sarah_sensei: Midna: LoZ Twilight Princess (Default)
So, lately I've been playing Monster Hunter Tri (ok, "playing" is an understatement with over 230 hrs. of playtime "obsessing" is more appropriate). The game is great fun if you like action RPGs and don't mind doing the same tasks over and over. It's even more fun when you go online, pick up some friends and go questing together—especially if you know said friends well and have access to Wii Speak. It's honestly a perfect fit for me gaming-wise because it's not TOO involved, I CAN pick it up and put it down when I need to (no real-time clock like Animal Crossing xx; ) the online service is free so I don't have to worry about setting aside time in my schedule to play and yet I can enjoy the online experience anytime I want (except the hours when the server is down in the wee hours of the morning EST).

I'm at the point where I have just finished the major quests offline (though I have a couple advanced ones to tackle now) and I passed rank 31 online so I'm doing the bonus online content as well. But it took me about 235 hours of game play to realize that perhaps Monster Hunter is the saddest commentary on humanity's habits that I've ever seen in a game.

Monster Hunter is pretty straight forward. You kill monsters/animals. You carve them up. You use their body parts to make new weapons and armor so you can kill bigger monsters/animals. You take on quests to kill specific things, you make money. You use money to pay for upgrades then you kill some more. It's really a no-brainer. It's the perfect game for people who like to grind. But things changed just the tiniest bit for me when I got to the end of the main story line and I saw the words "you left the elder dragon, wounded" on the screen.


Ok... this was the first time I actually felt BAD about killing something in the game. As people who have played know, there is no greater feeling than vanquishing some punk ass Rathian or Rathalos that has been pushing you into a corner and camping your ass while they totally ravage you and you can’t move. Killing something that has been totally reaming you? Best feeling in the world.

But this elder dragon, who is supposedly causing earthquakes on an island with a population of about 13 (if you only count the humans), has lived for a millennia. Here I come with my crappy little sword and shield, using some broke ass old underwater ballistas and a waterlogged dragonator (which is short for "dragon impaler machine of doom") and I have the gall to try and KILL this creature that probably has been around since the days when the men of this world were banging rocks together and living in their own shit? All this to save about 13 stubborn islanders who were ordered (and refused) to evacuate?

What is wrong with this picture?

Killing Jhen Mohran online… well I didn't really feel all that bad about it honestly since Jhen attacks you. But something was different about Ceadeus. Maybe it's because he looks sort of whale-like and we all know that whales are intelligent beings… Maybe it's because his right horn has grown over his eye and he has no depth perception so it's really not a fair fight. Maybe it's because Ceadeus is different from other monsters since it pretty much RUNS from you for the first 15 minutes of the battle. You actually pursue it through a series of caves, corner it in a room and just ravage the thing. It struck me that this animal was something I had no real right to kill. Especially, if it was the ONLY ONE of its kind. In fact the reason why it says you "wounded" him is because you can't kill him in just one go like other monsters. No. you need to come back 3-4 times and slowly chip away at him. There's a conscious effort to slay him when really, he's probably one of the more docile animals in the game.

What's that about? Is it just one more sad attempt at man stroking his own ego? "Oh I killed this giant beast that was about 20 times my size! I didn't need to EAT or anything, I killed him mainly because I could." (Notice that the only animals you EAT are the ones who are herbivores—just like in real life. You don't normally eat on your own trophic level so killing anything that eats meat exclusively is mainly for the body parts/bragging rights). Or is it commentary on how wasteful humanity is and how we place importance on the wrong things?

Through the course of the game you find out that the only reason why the island is even populated by 13 people is because they thought it was important to come back and guard some ancient ruins. So, we're protecting a wrecked ass, now underwater settlement, that only 13 people in the whole world deem important? Really? How about protecting the very rare and ancient elder dragon that decided to start living there? How about studying him and seeing if there's a way to learn from him and all that he has no doubt seen?

Um, nope.

Broken, waterlogged, nigh inaccessible civilization built by humans > ancient monster

Also there is a certain amount of excess and wastefulness portrayed by the very nature of the game. For example it uses the classic gambling hook to help keep players interested in grinding by making certain item-drops rare. In my case, I have YET to get a Rathian plate. Hell, I killed RATHALOS before getting this Rathian Plate which still eludes me to this day. I kid you not, between playing online with people and questing in the Moga Woods on my own time I probably have killed over 20 Rathians. But have I ever got a plate? Nope. I have full Rathalos armor... no Rathian plate. So, here I am, killing Rathian upon Rathian for no reason... other than to get this item that the Wii gods do not seem to deem me fit for. I'm now past the point in which it would be even USEFUL to me, except in high rank armor. Yet there will still be Rathians to kill and I will be asked to kill more just because people like to kill Rathians. Another item that has been a real thorn in my side is the Uragaan schute. I've killed at least 10 of them. I need only 5 schutes to make weapons (this is not counting schutes I need for armor). So far I was granted two. Killing an Uragaan, even with my slightly advanced weaponry takes about 35 minutes. It's no small task as occasionally I get a vicious one that totally wrecks me in the process. So, a lot of time and resources get wasted when I don't get what I want. I also have yet to get a proper rust shard for my weapon of choice because the game won't drop them for me. Somewhere out there in the world of Monster Hunter is a great sword user who is crying, because I have 3 rusted great swords that I do not want and no rusted sword/shield for me. He no doubt has my 3 rusted short swords.

So the game perpetuates this horrible habit of hoarding that humans seem to have and it plays to the unrepentant gambler in all of us who thinks if he just kills one more Uragaan those 3 schutes are as good as his!

It's just funny that most of humanity's bad habits are found rolled into one game. Are we supposed to stop and question the sanity of the behavior of the people in the world of Monster Hunter? Or just shrug our shoulders, go with the flow, and let status quo prevail? Do we deride them for mass killings of fauna? Or do we join in the fun because people happen to like to exert their dominion over small (and large) animals?

I don't know, honestly. All I know is I'm going to kill that F*#%ing Deviljho bitch who keeps wandering into my hunt.


sarah_sensei: Midna: LoZ Twilight Princess (Default)

January 2015

4 5678910
111213 14151617


RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios