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What The Critics Are Saying About Monster Hunter Stories 2

Since its inception in 2004, the "Monster Hunter" series has generally played like a faster-paced, somewhat more action-oriented version of "Pokémon." Most of the primary entries in the series, such as the recent "Monster Hunter Rise," are action RPGs in which successfully traversing the huge map required not only the careful collection of enemies, but also finely-honed movement and combat skills on the player's part.

As the franchise evolved and the universe became more defined, some gamers felt that the series could stand offer a slower-paced entry, focusing more on the RPG and exploration elements of the series. While Capcom explored different "Monster Hunter" spinoffs over the years, it didn't have an offering that scratched that itch until 2016's "Monster Hunter Stories," a JRPG that introduced turn-based combat.

Unfortunately, "Monster Hunter Stories" was only available on Nintendo 3DS and mobile devices, keeping it from having the same level of exposure a title released on major consoles would. The sequel aims to fix that problem, bringing the more deliberately-paced gameplay to the Nintendo Switch and PC. Here is what the critics have to say about "Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin."

Monster Hunter Stories 2 might be the most accessible entry yet

Overall, the critical assessment of "Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin" has been positive. IGN's review appreciated the game's even difficulty level, remarking, "It's accessible enough for newcomers and younger players alike to enjoy, but with intricate mechanics to keep a more experienced audience engaged." 

"Monster Hunter Stories 2" is more narrative-driven than the core games in the franchise, but IGN noted that the story seems to be more of a vehicle to open up the world for player exploration. In addition to the exploratory elements, PC Gamer praised the slower combat, stating, "Thankfully the turn-based combat gives you plenty of time to consider your options and this is where the series finally clicked for me."

Of course, "Monster Hunter Stories 2" is still a "Monster Hunter" game at heart, and the formula wouldn't be complete without enemies to defeat and collect. The game features plenty of "Monsties" for players to befriend and travel with, and they form a significant part of the experience. Eurogamer's Malindy Hetfeld wrote, "As sorry as I am to the virtual monster mamas, stealing eggs is really fun." The reviewer went on to praise the mechanics for collecting, identifying, and hatching companions before stating, "I just can't get enough of it."

Anyone seeking a more relaxed but full-featured "Monster Hunter" experience should give "Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin" a chance. The game is available for PC and Nintendo Switch.