Monster Hunter X review
I played 340 hours of Monster Hunter 4G from October 2014 to November 2015 and was still enjoying it right up to the day before Monster Hunter X was released. I bought the limited edition New 3DS LL that comes with a cartridge version of MHX and I’m currently 50 hours in. Monster Hunter is a huge game. You can play 100 hours and only just begin to scratch the surface. One of the Japanese friends I play with online bought a 3DS for the sole purpose of playing Monster Hunter, and that’s all he plays. That’s it. All Monster Hunter, all the time. I understand. I expect to be hooked on this game throughout 2016. I started Monster Hunter with 4G, so I’m still a newbie hunter, but here are my impressions of Monster Hunter X so far…
Shiny and New!
When I first started playing Monster Hunter X I was a bit wary that it was too similar to 4G, but after a few hours those fears went away entirely.
There are of course new monsters, new weapons, new armor, and new areas. There is also the new hunting style mechanic that allows you to pick from bushido, guild, striker, and arial. These different hunting styles give your hunter special abilities. For example, the aerial style lets your hunter jump into the air simply by running into a monster, a barrel, or other objects. The bushido style lets your hunter get a special boost when you dodge or block an attack at the last possible moment. On top of these styles, you can assign one to three special techniques to your character that you can use once it’s meter fills up during a match. Generally speaking, the meters fill up as you hit (or in some cases, get hit by) enemies, awarding aggressive play. Further adding to the number of possibilities and combinations is that as you advance through the village quests (Monster Hunter “story” mode) you will earn new techniques, and some of the techniques vary by weapon! When you consider that there are 12 weapons in this game, that’s an enormous number of combinations to really customize your character and your play style. The depth is overwhelming.
Monster Hunter veterans are describing this as a “Monster Hunter All-Stars” keeping all of the good elements of 4G, bringing in past areas and monsters while adding new stuff. I don’t know enough about the old Monster Hunters to verify, but yeah, it works and it’s awesome. It will be hard to ever go back to 4G after this… Even though I still have a lot of 4G to see…
What’s this MH Stuff all About Anyway?
Monster Hunter is becoming more well known in the west now, so perhaps a long explanation of the game is not necessary. My cliff notes description of Monster Hunter in general would be as follows.
Monster Hunter is a Hunting action game in which most of your time will be spent battling huge and terrifying monsters in epic boss fights. The monsters scream so loud your hunter will sheath their weapon and cover their ears unable to move. They spit fireballs in your face tossing you head over heels and setting your armor on fire. They push you back with huge gusts of wind from their enormous wings as they take flight… And they bite you. One battle will take between 15-30 minutes and have you setting traps, mounting the monster, and desperately slashing at its ankles. It’s dangerous to hunt alone so you can join a group of up to four online. Despite being on the small 3DS LL screen the game still really pops and feels enormous.
Every time you defeat a monster you can carve it’s parts to get loot that can be used to craft armor or weapons, or sold for cash. You do not level up like an RPG, you get stronger by equipping better gear and learning when to get out of the monsters way. The battles are so intense and the monsters are so amazing looking that even battling the same monster over and over again rarely gets old.
The only problem that I am having with the game recently is that sometimes I am unable to connect to play online because the servers are overcrowded. It’s been getting easier and easier to connect every weekend so think the problem will be completely resolved soon. Otherwise the game is technically fine. I’m playing on a New 3DS and there is no slowdown, the game loads quickly, no complaints.
I guess the biggest “problem” with Monster Hunter is that you have a game that takes from 15-30 short minutes to play a round of, and will give you easily 150 hours of total enjoyment. It almost makes making progress in any other game impossible. I have so many games I need to play and now I don’t have any time! Being busy has never been more fun.
I would give this game a solid 10 out of 10. Loving it.
Get hunting! Contact me on Twitter at @japannewbie if you want to hunt together!
For more information about Monster Hunter X I recommend you check the following:
● 8-4 Play podcast from 12/11 (http://8-4.jp/blog/?p=2413)
Buy Monster Hunter X