Appreciating distinctive Monster Hunter-likes
Thanks to Monster Hunter World, the series has exploded in popularity. People might experience it, go through its Iceborne expansion, then wonder what’s next. While moving on to another entry in that series is a possibility, it isn’t the only option. The series is so popular, it has inspired a whole collection of contemporaries who do similar things. Best of all, some of them explore the space to try and improve on areas Monster Hunter doesn’t touch.
God Eater is the big one, and it also happens to be the most successful. This is the Monster Hunter-like for people who desperately want some lore with their games. Monster Hunter does hint at some history while you play, but it doesn’t have the sorts of connections people might crave. God Eater really gets into it, with the story deepening with every new entry. We learn more about the Aragami, the giant baddies roaming the world, and their influence with each installment. We see how these species are evolving and what humans are doing to counter that. Every new installment can feature new weapons or different sorts of systems that humans have brainstormed to try and help survive.
Even better is how easy it is for people to get into God Eater. While the series started out on the PSP, it is now available on multiple platforms. The original game has remastered and released in its best possible form as God Eater Resurrection on the PlayStation 4, Vita and PC. God Eater 2: Rage Burst continues the adventure on the same three platforms. God Eater 3, the most recent entry, is out on the PS4, Switch and PC now, with the console versions even having a demo. Though, people who get into this series should also probably investigate Code Vein too.
Another major Monster Hunter-like is Koei Tecmo’s Toukiden series. Where God Eater focuses on giving people a story-heavy game with lots of characters to love and lore to digest, Toukiden is about the bonds between people. Monster Hunter games either force you to go alone with only a Felyne by your side or to find other players to join your group. Both of the Toukiden games primarily rely on the other Slayers present in the game, letting you work with these AI characters to hunt down Oni. As you do, you’ll raise your bonds with these people. (You could even become “soulmates.”) The closer you are to someone, the more likely you are to get a boost effect. Once you hit the highest level, you can bathe together and choose which boost your allies will get.
Like God Eater, it is very easy to play Toukiden right now. However, it is important to note that the handheld and console versions are considered superior to the PC ports. The original Toukiden started out on the PSP and Vita as Toukiden: The Age of Demons. It eventually received an updated version called Toukiden: Kiwami, which can be found on the PS4, PSP, Vita and PC. Toukiden 2 is available on the PS4, Vita and PC.
Someone could even consider the Tales of the World: Radiant Mythology PSP game to be a Monster Hunter-like. While its enemies aren’t nearly as colossal, it has the same sort of atmosphere to it. Players make a character and improve them. They take on quests from a guild, doing things like collecting items or defeating monsters to become more famous and move up the ranks. It could prove to be a helpful way to introduce people familiar with action-RPGs to the formula and see if something more challenging and with larger opponents could be up their alley. (Or, it could help someone determine if they enjoyed it enough to try importing the two Japan-exclusive PSP follow-ups.)
Speaking of Tales of the World: Radiant Mythology, it’s one of the Monster Hunter-like games that reinvents an existing IP. This is surprisingly common with this “genre.” Final Fantasy Explorers adds elements from Final Fantasy, like crystals, jobs and summons, with the ability to take on quests and work with others, giving 3DS owners a new option. Sega took concepts from the Phantasy Star Online series and paired it with the quest-structure and optional multiplayer gameplay to give PSP owners two Phantasy Star Portable titles and DS owners Phantasy Star 0. Even Ragnarok Online ended up getting Ragnarok Odyssey for the Vita and Ragnarok Odyssey Ace for the PS3 and Vita, a quick, quest-based game with lots of concepts from the MMO.
If you’re done with Monster Hunter, there are a lot of places you can go. Plenty of other games are out there to try and play, and each one will do its own things. People can get more of a story with God Eater. Toukiden will focus on helping you form bonds with AI allies. Tales of the World offers fanservice and a way to find out if the idea of a Monster Hunter works for you alongside iconic JRPG heroes. Not to mention, a few other famous series’ mimic the experience with their own spin-offs. There are lots of choices!
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