The Most Dangerous Game Questions and Answers
by Richard Edward Connell

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Why did General Zaroff first come to the island in "The Most Dangerous Game"?

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Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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During Rainsford's first meal with General Zaroff, the general elaborates on his affinity for hunting and mentions that he has hunted nearly every exotic, dangerous animal on the planet. The general proceeds to tell Rainsford that he became bored hunting dangerous animals because they could only rely upon their instincts and failed to present him with a true challenge. After briefly losing his desire to hunt, General Zaroff had the idea to hunt humans and needed a secluded place where he could murder people for game without being arrested and imprisoned. The general tells Rainsford

I needed a new animal. I found one. So I bought this island built this house, and here I do my hunting. The island is perfect for my purposes—there are jungles with a maze of traits in them, hills, swamps.

Essentially, General Zaroff purchased the island in the middle of the Caribbean for the sole purpose of hunting humans on it. On Ship-Trap Island, the general hunts unfortunate individuals, who are forced to swim to his island after their ships sink in the treacherous waters.

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The reason that General Zaroff came to this island was so that he would have some place where he would be able to hunt human beings.

General Zaroff tells Rainsford that he had hunted every kind of animal.  He had tried every animal that was supposed to be smart and hard to hunt.  He did this because he wanted a challenge.  But every single one of those animals disappointed him.  None of them was smart enough to challenge him.  So he decided to start hunting people and he bought this island so he could do that.  Here is the relevant quote:

I needed a new animal. I found one. So I bought this island built this house, and here I do my hunting.

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