Planet Zoo: E3’s Dark Horse

With E3 2019 all wrapped up we’ve been looking back at our highlights of the event – including the reveal of the Planet Zoo gameplay trailer and demo, which may just be one of the biggest ‘wow’ moments of the show. Sorry, Keanu.

YouTube video
Credit: Frontier Developments.

Sponsored article: Frontier and GameByte are working together to promote the launch of Planet Zoo.

A few weeks ago, we shared everything we knew about Planet Zoo so far. Hot on the heels of the announcement trailer and press preview, this brand- new gameplay trailer gives fans the first glimpse of the graphics and the rich detail in the gameplay.

Animals Take Centre Stage

Those of you familiar with Planet Coaster‘s exaggerated human characters will see the familiar style reappearing in Planet Zoo – not a surprise given they exist in the same universe and franchise. Contrasting that with the quality of the models, textures, and animations of the animals, you can really see that they’ve been made the stars of the show. I mean, just look at the quality on this absolute unit…

A saltwater crocodile in Planet Zoo.
Scarily accurate… Credit: Frontier.

In the gameplay trailer and demo we get a glimpse of just how many different species will be in Planet Zoo. The new trailer alone shows nine unique species, with Planet Zoo‘s website revealing an additional three in the form of Wild Dogs, Cheetahs, and Gazelles. We’re confident the game will have a lot more available at launch too, including the Komodo Dragon which is available as a Deluxe Edition bonus.

With the animals in the spotlight, it’s no surprise that your guests will want to know more about them. As with zoos in the real world, education is now central to visitor experience. Planet Zoo hasn’t been shy about this – having made it a core need for your guests as they visit. You’ll be able to share information with your guests via new Zoopedia screens and these will become more detailed as you progress through the games research elements. If the announcement trailer is anything to go by then we may even see zookeepers running presentations near enclosures too.

An Evolution of the Franchise

The developer – Frontier – is the team behind the likes of Planet Coaster and Jurassic World Evolution, with Planet Zoo seeming to be an evolution of these titles.

Credit: Frontier Developments

The games definitely share some familiar elements, with the building aspects clearly based on Planet Coaster (no complaints here on that front!) and the animal needs and habitat requirements seem to have been inspired by the systems in Jurassic World Evolution with improvements to match the simulation quality of the games.

The Only Limit is Your Creativity

The demo showed off the African theme, but the team narrating what we saw on screen have promised more information on other themes and biomes at a later date. What’s clear is how many customisation options and buildings there will be. The zoo that the team at Frontier had built for the demo was exclusively based on this theme, and yet had a huge number of unique buildings, structures, and decoration. Plus, given that it’s part of the Planet franchise, you can – of course – build custom structures too.

Necky-bois. Credit: Frontier.

These custom structures go beyond gift shops, restaurants and staff rooms. Amazingly, they span guest experience and animal welfare – the developers have built an incredible system allowing would-be keepers to build enclosures that animals will truly interact with.

Frames and beams for climbing, caves and covered areas for shelter, and water for drinking and swimming are just a few examples of the dynamic range included. This freedom, combined with the animals truly unscripted behaviour, could even see animals breaking out and exploring your park given the opportunity – “you’ll have to be careful with those roofs as well,” one of the team hinted.

Credit: Frontier Developments

Planet Zoo Arrives November 2019

It’s fair to say that the demo left us incredibly excited for the release of the game, and we were delighted to hear that the launch of the game isn’t far away either, with a release slated for 5th November 2019.

Credit: Frontier Developments

If you’re as excited as we are, you can add the game to your Steam wishlist today, or get your hands on a pre-order; with the deluxe edition getting you access to an exclusive beta and 3 unique animals.

Featured Image Credit: Frontier Developments