Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2005 Adventures
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|Cabela's Big Game Hunter
North American Windows cover art
|Developer(s)||Magic Wand Productions (PC and GC), FUN Labs (Xbox), Sand Grain Studios (PS2), Torus Games (GBA)|
|Publisher(s)||Activision Value, Zoo Digital Publishing|
In the Career mode, players progress through six geographical regions, each with several sub-levels. The regions are: Forest, Marsh, Desert, Prairie, Mountain, and Tundra. Each sublevel has a specific animal to hunt, though some animals are hunted multiple times on separate occasions, and occasionally the player will encounter other objectives within a level. Money is earned along the way, which can be spent on more-advanced firearms and other equipment. A few opportunities will arise for the player to win a gun by completing certain tasks. Some animals include: white-tail deer, timberwolves and peccary.
Other play modes include Quick Hunt, starting with one sublevel per region; other levels become available as they are completed in the Career mode, and Tournaments, including skeet shooting.
The PC version operates much differently, and allows the player to select locations and unlock them upon their completion. It operates exactly like its predecessor, Cabela's Big Game Hunter: 2004 Season. The game includes 10 maps located across North America. The maps are much more diverse and unique than those of the 2004 Season. Unlike the previous game, each map can only be played in two seasons. The seasons in question depend on the map. Each season features different game from the other one, requiring the player to play each map, except one, twice in order to complete the game. The game also imposes firearm restrictions based on each season in each map. The most prevalent restrictions are those that allow either rifles and shotguns or those that allow and weapon of choice. Other locations include bow-only seasons, and one includes a shotgun-only season. The player may only carry two weapons on each hunt.
- South Dakota - Located in the Black Hills National Forest, this map features thick pine forests, a winding river, and steep hills. Travel by ATV is practical on the trails, but the drastically-changing temperatures would effect the player's hunt based on the time of the day. Game here in the summer is cougar, mountain goat, and mule deer. In the autumn, the mule deer is replaced by the pronghorn.
- Idaho - Taking place in the Coeur d'Alene National Forest in the panhandle of the state, this map features densely thick forests, with little open areas. A large plain is accessible when spawning at "Whispering Falls", but clearings throughout the forest are rare. The pickup truck makes travel difficult, and walking through the trees obscures the player's vision. Game in the autumn is woodland caribou, shiras moose, and mule deer. In the winter, the caribou is no longer available. Instead, the aggressive grizzly makes a more difficult hunt in a difficult location.
- Kentucky - This map resembles the southern part of Kentucky, the Pennyroyal Region, near the Mammoth Cave. Thick forest, unstable foothills, small, winding paths, and a river bisecting the main trail, Kentucky is one of the most difficult locations in the game. At the top of the map, in the mountains, at the end of the trail, the player can find a small log cabin. Game in the autumn is wild boar, coyote, elk, and whitetail. Hunting in the winter is not necessary, as the elk is not prevalent, but no other animals are available game. Winter is also especially difficult as it is a shotgun-only season.
- Michigan - Located on the Upper Peninsula, this map features thick pockets of trees laid out among large plains. Trails are scarce, but can be followed to reach remote corners of the map. On the shore of what is most likely Lake Superior, a cabin and dock can be found. In the winter, ice forms over and the player can walk (or drive) to the small island off of the shore. Game in the winter is wolf, elk, and whitetail. Game in the autumn is black bear, wolf, and whitetail.
- Nevada - A map made of a vast plains, massive slopes, and deathly temperatures, this virtual map of Death Valley makes a difficult hunt. Although the smallest map in the game, Nevada's temperatures can reach above 100° Fahrenheit. Quick game is also a determining factor in the player's completion of the hunt. Game in the summer is coyote, mountain goat, and bighorn sheep. In the autumn, the pronghorn replaces the mountain goat.
- Nunavut - Canada's largest and most sparsely-populated territory, Nunavut makes for a brutal expedition. The map is set in exiled Victoria Island In the autumn, temperatures can be mild, making traveling on foot easier. But in the winter, temperatures are constantly below 0°. Trails lead around the map, but most of the map is covered in small rock clusters and foliage. In the autumn, the game is Labrador caribou, polar bear, and musk ox. In the winter, the musk ox is not available game, while the wolf is available instead.
- Sonora - One of Mexico's northernmost territories, Sonora is a simple hunt. In the spring, temperatures are moderate and game is not entirely dangerous. Sonora is a relatively small map. A favourable route would be for the player to spawn at "Salt Pool" and travel up the trail to the cabin at the other end of the map. Game in the spring is cougar, javelina, and Coues deer. In the autumn, the cougar switches places with the bighorn sheep. The autumn is a bow-only season.
- Utah - Utah is the most difficult map to travel in. Set in a desert gorge, the player will find difficult in maneuvering the terrain. Steep slopes, large canyon walls, and a narrow river that bisects the map makes this a formidable hunt. A boat spawns at the region "Blade Arch" and can be used to navigate to the other end of the map, "Thunder Fall." The only connection between the two halves of the map is a cast iron bridge. There is another region of the map, but the player go to the boat spawn, swim across and navigate up a steep hill in order to access the other region. Game in the autumn is elk, shiras moose, and pronghorn. In the winter, the black bear replaces the pronghorn.
- Vermont - One of the smallest maps in the game, Vermont features thick forests of maple trees, a small pond in the direct centre, and minimal trails. The winter features black bear, coyote, and whitetail, while the autumn replaces the coyote with the Canadian moose. The autumn is also a bow-only season.
- Yukon Territory - A large map that spawns the player without a vehicle. Because of its setting in the Klondike Valley, made famous for the Klondike Gold Rush, temperatures are formidably cold. A boat does spawn at the far end of the map, but spawning at a location near it entails a long walk. A river does make every region accessible via boat. Trails reach all around the map. It is also the map with largest variety of game. The spring entails brown bear, Alaskan moose, Sitka black-tailed deer, and barren-ground caribou. The winter, a bow-only season, allows the player to hunt sitka blacktail, dall sheep, and stone sheep. <Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2005 Adventures></Activision>
Game animals have rather generic behaviours. Non-hostile animals, such as deer, moose, elk, sheep, goat, antelope, and caribou will run at different speeds depending on their respective species. Upon approaching an animal, either stealthily or loudly, the animal will react and run in the opposite direction, given there is no map border hindering it. The animals will also sense the player if they are downwind of them. Vehicles produce more noise, but the animals cannot outrun them. However, the player will receive a penalty for striking an animal, game or non-game, with their vehicle.
Animals of different variations of a species will look identical to each other, and operate the same way. For example, a mule deer and a whitetail deer will look the same, respond to stimuli similarly, will give the same calls, and will run as fast as each other. This is where the game lacks realism, and it is also one of the many critical points of the developers.
Hostile animals share the same properties. For example, all bears, except the polar bear, look, sound, and usually weigh the same amount. The only difference is their colour. Wolves and coyotes look and sound considerably different. Javelina and wild boar are also different from one another. Hostile will often run from the player when approached, or when the player is sensed. The animal could also charge and attack the player, making them loose a considerable amount of health, or kill them. <Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2005 Adventures></Activision>
The game also introduces multiple non-game animals. These animals cannot be legally hunted, are not marked (even with the trophy beacon option on), and are protected under the same penalties as the legal game animals. For example, the player will be fined if they are to shoot a non-game animal or strike them with their vehicle. This presents a challenge, as non-game mammals cannot be marked, and are often to hard to detect in the environment. Foxes, snakes, rabbits, lynxes, and beavers will spawn in locations according to their appropriate environment. Lynxes spawn in almost every location, aside from the arctic and lush forest maps. Lynx are also hostile; it would be in the player's best interest to remain wary of them in their area.
Upon breaking the rules of the game, which are explained in the career mode tab labelled "guide," the player will receive warnings, fines, and eventual eviction from the warden of their respective area. The player can achieve these penalties by:
- Firing the weapon after hunting hours: one half-hour after sunset to one half-hour before sunrise. This can be a challenging rule to comply to, as the time restrictions will change based on the area. For example, hunting hours usually begin at six o'clock in the morning and end at around eight o'clock at night on most maps, like South Dakota, Nevada, and Sonora. However, other maps require different hunting hours, like the Yukon or Nunavut, where morning begins at eleven o'clock and end at around six o'clock in the evening.
- Shooting animals that the player is not legally allowed to hunt. This includes animals the player has already claimed, did not purchase a tag for before starting the hunt, or shooting non-game animals. This excludes animals that the player is required to bag multiple of, such as coyote (four tags), wolf (four tags), and barren-ground caribou (two tags). When the player has bagged all multiples, the tags will become invalid.
- Firing a weapon in the perimeter (fifty yards) of an inhabited building. Only four maps include buildings. Kentucky, which has a small cabin located at the top of the map, hidden in a mountain. Michigan contains a small cabin with a dock on the shore of what is probably Lake Superior. Nunavut features an Eskimo village at the top. However, the player cannot access the grounds due to a chain fence hindering the player and game. Sonora has a small cabin on the far side of the map, surrounded by mesas. The other maps either contain trails, or no trails at all. Nevada and Utah are the only maps that do not have trails. This rule can be disputed, as there is no evidence that these buildings are inhabited. If the player's target, is around the building, the player can move back beyond the restricted point, and fire a shot near, or even directly at the building(s), and they will not be charged.
- Failing to claim a dead trophy. If the player chooses to use the trophy beacon option, the red dot of their dead target will turn blue. If the player fails to claim it, they will receive a penalty. <Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2005></Activision>