Monster Hunter International

Team Miami Monster Hunter Match. (AAR)

I know it is kinda late but might as well write something other than politics and TSA groping for a change. Last Halloween we had a Monster Hunter Match very loosely based on Larry Correia’s books. I would give it a C+ of B- just due to the fact that I made several mistakes. Mainly I made it too big; even though it was just two stages, we had an IDPA classifier before it and that sapped the crap of lots of shooters and staff. IDPA classifiers are long and tiresome and probably the most annoying part of IDPA. At the end, people just shot the shotgun/pistol stage and left the rifle/pistol for a next time.

Still I think people not only had fun, but learned some interesting things about operating a shotgun… we suck.

Here are the two Courses of Fire shot: Werewolves and Puppies and Gnomes. Oh My! (Shotgun) and Zombies and Ghouls and Lead (Pistol.) Even both events were timed independently, the shooter was told to run them as if it was one single CoF.

In “Werewolves and Puppies and Gnomes. Oh My!” the shooter started at the Low Read with 5 slugs loaded in the shotgun and had to hit the 5 werewolves at 30 yards away in the kill zone (8 inch center or head shot), reload and do it again. Then move behind the Bianchi barricade and engage the previously selected gnomes (red or blue bowling pins) from both sides. Once there, the shooter moved to the final position and engaged 5 pepper poppers (werewolf puppies). Both gnomes and puppies were to be engaged with birdshot.

Shotgun Stage
Walk-Through of shotgung stage.
Walk-Through of shotgun stage.
Engaging Gnomes

” Zombies and Ghouls and Lead” was the pistol stage to be shot as fast as possible but from cover and designed to confuse shooters a bit. Zombies required one well placed brain shot but ghouls demanded 2 hip bone shots (blue zone) before shooting the head and before shooting the zombie. “Why shoot from cover? They are zombies and ghouls” I got asked this and the best and fastest I could come up with was ” Because they spit poison!” I know, lame as hell but I had been awake for 25 hours by then.

Explaining shot placement for ghouls
Shootin’ the undead.

Lessons learned: Safety Officers and Shooters were the reason the match even got started. Everybody collaborated setting up, pasting and having fun. Safety was one thing also run tight and fine. We had a cold range where you could carry your sidearm, but long-guns were to remain in the case, flagged and only manipulated when the shooter was called to the line.

Many people are now realizing that a shotgun is a bitch to reload fast, even if you are shooting a Saiga (we had 2 shooters with their “Abominations”) and a rifle might be a better choice for TEOTWAWKI. Nobody managed to place 2 slugs in the kill zones at 30 yards and that was also an eye opener. We shoot a lot of pistol so pistol scores were damn decent accuracy wise. We need more shotgun practice so we will be planning some classes in the future including Defensive Shotgun.

NEVER AGAIN DO SOMETHING LIKE THIS…… following another event. Too tiresome and although fun was had, it took on everybody. I didn’t even git to shoot and had to leave the range before the end under orders of the Missus or suffer the consequences… and she is scarier than a rabid werewolf.

I haven’t seen the winner yet since that day, but he will receive a cheaply printed certificate and a copy of Monster Hunter International.

That is all…. carry on.

October 31st: M.H.I. Miami will burn some Monsters.

No idea how the heck we were able to get the Markham Park range for that date but we are planning on getting some IDPA Classifying going on early in the morning for the heathens among us followed by a good Shotgun/Pistol and Rifle/Pistol Monster Hunting Shooting. Available for your eradicating pleasure, the menu consists of Zombies, Ghouls, Werewolves, Chupacabras (A local favorite,) Gnomes and Sparkling Vampires.

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The match is “sponsored” in part by M.H.I. Miami which is basically the fans of Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter International and Monster Hunter Vendetta. The Human model for the targets is a club member who recently became another fan of Larry’s He finished MHI just yesterday and was tripping happy) and I was using his mug without permission for the Zombie and Ghoul (also Werewolf) targets, but now he will be attending the match and I don’t have to worry about being shot for not paying copyright.

The IDPA Classifier will start at 8:30 am and the Monster Hunting Match will start immediately after, whereabouts of noonish to 1:00 pm.

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Monster Hunter Vendetta: Capturing lightning twice.

I am not gonna lie: I was afraid about the new Monster Hunter book. I enjoyed Monster Hunter International so much that I was hesitant about its successor. Was Larry Correia able to get a book as equal in action and fun as the first? He did not. Monster Hunter Vendetta is a great book on its own eight tentacles that you will stop comparing books about 50 pages in and just enjoy this new eccentric ride.

Gun Geek Alert: MHI’s narrative is a brand new cool weapon. It has the awe and lust of the new out of the box handgun and you spend time learning it, taking it apart, lubricating, and taking it to the range to show it off to your buddies for the Drool Factor.  MHV’s narrative is the same gun after the 500 to 800 rounds break in period: all rough spots gone, it cycles beautifully, sends the bullet where you want it and melds with your hand with the familiarity of your loved one.

Two things that caught me by surprise with this book: Humor and I mean laughing out loud- neighbors demanding silence- all out laughter and Larry’s totally outlandish imagination for new monsters and monster behaviors. In a couple of notable passages, both intertwine so well that one must wonder what kind of gun solvent fumes inspired these visions.

Both Monster Hunter International and Monster Hunter Vendetta cannot be pigeon-holed into any specific literary movement. Fantasy? Not quite. Yes, both have a serious dose of that, but that’s too easy. Fiction? Yes but it is also very well grounded on those physical things we know and depend upon. Sci-Fi? You got your interplanetary, trans-dimensional beings but we are spared of UFOs…so far. Magic Realism then? Nope, Larry ain’t a starchy or pretentious author plus I was forced to read some of that crap and bore myself to tears in my younger years while the books keep me awake and racing.

If the books have a “location”, it would be next to that shadow we caught in the corner of our eye on a weird day. That shadow that we cannot see if we try to look at it and it gives us a chill down our spine if we turn our backs to it. Larry does not make us suspend disbelief with his books, he just lets us have flexible minds. And in the monster hunting business, that is 50% of the game.

Monster Hunter International: The Baen Edition.

I feel I repeat myself and I usually don’t like it, but I will make any excuse necessary to plug this book. I always found the horror genre boring and stupid in the way authors treat their readers. It seems to be engraved in the stone that is the official guidelines to write horror that the human/normal characters are highly mobile screaming morons that will not see what’s coming even though there have been plenty warnings and even then, they seem to resort to a McGyverish solution as last resort but only because they are about the only ones left, the monster is about to kill them, all their buddies have already suffered horrible deaths and they are late for the opening of the Starbucks around the corner.

So I bumped into Larry Correia’s website by chance and read the sample of his book which back then he was publishing on demand (Internet version of selling from his garage) and I got hooked. All horror creations seem to start with some poor soul being killed by the evil monster but in this book the main character decided to kick ass and park the monster on a gas guzzler. The fight is painfully real as you can almost feel every laceration and broken bone as it happens. Hell I could almost smell the blood and rotting body parts as I sped, slowed down and re-read the descriptions. Cherry on top? The good guy actually gets his own crap kicked out and must spend serious recovery time. Not your typical monster hogwash so it bade well as your non-standard horror book. I ordered the book, got it and read it two times in a row in 48 hours and only stopped under direct threat from the wife who demanded her turn with the book.

According to my dear wife who is a true horror freak, the book has the best of the great horror classics and none of the political correctness or dumbness that plagues the genre nowadays. The monsters are really monsters and not tortured souls with some stupid redeeming value or not-so-veiled sex appeal to entice lonesome bored housewives. Basically you do not imagine the lead vampire as a Fabio look-alike dressed in ruffles but bleeding, stinking, blood dripping creatures that need to be put down ASAP. From a male point of view, it answers the question that any guy has asked before “Why the hell they got into that situation without the proper amount of firepower?”. Let’s face it, when you start a book shooting a snub-nose and close it with a five kiloton tactical nuke, you know it is a damn good book. However, iIf you are a metrosexual, you may be disappointed at the lack of hair mousse, facials treatments and the extreme level of violence.

Monster Hunter International is available at most of your local chain bookstores line Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, Borders and of course via

If you want to know more about Larry himself, check his blog Monster Hunter Nation and he was dragged into Facebook screaming and shooting his Saiga by his fans but he finally seems to be warming up to the idea somewhat.

So, what are you doing here? Go get the darn book!