The concept behind Murderous Pursuits is not exactly new. Fans of the Assassin’s Creed multiplayer mode and games like The Ship will be familiar with the cat and mouse gameplay. However, Murderous Pursuit is not just a copycat. It takes the concept and puts in in the colorful world of the Victorian Era.
Any cat and mouse game needs an antagonist to push the story forward. In this case, a passenger on board the HMCS Britannic is calling the shots. Mr. X has a simple request – take out the quarry that he assigns to you. Of course, you will also be hunted for his viewing pleasure. Up to 8 players will be hunting and hiding to earn his favor. The player with the most points wins.
The game doesn’t feature a huge backstory, but it does offer some fun little tidbits to keep it entertaining. The announcer, for example, offers positive and negative feedback as you play. The more favor you earn with Mr. X, the more compliments you will get. And if you do terribly, the announcer will tell you so. Besides the entertaining announcer, the 8 playable characters are unique and fit really well with the Victorian Era. You can unlock different skins for each character.
Throughout the game, you will try and earn as many points, or favors, as possible. You can earn them by killing your quarry. However, you can earn more points by using higher value weapons, stopping a hunter, and dancing over your dead quarry. Mr. X loves entertainment, and simple murder will not do. Each weapon is simple to use, but you will need to practice in order to get the timing right.
Each player can choose abilities to help survive the game. There are 5 to choose from, each with different benefits. I typically used an ability to briefly tell me who is a hunter, quarry, and NPC. This area effect doesn’t last long and takes a bit of time to recharge. But it can help a great deal if you need assistance.
How do you find your quarry? There is a handy-dandy compass to help guide you. As you get closer to your quarry, a green bar will get bigger until a message tells you that you are close. The bar will move if you are turned the wrong direction, and it will kindly tell you if you are on the wrong floor. You might think the compass makes the game too easy, but it really doesn’t. All of the characters look similar, and it is hard to find your quarry.
That brings me to a part of the gameplay that is both wonderful and frustrating. The best way to survive is to act like an NPC. There are white circles that you can step in that will help disguise you. Once you step in, your character will mimic the actions of other NPCs, which may include looking at paintings, dancing, clapping, or drinking. The trick is to make sure you move and act like the NPCs. This can make things a little frustrating. No other NPC will run, so you will immediately be found if you try and run. If you are not properly spaced apart, then you stick out like a sore thumb. I would love to see a little more variety with the NPCs.
Another thing to bring up is the content itself. It is a blast to play, but I would love to see more characters, skins, and stages. As is, it is my opinion that the game is worth the $20 price tag. But down the road, more skins, stages, weapons, and updates to the NPCs would be really beneficial. That would help keep gamers engaged and playing on a regular basis.
Murderous Pursuits looks great. I really like the character design and the Victorian Era settings. The HMCS Britannic is a massive ship, with stages that reflect both an upper and lower class setting. The 8 playable characters are a bit cartoony (as is the blood splatter), but it works in this world.
Here is the bottom line – Murderous Pursuits is a lot of fun to play. It’s challenging, yet fair. With the different abilities, areas to hide, and compass, everyone has an equal chance to survive and win. With regular content updates, Murderous Pursuits can become a powerhouse in the cat and mouse gaming genre.
Note: GameOctane Editor Jason Germina received a code for the purpose of reviewing this game. Any code or product intended for reviews is distributed to the team to review and stream for our audience.
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Entertaining Cat and Mouse Game
Wonderful Setting and Art Design
Gameplay Needs Some Tweaks