Monster Hunter Rise review – the Switch’s best game since Breath of the Wild •

Monster Hunter Rise review - the Switch's best game since Breath of the Wild •

I just drifted my dog ​​into battle, its hind legs tilting in a glorious arc at the push of a button for that precious extra speed boost, before descending with the blow of a wire that sends a line silky in the sky, allowing me to cling to it and swing towards my prey. In the air, I pull out a sword made from the remains of a bony Besarios and ram it straight into the skull of another. Take down that big bastard and I can craft a hat from his skin to complete my Besarios outfit and give me an attack boost, so I can go out and do it again only with more flair and more efficiency.

Monster Hunter Rise review Developer: Capcom Publisher: Capcom Availability: Release March 26 on Switch, early 2022 on PC

God damn it, I love Monster Hunter.

The main loop remains unchanged, but Capcom’s series has evolved tremendously since its inception in 2004, and after a long run on the Nintendo console that culminated with the exceptional Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, it wasn’t until after the Monster Hunter World cross-platform of 2018 that the series has found a good foothold in the west. Here’s Monster Hunter at its most accessible – and, with the Iceborne expansion, at its most brutal – and for the first time, it no longer felt like a niche chase. Monster Hunter had finally become mainstream.

Forgive me for making rough assumptions, but I was presuming the series’ return to Nintendo and more modest hardware – Monster Hunter Rise is a timed Switch exclusive, with the PC version not arriving until early 2022 – might mean a release. more modest for the series. I couldn’t have been more wrong. It’s such a lavish and opulent thing as Monster Hunter has ever seen, Capcom’s RE Engine excelling in its debut for the series while its soundtrack is fully orchestrated and accompanied by a full voice (each monster receives his own unique introductory song with shamisen and hyoshigi according to the traditional Japanese theme of Rise). It’s like all that money made from the success of Monster Hunter World somehow went into the production of Rise.

The number of monsters – I believe there are around 33 of the big boys – and the number of cards – around five – may seem slim compared to something like the fully developed generations, although it is in line with other games. basic. How post-launch support lines up remains to be seen, but we already have free monsters in the near future.

This is as big a step forward for Monster Hunter as World was before, with a generous suite of new features that make the hunt more palatable, more actionable, and much more enjoyable. Before I go through them all, however, there is one underlying change to note that is seismic in nature, and that informs everything new this time around. Traditionally in this series you are the whipping boy – for the first few dozen hours at least – when you are hit that way and that by a lot of beautiful beasts. In Monster Hunter Rise, however, you are OP AF, and I’m 100% at it.

It’s not so much that the monsters here are a cinch, and more that Rise is willing to push you through it all with a little more drive and pace than in previous games – here you’ll be facing face to face with a new Magnamalo Signature Beast when an earlier entry would still require you to haul eggs across the map. The hunts are also faster – even the last enemies unlocked after the credits roll, itself completed after around 20 hours, can be taken down in just over 10 minutes if you have half a clue what you’re doing. Is that a problem for a series where endurance and relentless challenge have often been part of the makeup? Maybe for some, but definitely not for me – and anyway, the reason these things are happening so much faster is that you, the player, are so much more dynamic than ever, with so much more in your arsenal.

2Single-player and multiplayer progress are separate, after being merged into World. Initially, it feels like a step back, although Rise is smart enough to get you through the multiplayer ranks with special tests if you’re going for single-player and want to get a head start when you do. you head online.

The title addition could be the wirebugs that get you from point to point, though they’re just part of a whole cohort of new colleagues opening up Monster Hunter maps like never before. before. As in Monster Hunter World, the maps are now a continuous area rather than the old partitioned areas, although they are freer and less claustrophobic than the dense biomes found last time around, in part to make room for the brand new Palamutes. . These are canine mounts, which can be jumped on with the push of a button and taking away much of the misery. It helps that these things are absolute delicacies, customizable to an outrageous degree, whether it’s equipping them with loots picked up during your adventure or even in the character creator himself (a tool as powerful as anything I can imagine). ‘ve seen in a game like this, and something that could very easily consume the first half a dozen hours of your time with Monster Hunter Rise if you want).


Another new feature to find in Monster Hunter Rise are Rampage events – although their impact and even frequency is limited to the extreme in the base game. It’s basically an evolution of some of the more organized encounters we’ve seen in previous games, but this time around you’re building defenses and mounting guns as you take on hordes of enemies. which precede one last big bad. It’s a crisp wrinkle and quite pleasant the rare times they do appear, although that rarity suggests that they aren’t too much of a Monster Hunter Rise makeup. Whether that changes in the future with the Rise update remains to be seen.

While driving your Palamute, you can consume items or re-sharpen your weapon, and the tracking itself has been greatly simplified: thanks to your new buddy Cohoot, it’s now just possible to see every monster on the map, a solution even more elegant blunt. than the Monster Hunter World scouts who have now been completely circumcised. Your Cohoot’s actual involvement is admittedly limited, though it’s hard to complain too much: Monster Hunter Rise gives you an owl companion that you can dress up however you like, and that’s good enough for me.

For all of that, and the returning Palicoes helping you in battle, it’s these wirebugs that really make all the difference. It’s hard to say how deep this will ultimately be – after 50 hours with Rise, I’m only beginning to explore the possibilities – although I’ll say they are responsible for one of the most engaging, open, and resilient. crossing systems I’ve seen in a game outside of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wilds. Apparently, nowhere is off limits now, and although they are limited as a resource – you usually have two casts available on a cooldown timer – a short combination of well-timed jumps can get you up to speed. the highest peaks in Rise. Combine that with Rise’s impeccable gyro aiming and you’ve got a simply delicious motion system.

It’s tempting to dwell on a comparison to Breath of the Wild, but in truth, it’s an extension of a path the series first took with Monster Hunter 4’s emphasis on verticality and mounting. Editing is something that comes up here in Rise, although in keeping with the mentality found elsewhere, it has now been supercharged. That same silken thread that can propel you across the map can also trap preys and let you control them, puppet-style, to unleash even more damage, giving Territory Wars an added edge when you smash two monsters. together. It’s as gloriously overkill and over the top as anything you’ll find in Monster Hunter Rise.

This metallic silk also gives each of Monster Hunter’s 14 base weapon types a new advantage, granting them new moves that eat away at your metal tacks resource in exchange for a dazzling volley. Then, of course, there’s simply the ability to jump into mid-flight combos with a little more ease, or how the added movement affects positioning in a junkyard. Take into account the aforementioned gyroscopic controls which make ranged weapons more viable for players like me who were previously hesitant to experiment and you have a Monster Hunter who can feel profoundly different from what happened before.

3Magnamalo is a beautiful beast – even his corpse is a beauty. Dancing next to him with an ax in his hand is a pleasure that I never tire of after more than a dozen races.

Indeed, if there is one other ramification to player empowerment by Monster Hunter Rise, it’s the way it encourages experimentation, encouraging you to choose a weapon type that you might have had before. neglected, or digging into the depths you find elsewhere. And those depths are always here to be explored – with everything the additions bring, I’d say Rise is as deep as Monster Hunter has ever been. It’s just that those depths have been made a bit easier to access, which is certainly not a bad thing.

All of that is enough to make me believe that this could truly be the Monster Hunter for everyone, and even though World has pushed the series into mainstream audiences, it’s Rise who could still propel it as a phenomenon – and at the very least, it will win. the series of new fans along the way. If you’ve been put off by the challenge, the investment, or even the action, Rise does her best to ease the way and open up the charms of Monster Hunter for everyone. If you are already in love with the series like me? Well, Monster Hunter Rise just might be as good as video games.

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