Monster Hunter is a series of fantasy, action, role-playing games that take place on various unnamed continents, islands, and archipelagos on an unnamed world. The land supports plains, forests, jungles, swamps, mountains, tundra, deserts, oceans, and large stretches of beach that are inhabited by a host of terrestrial, aerial, and aquatic creatures that are all well adapted to their environments and found almost exclusively in those areas.
The games follow a hunter who is paid to gather items and kill or capture various monsters. They must prepare themselves with the proper items and equipment to deal with the environment and monsters they will be facing. What monsters the hunter kills can be carved and their hides used to forge better armor and equipment that will allow the hunter to face bigger and fiercer beasts.
The games have a large focus on preparation such as bringing hot drinks when traveling to the tundra or antidotes when facing poisonous monsters as heading out into the wilderness without proper preparation will end in a quick death. There are no levels or leveling and the hunter’s ability to bring down a beast is instead determined by the material and shape of their equipment, proper use of items, and strategy in combating the monster’s natural defenses and maneuvers. Monsters have no health bars so the hunter is forced to look for signs of weakness such as excessive drooling, limping, regular taunting, weakened attacks and fleeing the battle which will usually be followed by devouring carcasses or sleeping.