I really need to start posting some more “blogy” type things on here that aren’t whole game reviews, so this is my first effort in awhile to do so. About a year ago I wrote a post or two detailing the reasons for my “Hunting Action burnout” (or perhaps more specifically my Monster Hunter burnout). Monster Hunter 4 had come out, and was supposed to be setting my world on fire. I played through the single player long enough to see the ending, and just barely got into high rank online, but it just never stuck with me like past Monster Hunter games had. I attributed this mostly to playing too much Monster Hunter in too short of time periods.
Fast forward to October 11th of this year, and I’ve bought Monster Hunter 4G (Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate) mostly out of obligation. I’ve bought every Monster Hunter game since Monster Hunter 3 on the Wii at launch, so why not. I fully expect to play this version for a bit and put it down out of fatigue, just like I did with vanilla Monster Hunter 4. As my game clock on 4G approaches 100 hours and I’ve hit G2 rank, this obviously did not happen. But why didn’t it happen? The non-G Rank content (which at this point still makes up the bulk of my play time thus far) is the same as it was back in vanilla 4, so I could have just played through it as furiously back then as I have now. What is different? I don’t even have a local Monster Hunter partner like I used to, and am only able to sometimes play with friends I’ve met on Twitter.
Before I explain my theory though, it doesn’t stop there. Two other “hunting action” type games have also recently had demos released which I’ve put a decent amount of time into, and plan on buying the full versions of each this year: Phantasy Star Nova and Final Fantasy Explorers. Both of them have me very intrigued for their own unique reasons (which I’m sure I will detail later), despite playing Monster Hunter 4G at the exact same time. I think it all comes down to timing and perception. I’ve delved into details in the past, but here’s a quick summary, in pretty much the order I played them (not counting any I went back and played retroactively for review/historical purposes):
Monster Hunter 3 (Wii): Played for hundreds of hours, largely online.
Monster Hunter 2G (PSP): Played for hundreds of hours, mostly with a local partner.
Monster Hunter Portable 3rd (PSP): Played for hundreds of hours, mostly with a local partner and online via AdHoc Party.
Monster Hunter 3G (3DS/Wii U): Started to burn out here. I felt like it had been too recent since I last played 3 and did not really want to retread my steps again. Lack of real online play in the 3DS version sort of killed it for me as well. By the time the Wii U version came on (which had real online play), it was too late.
Monster Hunter 4: This one had real online, but I still played it for less than 100 hours. I think I was still feeling burned out from 3G.
In other words, I just needed a significant amount of time to get out of my burn out period, though that time was obviously longer than I would have thought. The Hunting Action part of my brain obviously takes a few years to fully reactivate after it turns off. Regardless if anyone reading this is interested in playing any of these games online, let me know! I always enjoy playing with people I know!