Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / Primal Carnage

Go To
Primal Carnage is a game developed by Lukewarm Media, an independent company. The game's premise centers on a team of mercernaries being sent to an island to correct an experiment gone wrong. This takes the form of shooting up some dinosaurs. In the game, you get to play as four dinosaurs and one pterosaur. The basic point of the game is similar to Team Fortress 2 and follows many of the same principles. However, Everything's Better with Dinosaurs. Besides, who doesn't want to play as a big red Tyrannosaurus rex chomping down on overconfidant humans?

“The Island”, a strange hidden world where man has taken the ultimate leap in science, where the long lost wonders of the distant past have been recreated, wonders which walk hand in hand with atrocities of the darkest nature. At present the facilities lie destroyed and abandoned, all the experiments have ceased, the buildings empty, the screams... silenced. The most meticulous of plans could not prepare them for the horrors they set upon themselves, horrors now running free across The Island.

The humans must reclaim the island they once owned, and destroy the creations that have turned upon them. But for the dinosaurs, the island is now their home, and they will not allow this to happen so easily. Two deadly predators from opposite ends of Earth's history clash on a tropical paradise. The question is: which one will come out on top? Well, that's up for you to decide...


The official site can be found here. Development was largely dependent on donations for some time, and those were encouraged with inside peeks. (Donations have now been closed, however.)

A sequel, Primal Carnage: Extinction, was launched in late 2014 and left Early Access in mid-2015. The game is more or less an "upgrade" of the original game, with more features and game modes added. A prequel spin-off single-player game, called Genesis, was announced a couple of years earlier, but has since been put on hold, most likely to focus on developing Extinction.


Contains examples of;

  • Artistic License – Paleontology:
    • This isn't meant to be scientifically accurate, of course, but the game partially subverts the trope...
    • Ptero Soarer: On the one wing, the Pteranodon are naked, have pointed wingtips (although they're more rounded in the final model), grasping feet, are a bit misproportioned (more so in their prototype model), have wings that fold incorrectly (similar to the pterosaurs from the Walking with Dinosaurs series), and may be slightly too small, but on the other wing, they are quadrupedal and toothless, and vault from the ground using their wings like real pterosaurs. This is addressed by the developers in forum posts, which state that the Pteranodons had their pycnofibres removed for "cosmetic reasons", although the "Alpha Pteranodon" skin has pycnofibres. Like the feathers on the raptors, there is also the issue that the early builds had trouble with complex textures so it took awhile to get anything but smooth skin finished. The Pteranodon can also pick up humans, which the real animal definitely couldn't do.
    • Raptor Attack: The developers have invented a fictional species called Novaraptor ("New thief"), created in-universe through genetic engineering. They were still featherless and had anatomically impossible hands, but the developers fixed the hands after the community spoke out, and Pre-Order Bonus skin is accurately feathered. Tyrannosaurus, Spinosaurus, and Dilophosaurus got their hands fixed as well, and this is passed on to the other theropods. Additionally, later skins on both the Novaraptor and Oviraptor very frequently have full feathers.
      • Oviraptor is an alternate "predator" dinosaur with the same abilities as the Novaraptor. It's perfectly anatomically correct (aside from being fairly oversized), but the real Oviraptor probably wasn't quite so fast of a runner, and certainly not as deadly.
    • Tyrannosaurus rex: For the most part it's okay, what with the horizontal body posture and all that, but a few minor details leave, er, something to be desired. It's notably about twice the size of a real T. rex, has a Jurassic Park-esque boxy head and has armored, crocodile-like scales, rather than the tiny, pebbly scales of the real animal (this is Hand Waved as being genetic modification).
    • The Dilophosaurus is a Jurassic Park-esque venom spitter, though without the neck frill. Word of God says it's because they were genetically engineered to be venomous. Unlike most Dilophosaurus in media, this one is nearly to scale to the real animal, and not the one from Jurassic Park.
      • Cryolophosaurus has the same Hand Waved venom spit, but is also fairly slimmer than the real animal, with a narrower head.
    • Averted with the Carnotaurus, which has the correct forelimbs (that is to say, no fingers and practically no arm movement at all.) and is depicted as a very fast hunter with a hard time turning, as according to recent studies.
    • Spinosaurus for the most part looks pretty decent, but it spends mostly on land in the game, though a bone isotope analysis of Spinosauridae members indicates this was only partially the case. However, in an earlier teaser it was depicted as an adept swimmer. Recent studies have suggested that the limb proportions of Spinosaurus was much more unusual than previously thought, but the game's model was finished years prior to this discovery. However, the developers confirmed they might alter the current model and make a new skin showing the new anatomical features.
  • Ax-Crazy: The Pyromaniac comes across in his profile to be rather disturbing, to say the least.
  • The Berserker: The Carnotaurus, since it is very fast and hits really hard, but lacks resilience.
  • Chainsaw Good: The Pyromaniac has a "flamesaw" that's part flamethrower and part, well...
  • Expy: Many of the Dinosaurs (and Pterosaur) are very similar to the Special Infected from Left 4 Dead. The Raptor is agile and can pin foes down like the Hunter, the Dilophosaurus has a spit that screws up vision like the Boomer, the Carnotaurus charges foes like the Charger, the Pteranodon can grab players and force them to move against their will/drop them into something nasty like the Jockey, and the Tyrannosaurus is big, strong and deadly like the Tank.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: The Carnotaurus has this as special attack.
  • Fragile Speedster: The Oviraptor is even faster than the Novaraptor, but also frailer.
  • Friendly Sniper: The Scientist.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke: The dinosaurs were genetically modified to be more badass than their real-life counterparts.
  • Giant Flyer: Pteranodon.
  • Glass Cannon:
    • The Scientist can use her sniper rifle to dish out heavy damage to dinosaurs at long ranges, but seeing as her melee weapon is the weakest of all, and her sniper rifle is a liability at closer ranges, she will get swamped quickly.
    • The Cryolophosaurus is even more frail than the Dilophosaurus, but is significantly more deadly, swapping blinding venom for an acidic, burning spit.
  • Goomba Stomp: In Survival Mode, humans can jump on Compsognathus to kill them.
  • Ground Pound: The Acrocanthosaurus's special ability.
  • Guns Akimbo: The Trapper has two pistols as well as his unique Netgun.
  • Interface Screw: Both the Dilophosaurus' spit and the Pathfinder's flares can blind enemy players.
  • Kidnapping Bird of Prey: Pteranodon's main attack method is to snatch up mercs in its talons and drop them from high vantage points.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Pyromaniac. He's called that for a reason.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The Carnotaurus, although it's quite a bit slower and weaker when it isn't charging.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: The Oviraptor is this compared to its Novaraptor counterpart. It's faster, weaker and trades in the Novaraptor's "feeding frenzy" roar ability for the ability to track enemies via pheromones.
  • Mooks: The raptors are the foot soldiers. Although if they are used well, they can be just as dangerous as their larger partners.
  • Mighty Glacier:
    • The Tyrannosaurus, of course. He takes a lot to take down and is capable of One Hit Kills, but he's a nice wide target, you can see him for miles, he's slow and he can't fit into buildings.
    • The Spinosaurus even more so - it's incredibly durable and does very high damage, but is dead slow. The Acrocanthosaurus, on the other hand, is a little bit faster than both of them, but it's not as deadly and takes less hits.
  • One-Hit Kill: One bite from a Tyrannosaurus (or suitable Tyrant) is all it takes, and it can just step on humans, too. Fortunately, the humans have their own One-Hit Kill in the Trapper's Netgun.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The human faction. So far: a sexy scientist with a sniper rifle, a badass former US Army trooper, a Magical Native American tracker who believes Shotguns Are Just Better, an Australian poacher and an Ax-Crazy Violent Glaswegian with a flamethrower-chainsaw. This trope is even called out in the description on the website.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: The Pathfinder seems to believe so.
  • Shout-Out:
    • All the playable dinosaurs are clearly Jurassic Park-based in some way or another. There have also been a lot of promotional images and videos showing Tyrannosaurus fighting (the now playable) Spinosaurus.
    • A few of the human classes bear resemblances to some characters from the JP franchise as well. For example, the Trapper seems to be a mix of Robert Muldoon and Roland Tembo, while the Scientist has some similarities to Sarah Harding.
  • Shown Their Work: Despite the large amounts of Artistic License and Rule of Cool, the game does have a few subtle hints that the creators did their research:
    • Pteranodon walks on all fours, is toothless, launches quadrupedally from the ground, and is explicitly stated on the official site NOT to be a dinosaur, and one of the skins is correctly depicted with pycnofibres. Also, Tupandactylus is correctly proportioned.
    • Dilophosaurus is correctly sized and lacks a neck frill.
    • The theropods have non-pronated hands.
    • One of the available skins for the raptors is fully and accurately feathered.
    • Carnotaurus has stubby forelimbs with no visible claws and is correctly portrayed as a Lightning Bruiser with a difficult time turning at top speed.
    • Brachiosaurus has its nostrils on its snout rather than on the top of its head, and it has the proper foot configuration of a real sauropod (single claw on the front foot, three on the back).
    • Triceratops has armored skin and belly scales similar to a crocodile's, and two of its front toes lack claws and are kept off the ground.
  • Stock Dinosaurs: The playable prehistoric reptiles include Tyrannosaurus rex, Dilophosaurus, Pteranodon, and a fictional species of Raptor. However, the somewhat obscure Carnotaurus provides somewhat of an exception to this rule (Carnotaurus is a secondary Stock Dinosaur opposed to the others). The known NPCs all fall in this category so far. The newly-released Tupandactylus and Cryolophosaurus avert this.
  • Super Spit: The Dilophosaurus has this ability, like it did in Jurassic Park.
  • Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors: The classes were initially designed with this in mind, so that every dinosaur (and pterosaur) had a human class designed to take them down (and vice versa). However, this feature has been toned down. The various advantages some classes have over others are still present, but the game no longer adheres closely to the rock-paper-scissors system.
  • Take That!: Remember in Jurassic Park III how a Spinosaurus fought and killed a Tyrannosaurus rex? Not so lucky this time round... The method of fighting is also more Take That!: The Spinosaurus tried biting off the Tyrannosaurus rex's neck, like it did in the movie... The T. rex pretty much shrugs it off. Then the T. rex proceeds to use the same method the Spinosaurus used in the movie, bite in the neck... to kill the Spinosaurus.