You may have seen Cabela’s games before, you may have played Cabela’s games before, but trust me when I say, you ain’t seen nothing like this.  This ain’t no shooting gallery, this is a full blown next-gen hunting adventure game.  And it’s pretty bad ass.

While previous Cabela’s games have had more of an arcade feel, this game throws you headlong into the dark and gritty tale of American marksman Cole Rainsford, who has joined his father on an African safari to hunt savage animals that have been terrorizing remote villages. Soon finding themselves stranded, their survival depends on cunning instinct and expert skill to make it out alive.  (That’s right, it has an actual story)

But not just any story, renowned scriptwriter and creative director Brad Santos (Resistance: Fall of Man, Tomb Raider: Legacy, The Saboteur) Cabela’s Dangerous Hunts 2011 is story of suspense and survival as the player faces action packed kill-or-be killed scenarios. The game also utilizes the all new Top Shot Elite (Pictured above) wireless hunting controller, the first of its kind developed by the team at Activision that created the guitar controllers for the Guitar Hero franchise.

Activision has clearly spared no expense here, watch below as they talk about the Top Shot Elite:

Ok, so we’ve got a Cabela’s hunting game, with a story written by Brad Santos, that uses a bad ass wireless rifle as a controller.  YOU OFFICIALLY HAVE OUR ATTENTION

RipTen got the chance to check out this new breed of adventure last week, and rack up some kills with Dangerous Hunts in Cabela’s sweet customized truck and trailer.

Pretty Sweet, Eh?
Yes, This is Actually The Inside of the Trailer

As I entered the trailer, some maniac in full camo jumped out at me screaming, “So which console ya wanna play on!?”  “Uhh PS3 I spose …” I replied.  So he handed me the rifle, which I was immediately impressed with, and started up the campaign mode.  “Campaign mode?” I said, “Isn’t this a Cabela’s game?  You telling me this thing has a story mode?” as I rolled my eyes, preparing for the worst.  “Oh yeah” he said, “Just wait til you see it”

So after I got locked an loaded … See it I did, play it I did, and impressed I was.

The first thing that impressed me were the graphics.  The game looks great, especially on PS3.  The 360 version looked slightly worse and the Wii version obviously paled in comparison.  However, the game played the same on all three systems.  The next thing that impressed me was the freedom.  This was no on-rails shooter. You are given full 360 degree freedom to move around using thumbsticks on your rifle while pointing it in the direction you want to go.   There were some dark elements here and even some hints at some supernatural foes. The only thing I fought in campaign mode were wolves, which will repeatedly jump at you in slow motion, giving you a chance to blast the hell out of them.  Once you get used to the gun controls, it’s a pretty satisfying experience, and definitely something different than any other hunting game I’ve ever played.  You can tell Activision spared no expense with this one, and it shows.

They Don't Look Friendly
Full Moons Are Never a Good Sign

You also have to option to switch between weapons at any time, depending on what you’ve acquired, and different guns work better on different animals.  You are encouraged to use your shotgun on birds and animals at close range, while your rifle is necessary for taking down Rhinos and other large creatures.  If any animal manages to grab a hold of you, you will immediately pull out your revolver and be able to start blasting away at it’s head (pictured below)  Like I said, all of this will take some getting used to, but once you do, it’s pretty damn fun.

Nice Kitty . . .
Get Offa Mah Arm!!

For those of you who don’t like your hunting games to come chock full of story and suspense and just want to blast the living hell out of some big game, there’s also an updated arcade mode that features full co-op.  Rack up points as you take down all sorts of beasts while on rails in a variety of different locations.  The game will reward you for using the right weapon on the right animal and if you chain together kills you can rack up some sweet bonus points.  Check out some footage below:

So, while the campaign mode provides thrills and chills, the arcade mode is pure fun for 1-2 players.  All in all, I must say I had a pretty good time with Cabela’s Dangerous Hunts 2011 in their pimped out trailer, and was not expecting to be as impressed as I was.  I’ve been playing Cabela’s games on and off since the PS2 days and this is by far the most complete hunting experience they’ve ever provided. If you’re a fan of Cabela’s games, a fan of hunting games, or just a gamer who’s looking to blast the hell out of some beasties on your big screen, you too will be impressed by Dangerous Hunts 2011.

Just don’t tell Mega64 if you plan on picking something else up on October 26th.  They take their Cabela’s seriously!!

The game will retail for $39.99 by itself, $59.99 bundled with the rifle for Wii and $79.99 bundled with the rifle for PS3 and Xbox 360 on October 26th.

Did we mention the PS3 version is compatible with move?  Because it is :-)