Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin Review

Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin isn't a title that depends on its franchise’s branding. As opposed to a number of other spin-off games out there, this is not just another cash-grab, nor it fails to get results what its mainline series is renowned for. Things i want to say is that the sequel to the Nintendo 3DS’s Monster Hunter Stories is definitely an outstanding RPG, that even without carrying the name of the juggernaut IP, could easily get up on its own as a fantastic Pokémon-like adventure, adding a unique flair to it.

As a Monster Hunter entry and continuation of its 2022 predecessor, expect hundreds of Monsters to find, hunt and surprisingly, raise from infants. You heard that right, in Monster Hunter Stories 2 the main objective is to breed hatched Monsters, or Monsties as people call them hanging around, and fight alongside them other Monsters as well as other threats. While the essence of the universe is the same as the main series, the execution and various playstyle is what makes Wings of Ruin fantastic. Additionally, this is where the sport exceptionally succeeds, as it seems to keep everything that made the original action-RPGs famous, however with a twist that doesn’t subtract why is our planet so amazing.

A simple, yet beautiful story with lots of surprises and exciting moments.

It would be a shame to spoil anything Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin’s story provides, because it is surprisingly a full-fledged role-playing game with focus on narrative, so I will attempt and avoid any major spoilers in here. To sum up things though, and in order for everyone to know what is going on, we need to mention a few things. Especially considering that you aren't a Monster ‘Hunter’ in this entry, but instead a Monster Rider.

Contrary to Hunters’ beliefs, Monster Riders prefer living alongside Monsters peacefully, getting a balance between the civilized and wild world of this magnificent universe. As such, anticipate seeing plenty of Monsters hanging out humans without actually hurting them, and vice-versa. The game starts with a ‘celebratory festival’ going wrong, and your main character seems to be stuck in the center of it all. Weird things start happening along with a plethora of Rathalos Monsters appear to be acting way out of the ordinary. Something brings another, as well as your fellow villagers entrust you with searching what's going on. Everything beyond that, is where your adventure truly begins and you embark on an outing that includes a large amount of gathering resources, finding Monster Eggs to hatch new creatures, crafting gear and fighting wild Monsters. In the midst of all this, you encounter a particular baby monster, the Razewing Ratha that is believed to bring ruin towards the world, hence the title ‘Wings of Ruin’. That's where the story really ramps up as well as your quest becomes a lot more complicated.

Battles are fast and satisfying, negating the word of “turn-based combat is slow and boring”.

You begin your grand adventure by selecting your primary character, being male or female, and customize them accordingly. Then, you jump right in to the game with events unfolding and things constantly happening as you find out more and more reasons for the world’s motions, mysteries and more importantly, its Monsters that inhabit every continent.

Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin changes the initial formula from the main MH games, which time around that which you have before you is really a fully turn-based RPG with deep mechanics which make each fight feel impactful. Additionally, its main gimmick is Monster breeding, much like Pokémon-catching (yes, the comparison forwards and backwards is difficult to avoid), that you will expend the most time in the sport because you will find hundreds of different Monster Eggs, with a bigger a few different characteristics each. They have their very own individual stats, moves, abilities you should use in the overworld and certain passive perks called ‘Genes’. These types of equally important when you begin raising a Monster, as they significantly affect the way it functions in combat.

While you have your main character handling fights, together with his or her very own gear and abilities, alongside you will be your raised Monsties. They fight alongside along with you and you can even combine your attacks for visually stunning techniques. Depending on the abilities a Monstie might have, they can either heal you, damage enemies, provide certain utility buffs and a whole lot more. The beforementioned Genes play a vital role for their playstyle, so make sure to invest some time learning how the machine really works, after you unlock it in-game.

You will even find certain people who will accompany you in various periods of your journey, called Fight Buddies. They act as additional party members, if you wish to put it simply, and also you don’t have control over them at all. They're a tremendous help whenever someone joins, to wish to tackle some hard content when they are inside your team.

Lastly, battles themselves are handled via a more difficult rock-paper-scissors process which may sound a little random at first. However, this is not the case. Each monster has its own type, which you will understand after encountering them for the first time, as well as their pattern can be monitored so that you can see what moves that they like to make use of. This way, you will be able to calculate their attacks and win the Head-to-Head instances that occur when that monster and party members go toe-to-toe using their selection of rock-paper-scissors. Win that challenge, and you will do major damage and negate the majority of that Monster’s caused damage.

All these will take place in as we mentioned, a turn-based environment in which you have all the time in the world to consider your moves and plan ahead. What makes them not feel a chore though, is the speed-up system that's implemented into the game. At any point during a fight, using the press of the mouse you are able to speed-up the entire battle as much as x3 the initial speed. This can be a godsent, because you will spend enough time farming already visited areas, for materials and Monster Eggs. With this system, everything will be performed effortlessly and you will save plenty of duration of time, making grinding actually pleasant.

Monster Hunter Stories 2 stays true to its origin material, with elements that make it feel new and different from what we are utilized to.

You aren't a solo-fighter against the world in Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin. You've your Monsties, Fight Buddies, their very own Monsties and lots of different tools at your disposal, used at your own pace as well. This really is vastly diverse from what we should are used to from games like Monster Hunter Rise and the likes, but in a great way. The two series are totally different experiences, and none is negating the other. In fact, the total opposite. When i was playing Monster Hunter Stories 2, I had the need to go back to the recent Monster Hunter Rise and hunt some creatures with the adrenaline rush its hunts provide. Which I did, even though I was tackling High Rank content over to that action-RPG, Then i wanted to jump to the more relaxed, Monster raising and riding of Wings of Ruin. I don’t know why exactly, but seeing my character being friends and riding beasts that I was slaying mere minutes ago in Rise, felt soothing.

Everything has a similar vibe, nevertheless the core gamestyle is worlds apart. This will make Monster Hunter Stories 2 not to be overshadowed by its bigger cousin, and seems like a really refreshing adventure. It might don't have the fast-paced action the series is known for, or the full roster of weapons used in the main series, however for anybody who is into monster ‘capturing’, it totally nails everything. Not to mention that still it keeps the co-op element that the mainline series can also be popular for, as possible tackle missions and quests along with other players online. Additionally, and also to be honest here, certainly one of the most popular additions may be the inclusion of a PvP mode, similarly to how the first entry had. Taking into consideration the PvP facet of that game was actually very popular, even though it required heavy investment on Monster raising simply to be on par with other combatants, I'm so excited to see what Monster Hunter Series 2 will bring towards the table on that field. Crossing fingers to have a healthy and actually competitive PvP mode, for everyone to savor for a long time. Including myself.

Unfortunately, there are several caveats, concerning the Nintendo Switch version.

Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin is really a beautiful game, with bright colors and heavily animated characters and Monsters. But, this is mostly true for that PC form of the sport, which this review can also be according to. Naturally we all have the demo version Nintendo Switch offers, I can easily say something certainly. I won’t be jumping to the Switch, pretty much ever for playing this new RPG. There are some undeniable performance difficulties with that version, and we're now in an era where the Switch’s underwhelming performance seems to be increasingly more striking towards the eye. The sport shows clear FPS drops, and may barely stay stable at even 30 FPS which runs into. This is truly visible when in fights, as lots of animations and effects take place. Don’t take me wrong, Wings of Ruin is perfectly playable on the Switch, and it is handheld mode can even be the feature for a lot of people out there with this kind of game, but after experiencing the more than 60 stable FPS on PC and very fast loading times, it’s difficult to digest anything less. Which like a bonus, also increased my eagerness for the PC form of Monster Hunter Rise.

If you have the option to grab the two versions, performance-wise, go for the PC version hands-down. However, the Nintendo Switch has another redeeming qualities. Because the game is heavily promoted to that platform, far more than its PC counter-part, it is almost sure that the active player base will be bigger over to the Switch. This means that both co-op and PvP modes  of Monster Hunter Stories 2, will be more active to that platform. If online multiplayer is one thing you are planning on investing into, the Switch may be the clear winner here, although this is something which is going to be confirmed after the game’s official launch. You might want to wait just a little after which, in line with the current state of the game, decide accordingly.


Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin has everything you’d want from a turn-based RPG. An easy at its core but engaging story, a large number of ridable Monsters with different abilities, a large number of customizable armor and weapons and enough end-game content and deep mechanics to keep you occupied for hundreds of hours. That is before we even mention again the online co-op feature, and a competitive PvP mode. Truly, the brand new sequel to the spin-off series is much more than just a way of milking the franchise and a title that will for sure have its very own cult-following.

While the Nintendo Switch version supports the game back when compared to PC one, the sport itself remains a blast from beginning to end, offerings tons of content and a unique undertake the Monster Hunter formula.


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