Planet Zoo was a near-perfect revival of the zoo management sub-genre that the Zoo Tycoon games of old once dominated. Using all of the success and learning from the equally successful and impressive Planet Coaster, Frontier Developments delivered strongly upon the promise of realistic animals, full control and a high-quality look and feel to the whole experience. Naturally, this left fans wanting more; in particular, more animals. Likely with a plan already in their pocket for just such a demand, Frontier have deployed the Arctic Pack for Planet Zoo, bringing cool new vibes to their game (sorry).
On the menu in the Arctic Pack are four new species of animal, hundreds of new park scenery assets and a duo of new scenarios. The former is naturally the headline article, introducing Polar Bears, Reindeer, Arctic Wolves and Dall Sheep into the fray. Each of these species comes with their own new and demanding needs, adding a genuinely new set of considerations and challenges into the Planet Zoo mix. Of these, the Polar Bears are by far the most demanding. Requiring not only the cool, climatic stability of each of these species but also the extensive space that any large animal would require, your Polar Bear enclosure forces its way to being your headline act. As they say, bigger is better, and these animals certainly bring the bigger to the park! Every one of the new species is as delightful to just watch as any of the originals from the main game, too; especially as you watch the younglings learn, grow and play.
The scenarios follow as a quick second in terms of what they add to the game. In Norway, you are able to get to grips with the new needs management that the incoming new species demand, but in a more free-to-operate way than the main game’s missions. The better of the two scenarios, though, is the Mexico campaign. Attempting to bring the new Arctic inhabitants to the warmer climate of the country provides you with one of the game’s most satisfying challenges to-date. Certainly, it feels like the hardest scenario that has been offered thus far. A further thumbs up must be given to the return of Bernie Goodwin, the eccentric narrator of Planet Zoo who is back to talk you through the new adventures, creating a pleasing continuity between the new DLC and the Planet Zoo base game. If anything, the new content is over too soon.
The Arctic Pack’s draw is signed off with assets aplenty; with more than 200 new park objects (allegedly – I confess I did not count them) being added to the game. Whilst some of these are seasonal items to spruce up your park with once a year, others exist purely to allow you to create the frosty theme of your dreams. In line with the main game, every new animal and asset which has been added is of impressively high quality and offers decent value for money for what you get. There is little to be disappointed by in the pack as a whole, leaving only one question for fans; should you go in now, or should you wait for an inevitable Steam sale? If you feel a burning desire for something new in Planet Zoo then you are unlikely to regret going in, but new players to the game can probably wait out the desire to purchase the Arctic Pack until they have expended the main game’s offerings. The DLC feels like a natural continuation of the base title and is unlikely to be the last new addition that Frontier make. Whether you go in now or wait until later though, the Planet Zoo Arctic Pack bodes well for the future development of the game.
You can purchase Planet Zoo Arctic Pack DLC on Steam by clicking here – https://store.steampowered.com/app/1196770/Planet_Zoo_Arctic_Pack/ – none affiliated link
You can purchase the base game on Steam by clicking here – https://store.steampowered.com/app/703080/Planet_Zoo/ – none affiliated link
Developed and Published by Frontier Developments plc and available on PC for Windows.
This Review is based on the Steam Version on PC
Planet Zoo Arctic Pack DLC
Join Bernie Goodwin on an epic Arctic adventure and explore new challenges, animals, and more! Alongside two new Scenarios in which you face new challenges as a zoo manager, there are four new animals and over 200 scenery pieces to make your parks as cool as ice.
Product Currency: GBP
Product Price: 7.99