Survivor: We're going to die here, aren't we?This character has embarked on a Hunt, a mission to eliminate all monsters in the world, dedicating their life to killing supernatural beings. Whether this Hunter of Monsters is good or evil depends on how sympathetic the audience is supposed to feel towards their prey. Naturally, we see a hunter chasing our protagonist as wrong, but almost all hunters wrestle with some kind of fanaticism. Chasing a "good" version of their prey gives the character a chance to resolve that fanaticism, and potentially confront He Who Fights Monsters. Those who are "good" will often leave some examples of their prey alone because that person isn't evil like the rest. Others don't care about good and evil and consider all monsters to be beyond redemption, leading to Van Helsing Hate Crimes. The Hunter of Monsters seeks prey out of the following motivations (these may overlap):
Demon Hunter: No. Because as long as I'm here, they are the prey... and I am the hunter!
Demon Hunter: No. Because as long as I'm here, they are the prey... and I am the hunter!
- To protect humans from the dangers of these monsters; making the world safer for human life.
- The creatures are tortured souls who Cannot Self Terminate and eliminating them is a mercy. This is especially common if the monsters were once human and were turned against their will, with no means of turning them back.
- A supernatural authority says that some being shouldn't exist—or the individual believes that it says so, based on personal revelation or scripture—so they consider their Hunt a Mission from God. This style of Hunter is usually a Church Militant or some other religious type.
- They are part of a special government agency dedicated to keeping their country or world safe from these beings.
- Just plain old profit. The character is a mercenary who hunts their targets because it pays well. This style of Hunter overlaps with Bounty Hunter.
- These monsters are the ultimate blood sport, and the Hunter is a Blood Knight who enjoys the test of battle.
- They have suffered a terrible loss of some sort at the hands of the creatures, and now seek revenge. This style of Hunter usually has a specific individual among the creatures who is their personal enemy (usually the creature responsible for the wrong in question), and is particularly vulnerable to He Who Fights Monsters.
- Just good old-fashioned Fantastic Racism. Maybe there is just one type of monster with a bad rep that is the target, maybe they hate everything that isn't human. This style of Hunter is more likely than others to be a villain who commits Van Helsing Hate Crimes.
- They are themselves supernatural beings or Half-Human Hybrid killers who hunt their own kind or the kind of their more monstrous progenitor.
- Pleasure. It was once acceptable for the Great White Hunter to kill tigers, but today they are too endangered for that. So why not start hunting a creature that is just as dangerous as Hunting the Most Dangerous Game, but is much more ethical to kill?
- An Egomaniac Hunter may choose to hunt dangerous monsters just to prove that they can, or to earn admiration from the crowd, regardless of the collateral damage they cause.
A Hunter with no fixed home is probably also a Knight Errant, regardless of whether or not they hold an actual noble title. If they use magic, they may be a Blue-Collar Warlock. Groups or organizations that specialize in killing monsters are a Creature-Hunter Organization. A monster choosing to hunt their own kind is a Hunter of His Own Kind. Contrast with Mary-Sue Hunter (a plot/character trope for killing Mary Sue characters), Occult Detective (an investigator of supernatural mysteries), and Nazi Hunter and Vigilante Man (the character hunts human "monsters"). Subtropes are:
- Creature-Hunter Organization
- Demon Slaying
- The Dragonslayer
- Vampire Hunter
- Who You Gonna Call?
- The Witch Hunter
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- Vampire Hunter D hunts vampires, mutants and demons in a post-apocalyptic future. He is the son of none other than Dracula himself.
- Vampire Princess Miyu fights the Shinma (God Demons) as her job and her fate. She is more antiheroic than many Hunters due to her use of humans to trap the Shinma, and sometimes hunting humans as well.
- The SOLOMON organization, a.k.a. STN-J from Witch Hunter Robin, is an organization dedicated to hunting down witches, people born with superhuman abilities that many associate with magic, in order to keep these abilities from being used to hurt others. Robin is a witch who uses her powers in the service of the organization while trying not to fall into insanity like the witches they fight frequently do. Unfortunately, it soon becomes apparent that things a lot more sinister are happening behind the scenes, and even witches who have never used their powers for evil have reason to fear the group.
- Venus Versus Virus focuses on a group of two girls who fight The Virus, an evil spirit that steals people's souls.
- This pretty much describes the position of Spirit Detective in YuYu Hakusho. After returning to life, Yusuke is hired to solve various supernatural cases, and all of them end with deadly fights against the perpetrators. The trope is abandoned during the Dark Tournament saga as he and his team are busy fighting other teams to death. Resumed once again in the Chapter Black Saga when a major conflict will test the characters' physical and intellectual skills in order to stop the fissure that threatens to bring demons from the Makai. It's also revealed in this latter arc that Shinobu Sensui was a Spirit Detective in the past, and in fact he had been killing demons in self-defense since he was a very small child; Koenma just gave him some structure, and then moral relativism and confrontation with human evil broke his brain and he decided to Kill All Humans. Finally in the Three Kings saga, the concept of demon hunters and detectives is scrapped entirely for the rest of the main series (and not seen again until Poltergeist Report).
- Subversion: Those Who Hunt Elves (in a T-74 main battle tank, to strip them naked).
- Subversion: Seishirou from Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- hunts a certain set of vampires because he wants to become one.
- Claymore: half-demons hunting full-demons.
- Many of the "monsters" in Mugen Densetsu Takamagahara Dream Saga are hunting humans, in revenge for their near-extinction.
- Hellsing begins as a series about vampire hunters (with the subversion being that two of the main characters are vampires themselves), but the manga plot eventually becomes a war story whose entire opposition just happens to be made up of the undead. And/or robots.
- The Flame Hazes of Shakugan no Shana hunt down the Guze no Tomogara in order to protect the balance of the world.
- Quent Yaiden from Wolf's Rain hunts wolves to the point of obsession. However, we feel sorry for him because of Blue, his constant companion and Empathy Pet, and the fact that his wife and child were killed by wolves. Later on, it is revealed that his family was actually killed by Darcia's soldiers, and the wolves had only been driven to his home because they were caught in the middle. It's an understandably tragic misunderstanding, especially considering that it has long become his only reason for living. When Blue gains the ability to use a human disguise, he does not believe her when she tries to straighten things out. Nor does he (or any of the pack) enjoy Toboe's constant attempts to make peace between parties. And if you take it the right way, this leads to Toboe's death near the end of the series.
- Scar from Fullmetal Alchemist has dedicated his life to killing every state alchemist and singlehandedly defeating the nation of Amestris, to avenge their genocide of Ishval. Towards the end of the 2003 anime version, the Elric brothers take it upon themselves to hunt down and destroy all the homunculi.
- The cast of Gantz are alien hunters. They don't know why, hell, they don't even know what they're hunting half the time.
- After the Eclipse from Berserk, Guts becomes the Black Swordsman, dedicating himself to hunting down the demonic Apostles of the Godhand and putting them to the sword. He also seeks revenge upon Griffith for the betrayal that led to having the Brand of Sacrifice put on his neck and the utter destruction of his last group of True Companions, not to mention his lover being driven insane.
- The Survey Corps from Attack on Titan. In this post-apocalyptic setting, most of humanity is content to stay within the fortified walls of the last remaining settlement that the Titans are always trying to breach. The Corps are the only ones brave (or stupid, if you believe some citizens) enough and skilled enough to stray outside to fight them, but even they tend to have tragically short lifespans. Referenced by the first opening theme, as the German at the beginning translates to "Are you the prey? No, we are the hunters!"
- It turns out that they're seen as monsters by the rest of the world (no, humanity isn't actually extinct), as Paradis Island (where the main characters reside) is considered to be populated by "devils" - the race most of the main characters are (Eldian), are the only race that can turn into Titans and are seen as extremely dangerous. There are Eldians that live elsewhere, but they're kept in concentration camps and even they see the Paradis Eldians as worse than they are. More specifically, our protagonist Eren is now considered a direct threat to the rest of humanity and has been called a monster himself. In other words, the hunter has become the hunted. Eren seems to have accepted his role, however.
- Kurapika from Hunter × Hunter is dedicated to hunting down the Phantom Troupe/Genei Ryodan (also known as The Spider, each member being a leg), the villainous True Companions who are responsible for making Kurapika Last of His Kind. His vendetta kills about two of the twelvenote of them dead and puts their leader out of play for a considerable period. We visit them beating up a splinter group of the Big Bads of the arc-after-next just because Togashi wanted to play with them and their powers more. He has a tendency to bond with his villains.
- Kuroe Kurose from Blood Alone was one of these before the series began, and it's something he tries not to bring up, especially considering his living with a vampire.
- The Exorcists in D.Gray-Man, or anyone in the Black Order, including scientists and Finders, all joined the Order at one point or another mainly for personal reasons, usually because their relatives died from Akuma attacks, or they embody Innocence and want to put it to use. Occasionally some members of the Black Order have other goals, but the first two are most common.
- In theory, this is the central responsibility of shinigami from Bleach, freeing the tortured souls that have become Hollows so they can reenter the cycle of reincarnation and stop killing and eating people, but what with their having been at war basically since actual shinigami characters started to be introduced, we haven't really seen them do much of it.
- Shinigami of Yami No Matsuei are the government-bureaucracy version of this; they manage to combine cop-show tropes with The Hunter tropes, and also all those frilly shoujou tropes. (And in the manga, This Is Your Premise on Drugs tropes. Matsushita's mind is strange.)
- In Lyrical Nanoha, one of the original duties of the Wolkenritter was hunting mages or other magical creatures and stealing their mana from their Linker Cores. This process was not deadly and the victims eventually recover after some period of time, but gathering mana meant collecting pages for the Book of Darkness. If all 666 pages are complete, the ultimate destruction begins. Fortunately, Hayate Yagami, the last master of this book, breaks the cycle and has overwritten the the system of the book and the four Wolkenritter don't have to collect pages anymore.
- Tokyo Ghoul has the Commission of Counter Ghoul (CCG), a paramilitary law enforcement organization charged with enforcing the laws concerning Ghouls, primarily through hunting down and killing them. They handle all cases suspected to involve Ghouls, investigating them and sending out Ghoul Investigators to actually handle killing the targets. Many employees are simple office workers and pencil pushers, but the highly-skilled Ghoul Investigators are trained to battle Ghouls using Quinque — specialized weapons created from Ghoul corpses. Many of these Investigators were children orphaned by Ghoul attacks, taken in by the organization and "encouraged" to pursue a higher calling. The Ghouls refer to them as "Doves", referencing the organization's symbol, and most greatly fear them.
- Nagi Kirima from Boogiepop Phantom, although in practice she fails more often than she succeeds.
- In Youkai Shoujo - Monsuga, GCUP is a high-tech Knight Templar organization that hunts Youkai, which they call Abscesses. They initially try to recruit the protagonist due to his unique abilities, but immediately come into conflict with them by attacking the benevolent youkai that he has befriended.
- Comic book/movie example: Blade (who also shows up in Spider-Man), a half-vampire hunting down full vampires and other supernatural creatures. His reasons are a serious combination of a few of the above mentioned ones.
- In The Tomb of Dracula, where Blade was first introduced, there's also Quincy Harker and his band of vampire hunters working occasionally alongside Blade.
- Ulysses Bloodstone was the premier monster hunter in the Marvel Universe. Following his death, the mantle passed to his daughter Elsa.
- Robert Hellsgaard, who features in The Punisher's Franken-Castle storyline, is out to kill every single monster on earth after his family was killed by werewolves.
- Graveyard Shift from Scare Tactics is a church sanctioned organisation of vampire hunters.
- The Hellblazer John Constantine, who hunts down normal or supernatural badguys either to protect his beloved London, or just for his personal gain. Gods are no exception.
- Mordecai Chalk from Astro City. A cyborg monster hunter whose missing body parts were destroyed by occult creatures, Chalk makes quite an impression for a character who was only 'on screen' for a handful of panels.
- Comic Book/Batman has surprisingly little respect of non-human life. Seriously, in almost every iteration, the guy would gladly murder a vampire or undead juggernaut or torch an entire forest of sentient plants before he'd consider killing a single human serial-killing clown.
- Granted, considering that said undead juggernaut is Solomon Grundy, it's justified in that A) Lethal force is usually the only way to stop him, and B) he has Resurrective Immortality, so whenever his is "killed", he'll just come back next Monday, meaning even lethal force isn't really lethal for him. Vampires can spread their condition (It happened to him at least once), so throwing them in a jail or asylum would most likely make things worse. They are also creatures that need to harm others to live.
- Child of the Storm has Blade, naturally, and Agent/Director Peter Wisdom, who used to do this and, according to Harry Dresden, "made Inspector Javert look like Mother Teresa".
- The Hunter in With Strings Attached. Downplayed in that his name is actually Jim Hunter, implying that Jeft chose to use him as a character because of his name. If he hunts anything specific (besides forest animals), we don't find out.
- In Mongoose and its two sequels Harry was obsessed with killing vampires after one turned Ginny and he was forced to stake her.
- The Ultimate Evil has Nataline "Nat" Homoto, who comes from a long line of demon hunters. She meets the Chan clan after tracking stories of their battles over the course of the Demon Portal arc, and aids them in their fights with Bai Tza and showdown with Shendu. Afterwards, they part ways, but she promises to return if they ever need her help again.
- When there's something strange in your neighborhood, Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters. Except that they don't fight ghosts because of a traumatic event, mission from a higher power, or because they are afraid of becoming ghosts themselves. They fight ghosts because, well, they need money. Also, For Science!.
- Robert Morgan, the protagonist from The Last Man on Earth, spends his days hunting and staking the mindless, photophobic monsters known in-universe as vampires. Unwittingly, he's also been depopulating Los Angeles of people that could be reasoned with despite being infected by The Virus, since they, too, are nocturnal.
- A lot of Dracula adaptations turn Abraham Van Helsing from an aged professor of Medicine into this sort of character. The Hammer Horror Dracula films are known for this, and Van Helsing follows in the tradition.
- Blade, as in the comics, is a half-vampire who hunts full vampires.
- Hans is the titular character in The Troll Hunter.
- General W.R. Monger from Monsters vs. Aliens, who heads a secret government program to capture monsters and lock them away so that the public doesn't have to worry about them and get on to more important things, like paying taxes. He is more sympathetic than most versions, as he doesn't seek to destroy them, and eventually grants them their freedom in exchange for battling the Alien Invasion.
- At the end of Lesbian Vampire Killers, Jimmy, Fletch and Lotte vow to become lesbian vampire killers.
- The Frog Brothers from The Lost Boys, fighting the undead for "Maximum body count."
- Gerald Tarrant of the Coldfire Trilogy is named "The Hunter". Granted, his prey of choice seems to run high on young, attractive, and terrified women but, hey, if you're going to scare the bejeezus out of someone and stalk them through a creepy forest, they might as well be nice to look at.
- Colt Regan is this to the various demons and other supernatural nasties that make a ruckus in his vicinity.
- What does Takeshi Kovacs of Woken Furies do after his ex-girlfriend is burnt at the stake by a fundamentalist religion? Why, he tracks down the priests involved, and kills them. Then he kills everyone in the village who was eighteen or older at the time, and could have reasonably been expected to speak up. Then the starts killing every member of the Knights of the New Revelation on the planet. Because once you start killing people, it's hard to stop.
- He says this himself when the person whom he confessed it to asks "Where does it end?" The answer: "It doesn't."
- The titular witchers of The Witcher are traveling monster-slayers for hire, gifted with unnatural powers.
- The eponymous hero of Andrew Vachss' Burke novels is a Hunter by nature; having been raised by the state and horribly abused as a child, he has a pathological hatred of child molesters, but he doesn't hunt them full-time—only when he's getting paid or he's been crossed somehow.
- Steel in "Eva Fairdeath" by Tanith Lee.
- Samhain Island: The St. Charles’s are known for monster hunting, targeting various monsters around the town for their own research and/or personal gain. Zaccaria is the leader, and René is the muscle. Miss Vargas is there too, but isn't all that helpful
- Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.
- 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: The Hunter Ned Land accuses Nemo of being The Butcher after observing him massacring the cachalots. Captain Nemo claims to be hunting dangerous plagues.
"Well, sir," replied the Canadian, whose enthusiasm had somewhat calmed; "it is a terrible spectacle, certainly. But I am not a butcher. I am a hunter, and I call this a butchery."
"It is a massacre of mischievous creatures," replied the Captain; "and the Nautilus is not a butcher's knife."
- The Dresden Files: Harry Dresden evolves into this, and the Knights of the Cross are these.
- The Memory Wars: Nathan Shepherd and Elena De Santis have been these throughout multiple past incarnations.
- Kate of Adventures of a Demon-Hunting Soccer Mom and the rest of the Catholic organization she belongs to. She's mainly driven by the need to protect her family.
- The antagonist of Warren Ellis' Gun Machine is only referred to as this. His "prey" are human beings, although he doesn't seem to recognize them as such.
- The Mortal Instruments: The Shadowhunters protect humanity from supernatural creatures. However, the Shadowhunters are themselves supernatural in nature.
- The beasthunters of the Jennifer Scales series are an entire species of this.
- Monster Hunter International. The title says it all.
- Pact has witch hunters, which despite the name often work with local magic users as enforcers and assassins of various supernatural creatures and rivals. Practitioners in the setting of Pact are unable to lie or to enter dwellings without permission, meaning that a properly trained and equipped ordinary human can be a nasty shock. Andy and Eva, the witch hunters most seen in the story, are a Brains and Brawn team that works as enforcers for the council of practitioners that control the small Canadian town of Jacob's Bell.
- While he specializes in vampires, Leon hunted all kinds of things before the titular Vampirocracy came about.
- Monster slayers are people who hunt monsters created by the fey using the toy maker. These include everything from wild dogs with nightvision eyes, swarms of poisonous frogs and the mutated ostriches that eat them, and the really dangerous things. Gargants, in particular, are unique hand-crafted monsters that tend to kill hundreds of people if left unchecked. Derek is one of the best slayers in the city, and he trains Adam by taking him on some of the hunts.
- The angels were founded as vampire hunters. While at first everyone loved them for it, over time the vampires became less insane and monstrous, but the angels kept slaughtering them like beasts. Eventually an uneasy peace was forced between the two groups.
- Titus Crow is this for the Cthulhu Mythos. With his formidable Psychic Powers, he focuses initially on the Chthonians then moves to the Great Old Ones themselves.
- My Vampire Older Sister and Zombie Little Sister has Taori, the main character's mother. She's remodeled her body to the point where she can easily swing around a weapon weighing more than 70 kilograms, and can survive for several years without food, water or oxygen. Her reason for going to this extent is intensely personal - she believes that her family was destroyed by one particular monster (Lilith, now the main character's stepmother) and wants to take revenge at all costs.
- Ezekiel Stone of Brimstone is a hunter of the damned, who is tasked by the Devil with hunting down those who escaped from Hell and sending them back there.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
- Holtz embodies this trope.
- Highlander: The Series features an organization called the Hunters, an evil offshoot of the Watchers dedicated to hunting down and killing Immortals.
- Dean and Sam Winchester from Supernatural and a large part of their supporting cast. The series places a heavy emphasis on how much the life sucks, to the point of deconstruction: hunters typically make money by hustling pool and poker and credit card fraud, often end up with criminal records, generally end up emotionally traumatized to some degree due to the things they've seen and experienced, and when they die, which they probably will sooner rather than later, there's a good chance no one will know how to dispose of their body properly (if it's even recoverable) but other hunters.
- Pretty much the deal with the Argent family in Teen Wolf. They are part of a larger community of such people as well.
- Eric van Helsing in Young Dracula.
- The protagonist of Werewolf.
- Sylar on Heroes hunts down and kills superhumans to take their abilities.
- And now Volume 4: Fugitives will have a character actually named The Hunter, a U.S. Government Black Ops leader whose job it is to hunt down Superhumans for Uncle Sam to send to Super Guantanamo.
- That's the official plan, but Danko is also perfectly happy to use lethal force in liberal amounts too.
- And now Volume 4: Fugitives will have a character actually named The Hunter, a U.S. Government Black Ops leader whose job it is to hunt down Superhumans for Uncle Sam to send to Super Guantanamo.
- Dexter for killers not otherwise brought to justice.
- NCIS: Leroy Jethro Gibbs is like that. EVERY time he is tracking a criminal It's Personal. When one of his own team is endangered of course Its Really Personal
- Van Mcnulty from the Smallville episode "Extinction". He hunts and kills anyone with superpowers, not caring if they are good or evil. Immediately after discovering Clark's secret and heroic career, Van attacks him with kryptonite bullets. After Clark defeats him and sends him to jail, he is murdered by two superpowered foes Clark had defeated and jailed earlier in the series.
- Technically they weren't jailed, they were thrown in the loony bin.
- The Auzora (Blue Sky) Association from Kamen Rider Kiva is this to the fangires and to a lesser extent the other monster races. How extreme it is taken varies between members though. Some are content to allow fangires to live as long as don't feed on humans whereas others will kill all fangires on site. Almost all of them warm up the half-fangire protagonist though.
- The Grimm are people with the strange ability to see Wesen for what they are. Additionally, they also have enhanced strength, reactions, and senses that allow them to fight the Wesen on an almost-equal footing. Most Grimm tend to actively hunt Wesen, usually by following up on strange stories or newspaper articles. They also keep journals with pictures of the Wesen's true appearance as well as the best ways to kill them (typically, beheading does the trick, which is why they were called "Decapitare" in ancient times). Nick is a rare Grimm who doesn't actively hunt Wesen. He also doesn't reflexively kill every Wesen he sees, only doing so when he has no choice, and actually has a number of friends who are Wesen (a vegetarian Blutbad named Monroe, a Fuchsbau named Rosalee, and a perpetually-nervous Eisbiber named Bud), as well as a Friendly Enemy relationship with his Da Chief, who's a half-Zauberbiest. In Season 5, Nick is living with Adalind, a Hexenbiest with suppressed abilities, and their Grimm/Hexenbiest son.
- In iZombie, Major Lilywhite (Liv's ex-fiancé) eventually finds out about the existence of zombies. He eventually buys a shitload of guns and goes Van Helsing on a butcher shop, where a number of them work (killing homeless people and supplying the local zombie population with their brains), killing all but one zombie there. After being turned into a zombie and then cured, he gains the ability to sense when a zombie is nearby. Vaughn Du Clark then forces him to become a zombie hunter, threatening Liv if he doesn't comply, compiling a list of prominent city figures who have a high likelihood of being zombies. Major has become pretty good at breaking into people's cars and homes, kidnapping zombies (by injecting them with a sedative developed by Du Clark's people), driving them to a bridge, stuffing them in a bag, shooting them in the head, and dumping the bag into the water. He feels remorse, especially since many of the zombies are loving fathers and husbands and appear to be decent people (they didn't choose to be zombies), and has even spared one or two. His day job as a personal trainer helps him get close to many of the suspected zombies.
- Witch Hunters hunt witches. Well, more like are the last bastion of humanity against an overpowered magical force, but the routine is still to hunt single witches.
- Dungeons & Dragons
- The Ranger character class is stereotypically the Hunter. Their "favored enemy" class ability gives them bonuses to finding and killing a specific category of creature. It is possible to subvert this trope by choosing favored enemies for reasons other than those of the Hunter.
- In the original AD&D, all rangers had goblinoids and giants as their enemy, owing to the roots of the class, but with the advent of Second Edition, one could choose which kind of enemy their ranger was dedicated to taking down. One could even have a human ranger who had certain kinds of evil humans as a favored enemy, such as pirates, brigands or slavers, or in the case of Drizzt, a drow ranger who rebelled against his own evil kind. The original 3E removed restrictions on alignment, but you could not choose your own race as a favored enemy unless you were evil, which was thrown out for 3.5.
- Ravenloft has Rudolph van Richten (an Alternate Company Equivalent of Abraham van Helsing in concept), a herbalist turned monster hunter after his son was sold to (and turned) by a vampire, who later killed his wife in revenge. Not only does van Richten personally go after these deadly evil creatures, but had several books published detailing the results of his research to give others the needed edge to kill the things. And on other monsters he met and had to fight in process, such as werewolves and liches.
- The Player Characters could likely fit the Trope in Ravenloft too, depending on how the DM is running the campaign.
- In Planescape, the githyanki and githzerei are both descended from a Slave Race of the illithids; as a result, they often form bands called Rrakkma Warriors, who leave their planar fortresses on missions where they are not allowed to come back until they have slain a number of illithds equal to ten times the number of the band. (Most at least try to kill far more.) It's dangerous work, but among their own people, successful Rrakkma are the most admired and most revered.
- Hunter: The Reckoning, an Old World of Darkness RPG by White Wolf where all the player characters are monster hunters who've been granted mystical powers and are driven by a new urge to protect mankind from the supernatural beings that live among us. They also have a tendency to be driven insane, and a lot of them (especially those of the Avenger creed) aren't fussy about whether the supernatural beings they hunt deserve to be slaughtered or not.
- While Reckoning is the main oWoD Hunter game, there are other hunter groups, many of whom come to the hunt for their own reasons and have their own avenues of power: the Inquisition, the Arcanum, the Benandanti, the Shih, Strike Force Zero, government agencies, criminal organizations, religious groups...In a world as supernatural-heavy as the oWoD, there are a lot of hunters.
- In the historical Dark Ages setting, the Shadow Inquisition, predecessor to the modern Inquisition, is the primary hunter group, tasked to hunt the supernatural on behalf of the Catholic Church. Each of its constituent groups has their own set of supernatural knacks... and drawbacks.
- New World of Darkness:
- Hunter: The Vigil, which draws more on the oWoD's secondary hunter groups. In HtV, player characters are generally bog-standard humans who become Hunters after some sort of incident breaks The Masquerade for them (although some have some supernatural heritage, others can call on some form of magic, and yet others have supertech developed to fight various types of monster).
- Some fan-made supplements also offer their own factions of Hunters:
- Leviathan: The Tempest has the Ahabs (people who were made insane by a Leviathan and become obsessed with slaying the creatures responsible for their insanity) and the Marduck Society (Science Heroes who use super-science to fight Leviathans).
- Dragon: The Embers has the Exterminators (a collective term used to design all mortals who seek Dragon Hearts to destroy them out of hatred for the whole species) and the Knights of the Bloody Chalice (a group of psychotic humans who keep themselves young by bathing in the blood of supernatural creatures, with a preference for Dragons).
- Siren: The Drowning gives us the Flensers, a secret society of Siren hunters who lure and kill Sirens so they can get immortality from eating their flesh.
- Princess: The Hopeful has the Stormwracked, humans who were granted Sworn powers by the Queen of Storms to fight the Outer Darkness.
- The Witch Hunters of Warhammer go after their prey (witches, vampires, heresy, the forces of Chaos...) with little more than their weapons, their unshaking faith in Sigmar, and of course their hats. Some are accompanied by a rabble of zealous henchmen, others work alone.
- The Inquisition of Warhammer 40,000 is this (on a much larger scale. Here the Inquisitor can essentially requisition entire planets, regiments of Guardsmen and even Space Marines if he so chooses (Though he is usually polite about it), and often the dangers they hunt require that kind of firepower to destroy. The Inquisition is divided into many groups or "Ordos" specializing in various prey, but only three have any real clout: rooting out traitors and heretics (Ordo Hereticus), dealing with Chaos Daemons and incursions (Ordo Malleus), or learning about/shooting aliens (Ordo Xenos).
- The children of Little Fears are often driven to this on account of the fact that once they realize the monsters are out there, the monsters become aware of them, making it a matter of kill or be killed.
- The game Monster of the Week is all about monster hunters of pretty much every stripe that go forth and hunt down the supernatural.
- The Hunter of Bloodborne, who doubles as Dream Walker, travels across the land of Yharnam to hunt beasts and to halt the source of the nightmare. Besides, almost every NPC encountered outdoors and out of the safe zones is one such character, even referred to as such. The three different covenants of the game each follow a certain aspect of the archetype - The Vilebloods hunt for pleasure, the Executioners hunt for the Church Militant, and the Hunters of Hunters hunt to protect humanity. And thanks to the Paleblood transfusion that becoming a hunter requires, you're more or less a Hunter of His Own Kind as well.
- Samus Aran hunts the Space Pirates who devastated her homeworld and left her the sole survivor of the whole planet. In Metroid Prime, files recovered from a Space Pirate ship indicates that they refer to her, literally, as "The Hunter". Since the Space Pirates are bug-like aliens with a brutal totalitarian society, however, she can easily slaughter them by the thousands without worrying about the usual psychological problems.
- There's also her recurring troubles with the series' eponymous creatures. In Metroid II: Return of Samus and Metroid: Samus Returns, the entire point of the game is to commit xenocide, wiping the Metroids off the planet one by one.
- In the Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, the Space Pirates react to the appearance of Dark Samus by referring to a "Dark Hunter." Hilarious to read at first, as they express their horror at being hounded by two Hunters... but by Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, Dark Samus has become their leader, resulting in some nightmarish logs detailing the Pirates' blind fanaticism and devotion to her.
- The Belmont family in the Castlevania games, as well as the Belnades and Morris families. The Belmonts are described as a clan of vampire hunters, but in the end it's only really Dracula (and his countless minions) that they wind up hunting.
- The titular player characters from Monster Hunter, who are card-carrying members of the Hunter's Guild, have the primary task of ensuring the safety and survival of civilization in the face of titanic, city-destroying wild animals and dragons by keeping their numbers manageable through hunting. It's subverted, however, in that the Guild itself, alongside several independent organizations, carry out monster preservation activities to ensure ecological stability. Of course, one won't be able to tell that given the grindy nature of the game.
- Mortal Kombat's Ashrah is a demon who hunts others of her kind. She wields a holy sword that cleanses her of her demonic essence bit by bit with every demon warrior she kills with it, and she hopes to become completely purified and holy this way.
- As the name implies, Witch Hunters from Warhammer Online hunt rogue witches.
- The future Tohno(/Nanaya) Shiki becomes this, hunting down the 27 Dead Apostle Ancestors (some of the most powerful beings on the planet) for the sake of the vastly-weakened Arcueid. He is good at it.
- Arcueid herself. She's been chasing one single vampire for 800 years, killing any of the others who get in her way. Even before going after him, she hunted the Demon Lords, fallen True Ancestors.
- The Holy Church has the Assembly of the Eighth Sacrament, a whole army of hunters dedicated to exterminating vampires and other threats to mankind. Among them we have the Burial Agency, seven (plus one) people or creatures chosen not for their faith but for the power and the will to exterminate the most dangerous creatures in the world that the Church finds inconvenient. Including the 27 Dead Apostle Ancestors, with the exception of the one who is among their numbers.
- Enhance, one of the 27 Dead Apostle Ancestors, is hunting down his own kin to slay all vampires. If he shows up at a vampire coven, he'll leave no survivors.
- Barthomeloi Lorelei, one of the leaders of the Magical Association, harbors a fanatical hate for vampires and the power to kill even the Dead Apostle Ancestors.
- The Maverick Hunters of the Mega Man X series. Ironically, one of the organization's greatest hunters becomes a primary target of a similar organization, the Neo Arcadian military, in the Sequel Series Mega Man Zero.
- The Hellgate: London features a faction called Hunters though they aren't the only ones out for demon blood.
- Half-Life 2's Father Grigori is clearly of the "putting a damned creature out of its misery" type. "A shepard must tend to his flock!", where his flock is the town of Ravenholm, who have all apparently become zombies.
- Gabriel Knight is descended from the Ritters of Bavaria, a family line whose men were Schattenjägers, a German word loosely translating to "shadow hunters".
- Juliet from Lollipop Chainsaw; the game itself is Buffy the Vampire Slayer on on acid instead of meth, but she is a professional zombie hunter when she isn't a cheerleader.
- Some characters in Girls Love Visual Novel Akai Ito and its sort-of sequel Aoi Shiro fits hunter archetype.
- Tsudura and Uzuki from Akai Ito are part of an ancient clan of demon hunters (the "Onikiri"). Tsudura is even the (unwilling) leader of it. From Aoi Shiro, Migiwa is also member of similar clan, except based in the southern islands. Kohaku was turned into immortal oni long time ago by her sorcerer foster-father, and now seek epic vendetta against him and his creations. Kaya is Back from the Dead and is on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge to avenge her little sister that is, you.
- The most dramatic example of The Hunter in this series is the main character of Akai Ito, Kei herself, in one of the Sakuya routes. She was killed by the Big Bad Nushi, and was given Emergency Transformation by Sakuya. She returned to (un?)life and, with Sakuya, is now going to kick the asses of Nushi's cultists for all eternity.
- And hunters in this series are prone to all kind of moral problems that a hunter can expect to face in her career. Universally, they believe that all non-humans must be terminated. It's strongly implied that Tsudura have shot several dogs. Uzuki was Driven to Suicide after she accidentally killed Kei, believing that she's Not So Different from her quarries. Migiwa destroyed the astral body of Yasumi, rendering her comatose for the rest of her life. Both Kohaku and Kaya will not stop at anything to exact their Revenge, and in Kaya's case she can tragically kill you.
- Angry Black Man and recruitable ranger Valygar Corthala in Baldur's Gate II is a wizard hunter thanks to a long family history of magical obsession leading to evil and death, although his favoured enemy is "golems" (presumably because a lot of evil mages use them). The only real question that has to be asked is why he's a ranger given that there's a fighter subclass known as the Wizard Slayer and specifically geared up to kill mages.
- The Demon Hunter class from Diablo III is a ranged class that is dedicated to Demon Slaying. They're typically recruited from among the survivors of villages ravaged by The Legions of Hell, and they're primarily motivated by vengeance against demons in general. The Player Character among them lost a sister to demon-induced madness after the two of them survived the destruction of their village.
- Eponymous characters of Dragon Valor hunt dragons, who represent the evil in the world.
- The Elder Scrolls
- In Morrowind, Jiub is the Nerevarine's shirtless, bald, one-eyed fellow prisoner aboard the Imperial Prison Ship at the start of the game. He lets the Nerevarine known they've arrived in Morrowind and asks for the Nerevarine's name, and is never seen again once the Nerevarine exits the ship. Despite his very limited role, he was popular enough with fans to generate countless Fan Fics and Game Mods which add him back into the game. Bethesda took notice and, in Oblivion, mention that Jiub became a Saint after hunting the much reviled Cliff Racers to eradication as a form of atonement for his "sordid" past.
- In Skyrim, the Dragonborn is considered to be the ultimate Dragon Slayer and "The One They Fear". According to lore, the Dragonborn are sent by Akatosh, for the sole purpose of acting as a natural predator to Dragons.
- Commander Shepard of Mass Effect is revered across the Galaxy as the only person who has managed to kill several Reapers, most of the time doing so entirely on foot, either through clever tactics or while practically staring them down. Even the Reapers know his/her name and are frankly terrified of him/her.
Dying Reaper: Shepard?!Shepard: You know who I am?Dying Reaper: Harbinger speaks of you!
- Rayne of the BloodRayne series. She's dedicated her life to hunting down her vampire father, Kagan, and his other offspring. She has since also become an assassin and agent for the Brimstone society, who dispatch her against supernatural threats. During World War II she carried out assassinations of Nazi officers and scientists involved in paranormal warfare and research on behalf of the Allies on Brimstone's orders.
- Isaac Clarke becomes this over the course of the Dead Space series.
- World of Warcraft has a playable class called a Hunternote , but this trope is more closely represented by the NPC demon hunters. Lorewise, Illidan Stormrage is/was regarded as the demon hunter.
- Dante from Devil May Cry is a half demon who works as a mercenary that hunts demons to avenge the death of his mother at their hands. He also has shades of a Blood Knight as he clearly enjoys himself at it.
- Monsters sometimes appear in the village in Hometown Story and some of the villagers are hunters whose job explicitly include protecting the village from said monsters.
- The Hunters of Evolve. They each have their own motives, including revenge, a Worthy Opponent, money, For Science!, being a Death Seeker, being a Blood Knight, or simple self-preservation.
- As they are in the books, the witchers in The Witcher and its sequels are professional monster hunters, though the character played, Geralt, doesn't get around to a lot of dedicated monster hunting until the third game.
- The Hunters in Weregeek believe Tabletop RPG players are a menace to society, to be stamped out with deadly force.
- Both the Vatican and the Norse "Æsir" churches field specialist troops to hunt down and exterminate immortals in Cry Havoc.
- Curse Quest: Unsurprisingly, the Owl Hunter and probably more appropriately also his apprentice Minerva. The Owl Hunter claims to hunt ulvorn owl-bear hybrids. His method of fighting is wrestling, which sounds awesome but proves impractical considering Minerva one shots an ulvorn on her own.
- Abner Van Slyk, professional vampire hunter of Hanna Is Not a Boy's Name. Bad news for Conrad.
- In Errant Story, the elven rangers are this, hunting down half-elves because the elves believe they all inevitably go murderously insane. It's suggested, though, that some rangers will let them go if the half-elf in question isn't a danger.
- Parodied with Tiffany Winters of Eerie Cuties and Magick Chicks. Being an expy of Buffy Summers, she's dedicated to slaying vampire main character Layla DeLaCroix, who in turn is completely unaware of this fact. Her attempts to stake Layla usually end abruptly, due to being easily distracted and because of how well they get along, as they share a lot in common. Hence, why it was almost inevitable that they eventually became best friends. Sorta.
- Jordan in Head Trip is a Furry Slayer -in-training. Or at least wants to be.
- L.A.W.L.S. comic has Autumn, The Slayer—more specifically, Furry Slayer.
- In Charby the Vampirate Blaine started hiring hunters to take out the vampires and other monsters preying on people living in Kellwood after seeing a vampire tear his parents apart and after becoming a competent hunter himself came before the mayor with proof of the supernatural and now has city support for his group of hunters.
- Spin-Off comic Here There Be Monsters focuses on Blaine's group during a turbulent period.
- Girl Genius has:
- Vespiary Squad, an elite team specialized in hunting Slaver Wasps and containing (or killing revenants if anyone is already infected. From what we saw, they're very good against wasp warriors—established to be formidable even as battle constructs go—but mediocre against experienced human opponents. They have the characteristic Hunter attitude and even habitually strap skulls of Hive Warriors over their helmets.
- Othar qualifies as well. He's on a quest to eliminate Sparks from the world, including (eventually) himself.
- Stand Still, Stay Silent: In the comic's Plague Zombie ridden world, one of the military jobs is hunter. Among the members of the main cast, Sigrun is one by profession.
- In RWBY, each of the four kingdoms has an academy that trains teenagers into becoming Hunters of the Grimm. They aren't directly called Hunters, however: it's "Huntsmen" if male and "Huntress" if female.
- Nightbane, of the Whateley Universe, hunts supernatural monsters: vampires, goblins, what-have-you. She's currently trying to kill Carmilla. Only one problem: Carmilla is one of the heroes in this universe.
- Much like the video game it's adapted from, the Belmont family from Castlevania have been doing this for generations, at least until they were declared heretics and excommunicated. Now Trevor Belmont is the only one left, but he's more than capable of fighting demons, vampires, and a various other monsters on equal footing. It takes a little while to convince him to join the fight against Dracula, though.
- First Gillecomgain and Duncan, then the Canmore family, from Gargoyles are dedicated to hunting down and exterminating the titular creatures.
- Valerie Gray from Danny Phantom who's under the delusion that all ghosts are evil—her job originally started with her getting revenge on one who ruined her perfect life.
- There's also Skulker, who generally hunts rare ghosts. During his first appearance, he made a comment roughly along wanting "to hang [Danny's] pelt at the end of [his] bed".
- Also Danny's parents, who are professional ghost hunters, and also happen to unknowingly supply him with all of his ghost hunting equipment.
- In The Venture Bros. there's Jefferson Twilight, blacula hunter, dedicated himself to the elimination of black vampires after his mother was raped by a group of them when he was 10. He breaks off their fangs to add to his necklace before he kills them. He even has a "blood eye" that allows him to detect the presence of blaculas despite not being magic in any other significant way. Keep in mind, the eye only works on blaculas- vampires of other races are not his quarry, and so he can't magically detect them.
- In Mary Shelley's Frankenhole, it's a drunken redneck named Joe. He's mostly a Vampire Hunter but has Fantastic Racism for most creatures.
- Dr. Nicholas Van Helden from The Real Ghostbusters episode "Transylvanian Homesick Blues" is a villainous example. The vampire Count Vostak (who actually seems harmless) explains that Stoker's novel is a fictionalized account of his longstanding feud between his and Van Helden's family; exactly how justified the feud was, he doesn't say, but Van Helden is clearly doing it because he hates vampires, and is more than willing to commit immoral acts (including potentially murdering humans) to continue it.
- Gutner Van Halen from Frankenstein's Cat. Van Halen, the "Monster Man", is a monster hunter who, as he puts it, "dedicated his life and limbs to their destruction", which is saying something, as he has sustained a few scars in his career; he lost his left arm whilst capturing a Two-Headed Transylvanian Zombie and lost his nose to a Giant Blood-Sucking Leech of the Black Lagoon. How he lost his left eye and his right leg are not known.
- American Dragon: Jake Long has the Huntsclan, a whole and fairly large organization of people dedicated to exterminate magical creatures. The strongest ones are easily recognized for their helmet, AKA the skull of the first dragon they slayed.
- Dragons: Riders of Berk: Berk's dragon riders deal (normally peacefully) with every dragon problem like a fantasy Animal Control Agency. The Evil Counterpart of this are the literal Dragon Hunters who hunt dragons for very obscure reasons like selling their skins or auction them.
Hear him roar, see him foam, but I'm not coming home 'till he's dead! Good and dead! KILL THE BEAST!