The most realistic online hunting game ever produced. Experience the thrill of the hunt in huge realistic environments using everything from crossbows to state of the art bolt action rifles.
User reviews: Mixed (6,894 reviews)
Release Date: Jun 3, 2014

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Play theHunter

Free to Play

Recommended By Curators

"This game is for these who love to hunt animals, kinda simulator game, its great that steam made it for free. You can play for fun with friends."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (21)

October 9

Status Update 9th October 2014

Hello hunters,

It’s status update time and today we're happy to tell you that the Expansive Worlds' crew has grown, again! Three new team members have joined us to work on a side project, not related to theHunter. What's it about, you'll all find out when the time is right, as for now – please meet our new artist Simone, animator Dick and client programmer Anders. You can get to know them in the intros in our blog and say ”Hi” in the forums.

The new .22 ”Grasshopper” Pistol

Today we released a new weapon that has been suggested and requested by the community for a long, long time – the .22 ”Grasshopper” pistol, specially designed for hunting birds and small game. Following the introduction of the ”Grasshopper”, the ethical animals list for .357 revolvers will be adjusted. From now on it won't be permitted for mallards, geese or pheasants, since, as many of you have pointed out in the past, it's too large a caliber for birds. The reason why birds were on the ethical list before is that we simply didn't have a handgun option for them, which has changed now. Enjoy “grasshopping”!

Val-des-Bois will be less full now

Many players have touched on the fact that the new reserve seems to be more densely populated than the rest of the EHR. Following this discussion, we've made some re-evaluation and slightly lowered the numbers of Roe Deer, Red Deer and Red Fox on Val-des-Bois due to overcrowding in the lower part of the reserve. The narrow shape of the valley pushed animals together too much which indeed resulted in a less realistic animal population, compared to other reserves.

TheHunter went viral

Recently theHunter has been enjoying a lot of attention on Twitch and YouTube, which is really cool! In the last week a bunch of popular gaming channels have made videos of theHunter with total combined views of almost 3 million. You can check some of the videos on these channels: SergeantMerrel, TheDevildogGamer, jacksepticeye, SeaNanners Gaming Channel, CriousGamers, TheRPGMinx.Thanks for spreading the word about theHunter everyone, we love what you do!

That's it for today, happy hunting!

11 comments Read more

October 2

Status Update 2nd October 2014

Howdy hunters,

It’s been a week since Val-des-Bois was released and from the feedback we’ve gathered so far you seem to love it, and so do do we! There have been lots of nice videos and live streams shared in the forums and social media, thank you everyone for doing a great job showing the beauty of Val-des-Bois. Here are a couple of our favourite community videos:

By Aryvuel

By yakuza8183

Ask me Anything with Andrés and Danny

It’s been a while since our last AMA session with NAOutdoors, so now, when we’ve come down from our Val-des-Bois release madness, we thought it’s time to to do it again, since you’ve probably built up lots of new questions for us. This time it will be a double AMA with our client programmers Andrés and Danny – don’t miss your chance to pick their brains with tough questions about the physics, performance and logic of the game, as well as other trickeries. Andrés is also one of our team veterans and has been working on theHunter the longest, he allegedly has heaps of secret game knowledge, so make sure to ask the right questions ;) Please note that, although Andrés and Danny are our ”bug fixers”, they will not be able to reply or comment on specific bug reports and questions like: ”Why isn’t X bug fixed yet?”, please use our bug forums for such queries.

Andrés and Danny’s AMA thread will be unlocked for 48 hours, starting at 9:30 CEST on October 3rd. All the questions will be moderated and supervised by the moderation team, the standard AMA rules apply.

All theHunter goodness in your inbox

This week we’re launching our own newsletter. It will be sent out weekly and will be packed with news and updates, special campaigns and promotions, interesting tidbits from our community and other goodies. If you want to keep up to speed with everything going on about theHunter but don’t have time or energy to regularly check our news feed, forum and social media, this is definitely something for you. To receive our newsletter, enter your email in this form and hit ”Subscribe”. You can unsubscribe any time and we promise not to send you any junk, only great stuff!

Happy hunting!

6 comments Read more


“The Hunter offers the most compelling hunting experience ever offered by a PC game.”
MMO Reviews

“This game looks incredible, the graphics are simply astonishing”
90% – Retro Game Shelf

“The complete experience of tracking and hunting an animal is highly-rewarding and simply not found in other games.”
88% – Gaming Nexus

About This Game

The most realistic online hunting game ever produced. Experience the thrill of the hunt in huge realistic environments using everything from crossbows to state of the art bolt action rifles. Realistic animal behavior and persistent online features provides a living world where you can roam casually or compete with other players for glory and fame.

Go hunting with your friends in multiplayer with up to 8 players - or explore the seven diverse and immersive hunting reserves in the ever evolving world of theHunter by yourself.

Key Features

  • Hunt 20 different species including Black Bear, Brown Bear, Moose, Whitetail Deer, Turkey, Pheasant, Coyote, Red Fox, Roosevelt Elk, Wild Boar, Red Deer, Roe Deer, Mule Deer, Blacktail Deer, Feral Hog, Mallard, Canada Goose, Cottontail Rabbit, Reindeer & Alpine Ibex.
  • Explore 8 different huge environments with state-of-the-art graphics, complete with day cycle and weather effects.
  • Co-op multiplayer with up to 8 friends
  • Extensive online features. Increase your skills, see statistics and trophy shots. Participate in competitions and leaderboards or take on challenging missions and achievements.
  • theHunter is continuously updated with new species, environments, equipment and features.

Progression & Acquiring Items In The Game

Two huntable species (Mule Deer, Cottontail Rabbit), a weapon (.243 Bolt-Action Rifle) and a bunch of additional equipment are available for free when first entering the game. Additional items such as weapons, species licenses and ammo can be acquired with gm$, the in-game currency that can be earned through play, or em$, the in-game currency that can be earned through winning competitions or purchase for real money.

There are several different types of skills in the game that increase when players use items & hunt various species. As these skills increase, more abilities get unlocked, such as the ability to tell weight & gender from animal tracks and steadier aim for weapons.

Achievements can be earned through diverse in-game activities. Each achievement adds to your HunterScore, which can be used as a progression comparison vs. other players. Additionally, increasing the HunterScore unlocks upgrade items such as pouches & holsters.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows ® 8/7/Vista/XP
    • Processor: Intel 2 GHz or AMD Dual Core
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVidia GeForce 8800, ATI/AMD Radeon HD 2400 (NVidia GeForce 8800, ATI/AMD Radeon HD 2400)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 7 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible
Helpful customer reviews
3,181 of 3,581 people (89%) found this review helpful
144.8 hrs on record
Hello everybody,

I play this game since nearly the beginning, have seen the initial developer go bankrupt and the new developer take over. I have seen month with nothing happening in terms of developments and I have seen the last few month after multiplayer was released with new stuff released every few weeks.

If you love hunting simulations, theHunter for sure is the game you want. It's way more realistic then Cabela's games, it has pretty nice graphics and huge different hunting locations with many, many animals to hunt. Every species feels special and there has not been a really good hunting simulation since Deer Hunter 2005.

- Pricing -
The downside: You need to invest a whole lot of money. To really enjoy the game you need a membership for about 5$ a month. No membership and you can only hunt very few species, need to buy ammo for all but the default rifle and can't create multiplayer games. Sure you can stick with some basic guns, but to take part in competitions and finish missions you need a whole lot of different guns. Each between 3 and 5$. Not to forget, there are tree stands, ground blinds and tents you would like to use sooner or later because there are very few fixed hunting towers on the maps and... yes, each of these items is another 4,50$ from your wallet.

Just a few numbers for you:
All weapons with scopes (not caluclation different skins or "premium" skins)
more then 150$

All callers (no decoys, no consumables like scents):
about 20$

Decoys for one full area for each species:
about 30$

Clothing depends on what you want, so I don't add a number to this, but each clothing set is about 5$... and you guess it: Some work better in different areas or against different species.

Stands and tents... lets say two of each for each reserve, you place them permanently, you don't want to pick them up after each hunt, so you can't really use the same two everywhere.
more then 200$

Sure, you are free to choose if you want this items, but to get everything out of the game you want this stuff. And more, every few weeks there is a new weapon, new cool cloth and your membership runs out every now and then.

- Earn ingame money -
There are ways to earn ingame money: Win competitions, but without spending money you can only take part in very few competitions and so the chance is low (and the prize money gets you nowhere). The developers also have partnered with third-party pages who offer you some money for playing other online games, taking part in surveys or downloading and using different applications. The results are spam on your email address, malware and a lot of these offers simply don't reward you.

There is a different ingame currency you earn completing missions, but you can only use this "money" on consumables and you need a good bunch of weapons to finish most missions, so again: No way without spending money. There is no way to grind the gear inside the game.

Without spending money you stick with the .243 for the free Mule Deer and you can unlock the Single Shot Shotgun to hunt Cottontail Rabbits, but you need to buy the ammo for it. That works with earned money for some time, but sooner or later you will run out of missions to do without buying weapons or a membership for real money.

- Bugs -
The game is full of bugs. I personally can't say there are gamebreakers, but animals getting stuck in trees, climbing trees, nearly all weapons stuck into your arm and broken reloading animations and other smaller and bigger bugs are around since a long time and often they return after a few patches. Gamebreaking bugs get fixed pretty fast but smaller bugs are often not relevant enough (and the fixes can't be sold like new weapons or cloth) so we will for sure see this bugs for some more time.

- Community -
Just have to add it now, after multiple insults from fanboys. This game has a small die hard community that are happy to have this game, due it's the only one of it's kind. This makes them accept and defend every action the developers take. Since this review I often got friend requests from some of these guys that have nothing better to do then to tell me I'm a hypocrit to play this game a lot and not remommending it in my review. That's what you get from the community if you are not a 100% fan and don't think it's okay to pay a small fortune for this game.

- Conclusion -
As said, I'm into this game since years, I love it and I will keep playing it, but since about a year this game is all about money and everything ingame is pretty expensive.
Like with this the pre-release review postet on Steam, my personal experience showed me, that the developers break promises and contracts, lie in some cases, solve things always to their best and only communicate public what makes them look good.

- Tipp for beginners -
If you enjoyed the small free part, go to or google for "theHunter 2014 box" and purchase a key from the boxed edition of the game. For about 17 € you get 6 month membership (hunt all species, get free ammo for all guns) some starter weapons that allow you to hunt all species ethically and some additional gear. It's the best deal you can currently get as a beginner. This box is also available at Amazon and some other retailers if you want the box itself.

- Update after some actions taken -
Today the developers release a new .22 handgun and to make the game more realistic, changed the existing and wide spread .357 handgun and made it unethical for some species. What might be realistic is clearly forcing players to buy the new gun for about 4$.

Changing already sold virtual items might be common but this change make this weapon pretty useless. Why? Because a lot of players have it. It's not a good weapon against larger animals and was pretty often used against birds, now the only animals it's good for are fox and coyote.

The new reserve released some time ago included the new "feature" of climbing walls... what simply is a bad mini game and asks you to buy a new consumable: Climbing gear. Some would argue that it's purchaseable with gm$ and you can take 75% back if you remove it, but it's again something that will eat up the earned gm$ from free players and make this game harder to play for free (besides, it's a ♥♥♥♥ty mechanic that has nothing to do with hunting).
Posted: June 2
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1,919 of 2,232 people (86%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
How dare anyone call this product Free To Play [F2P]? The free content in the game is limited to one kind of animal, one map and default equipment. It is worse than a demo, or even a trial. Everything in this game is available after paying, constantly paying. Forget about "I paid once, I will have it all forever". Pay and play, pay and play.
Posted: June 3
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1,189 of 1,446 people (82%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
There's Free to play and then there's "Free to Play". If you want to play this with a friend (multiplayer) you'll need to buy a 3, 6 or 12 month membership. Price? 15 bucks for 3 month. 15 bucks that do not include any other items, just to be able to play online, with a friend. For 3 month. Obviously not recommended.
Posted: June 3
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824 of 1,042 people (79%) found this review helpful
2.9 hrs on record
I really had some good few hours. This was the first time I played a hunting game and I really expected nothing from it.
But I was surprised how how good the game was from its technical view. It's not the best looking game but the flora and fauna really got some love and detail, the sound is awesome and the lighting and sun effects are also really nice.
Really felt like being in the woods.
Now here's the negative trait. This game's free2play model is nowhere near anything you might consider as free to play and fair. Everything costs a lot of money and either you join the membership or you have a walking simulator (you're only allowed to hunt rabbits and mule deers).
It's more like a demo when you don't plan to invest money. The game even calls you a guest. And oh boy, the pricing is insane.
Probably a good hunting game, but I can't recommend it. It's a shame cause it was really an atmospheric experience for me.
That said I think if you are a really passionate hunter in real life you would probably gladly spend money on this one and you would probably go nuts about all people who complain abouth the subscription model.
Posted: June 2
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202 of 237 people (85%) found this review helpful
211.0 hrs on record
You can only shoot 1 of the 18 animals for free. Solution: pay for hunter licenses.
You can only shoot deer, fox and coyote with the free gun. Solution: pay for more guns.
You want to play with friends in multiplayer. Solution: pay a sub so that your computer and your internet can be used to setup a server.
You don't get the carry capacity to do even semi-long hunts. Solution: pay for extra carry capacity.
You payed for extra carry capacity but you still don't have the carry capacity to do awesome long hunts whole day long. Solution: NONE!!!
You can travel free on maps from lodges but on all maps this is very time consuming with how they were layed out by the developers. Solution: pay for tents and camping equipment.
You don't get free ammo for 32 of 33 weapons in the game. Solution: keep paying money for new ammo (hardcore simulator?) or buy a membership.
You don't like your clothes or the fact animals can see you from miles away because there is no telling which bush actually gives you cover or not. Solution: Pay for clothing items.
You're tired of stalking animals for hours before you get a shot at them. Solution: Pay for callers, decoys, ground stands, tree stands, tripods, scent lures, feeders, bait.

I'm surprised the developers don't ask money for every footstep you take into the game.
If you buy the $15 starter pack, you will be missing tons of guns and all other equipment that are simply needed to enjoy the game. But even if you spend $50 on the biggest starter pack, you still miss many equipment to hunt half the animals in the game and the weapon selection in the biggest package is rather sad (I wouldn't dare to say it was done deliberately to lure you into buying the more fun/better weapons later seperately wasting all the money you gave in the first place on guns that will be gathering dust).

This is the best executed hunter game ever if money grows on your back. We're talking at least €200 here to start enjoying most of the full game. If you really want to hunt in luxury (it's a game, who wouldn't want to?) you'll start looking at a lot more money than that.
The game is easily 8/10. The amount of money you have to throw at the game to actually get to that 8/10 makes it a 1/10 at best.

My library hopefully shows I'm not one to be afraid to spend money on games. But these guys brought it to a level that I have never seen before. Congratulations on surpassing Korean MMO's EW.

Addendum: subscription

And what are people paying subscription for?
Retextured or new weapons? Because you have to pay to get those.
New animals? Because you have to buy licenses to hunt those.
New equipment for the new animals? Nope not that either because you have to pay for all the new callers and feeders and stands.
Multiplayer? Well they did add MP afterwards but it can't be it since an MP game is hosted on our computer with our internet connection. And they didn't spend any effort on making a standalone server or adding any useful filters in the client browser to warrent anything special. That is if you are lucky enough the client browser is working without big lag and there are none of the many connection and disconnection issues.
New clothing? Again these cost money.
New maps? Well it must be maps then since there isn't anything else. So we're paying €35/year for the 4maps? they added in the last 5years. Those are some damn expensive maps!

We're not paying for continued development of the engine either.
- View distance of 210m for weapons that can make accurate shots of 500m.
- Trees that are literally square with highest ingame settings and the leafs are just flat green 'sheets'.
- Game settings can only be adjusted outside of the game.
- A fox and pheasant can just walk next to eachother because it's a fairytale land where all animals are big friends.
- Mouse often feels laggy/jaggy however you want to call it. Many people have these small FPS drop problems and support just ignores it all.
- The surface has the most annoying edges which makes it very awkward to crawl up to an animal and finding an angle where your gun gets enough depression.
- Floating rocks, plants and trees everywhere you look on the map.
I can go on further with a list of technical stupidities that were allready old tech 5years ago.
Posted: June 11
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