First of all, what genius came up with that name? Seriously no one in the whole damn department could have thought of a more creative name than "Monster Hunter"?! I have personally overlooked this game for years, I've heard the name but I didn't want to play it because for some reason I thought it was a part of the "Monster Rancher" series. My mistake, my big bad festering mistake!
Good 'ol butcher there was the one to clue me in on this franchise. He had stumbled into some screen shots of this game called "Monster Hunter Tri" that will be coming out for Wii sometime soon. My jaw dropped upon seeing these screens, and I had to know: if this was Tri(3) then there must be others! Sure 'nuff, there were quite a bit more, including some for PSP.
I went to my local Game Stop and purchased Monster Hunter Freedom 2 (for PSP), I told myself I'd only play it long enough to tell whether or not it was a good game. 150 hours later, there I was Hunter Rank 5, upgrading my weapons, carving my monsters, and petting my pig. I was boiling in the stewy goodness of Monster Hunter, I now weep at the thought of missing out on all this greatness since its conception on September 21, 2004.
There are many weapons to choose from, and each weapon is vastly different from the other. Armor is beautifully designed, and doesn't repeat itself completely. This game also has MMO elements; there is crafting, mining, fishing, gathering, bug catching, and all of these things are used to create or upgrade your weapons and armors. As you progress in the game, you also are allowed to hire Felyne Chefs which cook you up many different meals that can either enhance your stats, or the give you bubble guts :O (lol). In the Unite version, Felyne Fighters join you on your quests! You level these cats up, and choose perks for them as they progress, it's all very fun, and progressive. All that said this game has the potential to decimate all that you think you hold dear in your life!
And now for the two things that make people quit!
1. Camera control (PSP).
In order to control your character with the analog nub, and control the camera with the digital pad, you have to put your hand into a hand cramping (claw) form. Granted once you get used to it, it's nothin', then you and Bob Dole can have hand claw battles (swank!).
This is the thing that actually kept me playing. I love hard games, especially games that require skill, but aren't cheap. This game requires a lot of skill, and coordination. Most bosses, when first encountered, can 1 shot you, so you have to be on your A game for pretty much all these fights! A thing that has almost made me throw my beloved PSP against a wall to watch it shatter in a lovely display of Japanese parts.
One final thing of great notability, is this game is a 4 player co-op experience! So if you really have a hard time with anything, take it online using Ad Hoc Party or X kai link, because this game is local connection only.