Parents' Guide to

Ultra Kaiju Monster Rancher

By Joey Thurmond, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Promising premise let down by repetitious, boring gameplay.

Game Nintendo Switch 2022
The cover art for Ultra Kaiju Monster Hunter, featuring a menagerie of monsters in dynamic poses.

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This game has everything going for it based on the concept alone, but it fails in repetitive gameplay. . Based on the Ultraman series, Ultra Kaiju Monster Rancher gives you giant monsters as pets to play with and care for. Even though you fight wild ones and other monsters in competition, the goal is to tame these animals, with fighting as a form of exercise and play. You acquire your own kaiju in a city through some peculiar mechanics, which include using a keyword generator, premade codes, and NFC device scans (using items like a smart phone or credit card, which aren't used to record information or enable transactions). There are dozens and dozens of kaiju, so once you obtain one you like, you put them on a weekly schedule of training and rest. You decide what food to give them for the month, which affects their anger and fatigue levels, training their stats like Life, Power, or Intelligence to play into their strengths for battles. These routines can succeed or fail depending on whether or not you're attending your kaiju's needs and wants, and since you only have a couple years before retiring kaiju from competitions, figuring out how to optimize routines and stat growth is the key to winning.

But the quantity of features disguises the lack of gameplay quality. Ultra Kaiju Monster Rancher feels like it has a shell of a story. Half-backed mechanics and systems offer senseless variety to combat that's too simplistic and repetitive. The training involves all sorts of activities that could be mini-games, but consist of cutscenes you can skip -- an option that's even applied to battles, making combat a waste of time. Even distinct abilities, strengths, and weaknesses feel optional to consider. Diehard fans of the Monster Rancher and Ultraman franchises may find some fun out of the rhythm of raising monsters, especially more challenge with other players online. But most players will find the core experience too automated and repetitive.

Game Details

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