• Publisher: Capcom
  • Release Date: Sep 21, 2004

Mixed or average reviews - based on 37 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 37
  2. Negative: 3 out of 37
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  1. Whilst certainly not free of issues, Monster Hunter is equal measures out-and-out fun and out-and-out terror, delivered fantastically well in both online and offline modes. The game provides a PSO-style game for the PS2, and offering pick-up-and-play online gaming without the need to commit to hours at a time.
  2. TotalGames.net
    The quests quickly repeat themselves and some of the larger creatures are nigh impossible to take down alone. Even so, it's a remarkably unique and thorough title and if you're online with your PS2, there's no reason for you not to get a taste for cold blood and take the hunt online. There really is nothing else quite like it.
  3. Weekly Famitsu
    8 / 8 / 8 / 8 - 32 gold [Vol 796; 19 Mar 2004]
  4. 80
    Problems with the camera and controls hold it back from mass appeal, and unless you have the broadband adapter, you're missing out on a large chunk of the experience. With that said, there's definitely enough here to for serious players to enjoy if they're willing to devote the time necessary to really dive into the game.
  5. If you're able to accept the unorthodox control scheme, the mediocre single-player game (at least it has one), a troublesome camera, and the lack of an effective lock-on mechanism, then you're tough enough to reap Monster Hunter's unique benefits. [Dec 2004, p.162]
  6. With more true role-playing elements to balance out the sheer kill-and-collect MO of tis debut, this franchise, ripe with much potential, could grow serious legs. [Nov 2004, p.138]
  7. 80
    A must have for those with an interest in online gaming, especially the type of gamers who simply do not have the time to spend hours upon hours finding a party in an MMORPG. The pick-up-and-play formula works very well here and will no doubt keep you addicted for many months. [JPN Import]
  8. You can see the potential here the instant you set foot in town, but the real fun is found only online. The rest of the elements are merely so-so. [Nov 2004, p.134]
  9. PSM Magazine
    For scratching that online teamplay itch though, not much else around satisfies quite like this. [Dec 2004, p.82]
  10. Highly amusing, fun combat system but a bit dragged down by the sometimes hard to get used to controls. Online play is great, but lag is sometimes a painful factor against small enemies.
  11. Edge Magazine
    The game’s major achievement is an emphasis less on personal advancement, but rather on working as a cohesive unit to achieve your collective goal – the hunting of monsters, truly absurdly monstrous monsters... It’s an excellent exercise in humility and cooperation, and one that should not be passed by. [Dec 2005, p.108]
  12. With friends, the sense of camaraderie and teamwork is fantastic. Working together luring monsters into traps is hugely satisfying.
  13. Offline it’s a hollow shell of an action/adventure game, but online it’s a fun, addictive, and worthwhile entry – a game that’s based on teamwork rather than endless deathmatches.
  14. 75
    Those who "get" Monster Hunter will find hundreds of hours of entertainment both online and off. But whatever the case, Capcom should be commended for taking such an original, offbeat and ultimately rewarding approach to the genre.
  15. Lack of a lock on system can make the game frustrating, and I did suffer from a couple connection dropouts that weren't on my end. Still, to anyone looking for a new MORPG to play with their friends, try this out.
  16. The game holds about 40-60 hours just playing the single player campaign, and if Capcom could (or even would) go through and solidfy the gameplay elements and features they’ve instilled, Monster Hunter could really be a killer franchise. Until then, rent it first.
  17. netjak
    The kind of game you’ll either love or hate right off the bat.
  18. 72
    It's interesting, and a bit frustrating, to see a game with such a unique devotion to a single type of play.
  19. Cheat Code Central
    The only thing you need to know about Monster Hunter is that offline it's about as fun as an allnight marathon of infomercials. Online is a different story entirely. If you don't have a PS2 network adapter then don't even waste your time.
  20. The missions are short and to the point, which works out nicely but if you’re use to exploration EverQuest style, then you’re in for a disappointment.
  21. games(TM)
    Monster Hunter is without question the PS2’s finest exclusive online title. The scope and scale make it like nothing else we’ve played on a console. [June 2005, p.110]
  22. 70
    If you want an online dungeon crawler with a decent atmosphere, nice visuals and repetitive but social and sometimes exciting action, this will do nicely. Don't bother for offline only play.
  23. Play Magazine
    The game just has this awful, clunky, ugly interface that had me dreaming of the elegance of "Phantasy Star Online." But even so, there is a level of addiction to be had here as there is in any decent online game. [Nov 2004, p.76]
  24. A USB keyboard plugged into your PS2 is the only way to communicate online. This makes getting a group together and executing all but the very simplest of missions a ponderous exercise.
  25. A fun experience that feels like a light RPG snack rather than an epic role-playing game. If you dig action more than actual role-playing and can deal with all the hassles then Monster Hunter might be for you.
  26. 60
    A beautiful gaming experience with a solid online aspect. If you can manage to work your way through the steep learning curve for the controls, it gets easy to lose yourself in what the game has to offer.
  27. Pelaaja (Finland)
    For a single player, Monster Hunter doesn’t offer much. It’s designed to be played together with other people over the Internet. Clunky controls and the wonky camera system make it hard to get into, as does the frustrating amount of menus you have to wade through to simply get into the multiplayer part. [May 2005, p 60]
  28. Inevitably, such an involved game is unlikely to convert the masses, regardless of its quality. For wired-up MORPG fans though, Monster Hunter is a likeable, though unexceptional, addition to the genre.
  29. There is an addictive quality to Monster Hunter as you push your character to new levels and wonderful weaponry. Yet it relies too much on management of items and combinations that take up more time than the quests themselves.
  30. In today's world, it's merely a living fossil, reminding us of what online console gaming once looked like.
  31. Expanding the environments, fixing the controls and camera, and allowing an easier matchmaking setup in the next game could mean a seriously fun online experience, but right now, what we have can hardly be called even an experience.
  32. Aside from some moments of fun online, Monster Hunter is a pretty boring game that is at the bottom of Capcom's ability.
  33. Game Informer
    The control scheme is horrific and cannot be changed. [Nov 2004, p.156]
  34. Leaves a fairly bland taste in the mouth. With its cool creature-catching concept and some field items that would make a Boy Scout proud, it sets a good table. Unfortunately, the poor control and lack of solo playability hinder it from catching the big one.
  35. A poorly mixed batch of mini-games, tedium and awkward play wrapped in shell of dated graphics and forgetful music. Give this game a pass.
  36. AceGamez
    One of the biggest missed opportunities I've come across for quite some time and a huge disappointment.
  37. 30
    Though the graphics are sharp, the world is tiny and the pain-in-the-ass controls make killing monsters a chore.

Awards & Rankings

#43 Most Discussed PS2 Game of 2004
#49 Most Shared PS2 Game of 2004
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 61 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 51 out of 61
  2. Negative: 6 out of 61
  1. ErikL.
    Jan 23, 2007
    I love how this game is reviewed badly by criticsbut everyone who plays loves it. I cant thing of anything bad to say about this game I sunk I love how this game is reviewed badly by criticsbut everyone who plays loves it. I cant thing of anything bad to say about this game I sunk over 500 hours collecting all the armor. Full Review »
  2. Mar 19, 2022
    None of the weapons are fun to use, they're too weak or too slow. The missions are either fetch quests or fighting damage sponge monsters withNone of the weapons are fun to use, they're too weak or too slow. The missions are either fetch quests or fighting damage sponge monsters with no HP bars or fighting monsters with annoying mechanics. There's absolutely 0 story, the hub city consists of 5 buildings. Almost every mechanic is designed to be annoying (pickaxes break after ~5 uses, have to do stupid minigame to cook, animation for everything). The monster designs aren't bad, but most of them are just dinosaurs are altered animals like pigs, and they certainly aren't the main attraction. Reading through the Wikipedia, I understand that the online component played a bigger role when it was new, but I don't see how that could have redeemed this mess. Full Review »
  3. Feb 27, 2021
    Look here, proof that game reviewers are shills looking for advertising dollars!

    Boy I remember the old gamespot review where they played
    Look here, proof that game reviewers are shills looking for advertising dollars!

    Boy I remember the old gamespot review where they played this game naked without equipping armor then continued on to dump all over it. Well if you can find that review. Unlike the critics here they tried to cover up their tracks. Or at least that's what it looks like, when you don't even attempt to fairly review a game. But then again, no one was paying for adds here is the USA.

    Now look at the absolute monster of a franchise that spawned from this title. And I know its a bad joke to call something "Dark Souls like", but man Dark Souls sure was a lot like this game. Where are all the I-Frame dodge rolls and giant two handed weapons before this title? I cant say for sure, but this sure feels like the spiritual grandfather to a whole lot of games.

    This was a genre defining game, and most reviewers were just not (monetarily) incentivized to give it the time of day. Those reviews sure didn't age well!
    Full Review »