Off-Road Velociraptor Safari
Samurai bears. Puzzle-solving robots. Snowmen with bombs. We're used to suspending a little bit of belief when it comes to the games we play. Off-Road Velociraptor Safari, however, really tests the limits. You play a raptor driving a jeep with a spiky ball and chain attached to the rear. Your goal is to chase down other raptors and throw them into a teleporter that sends them to the future. At this point it's a good idea to throw intellectual understanding out the window, because this game is all about hitting dinosaurs with cars for points.
Off-Road Velociraptor Safari is presented in full 3D thanks to the Unity plugin, the same engine under the hood of When Orcs Attack. And, for a browser-based game, it looks great. Drive through the lush jungle using the [arrow] or [WASD] keys and tap the [B] button for a quick turbo boost. The [spacebar] deploys the chain and spiky ball that's used to clothesline raptors or drag their limp bodies to the teleporter. As for the cool jumps, crazy crashes and lavish stunts, that's up to your own driving insanity.
The goal in Off-Road Velociraptor Safari is to get a high score, and there are several things that factor into this. Capturing and teleporting raptors is the most obvious way, but you also net a few points for doing spectacular stunts, damaging your vehicle, and grabbing orbs scattered around the stage. Each time you increase your score there's a small window of opportunity for you to multiply it by doing the same thing again. An online high score table lets you track your numbers and compare with dinosaur safari-ists around the world. There are even a few achievement awards to be uncovered.
But forget all that stuff, this game is really about driving around (as a raptor), knocking over dinosaurs, smashing into stuff, and pulling off cool stunts. Seriously.
Analysis: Yes, Off-Road Velociraptor Safari is a strange game idea. Yes, that's what makes it fun. The raw dose of driving, destruction and dinosaurs is enough to get just about any gamer's blood pumping, while the 3D environment is ripe for exploration. The wild arcade-style action gameplay encourages crazy stunts and stupid tricks, which is always a nice bonus. The controls are a bit clunky and take some getting used to, but they work fine in the end. Smashing into velociraptors and dragging their bodies around does seem a bit disturbing at times, but there's just enough fiction to the setting to keep realism at bay.
The only real drawbacks to this game are technical in nature. For starters, Off-Road Velociraptor Safari requires the Unity plugin, which you must download if it isn't already installed. And even with everything ready to go you can expect a long load time, no matter your connection speed. Some players have also reported numerous slowdown issues with the game. Hopefully the developer will pull out the toolbox and start optimizing the game very soon.
Despite its technical limitations, Off-Road Velociraptor Safari is crazy enough to work. For raw dinosaur-based jeep-driving carnage, look no further.