If you were playing video games at home on your PC in the late nineties like I was, chances are you were pretty excited when Deer Hunter came out. The simulated outdoor experience created by Sunstorm Games was not only a great commercial success, spawning numerous sequels and spinoffs, but also an industry benchmark for first-person 3D programing. It blew Duck Hunter out of the water, and any other hunting-specific games that were around didn’t even compare.

Sunstorm continued to dominate the hunting video game market for about ten years, and when iPhone apps came along, the Las Vegas company was ready to put its mark on mobile gaming. Maybe it was the residual brand awareness among a huge group of thirty-something gamers, or maybe it was just awesome graphics and a great user experience that made the revitalized Real Hunting games a huge success on iTunes. First came Real Deer Hunting in late 2009, then Real Bird Hunting Challenge, followed by Real Trophy Hunting.

What I like about these hunting apps are the detailed background graphics, the 3D, first-person POV and the realistic movements of the animals, especially the birds in flight. Sunstorm easily has the best graphics among all hunting apps. Each Real Hunting game comes with over a dozen hunting locations, each with various animal species, weather conditions, terrain and foliage. Choose your weapon: Crossbows, rifles, pistols and bows all feature realistic aiming apertures and are designed after real-life models, like the Remington 870 Wingmaster.

And when you bag a big one you can put his head on the wall of your virtual trophy room, and even send screenshots of your kill to your buddies. Hey, it’s all about BRAGGING RIGHTS!!! Additional cool gear options include binoculars and scopes you can raise and lower, various attractant options, like rattling, bugling, grunting and using scents. But don’t OVER-DO-IT, and for crying out loud STAY STILL! You might be sitting in church, but you’re still hunting . . . Don’t let that buck get away!

Remember playing Deer Hunter on your PC in the late nineties? Well, Sunstorm Games has brought it back for the iPhone and iPad, plus a Real Bird Hunter, Real Trophy Hunter and more! Check them out on the iTunes App Store!

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