When I was a kid I absolutely loved a cartoon called Dino-Riders. It was about a bunch of bad guys who brainwashed a bunch of dinosaurs, outfitted them with all sorts of armor and weaponry, and used those dinos for their nefarious purposes. It’s also about a bunch of good guys who did basically the same thing, but by virtuous befriending of the dinosaurs instead of brainwashing, and used their heavily armed dinos to fend off the bad guys. I don’t remember any storyline details other than that, but all that mattered was that everyone was ridin’ dinos, and the accompanying Dino-Riders toys were out of this world awesome. I had SO many of them, including perhaps the best T-Rex toy ever made. Of course someday you grow up and learn that the cartoon you loved so much only existed as a way to sell a bunch of expensive dinosaur toys to children just like me, and that their ploy worked. I was just a mark.
Still, I have so many fond memories of playing with my Dino-Riders collection, which my dear sweet grandmother gave away to charity along with all my other toys when I was in high school (I’m not bitter I swear) and I’ve frequently wondered why there aren’t more “riding dinosaurs equipped with weaponry" media or toys or especially video games. Well, Moscow-based developer Pixonic were also fans of Dino-Riders back in the day, and it inspired them to make a third-person shooter based on that very idea. It’s called Dino Squad, and you can hear the Pixonic community managers describing the game in the video below (or you can skip to about the 1:00 mark if you want to get straight to the gameplay):
As mentioned in that video, Pixonic is responsible for another mobile online shooter called War Robots which has seen great success and more than 150 million downloads since its launch back in 2014. Which is great and all, but it doesn’t have dinosaurs. Which is why I’m all about this Dino Squad business. The Android version of the game is currently available for pre-registration on Google Play, and the iOS version is available for pre-order on the App Store with an expected release date of April 29th. However, if you like the look of the game and you just can’t wait, today Dino Squad launched worldwide in open beta. You can grab the Testflight version for iOS right here, and if you’re on Android you can sign up for beta access through Google Play here. It sounds like beta progress will transfer over to the full launch version too, so why not give it an early look?