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Monster Hunter Stories Review – Perfect Introduction To The Series

The Monster Hunter series is currently at the height of its popularity. Capcom is capitalizing on this success by reintroducing older games, such as Monster Hunter Stories, to modern audiences. Originally designed for the Nintendo 3DS, the first Monster Hunter Stories might feel like a lower-budget game compared to its successor. However, this does not detract from its enjoyment, largely due to its excellent combat system. I was excited about the game’s release on PC and its compatibility with the Steam Deck, as its RPG elements make it an ideal experience for these platforms.

Monster Hunter Stories is a traditional old-school JRPG. It features a turn-based combat system based on a Rock-Paper-Scissors mechanic, with Power, Technical, and Speed replacing the classic elements. If you have played Monster Hunter Stories 2, you will be familiar with this system. The rest of the gameplay is straightforward and reminiscent of a Pokemon spin-off. Players search for eggs, gather monsters to form a party and embark on quests to save their village.

The story revolves around a village inhabited by Riders, people whose job is to tame and guide monsters to fight alongside them. Due to unknown circumstances, the monsters begin to lose control and attack the village. This prompts the village elder to ask for your help in discovering the cause of this spreading sickness.

My first impressions of the game were excellent, as I had not played it on the Nintendo 3DS. The game runs smoothly on the Steam Deck. While it may not be demanding enough to require extensive tweaks, it is reassuring to see that it runs natively with support for the Steam Deck’s native resolution at 60 FPS. Capcom has kept the graphics options simple, and the game performs perfectly, looking especially good on the Steam Deck’s OLED screen.

If you have played the mainline Monster Hunter games, you will find this experience quite different. The game places a strong emphasis on the story, with numerous cutscenes advancing the narrative. The writing is simpler in tone, targeting a younger audience than the core Monster Hunter fanbase. However, it is still an excellent game for those looking to experience something different within the franchise. The story is charming with a memorable cast, maintaining a serious tone while incorporating ample comedy.

One of the new additions in this re-release is voice acting, which enhances the cutscenes. While it may not be top-tier, the voice acting is serviceable and adds to the overall experience. The visuals have been cleaned up and look sharper, though some lower-quality textures are noticeable at higher resolutions. This was not an issue for me on the Steam Deck. I appreciated the game’s colorful palette and world, despite it feeling a bit empty at times.

The combat system in Monster Hunter Stories is engaging and enjoyable. Each monster in the game has a specific weakness to one of three attributes: Power, Technical, or Speed. To inflict damage, you must use attacks that counter their weakness. Additionally, there are other strategic elements to consider, such as weapon selection and having Monster companions, known as Monsties, fight alongside the main party. Battles are made dynamic with mechanics like double attacks and kinship attacks. I never found the game difficult, which is understandable given its original target audience was younger players. Although it might feel like a step back for those familiar with the sequel, I found it enjoyable enough to continue playing.

The game is rich with fan-service elements, featuring beloved monsters that appear as the story progresses. However, the game’s exploration and quest design are its weaker aspects. These elements feel outdated, particularly the world map, which is visually underwhelming. Due to the game’s originally small budget, the environments lack detail, resulting in large, empty backgrounds that are noticeable during exploration and battles.

Despite these shortcomings, the game’s excellent combat system stands out, and the PC port, along with Steam Deck support, adds significant value. If you enjoyed Monster Hunter Stories 2, this game is a fun addition, especially at its budget-friendly launch price. For those new to the series, now is a perfect time to try both games while waiting for Monster Hunter Wilds.

Monster Hunter Stories Game Information

  • Price: $29.99
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Developer: Capcom
  • Platform: PC (Reviewed)
  • Disclaimer: A review code was given by the publisher


Capcom has revitalized the original Monster Hunter Stories by releasing it on PC and making it compatible with the Steam Deck. While it may appear lower-budget compared to its successor, its excellent combat system and engaging RPG elements make it an enjoyable experience.

Total Rating

Salal Awan

Salal's main hobby is photography but he is also interested in learning the latest about Technology including Smartphones and PC Hardware. He is the co-founder of Twisted Voxel and always on the lookout for the news.

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