Dutch’s Past In Predator Hunting Grounds Revealed by Arnold Schwarzenegger
Predator Hunting Grounds may just be a multiplayer game. But it takes the time to expand on the series’ story with tapes recorded by Arnold himself.
As an asymmetric, multiplayer shooter, Predator: Hunting Grounds mostly focuses on the gameplay and action. However, they did fans of Predator lore a huge favor by shedding light on the actions of the original film’s hero, Dutch, in audio tapes recorded by Arnold Schwarzenegger himself.
In the original 1987 Predator film Arnold Schwarzenegger plays Alan “Dutch” Schafer, an American special ops commando whose team is sent to the South American jungles of Val Verde on a mission to rescue an important Guatemalan politician. When Dutch’s team arrives, they find the politician brutally murdered. In the end, Dutch’s mission had been a setup to retrieve other captured American agents, but all of that changed when they were attacked by an unknown, invisible entity. In truth, the politician had been slaughtered by a Predator, an alien life form who travels to other planets hunting challenging species of prey. The Predator massacres Dutch’s entire crew, but Dutch survives and defeats the alien menace. Dutch’s tapes in Hunting Grounds reveal exactly what he did after killing the Predator, and then covers his actions during the 40 year gap between then and the year the game takes place in, 2025.
In his tapes, Dutch reveals that after the Predator ritualistically blew itself up in defeat. Dutch was recovered by the American Government. Dutch, suffering from radiation poisoning after the blast, shares his story with a spy by the name of Peter Keys. Keys worked for the Other Worldly Life Forms Programs, or the OWLF. And despite accepting Dutch’s story, only seemed to desire his information for the technological benefits. Wary of the threat posed by the predators. Dutch cuts his radiation treatment short and goes off the grid before traveling back to Val Verde. Once he gets to South America, Dutch collects local folk stories to gain more information on the Predators. He fully expects the Predators to return to Earth.
Four years since the events of Predator pass, and Dutch shares intel with Agent Keys in Val Verde. However, he gets impatient with the progress both him and the OWLF have made so far. He begins working as a mercenary in any hot, violent environment (the ideal hunting grounds of a Predator). Eventually, Dutch puts his own team together and encounters another Predator. Dutch successfully kills this Predator, but once again remains the only survivor in his team. He recovers evidence from the Predator’s corpse and makes his way back to America. But is too late to interfere in the events of Predator 2. Dutch is captured by the OWLF. But barters his way to freedom by trading alien technology and his services as a consultant.
Through their combined efforts, Dutch and the OWLF become efficient Predator killers. As a result, Dutch begins encountering more vicious, more skilled Predators. The appearance of these more powerful opponents causes Dutch to doubt himself. Is he simply bringing more danger to Earth by making humans more of a threat? These issues become more escalated as a second intelligence agency enters the fray. The agency known as Stargazer begins taking action with no regard as to the danger presented by Predators. In a matter of years, they nearly dismantle the entire OWLF and begin gearing up to deal alien weaponry to human buyers, further escalating Earth’s conflicts and making the environment more attractive to Predators.
By 2025, Dutch and the OWLF successfully turn the tide against Stargazer. However, that has not stopped the world from becoming a more apt environment for Predator interference. Their appearances have become more common, and they have become more dangerous. By this time Dutch is almost 80 but physically resembles someone in their 40s thanks to a variety of experimental medical treatments based on Predator technology. He has realized that his actions have escalated the violent relationship between Predators and humans. As the events of Predator: Hunting Grounds unfold, Dutch has no choice but to continue fighting Predators in the hopes that humans become strong enough to repel an all out Predator assault before the aliens stop hunting and begin waging war.