As a longtime, unapologetic fan of the Monster Hunter franchise, I felt my pulse quicken during the PS4 show at E3 2017 when I laid eyes on a character wielding a very Monster-Hunter-looking sword, battling very Monster-Hunter-looking beasts. When Monster Hunter World was properly announced, and upon learning that it would be available not just for PS4 but Xbox One and PC as well, anticipation turned to ecstasy. A current generation Monster Hunter game on a full-blooded home console (and not a slightly behind the curve Nintendo platform) has been a dream of hunter fans for years, one piqued but never wholly satisfied by similar takes like Toukiden and God Eater.

After the original and its sequel launched on PlayStation 2 back in 2004, Monster Hunter languished on the PlayStation Portable, 3DS, and Wii/Wii U for more than a decade. While many of these iterations were excellent games (I have a particular fondness for Monster Hunter Tri in all its incarnations), they always felt like they were straining at the leash. You could see the seams and limitations of the hardware, and the gaps set the imagination on fire, thinking of what would be possible with this potent formula on a modern console. 

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