RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Wild!
Being in possession of somewhat disturbed minds, the promise of adding animals into a theme park compelled us to see just how wild Wild! actually is. So, we loaded up a crowded park, purchased the most vicious-looking tiger we could find, then dropped it right into the middle of a busy queue. The box opened, the peeps screamed, the tiger chased them, and... That was it. No blood. No dismemberment. Just a lot of running. After unsuccessfully trying to get the carnivores to eat the herbivores by sticking them in the same pen, we resigned ourselves to the fact that we were going to have to get our heads back into a more cerebral mode. Pah.
Wild! is the second expansion pack for RCT3, the first being Soaked! which arrived around six months ago. The major new additions there were the swimming pool complexes and water shows, whereas Wild! introduces the option to turn your theme park into a quasi-zoo. Getting some animals in is a thankfully simple affair involving little more than building a pen and viewing area, then dumping some creatures inside for your visiting cash-cows to gawp at.
A new level of micro-management (as if the game needed yet another) is added in the form of hiring animal keepers to keep the beasts fed and cleaned, and the frequency of feeding times can also be bumped up to draw in the crowds. As well as having dollops of shit in addition to the punters' vomit to clean up now, you've also got to keep an eye on all sorts of stats relating to how happy your animals are, giving them some company or toys to play with if they're not faring too well. Ever seen an ostrich kicking a beach ball to a rhino? Buy this, and you will.
The pack brings with it another set of campaign missions, inevitably along with another batch of tutorials that are thankfully less painful than the previous lot. The coaster-cam has been extended to the animals, so you can finally satisfy that aching desire to know how a mandrill spends its days. Also, more customisability has been added in the shape of billboards that can stream advertising from the Internet. Why anybody would want to do that is anyone's guess, but the option to import your own photos or rude drawings instead makes the feature more worthwhile.
Wet And Wild
If you've yet to purchase Soaked!, it's worth bearing in mind that a few of its features have been included here, and in some cases improved, such as the ability to tunnel into sloping ground. As a whole, Wild! doesn't bring anywhere near as many new complications as its predecessor did to what's already a relatively heavy-going game, and that counts in its favour for our money.
Nevertheless, the hundreds of tiny icons that lead to more tiny icons which make up the crux of the annoyingly fiddly interface still hasn't been addressed, and the needlessness of its complexity is only highlighted by the splendidly intuitive system recently seen in The Movies. This fact alone is unlikely to put off RCT3's die-hard fan base, who'll find plenty to enjoy here. It'll take more than some monkeys playing with themselves to win over any new fans to the series though, even if you can shoot at them.
Download RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Wild!
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP