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Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin review
by MrSpanky

Monster Hunter Stories Remaster 1.5

PRO:
- Cell shaded visuals
- Combat
- Monsters variety
- Weapon and armor variety
- Companion choices
- Farming loop
- Monster management
- Arena fights

CONS:
- Random dungeon design with limited assets
- Lack of background music in dungeons
- Stereoytypical world map biomes design
- Story
- Dialogues

Feels like the minimum effort has been done to sell a new title in what has potential for a franchise.
Too many similarities with the first title, starting from the recycling of the series flagship monster, sidekicks, characters and essentially the same story and main character evolution.

Story is below average and despite being targeted at a young audience shouldnt be excused with the most boring and intelligence insulting dialogues.

Limited and not much inspired maps, with the stereotypical tropical, icy, volcano and desert landscapes. Taking more inspiration from MH: World would have helped with locales like Rotten Vale or Coral Highlands. Fortunately they took some new monsters, weapons, armors and icon design from MH: World.

Random generated dungeons assest are used in the main campaign making it feel cheap and, again, low effort cash grab.

The cartoon style and cell shaded design will age beautifully, but the places where textures are used immediately make the hardware limitation of the Switch stand out and having a PC port adds nothing to improve some very low resolution objects, mainly floor and wall textures. Distance rendering of items is far too short with the grass and flowers basically popping under the riders feet. PC version has no extra options to increase this horrible limitation.

Sound is decent, altough the soundtracks choice is very limited and music doesnt play in dungeons outside the main overworld map, including main story chapters. Same for random generated monster dungeons. Considering the focus on grinding and egg hunting this is just bad game design. Add the limited assets in generating such farming locations and the main appeal of spending dozens of hours postgame in such conditions quickly takes away most of the interest in continuing to play.

No feedback on co-op or PvP as the game was played 9 months after release and no one in the linked PC-Steam region was ever found active online.

Completed main quest in 55 hours and unlocked postgame content.

Recommended, but not at full price. Try the demo first.

EDIT POSTGAME:

130+ hours to play atleast once trough the available content, collecting all monsters, finishing sidequests and farming to max out main weapons, armors and monsties.

At games end a new dungeon farming zone is unlocked. Finishing that unlocks a higher difficulty version of the exact same zone. Very cheap.

XP collecting after level 65 is slow and after 70 its painfully unfun.

Content is, sort of, hidden in hubs, requiring to visit towns again in search of new content.

Post content is mostly done in hubs, using multiplayer quests, farming rare eggs, genes, monster parts and task specific quests.

Boss fights lacking dedicated zones.

Final words: for a game focused on grinding its sad how little diversity is present in the random generated assets and how silent everything feels without dedicated background music. Same issues as the first title. Nothing has been learned from the previous title. Cute graphics and improved combat cant keep the game going past the grind fatigue.
«Just one more turn»

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Monster Hunter Stories 2 Wings of Ruin PC - Finished on 07/16/2021