When we monitor our communication channels (Forum, Steam, Discord, Facebook, and others) we’re so proud of how kind and helpful our community is (another huge thanks for that!). Any new player gets proper suggestions and advice instantly. On the other hand, we felt guilty we weren’t so helpful ourselves, as Classic is quite difficult for new players. Therefore, we decided we needed to do our bit too, and we started with re-doing the Tutorials from scratch. For now, we are glad to present two brand new tutorials to you: The Basics and Tower Usage, to be followed by a few others which are in progress and will be added later. We hope it will help our new players understand the game’s hunting techniques better and grow our beloved community!
Please note that this update is bigger than usual due to some small internal changes that have caused Steam to recalculate a few extra files… We’ve done what we can to mitigate the size but unfortunately, we can’t reduce it any further.
Here’s a cool video from veteran hunter and content creator HooCairs taking a first look at the new feline:
Last but not least, our translators have been very busy making sure theHunter Classic speaks your language, and we want to thank them for the awesome job they are doing!
On that note, we are still looking for translators for the following languages:
A new game update is live, and we want to let you know all the cool stuff you will find in it!
✅ New species: Snow Goose
A new waterfowl has been introduced to the Whiterime Ridge reserve: the Snow Goose! Their name comes from their bright white feathers, however, some snow geese are actually gray/blue colored, and known as “blue morphs.” You will be able to hunt both variants, together with a much rarer one, in the snowy lands and cold skies of Whiterime Ridge.
✅ New winter camo for the 20 GA Semi-Automatic Shotgun
With the introduction of Snow Geese we thought you might need a suitable camo for one of the waterfowl-hunting favourite shotguns.
✅ 3 Snow Goose Static Decoys
Static decoys for Snow Goose come in three flavors to increase realism: Feeder, Sentry and Active.
✅ Snow Goose “Flapping-Wings” Decoy
This type of decoy mimics the wing movement of a real Snow Goose.
✅ Snow Goose Flag Lure
This flag features the characteristic black and white color pattern of a Snow Goose and can be used at long range to attract geese with motion resembling a goose flapping its wings.
✅ Snow Goose Long Range Caller
This caller is used to increase the probability of birds breaking off from high flying flocks, and attempting to land, as they fly over an area.
✅ Snow Goose Short Range Caller
This caller produces all the honks, clucks and feeding cackles needed to attract the birds that have already broken off a flock.
✅ Waterfowl Blind – Arctic Winter Real Vegetation Camouflage
Especially designed for waterfowl hunting this blind comes decorated with foliage and vegetation from boreal forests and provides excellent visual reduction in subartic environments.
Last but not least, check out this cool video from Master Hunter HooCairs showcasing the Snow Goose and the new items!
As the new release is finally live, we want to let you know all the new stuff you will find in it.
An old time theHunter’s favorite, the turkey, has been given a complete redesign to give both toms and hens a more realistic look.
The redesign includes all 5 color variations:
12 GA Blaser F3 Game O-U Shotgun – Forest Camo
To help you hunt the new turkey in his natural environment a new camo has been created for this popular shotgun.
Three New “Real Vegetation” Waterfowl BlindsThese newly designed waterfowl blinds are decorated with vegetation from the surrounding environment to achieve a more realistic camouflage. Each blind can accommodate 4 hunters (or 3 hunters and 2 dogs) as opposed as the 3 hunters capacity of the existing waterfowl blinds.
The new waterfowl blinds comes in three flavors:
Please note that these blinds will not replace the existing ones, both types will be available in the store.
Rusa deer and Sambar deer antlers have been reworked (angles, scale, position of main beams and tines) to achieve a more realistic look.
We are aware there’s still room for improvement for these antlers and this is something we will continue to focus on in the next release.
Quality of life: Ability to rotate blinds
It is now possible to rotate the position where a blind will be deployed using MOUSE 2. This feature has been added for ALL types of blinds.
Bugfixes: .22 LR Ammo bug
Fixed the .22LR ammo bug. It is now possible to kill turkeys and rabbits with one shot.
Bugfixes: Blaser F3 Crooked Barrel Rib
While we were at it we also fixed the crooked barrel rib for all Blaser F3 models (Standard, Custom Grade V and Forest Camo)
As mentioned by Alena last week, it’s now me (Graham, Community Manager) who’ll be penning Status Updates for the foreseeable future. You shouldn’t see much of a change, it should still be the same great content, just perhaps with a slightly British twist here and there! 😉
With that out of the way, let’s get into it!
Bobcats, bobcats, and more bobcats!
Did I mention bobcats? So yes, it’s been quite a theme for us these past weeks. Since our reveal stream last Thursday we’ve been really thrilled to see all of the excitement around our latest addition to theHunter Classic, the whole team has been busy beavering away putting the final touches in place for release.
Seeing as today is the big day when you all get to hunt the bobcat for the first time, it would only make sense that our bobcat-fever continues with this status update!
For those of you who didn’t catch it yet, the bobcats can be found prowling in the Loggers’ Point, Whitehart Island, Rougarou Bayou, and Settler Creeks hunting reserves. You can find more details on their behaviour and gameplay in the Release notes from Patrick and Alena below.
Bobcat Release Notes
A feline in theHunter – finally!
Cats have been the most requested species in theHunter since a long, long time ago. They have been consistently high on the wishlist in last three player surveys in which we asked what species you would like to see added next. You can see the results below (click to enlarge, please note that other options are removed for everyone’s peace of mind ;)):
Player survey 2015
Player survey 2016
Player survey 2017
The main obstacle on the feline’s thorny path to the EHR has been the complexity of the animations and, to an even larger extent, the client code. We wanted to make an intelligent and graceful cat species that would do justice to the real world counterparts. The climbing trees function has been the main reason why cats have been moved down the priority list; to spare you a long technical explanation, it would require tons of time and resources to make it possible. However, when we voiced this in the community forum, the overwhelming reaction was that people would rather have a cat that doesn’t climb trees, as opposed to no cat at all. Back then, scratching our heads, we started considering adding it for real. Once we decided that there should be cats in theHunter Classic, the natural choice was the bobcat. They fit nicely in our older North American maps, and in addition to that, they are not the most famous for their tree climbing skills.
What’s new about this species?
Our bobcats are exceptionally smart and watchful animals, with extremely sharp eyes and a keen sense of smell. Remember Turkeys? Forget about them. Bobcats will have them for breakfast (alas, not literally) when it comes to wariness. This will make hunting them challenging, but not impossible. Luckily, we have plenty of lures and gear for them, more on this below.
As if this was not enough, compared to other species, the bobcat population is rather scarce, and they prefer their own company to that of their kin, moving exclusively solo. So, bagging one will feel like a real accomplishment!
Bobcats feature a completely new type of behaviour. They sprint, and they are lightning-fast run, capable of speeds that the red kangaroos of Bushrangers Run, our swiftest species to date, can only dream about. Another curious new behaviour we introduced is “hunting”. If you are lucky, you might spot bobcats jumping around trying to catch mice. It’s fascinating to watch.
And of course, animations. If you have a chance, while in your tree stand, spare a minute and watch a bobcat moving with your binos, it’s real work of art.
How can I hunt them?
Together with bobcats, we are also introducing a new type of lure. The electronic caller, “Shockwave”. Right now it only works for bobcats but later on we are planning to add sounds for more animals, for those that it makes sense. The electronic caller is a powerful piece of equipment, imitating the high-pitched sound of distressed mouse, it attracts cats from far away, which then sneak up towards the prey. A tree-stand / tripod combined with an electronic caller is a perfect set-up for hunting them, and for your convenience we’ve also added the possibility to activate the caller remotely. Your reaction speed needs to be spot on though; being such an intelligent species, after a while a bobcat realizes that the electronic caller is a trap and if you are too slow with your finger on the trigger, you might only see the black tip of its tail.
Motion predator decoys and our good old Predator “Jackrabbit” Caller also have a chance of attracting bobcats, although again, due to the intelligence of this magnificent creature, you are unlikely to receive the same consistent results as you are used to with coyotes and foxes. You simply have to try and see what works best for you.
On a side note
With the introduction of bobcats, we took the opportunity to bring our coyotes and wolves closer to real life scale, as they have been notoriously large. After today’s patch they will feature a smaller size and, hence, scoring, which is why today we are starting the new season!
Get Yourself a Prize-Winning Kitty
In tandem with the bobcat release there is of course a special mission set with a unique trophy to get your hands on! We suggest registering and getting your hunt underway as soon as possible, these missions will only be live until the end of September!
HooCairs About Bobcats?
Ummm…Hoocair does? Join him as he gets a very special first look at the bobcat, and demonstrates his hunting expertise across the various reserves the bobcat calls home.
There’s some great tips to be found inside!
Safety First! Account Security and You.
There have been a few issues cropping up recently that our support team has dealt with, we thought it would be good to refresh you all on some “good to knows” with regards to account security.
Never give your password to anyone, including us! No member of Expansive Worlds/Avalanche Studios will ever ask you for your password and you do not need to send it when contacting us.
With the above in mind, we’re unable to investigate rouge sibling purchases or ‘friends’ messing around in multiplayer games. So please, only use your account yourself.
Only purchase your memberships and em$ directly through us from the launcher or through Steam or Paymentwall, we’re unable to assist with any other purchases. We will never ask for your payment details, or ask you to make a payment directly to us, everything goes through our store:
Any issues with purchases from third party retailers has to go back through the retailer, we have no control over them.
Any e-mails you may get from an unofficial address are most likely a scam and shouldn’t be trusted. Our special offers always require you to log into your account and make your purchase that way, we will never ask you to make a payment directly to us through PayPal.
And finally, If you have any issues at all, please feel free to contact us at Customer Support or post on the official forums for community advice!
After many years of service and having been applied to countless thousands of hours of the most realistic hunting experience, our once brilliant Hunter Score system has lost its appeal for many players. The reasons are numerous, the most brought up being the amount of weapon variations which we’ve added over years, each carrying its own achievements, further influencing the Hunter Score figures. Another one is that it has become somewhat of a never-ending and demotivating task to increase one’s Hunter Score, with the Achievements bars being set so high.
The challenge to redesign a system with such a huge amount of data, affecting every single player we’ve ever had, hasn’t been an easy one, and what we’re releasing today has gone through many iterations. Our main goal with the new system was to find a balance between preserving what you’ve already achieved in the EHR while adding additional levels to the Hunter Score which would eliminate the problem of weapon variations, making the system more compelling for beginner hunters (imagine joining the game and looking at the achievement progress bars of top players) while still attractive for players with many years of EHR hunting under their belt. As much as we would like to introduce even deeper identifiers of one’s hunting skills and the breadth of one’s gameplay (such as, we wanted to add Hunter Score points for completing missions, harvesting rare animals, competition trophies, harvest value etc.) this has proven to be a huge task for us, at least for the time being given our resources and other projects in the pipeline. In the new improved system, we’ve removed “Exploration” from counting towards your Hunter Score, as this is one of the most controversial categories. Instead we replaced it with another category (which some might find as controversial). That new category is “Collectables”, inspired by community feedback relating to mushrooms and other treasures being meaningless.
Long story short, after months of hard work we are proud to present you with the new Hunter Score. In a nutshell:
1.Achievements. Our Achievement system will remain untouched in terms of numbers and thresholds. However, it will represent nothing more than in-game achievements. As usual, you will receive an in-game pop-up and hopefully a sense of gratification after reaching achievement milestones, but this progression will have no direct impact on your Hunter Score. Achievements will become a means of gauging your own progression, competing against yourself to become a better hunter, but not something to compare yourself against others in game.
To add an additional edge to the Achievement system, we are introducing two new features: Achievement Collector Badges. They are available in five different categories, named after EHR animals and ranked by their hunting difficulty. Those badges will be awarded to you after you’ve reached a certain percentage of Achievement points available and will be displayed on your profile, under your profile picture. Badges are dynamic, which means that if the amount of Achievement points becomes higher, they get recalculated.
Achievement Master Header images. Those are the available in six different variations for each of the Achievement categories. You unlock them by reaching certain levels in becoming a Species, Weapons or Exploration Master. Unlike Achievement Collector Badges, once unlocked, images remain available to you forever, even if there are more species and weapons introduced later. You can pick the image you want to display on your profile within the Profile Settings menu. If you don’t choose any, the most recently earned head image will be displayed by default.
Level 1 – 1 harvest for every species of animals
Level 2 – 25 harvests for every species of animal.
Level 3 – 100 harvests for every species of animal.
Level 4 – 250 harvests for every species of animal.
Level 5 – 500 harvests for every species of animal.
Level 6 – 1000 harvests for every species of animal.
Level 1 – 1 harvest using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Level 2 – 25 harvests using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Level 3 – 100 harvests using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Level 4 – 250 harvests using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Level 5 – 500 harvests using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Level 6 – 1000 harvests using all unique weapons with separate Achievements.
Steam achievements. We are finally bringing out these bad boys! Steam achievements will mirror our existing achievements per animal, unique weapon as well exploration and total harvests. To unlock an animal or weapon achievement, you need 250 harvests per animal / weapon (except duck, geese and mallards, those have 1000 harvests). Exploration and total harvests have different levels, please check all the details on our Steam page.
2. Ranks. Ranks are the new sheriffs in town, i.e. they will count towards your Hunter Score. Ranks come in three categories. These categories are Species, Weapons and Collectables. Species and Weapons are grouped in the same way as our Skills system, so all species have their own Ranks and all unique weapons have their own too. Weapon variations, such as the three different Plinkingtons, are grouped together and harvests with any of the three of them will count towards the same Rank.
The “.22 Plinkington” comes in three color variations; “The .22 Plinkington Blue Marble”, “The .22 Plinkington Winter Camo” and the “The .22 Plinkington Wood”. All of these count toward the same Rank and no matter which gun a player uses, all kills count towards the one Plinkington Rank which in turn counts toward the Hunter Rank. What it looks like in the old system: 22 Plinkington “Blue Marble” has 100 kills .22 Plinkington “Winter Camo” has 50 kills .22 Plinkington “Wood” has 50 kills … would look like this in the new system: .22 Plinkington has 200 kills
Collectables have three Ranks: Common mushrooms, Rare mushrooms and Treasures.
Each kill per Rank adds you one Hunter Score point. All Ranks are currently limited to a maximum of 500 points, aimed to make the system as accessible as possible. Please note that we will monitor the performance of the new system in the first months and will adjust the bar if we deem it necessary to do so.
That’s it! You can now go to your profile, check your new Hunter Score and new place on the Hunter Score Rank Leaderboard (please note the Hunter Score recalculation will take some time), Achievement badge and headers images. Have a look and let us know what you think!
Wolves are one of the most successful predator species in the world. These iconic animals have been long sought-after residents of the EHR and today, we are thrilled to finally bring them to theHunter. They are by far the most complex species in terms of AI and animation, that we’ve ever introduced, and probably will ever introduce. The crown jewel of theHunter animal kingdom if you like. We can’t wait to hear what you think!
Wolves are highly social animals, which is the key to their success in the wild. This is reflected in theHunter by means of our new group behaviour, new hunting behaviour and the calls they make.
A wolf pack in theHunter has a three-level hierarchy, which is visible in their unique animations. Each pack has one or two Alphas, a bunch of Betas making up the bulk of the group, as well as Omegas. In addition, there is always one lone wolf at the bottom of the hierarchy. When you pick up a howling call on your HunterMate, it will always be the Alpha of the pack.
Wolves are top of the food chain predators, and they will be chasing some animals that get too close to them. So, next time you are stalking a group of Mule Deer, decide to take a shot and raise your rifle, don’t be baffled if you see the deer spooking and running away. A couple of moments later you will surely see a pack of wolves running after them.
Carcasses and feeding
Where there are wolves, you might come across carcasses of dead animals which wolves usually prey on. Those carcasses are spawned randomly and act as bait sites, so don’t be surprised when you see a group of hungry wolves nibbling on their downed prey, all according to their group hierarchy. Stay a minute and watch them while they are it, it is truly fascinating!
Wolves use howls to signal stray members of their pack or to ward off rival packs. So, a wolf will not just howl randomly for the fun of it. It is also not likely that a lone wolf will howl on its own as it would then reveal that it has no pack around to help protect it. Your HunterMate will register a call if the howling pack is within its pick-up radius, but howling can be heard far beyond that.
Grey Wolves are hunted by spot and stalk methods or by waiting by a carcass in wolf territory. They can be lured closer with a special “Calf Elk” Caller which also has a chance of attracting Rocky Mountain Elk cows.
Time for another status update from us. If you missed the game update from yesterday, alongside some fixes and changes we’ve also added leaderboards and achievements for Polar Bear, following your unambiguous feedback. Hope you’ll enjoy hunting in the northern regions of Whiterime Ridge even more now.
As for the big news I promised you last week, yes, it IS a new reserve we are working on! We released Whiterime Ridge in autumn last year and it’s time to bring new hunting experiences to your game. What needs to be said here is that our Whiterime Ridge release was very turbulent, it was a harsh lesson for us and will do everything possible not to repeat our mistakes. For now we can only tell you that this one is going to be the biggest reserve in theHunter and our artists have been focusing on creating lots of amazing vista opportunities. If you’ve been with us long enough, you will know that creating a new location is a substantial undertaking with tons of things needing to fall into place before it’s a product ready to be shown. So, from now on we’ll be slowly revealing some bits and pieces of the upcoming location, but let the speculation commence!
And now onto another big piece of news for today, which is…
Introducing the new Recruit a Friend
We’ve always seen theHunter as the ultimate game for creating and nurturing strong bonds between people. Nothing makes us happier than seeing players from different parts of the world becoming friends for life, and real life friends and couples having fun in the EHR together. Because let’s face it, what else could make a friendship stronger than stalking a monster Brown Bear together for half an hour through the chilly hills of Hemmeldal, finally getting that big boy and posing for a memory trophy shot? Not much, in my book.
To motivate you to invite your friends to theHunter, we’ve had a Recruit a Friend programme. It has existed for a couple of years and although many of you have taken advantage of it, we felt that the programme has been lacking something.
So, we took a closer look at our Recruit a Friend system and decided to ramp it up a notch. Not only have we added more rewards to recruiters if the invited party buys a membership (including some exclusive items that are not possible to acquire otherwise), but we also put together a nice welcome package to people who joined by invitation, so they can get started hunting right away!
One year ago we released the first dog in theHunter: the jolly and rather unruly Retriever. It was a huge success and not too long after its release, players were taking their dogs with them regardless of whether they were out hunting waterfowl or deer. Soon however, it became evident that the Retriever, despite being fun to bring along on a hunt, was a retrieving specialist and not too much use when stalking deer or other animals. With the Scent Hound, you’ll get a loyal and disciplined hunting partner that you can take with you wherever you go.
Why a Scent Hound?
We saw that there was a need for a hunting dog that could cover aspects of the hunt that the Retriever was never intended to. This new dog needed to be a companion, but also serve a purpose other than simply being a pet that followed the player around. One game aspect that is time exhaustive and frustrating and also goes against hunting ethics, is animals that go unharvested due to the difficulty in finding them when they flee from the hunter after a poorly placed shot. It felt natural therefore to add a dog that would be a loyal friend out on the field, but also an aid to the player in finding those injured animals.
Impact of the dog on the game
Much like the Retriever, the Scent Hound is more of an experience and a convenience, as opposed to a game-changing addition to theHunter. The dog has no real impact on missions or competitions either since the stalking and shooting is still done by you. However, with this dog, the days of not finding animals are over.
How it works
Taking a dog with you on a hunt is simple: Just drag it out from the lodge or tent inventory and place into the dog slot in your own inventory. It will spawn next to you once you close the inventory screen. If this is the first time you bring your dog with you, you will be prompted to give it a name (choose wisely as it’s not possible to rename your dog – at least for now). Once you leave the lodge or tent area you won’t be able to un-equip the dog (try putting a Scent Hound into a backpack and see how that goes). You can access a set of dog commands by pressing the “V” button. While holding “V”, simply select the command you want to give your dog by moving the mouse in the relevant direction and confirming with a left-click. Play around with the different commands and see how your dog behaves. It’s a lot of fun!
To track a wounded animal you’ll need to walk up to a blood track, ID it (left-click on the track with the HunterMate) and then hold “V” and select “Track”. The Scent Hound will move to the selected track to get its scent and then it will start tracking. It can track blood tracks and fleeing tracks of an animal, but not water tracks. When the dog has found the dead animal it will stay by it, baying and barking so you can easily pinpoint the location. When can a Scent Hound fail with tracking? Well, there are basically two scenarios. The first is that the dog simply got distracted during tracking. It may have caught the scent of another animal or the distance between two clues was too far. The second scenario is that the animal being tracked just got brushed by a projectile, bled for a few minutes then the bleeding stopped. In this case the dog cannot continue the tracking.
When you first purchase a dog, it’s already a capable Scent Hound. It should perform its tasks without any fuzz, most of the time. But if a dog does not understand a command, a small icon with a question mark is shown. If the dog understands the command then an icon with an exclamation mark is shown. If the dog is too far away to be given a command, the icon to the right will be shown.
More experience will make your Scent Hound hone its skills as a tracker, finding clues that are farther apart and finding them faster. Your dog has 50 levels and each new level comes with a skill increase or a small gift. Levelling up is fairly quick in the beginning but will slowly become tougher and tougher. You can see your dog’s experience and level in the right corner of the screen when you bring up the command menu, as well as its stamina state.
Each performed command reduces your dog’s stamina. This doesn’t have much impact on how long your dog can work with you, but a lower stamina means it gains less experience, such as a tired dog learns a bit less than a well-rested one. Letting your dog mind its own business will regenerate its stamina.
On your dog’s profile page you’ll see two sets of icons. One set governs basic dog skills, called Loyalty skills, the other set is specific to Scent Hounds. The number in the upper left corner shows which level your dog is at on that particular skill. Each skill starts out on level 1. All Scent Hound skills have a maximum of 3 levels, but some of the Loyalty skills have more. For information on what each skill does, just hover the mouse over the skill icon.
What about those darn rascally Retrievers?
We have reviewed the Retrievers as well and increased their skill levels across the board. They will be better at understanding commands and be a little bit quicker at finding and retrieving birds than before. They will still be quite rowdy when on the move but they will perform their duties in a much more stable manner.
Special release events
To celebrate the release of our scent hounds we’ve prepared some tasty offers that you’d be barking mad to refuse. If you buy a dog before Tuesday, June 7th 12:00 CEST you’ll get a 20% discountand receive a cherry on top – free Founder collar! Please note that the free leather collar offer is only available in the Bundles section in the store. You can however buy dogs separately in the Dogs section.
Also, Daniel has created a special package of dog missions for you to hang out with your new buddy and try to win this gorgeous trophy. These are time-limited missions, and you have until Tuesday, June 7th 12:00 CEST to complete them.
We’ve also released three new winter vests for your dogs in the variety of colours – they will keep both your scent hounds and labs warm and toasty.
Now it’s time to go and make use of that heel command – happy hunting with your scent hounds!
Trying to simulate real life conditions for hunting the Polar Bear as much as possible, we created an event-based game design which will be unique for this species at this point. According to the design, a handful of Polar Bears will spawn in Whiterime Ridge reserve, which you will not be permitted to shoot unless they attack you. Polar Bears killed in self-defense will not yield any score, nor will there be a harvest screen. Our good old Doc will of course send you an educational message on the matter too.
From time to time there will be special events in the EHR during which the Polar Bear population will be huntable due to various natural influences and animal control. During such an event the aforementioned restrictions will be lifted and players will be permitted to hunt Polar Bears like any other animal. Those events will run for long enough for players with not so much time on their hands to take part in and they of course will be announced well in advance. There will be neither achievements nor leaderboards for Polar Bears.
With the release of the Polar Bear we have added a mission pack that explains why the Polar Bear is huntable this time. The population is threatened by a parasite and some culling is needed to prevent the parasite from spreading.
Fix for rare Sitka Deer and Snowshoe Hare showing up as Common in statistics
Crash fix when shooting at dead animal antlers
Fix for animals not fading out for clients in multiplayer
Fixed issue with turkey and pheasant variations
Fixed an issue with a specific tree’s LOD not showing foliage.