Exoprimal, a new game from Capcom, is a unique combination of squad-focused shooter and competitive elements. It is not a revival of the Dino Crisis series, as many fans initially believed, but a game that stands on its own. The game, which was first revealed in 2022, features mech-suit-wearing mercenaries battling against an overwhelming horde of dinosaur baddies in a sci-fi time-travel narrative. In this article, we will explore the game’s premise, gameplay, and potential.
The Game’s Premise and Gameplay
Exoprimal is set on Earth in the 2040s, where time portals have brought dinosaurs into the modern world, creating a global crisis. A crew of mercenaries known as “exofighters” use their arsenal of exosuits and high-tech weapons to intercept each incursion, dispatch the deadly dinos, and complete objectives to acquire new intel to uncover the mystery of why the dinosaurs are invading. The game’s opening hours send players into the deep end with its lore, which is a strange yet intriguing premise that feels like Pacific Rim with bits of the Dino Crisis series.
The game is a squad-based hero shooter that mixes battles with both AI minions and rival players, known as “PvEvP” (player versus environment versus player) gameplay. For each wargame match, two opposing squads are in parallel competition. Both teams have similar goals, but only one can come out on top to get maximum intel for Leviathan, the AI construct that heads up the campaign. During each game, the squad is tasked with completing objectives, such as culling the local dinosaur herds, eliminating high-value target dinosaurs, or capturing territories on the map. The match eventually culminates in a goal to escort data payloads to their destination, which puts players in direct competition with the rival team, who they can directly engage with.
Battles can get extremely chaotic when facing the dinosaurs, and it’s an interesting dynamic to contend with in the various wargames. As it goes with the PvEvP setup, players are mostly fighting against common foes and AI-controlled baddies, but when a rival player enters the field, it feels like an invading element comes into play, which changes the flow to something more fast-paced. The setup for Exoprimal’s wargames reminded the author of Destiny 2’s fan-favourite Gambit mode, a competitive multiplayer mode that introduces common and elite foes to fight.
Success in Exoprimal comes from working with the team and using everyone’s skills as best as possible. As in games like Overwatch, players need to balance out the classes on their squad, broken up into the traditional damage dealing assault type, the resilient heavy class, and the healing support archetype. Each class has its skills and abilities that separate them from the others. Fortunately, players are free to swap between different types when they need to, but only upon respawns. Ranking up unlocks upgrades and cosmetics for the class to further tune them to the player’s liking and add new ones to their arsenal.
Potential for the Game
Exoprimal is an interesting game to see from Capcom, a developer and publisher that hasn’t had much luck building a dedicated multiplayer game in recent years. Most of their efforts have come from other IPs, like Resident Evil. But the fact that Exoprimal is its game, away from the other established franchises, may work in its favour. It still possesses that hyperactive and over-the-top vibe the developer is known for, and marrying that with such a wild premise means this game has the makings of something that could grow to find a passionate audience.
The author enjoyed the flow and pacing of Exoprimal’s matches and how these related to its bizarre yet fun plot. While there is a concern that it could run into familiar issues of repetition, the premise could help give it some solid mileage. Exoprimal is definitely not a Dino Crisis game, but it takes some wild swings that show promise for a satisfying action game to play with friends.
Exoprimal is a unique combination of squad-focused shooter and competitive elements that stands on its own. The game’s premise, gameplay, and potential make it an interesting addition to Capcom’s lineup. Despite Exoprimal’s complex approach to justifying its sci-fi dinosaur action concept, the game’s bizarre premise is intriguing, and it offers an interesting take on dynamic multiplayer shooter action with a Capcom-style spark.