cheap and simple to use package. The only downside is that this item isn't unlocked until rank 98, which is only two levels away from the current level cap. However, it's possible that tier-3 Hunters can be hired with one already equipped before it is unlocked in the shop.
    • While they're fairly mundane in most other shooter games, semi-automatic and automatic weapons become this in Hunt, which takes place at the end of the 19th century, where most weapons were either single shot, or operate with some kind of manual cycling action between shots. The Dolch 96 pistol, the Crown & King Auto-5 shotgun and the Mosin Nagant Avtomat are noticeably modern in comparison to most of the game's arsenal, and the difference in how they feel to use is palpable. It's no wonder they have such high prices in-game. For the time period, they're state-of-the-art tech.
    • The Winfield Swift, an unlockable variant of the Winfield lever-action rifle that has the largest ammo capacity of the rifle category in the game. Compared to other rifles it's cheap, uses the most abundant ammo variant in the game, and is available earlier than more powerful rifles. The 'Swift' in it's name refers to the speed-loader it comes with which permits the user to reload it similar to a stripper-clip (Normally with the Winfield each bullet is manually loaded). When combined with the Levering perk whichs allows the player to rapidly fire the Winfield from the hip you get a rifle with the ability to two-tap hunters at close range if hit in the chest and a sustained fire-rate that will outlast any other weapon in the game.
  • Sniper Pistol: The Caldwell Uppercut is a revolver pistol that fires long rifle ammo, having nearly the damage and range of said long rifles. However, since it's a pistol and not a rifle, it has massive recoil per shot, is slow to fire, and sways much more than a rifle with a stock.
  • Southern Gothic: The game's primary aesthetic. The setting is in the Deep South, depicting deadly swamps, ruined peasant homes and plantations, abandoned industries, and unkempt graveyards.
  • Stealth-Based Game: The nature of the game will often compel players to play like this so they can improve their chances of survival, especially as they have limited ammo and health, and firing guns will attract the attention of not only other players but enemies.
  • Still Wearing the Old Colors: Some Tier II Hunters are still wearing Confederate or Union uniforms (in pretty damn good condition) more than 3 decades after the end of the Civil War.
  • Truth in Television: As explained below in Unexpectedly Realistic Gameplay, the guns shown are incredibly accurate to their real-life counterparts. Including, surprisingly enough, the chain revolver and Mosin Nagant Avtomat, both of which existed. Well, at least, guns that worked on those same principles existed.
  • Weird West: Members of a supernatural Creature-Hunter Organization wage a secret war on demonic monsters during the late 1800's. The game doesn't happen in the Wild West, but everything else fits.
  • The Western: Although it's more appropriately a “Southern” being set in the swamps of Louisiana, the game features many of the same themes, such as time period, weapons, items and character design.
  • Unexpectedly Realistic Gameplay:
    • The developers of Hunt have gone out of their way to make sure the guns in the game behave realistically, especially in terms of how they reload. While early semi-automatic, pump-action and bolt-action guns can all be used alongside the older single-shot, break-action and lever-action weapons, many of them exhibit realistic limitations that were present in their real world counterparts, such as long or cumbersome reloads:
    • Both the Caldwell and Negant revolvers use a loading gate for loading and ejection of cartridges; if you reload the gun before it's totally empty, an extra animation plays where the gun's cylinder is indexed such that the clockwise-most chamber with a spent casing is lined up with the loading gate before starting the eject and load cycle. Reloading after firing every shot in the cylinder will skip that step and immediately start the reload animation.
    • Similarly, both the Dolch pistols and the Mosin Nagant rifles can be reloaded using stripper-clips, but only while empty. Reloading them early means each cartridge needs to be loaded individually. Fine if you've only fired a few shots, but not so great if you're down to one or two.
    • Several guns, such as the Specter 1882 and the Mosin Nagant rifles will eject perfectly good bullets if they're reloaded with a round already chambered. This can be circumvented using a trait called “Bulletgrubber” which allows the ejected ammo to be caught in midair, but still requires that it be loaded, so reloading after a single shot will still mean having to load two bullets.
    • Meanwhile, other guns like the Winfield and the Vetterli rifles will need to be cycled in order to chamber a round if they're reloaded from empty, meaning that the player will need to add in an additional round to totally fill out their magazines.
    • Bolt-action and lever-action rifles will normally cycle after each shot, but by holding the fire button, the cycling animation can be delayed, allowing players to confirm their shots, or reload the weapon easier.
    • Even present in fictional variants, such as the Mosin Nagant Avtomat – because it's made from a converted bolt action rifle, it can still reload using stripper-clips... two of them. And as with the normal Mosin Nagant rifles, reloading the Avtomat too early will mean needing to load individual cartridges. With the regular five round Mosin Nagant, this isn't too much of an issue, but the Avtomat can hold twenty rounds, so reloading it at the wrong moment can take up a lot of unnecessary time.
  • Universal Ammunition: There are five kinds of ammo present in the game: “Compact”, which fits most pistols as well as the Winfield lever rifles. “Medium”, which is used by the Vetterli 71 and Winfield Centennial rifles and the Caldwell Pax (the Dolch 96's bullets behave like Medium ammo but can only be restocked from Special ammo boxes). “Long” which is used by most rifles and the Caldwell Conversion Uppercut pistol, “Shot” which is used for all shotguns, and “Special”, a generic type that covers all custom ammo as well as the Nitro Express Rifle and Dolch 96 pistol.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: Thanks to an influx of demonic force, the Louisiana bayou (and potentially other areas of the world) is undergoing a particularly bad one. The playable map features no living humans whatsoever outside of other Hunters, who are just as much, if not more of a threat. Most people seem to have been turned into shambling, flesh-eating undead zombies, but others have mutated further into some truly nightmarish creatures.

Rise up, dead man...

Alternative Title(s): HUNT Horrors Of The Gilded Age


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