Offering a successful mix of old and new features, Monster Rancher 3 is a solid entry in the series.
Tecmo is bringing its Monster Rancher series over to the PlayStation 2 with the latest game in the series, Monster Rancher 3. The game expands on the main draw of its predecessors--which generated monsters for you to raise using virtually any game or music compact disc--by allowing DVDs to be used for monster creation. In addition, the game features a total graphical overhaul and a number of gameplay tweaks. Offering a successful mix of old and new features, Monster Rancher 3 is a solid entry in the series.
Monster Rancher veterans should feel right at home with MR3. While the gameplay has been tweaked slightly, the game is still accessible to even novice players. The game structure is simple. You'll go to the shrine area in the game and generate a monster using a disc or your encyclopedia. The monsters all sport a cel-shaded and highly detailed look that gives them a great deal of personality. The encyclopedia is a new feature in the game that allows you to track each monster type and variant on a series of pages. You'll be awarded new pages in your encyclopedia as you generate monsters using discs. If you've never encountered that type of monster before, an entry will be added to your book. The nice thing about the encyclopedia is that it allows you to generate monsters from those entries, which will save you the hassle of tracking down which CD or DVD gave you a particular monster. Once you have a monster, you'll take it to a training area. Unlike the previous games, MR3 doesn't provide you with a farm to settle down on and raise your monster. Instead, there are now five general areas, each offering a different environment and training options for your monster. There is initially only one open to you, but the others can be unlocked as you progress through the game. As you visit each area, you'll encounter other characters who'll become rivals that you'll have to interact with and occasionally fight, much like in the Pokémon games.
Caring for your monster is roughly the same as before, although there are many more variables. You'll have to feed it once a month like always, but this time out, onscreen meters let you know the item's nutritional value and how much your monster cares for it. You'll have to balance training your monster with making sure it gets rest to ensure successful development. You'll still have the option to participate in small tournaments for money and items, as well as the official tournaments, which raise your letter ranking--the ultimate being the S rank. The expeditions from the first two Monster Rancher games are gone, having been replaced by sequences called ventures that take place at the change of every season. The ventures find you actively controlling your monster as it explores its training area. You'll come across patches that can be examined to reveal items, gold, training sequences that increase one of your monster's skills, and leeches that drain your statistics. The venture sequences require you to purchase an item called ran ran. There are three types, each more expensive than the last. The most expensive type of ran ran gives you the most time to explore.
- Player Reviews: 1
- Game Universe:
- Monster Rancher DS (DS),
- Kaite Shabette Hajimeyou! Monster Farm DS (DS),
- Monster Rancher 4 (PS2),
- Monster Rancher Advance 2 (GBA),
- Monster Rancher Advance (GBA),
- Monster Rancher 3 (PS2),
- Monster Rancher Hop-A-Bout (PS),
- Monster Rancher Explorer (GBC),
- Monster Rancher Battle Card: Episode II (PS),
- Monster Rancher 2 (PS)
- Offline Modes:
- Number of Players: