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Manhwa-Manhua Mash-Up: Monster Pet Evolution.

November 23, 2022 by  
Filed under Anime, GM, Manga, News

( Let’s take a departure from isekai and martial arts manhua and manhwa and look at something very different in Monster Pet Evolution. It’s not unusual to read a manhua or manhwa series and see that the main character has gained a pet of some sort.

Often times, it’s a mythological beast that they get in a weakened state or as a child. The main character then uses resources to raise the beast into a powerhouse. Of course, we rarely see it as the character becomes more powerful and the mythological beast becomes less useful to the main character.

It’s an interesting trope that always peters out during the same character progression. Monster Pet Evolution puts the beasts to the forefront in a way identical to Pokemon.

Monster Pet Evolution Offers Something New for Manhua

MPE takes place in a world where a catastrophe resulted in plant life and animals becoming mutated. While plants can prove to be useful in an animal’s growth, animals now have two forms. The first is their every day, energy saving form.

For example, the original form might be a domesticated cat but its second form—for combat—might be a panther that can breathe fire. Basically, all animals underwent some mutation that attunes them to elements or improves their natural abilities.

In this world, some animal mutations are more powerful than others. Since the world is just a few years removed from the catastrophe, evolving beasts is still a big mystery. That’s where Monster Pet Evolution’s main character comes in. High schooler Gao Peng is living alone as a high schooler with only a friendly caretaker checking in on him and his pet centipede monster.

He then happens upon a “system” which gives him information about any beast he’s looking at as well as their evolution path. Not only does he know the evolution path, he also knows how to ensure a 100-percent success rate.

Gao Peng aims to use his system to evolve the rarest, most powerful monsters just as the military increases its influence and a threat to humankind looms.

It’s Like Pokemon but With Some Bite

I love how the existence of beasts is explained and how even in a short period of time, humans found a way to use them for work, take them in as family, or subdue the more dangerous species. A lot of it is explained while some of it is explained as the story goes on.

However, you don’t get a kid who simply let out into the world to become the best. Instead, you get an orphan who grew up in a world where power, money, and fame are the only way out of a mediocre existence. In Pokemon, you’d be hard pressed to find an underhanded person who isn’t employed by Team Whatever.

In MPE, the underhanded people can be friends at first and users later on. Gao Peng’s high success rate for evolution makes him a hot commodity and brings him into games and tricks. As there are some powerful beasts that can’t be domesticated, they present a problem to civilians.

The military plays a larger role because of this and multiple companies are trying to get a slice of that power. While early into his trainer career, Gao Peng becomes a focal point to everything. What works about the story is that gives you a side of the world that Pokemon tends to either not explore or eliminated entirely.

That’s for another article, folks. All you need to know about MPE is that it’s definitely Pokemon with some spice to it. The world of MPE is fleshed out better and the motivations of characters go beyond being the best ever.

Sure, that’s the ultimate goal but some characters have other agendas or their goals are bolstered or hindered depending on what faction they’re with or their attitudes. With that said, the dialogue is pretty mediocre 80-percent of the time and that’s down to having the same tropes as any other manhua and manhwa.

As for the artwork, I’d say it’s decent overall. Some backgrounds are just edited images from an online search and the human characters all resemble character you will see in other manhua with a modern setting. It’s kind of similar to how some male protagonists look similar in manga if they’re supposed to be your average teenager.

Where Monster Pet Evolution shines is in the monster designs when they’re in combat mode and the fight scenes.

Verdict: 3.5 out of 5 Fists

The only problem I have with Monster Pet Evolution is the pace of Gao Peng’s backstory. It’s weird because the pace of the overall story is fine but when it involves character development with Gao, it seems like its rushed along. I’ll say it’s hard to explain.

Stories involving Gao Peng move at this good pace where there isn’t too much exposition or the fights aren’t totally one-sided clobber-fest. Then you get to stuff such as Gao Peng’s super powerful grandfather which seems a bit rushed.

Also, while I’m glad that Gao Peng can see through other people’s motivations and sees that he needs to build himself up, that happened pretty fast. Mind you, it happened at the speed it would’ve happened in a manhua, it’s just that Gao came to that revelation a little fast.

That aside, Monster Pet Evolution is an all-around good read. It’s action-packed, adventure-filled, and funny—everything you’d expected from a Pokemon clone. However, the threat of war with beasts and manhua’s “all businessmen with power” trope in play, you get something that is most fresh but familiar.

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.

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