Monster Hunter finally launches a first in the fourth generation of the franchise worldwide. We may not have had the chance to enjoy Monster Hunter 4, which only released in Japan. However, 4 Ultimate is here to give us the ultimate experience of the Monster Hunter world has to offer so far. Capcom has made sure this game is a lot more user friendly and will entice many new players to discover what it feels to be one man, one hunter determined to take down the biggest of the beasts. Get your gear together and venture forth into the most dynamic and addictive experience in Monster Hunter yet.
After creating your custom character, you jump right into the world as a hopeful hunter. First thing’s first, you find yourself on a sand ship heading to Val Habar, in hopes to fulfill your dream. This is where you meet the Caravaneer, an explorer of some sorts. After having one of most exciting introduction to any Monster Hunter game to date, the Caravaneer is impressed and wishes to employ you as his hunter. Together you will travel the land in order to find the secrets behind the mysterious shiny object he carries which he calls the Article. Along the way, you must sharpen your skills as a hunter, carve your victims, craft some stronger gear and become the best hunter you can be in order to complete your quest.
Monster Hunter is an awkward series where many players find it hard to learn how to play the game and how to jump into the feeling of what it is to be a hunter. The series was also known for not doing a great job inviting newcomers into the fray. The gameplay is different and if the player did not understand the principle of Monster Hunter, they often cannot find the will to adapt to it. This was an urgent matter in order for the franchise to flourish in a bigger market. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate does that exactly. Once you go through the introduction, you go through a couple of quests to explain the basic mechanics as well as objectives in quests. After that, you can jump into optional tutorials for all the weapon classes in the game. There are 14 different ones and you begin with all of them in the item box. These tutorials are pretty informative and they give good tips and important information regarding the different attacks and abilities the weapon class possesses. Even after the tutorials, the game still explains important information such as capturing monsters, carving, gathering and crafting.
Being on the 3DS, the game does look upgraded since 3 Ultimate on the 3DS and Wii U. Being the namesake of the series, the monsters look vicious, natural and well animated. Monster Hunter does a great job making the creatures’ looks reflect some of their abilities such as rocky exterior, shells and the like. The armor pieces and weapons also look well-detailed and impressive. There is nothing than being rewarded with a cool armor piece or weapon that can be made from a monster you just took down. The landscapes in the game also very important in creating a deep wild ambiance. The environment is well decorated and subtle sounds of the wild is always a nice touch. When on a quest, there is nothing but the little sounds of the wilderness. This sets the stage properly for the close encounter with a large monster where the combat score kicks in. At that moment, the gameplay speeds up when the battle begins.
Monster Hunter’s combat consists of attacks and maneuvers that promote precise attacks to strike different limbs on the creature. Hit them enough and you may break them which allows the hunters to deal more damage and cripple the wild beast. Different weapon are capable of doing different kinds of damage such as cutting damage from Long Sword or impact damage from a Hammer. Every weapon class feels and plays very differently in both maneuverability, strengths and even controls. The fact that all weapon classes are easily accessible and switchable allows players’ experience to always stay fresh. The addition of the two new weapon classes was also impressive. The Insect Glaive and the Charge Blade are both unique weapons that sports their own pool of advantages and disadvantages different from the rest.
Another new aspect are the furry companions you bring around with you, the Felynes known as Palicos. These are the Hunter’s best friend. Palicos can have different kinds of weapon and skills, much like the hunter himself, and aid the player defeat large monsters, keeping his health up, gather materials and more. Palicos can also be shared through StreetPass and then hired by other players around you. Customization is deep when you have your hunter and your Palicos to take care of.
The multiplayer aspect of Monster Hunter has always been a core element of the franchise. There is nothing better than hunting with your group of friends and work together to take down one of the biggest creatures ever. The 3DS has an online mode for the first time. This is to undertake quests made for multiple hunters separate from the solo mode. It’s easy to join group of hunters and jump straight into the action with the. Your fellow hunter friends can be anywhere in the world. Multiplayer brings the magic of Monster Hunter to a whole new level since you can use many new strategies including the new mounting mechanic that was introduced here. A hunter can jump onto monsters’ backs to deal great damage while holding on.
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate has done an excellent job fixing the issues that plagued the franchise for many years. As the game becomes more dynamic, customizable and accessible, MH4U is a strong title to headline for the New 3DS XL’s release. The C-Stick or the Circle Pad Pro is used for controlling the camera and it is necessary to keep track of your surroundings. All in all, the game is very inviting to new players.
Being a fan of the franchise, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate really surprised me on how quick it was to jump and start the serious quests, craft some better armor pieces and some deadlier weapons. It’s very impressive that Capcom has given a lot of effort to make it easier for new players to discover the world of Monster Hunter. The extensive tutorial session they had mention was made in vain and should provide a substantial amount of information for any player. There are cool new abilities and/or attacks for every of the existing classes, so there is plenty to learn for even veteran players. The monsters are very unique and are each given a good cutscene to introduce them. It’s like a little taste of what the monster is capable of doing.