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Thread: Ayen's Reviews #1: Monster Rancher

  1. #1
    Resident Critic Ayen's Avatar
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    Default Ayen's Reviews #1: Monster Rancher


    Monster Rancher (Monster Farm in Japan) is a life simulation game developed and published by Tecmo for the Sony PlayStation that was released to North America on November 30th, 1997. Making it over twenty years old. It stars you in the role of a Monster Breeder with an assistant that helps take care of your monster as you strengthen it to fight other monsters and rise through the ranks as the ultimate Monster Breeder. So, without further ado, let's dive into Monster Rancher.


    It's so small.

    Monster Rancher starts out at your home where you're visited by the mailman with a package to sign. This allows you to put in your name, or any name you wish, and begin playing the game. Once you acquire your assistant you can go to town and find your first monster. The market has three basic types you can generate to start out with while the shrine allows you to use a disc in your collection to generate a random monster.

    Discs you can use include other PlayStation games, demos, computer CDs, and albums. It's completely random, but some discs can generate interesting selections. For example the original Resident Evil game will give you a Suezo which only has one eye, similar to the eye ball symbol you see on the title screen of Resident Evil. Final Fantasy VII gives you a pixie which is appropriate when you think about Final Fantasy. And Metal Gear Solid gives you a Monols which is basically a wall that Snake could hide behind. Monsters include the Dino, Tiger, Suezo, Monols, Golems, Hares, Gails, Worms, and countless others.


    My favorite monster of all. The Dino!

    Monsters' stats are important once you get to the ranch. The stats include Life, Power, Defense, Skill, Speed, and Intelligence. The higher you can get these stats the better chances you have in fighting other monsters with similar stats. Although, the monster can and will die once it reaches a certain age. Making it hard to really grind to raise monsters' stats in order to defeat harder opponents as you rise the ranks to win the game. Frankly, I find it impossible to beat the game without the use of cheat codes. Which reminds me, I almost forgot to introduce you to your assistant.


    Holly... Oh, just an old crush. It's nothing...
    LET ME LOVE YOU!

    Holly is the main character you spend the most time with in the first Monster Rancher game. She lets you know your monster status, when you're being too hard on it, when it's tired, when a tournament is coming up, and explains to you the details of what each option does when you ask. She's also a friendly character with plenty of personality and facial expressions to go with the occasion. As you can probably tell from reading this, Holly is somewhat of a personal favorite character of mine. She was great in the anime which the picture comes from, too.


    LET'S GET READY TO RUMBLE!

    Battles can take two different forms. One where you tell your monster which attack to use, and one where you just watch your monster do it by himself. Personally, I always control my monster myself to make sure things go over the way I want. If your monster has little loyalty it will tend to act confuse. It stats will determine how effective it can hit, how many hits it can take, and how fast it can dodge and deliver an attack. So training your monster at the ranch is very important if you want to get anywhere in the arena. Granted, you don't have to win every match, but enough to get in the winning spot and watch your fame and money go up. If you ever run out of money it's game over, just like in real life!

    Once you get to Rank C an old man will visit your ranch offering you the chance to join him on an expedition. This offers a nice change of pace in your daily routine and you can explore ancient ruins with your monster and break through obstacles if your monster's power is high enough. Be careful searching for artifacts in the buildings as your monster could get lost. Monsters can also be injured in battle, or get sick. Artifacts you find can be something to sell at the shop, or help you combine monsters at the lab in town. Some artifacts are require to unlock certain rare monsters you can find in the Major 4. If you're good enough, or flat out cheat, to get there.

    Overall, Monster Rancher is an enjoyable experience that may get a little repetitive, but is worth the time to look at if you're looking for a fun game where you can raise monsters and battle them with others. So, in other words:

    Get it!


    Dedicated to
    Virginia Norland
    1922 - 2019
    Last edited by Ayen; 10-10-2019 at 02:05 AM.


  2. #2

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    I don't mind a bit of repetitiveness. I think Monster Rancher is just up my ally. I'll give it a shot.

  3. #3
    Resident Critic Ayen's Avatar
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    You can find a physical copy on sale here, but there are reports of it being re-released either on mobile, or I think on the Nintendo Switch, but I don't know about a U.S. release yet.


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    I forgot that Monster Rancher was a thing. I don't remember trout about that show.

  5. #5
    Resident Critic Ayen's Avatar
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    A regular kid gets transported into the game and meets Holly and some monsters, and they search to find the legendary phoenix to stop Moo. It only lasted three seasons and that main story line was over by the end of season two. Season three was just about going through a tournament.


  6. #6

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    I never played it, but remember reading about the CD mechanic and thought it was interesting. I do remember seeing some of the anime on TV in the mornings and really digging the golem.


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