Frontier Developments has unveiled a major expansion for Jurassic World Evolution 2, introducing four new Cretaceous dinosaur species alongside impactful new features and improvements arriving in Free Update 8.
Released on November 29th, 2023, the paid Cretaceous Predator Pack DLC brings feathered killers based on recent paleontological evidence and deep lore connections, while the free update adds long-requested additions like automated hatcheries and prebuilt park layouts.
Cretaceous Giants Bring Feathers and Fangs
The Cretaceous Predator Pack allows players to populate their parks with dinosaurs at the peak of the predators’ reign, introducing four lethal hunters:
Utahraptor: A cousin of the famous Velociraptor, this large dromaeosaur clocks in at over 6 meters long. Covered in feathers, it employs large hand claws to eviscerate prey.
Gigantoraptor: An 8-meter-long oviraptorosaur and one of the largest feathered theropods ever discovered. It sports elongated legs for pursuing herbivores over long distances.
Concavenator: A uniquely-humped carcharodontosaur with unrivaled agility allowing complex pack hunting behaviors.
Tarbosaurus: Inspired by its appearance in the Camp Cretaceous Netflix series, this Tyrannosaur cousin boasts the strongest bite force of any terrestrial predator in history.
These dinosaurs fill important niches and help diversify parks, while introducing new skins, animations, behaviors and terrain tools.
Free Update Overhauls Management Depth
While extra dinosaurs are always exciting, Update 8 maybe even more monumental with its introductions of highly-requested features. These include:
Automated Hatcheries: Players can now set population targets, with hatcheries automatically releasing dinosaurs to meet goals. This also enables delivery to other enclosures.
Species Unlock Shuffling: Randomizes research order for unlocking species, increasing challenge and replayability.
Pack Hunting: Select small carnivores now demonstrate coordinated attacks, just like velociraptors in films.
Prebuilt Park Layouts: 10 maps now feature starting setups with paths, enclosures and buildings from campaign levels, for faster sandbox starts.
Alongside visual variety like building skins and dino variants, the update also brings stability fixes and quality-of-life changes requested by the passionate community.
Player Reactions: Nostalgia and Promise
Releasing alongside a major film franchise comes with pressures to capture iconic species. Frontier Developments has responded well by picking dynamic dinosaurs that build hype.
According to Claire Dearing voice actress Bryce Dallas Howard, “This game continues to fulfill the promise that brought me to the franchise in the first place – the ability to connect deeply with these majestic creatures that once walked this Earth. That palpable sense of awe and wonder, captured in Jurassic World Evolution 2, is unparalleled.”
Fans agree, with Reddit user ‘NateZilla10000’ stating: “The species roster is everything I could’ve asked for. Feathered raptors, a humped carcharodontosaur, an oviraptorosaur larger than the Rex, and of course the iconic Tarbosaurus.”
User ‘Thylaco‘ meanwhile calls the pack hunting, automated systems and new maps “an exciting move towards management depth.”
With incredible animated dinosaurs and improved strategic complexity, the Cretaceous Predator Pack and Update 8 add phenomenal value to an already stellar park builder.
The Future of the Franchise
While this expansion provides meaty content now, Frontier Developments promises more support down the line. Community Manager ‘Batty’ confirms they will “continue working to bring additional content to the game”, though no specifics are currently available.
With a foundation of great mechanics and visuals, plus a dedication to improvement, Jurassic World Evolution 2 demonstrates immense potential moving forward. The developer clearly values fan feedback and acting upon it, while using new scientific evidence to keep their dinosaurs fresh and exciting.
If Frontier maintains this trajectory, the franchise could soon become one of gaming’s most beloved and polished park simulation titles. For now, new players have a bigger, better experience to dive into, while veterans gain awesome additions that demonstrate a commitment to growth.