Maneater: The KotakuReview

So many games only let me play as a human. Sure, that’s fun, but it’s not really taking full advantage of games’ ability to let us be and do anything. Maneater gets it. In Maneater, I’m not a dull person—I’m a shark. A dangerous, agile, and cool shark, free to swim anywhere and eat whatever and whoever I like. Sadly, most of what this cool shark does is a bunch of repetitive missions.

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. It’s not the most complex narrative, but sharks don’t need long, well-written stories to justify killing things.

The game is presented in the form of a reality show, not unlike ones you might find on the Discovery Channel. The few cutscenes include hashtags in the corner for viewers to use, camera people asking questions, cutaway interviews, and narration. During gameplay, the narrator, voiced by Chris Parnell, talks about what the shark is doing and provides some jokes about the world of Clovis Bay where the game is set. All of this is done well, and some of the jokes are genuinely funny. But these cutscenes don’t happen often; I would sometimes forget the game even had a narrator.

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