Thursday, June 12, 2008

Monster Hunter - PS2

k, I figure I talk about something that I was really surprised about and gave me hrs of entertainment. Of course its the chasing a string on stick, don't knock it, its oodles of fun. When that gets tiresome which is unlikely, you can give Monster Hunter a try. I Heard about this game for some time and was intrigued about the idea that you kill monsters and then use their body parts, teeth, scales, claws, horns ,etc to make your weapons and armor.

That idea alone was enough for me. I thought that was a great premise. There is no real linear story line. You start in a village where you spend the entire game and walk around and talk with different towns folk. And by talking to them they tell you that this monster is attacking this place and this monster is attacking these crops, etc. There are a set number of quest from different townsfolk, complete each one and it opens up another more difficult set of challenges. Once you accept the challenge you leave the village to explore a area that is divided into sections. Such has the cliffs, river, jungle, cave, swamp and so on. You can't just leave the village and explore, you have to accept a mission. But once you done a easier mission and you want to go back and look around the area for items, you can repeat the mission.

I think that was my only grip with the game. With games being so open today, it felt very boxed in. But once you actually get further into the game, I am glad that they made them has small has they did. Chasing a 25 foot dragon around a set area is alot easier in smaller areas then when it takes off into the larger fields.

But back to the good. So yeah, I summed it up when I said you make your weapons and armor out of the parts of the things you kill. But there is sooooo much more to this game. Which I can see alot of people not liking. For example, you go on a hunting trip and you can make all your own provisions. For food, you kill the smaller animals, carve them up and cook them, till their rare, medium, well done or burnt. But burnt makes you sick and takes away life. You make healing and booster potions from searching in the foliage, where you find mushrooms, herb plants, insects, moss, fungus, rare metals. All of which can be used to make stuff that is really helpful in the game.

You can fish, capture bugs, search for bones, monster eggs, even look in monster poop. You can then takes theses items and combine them by trial and error to make a NEW items or sell them to make money. You need money for the blacksmith to make your weapons and armor. And money is a really hard thing to come by in this game. I think I made most of my money by fishing. IF theres one thing I learned the hard way in this game. You can't go into a hunting trip unprepared. You can only carry so many items ,so you do have to pre-plan and take what you think will be the most helpful items on the trip. Take the wrong items and your screwed. This of course is trial and error, but this time I didn't mind doing the hunting missions again and again. Each time there was something different that I could find. A rare item and such.

This game doesn't have a level up system. It has a "Make your weapons and armor" better system. For example, to a sword, one might need, teeth from the viper beast, Large bone from any monster, poison sac from the weird little bird creature and iron ore found in the caves. Once you have all these items you take them to the blacksmith and he makes the weapon specific to those items. There are tons of combinations to make all types of weapons. I honestly didn't see half of them. Which is the next point. There are different fighting styles in the game. Sticking with one fighting style only makes you a better fighter later on in the game. Unlike the guy who keeps changing his weapons every time he goes out on a hunt.

You could choose a small sword and shield, double swords, Lance, Bow guns, Large sword, and Club. I played through the entire game using the large sword. Its one if the easiest to get used too. Each weapon has its own style for fighting. The club would need thick and strong armor for close combat since the swing time is so slow and the chance of getting hit goes up. Where as the Bow gunner has light armor, making it easier to stand back from afar and prep the gun and aim and shoot then run away.

Each area has its own I guess a boss, or large monster that you have to kill. They are mostly Dragon type monsters. They do a great job of making you shit your pants when one of these things charge towards you and you don't know what to do. But like all animals, they have a behavior, and knowing what affects a animals behavior is key to killing or trapping it. Yes you can trap monsters, but its friggin hard the first few times. But like I said, its getting to know the behavior that makes this game easier. Unfortunately it takes time to learn what affects the monsters and what is useless.

This game has a online play, but I never did hook my PS2 up to online, so I never go to experience it. They release a second one a while ago, buts its just for the PSP. I really hope they do one for the PS3, I would love to see their take and play online. Where one guy sets up a trap, another acts has bait to lure the monster in, while the other 2 sit back and wait to make the killing strike when the monster spring the trap.

Now I really liked this game. But I definitely see this type of game has a niche game and I probable think that alot of people would be bored and not get the game. I chuck it up to , its just one of those games that I like for my reasons. Theres no real story, theres no leveling up, theres alot of exploring and learning from the environment, Its not a RPG. This is not a game that you can pick up and start playing and know what you are doing. It has a steep learning curve. But I loved every minute of it. I just found out that monster hunter 3 for the Wii,is coming out, but it looks piss poor, it needs to have a face lift. Each version so far have all looked PS2 dated. I can't wait for the Ps3 version, if any version will be released for it.

The link below should give you a good idea of what is involved in the game