The Monster Hunter series made its debut on the PS2 many years and since then, the series grew from a niche title to a worldwide blockbuster. Monster Hunter World introduced many new hunters with a large quality of life approach and ease of use. This enabled more people to get into the game while veterans still had challenges awaiting them. Now, Monster Hunter Rise takes the series to new heights (literally) with more monsters, challenges and loot to acquire. The series is at an all time high and Monster Hunter Rise rises to that pinnacle. This is one of the most graphically impressive, fun and best games found on Switch. It only gets better from here on out!
Rising As A New Hunter
Monster Hunter Rise begins after creating a hunter in the character creation menu. Upon finishing, players awaken in their home in Kamura Village. This is a feudal-Japanese inspired village with sakura blossoms, blacksmiths and delicious dango treats. Elder Fugen, the leader of Kamura, meets the new hunter and says a major problem has arisen. The Rampage is on the loose, a stampede of dangerous monsters with a legendary creature Magnamalo as its feasting catalyst. The village is in trouble so it’s up to the player to rise up to the challenge, protect the village and hunt monsters across various locales. The story reaches a early climax with the successful hunt of the first Magnamalo but dangers await even further. Journeying through the ranks only increases the challenge but in turn, rewards and weaponry are ready to claim.
The Most Agile Hunter Yet
Monster Hunter Rise delivers the most satisfying and addicting combat yet with the introduction of the wire-bug and Palamute companion. Wire-bugs allow the hunter to scale and run up walls, jump extra lengths and dodge the biggest attacks by monsters yet. Wire-bugs also play a roll in the hunter’s Switch Skills, allowing for a range of different attacks and abilities. The wire-bug even allows hunters to ride a weakened monster and control them to fight other monsters in turf wars. Hunters also feel more responsive to control thanks to the wire-bug and tuned weapon combos. The Palamute is a new doggo companion that teams up with the series staple Palico for a trio of endless potential in combat. Both the Palico and Palamute have a variety of skills that set them apart while becoming synergistic alongside the hunter. Upgrading the armor and weapons of these companions also changes up how they may fight in an encounter too.
The Monster Hunter Suite
Monster Hunter Rise further improves on quality of life enhancements that made Monster Hunter World as good as it was. However, Rise surpasses it in spades. Hunters can still choose from the large amount of weapon categories and upgrade them to their heart’s content. With the insane variety of monsters, craft-able weapons and armor are aplenty. More features, monsters and quests are introduced as the hunter progresses through the low and high ranks. This is done between the village quests (main-story) from Hinoa and hub quests from Minoto. NPCs also issue requests for special rewards like dango recipes and items. Before quests, hunters may eat dango and pick from a large pool of bonuses. The number of dango to choose from increases with each rank gained and special quests completed. New to the feature set is the Cahoot, a new Owl companion. This companion gathers materials from the world and delivers them to the nest in the Buddy Plaza. In addition, Hunters may call up their Cahoot to feed and pet them. Overall, the suite of Monster Hunter features that fans love is even better than ever.
Streamlining The Hunt
As mentioned before, the wire-bug allows for extra mobility and maneuvers not possible in previous Monster Hunter games. While this is the case, the way items and potions may be crafted helps a lot too. For instance, drinking a potion is even faster than in World and crafting ammo is fast as well. The radial menu is also tweaked for faster use of items when needed. Players may access these features while riding a Palamute across the locale. Additionally, gathering and carving monsters may be done while riding a Palamute. While traversing locales, hunters may run across endemic life which grants buffs to help out in combat. It also helps that load times are much faster so getting in and out of a quest is quick thanks to the RE Engine. The game allows the hunter to keep going with only a few seconds lost in load times. As a reward for each quest done, hunters are awarded with Kamura Points. These points may be used to purchase items, dango and much more. Being rich in Kamura Points is like being rich with money so there are no downsides to it!
Rise’s New Opportunities
The Rampage adds a new tower-defense style dynamic to Monster Hunter that allows players to go solo or team up against a stampede of monsters. Each Rampage area features weapons, NPCs to defend the area, bombs and many more contraptions to place down. Waves of monsters approach and its up to the hunters to fight against these monsters and protect the main gate to the village. In another part of the village, Monster Hunter Rise offers more for the Palico and Palamute. The Buddy Plaza is a training and trading ground for these companions. Hunters may hire new companions and set them off on adventures as Meowcenaries to hunt monsters and gather materials for you. Trading is offered by Rondine, a trader from afar who gathers rare goods for those with Kamura Points.
The Best Monster Hunter Game Yet
Monster Hunter Rise offers the most satisfying gameplay loop in the series history. On top of this, everything that makes Monster Hunter what it’s known for is just better in every regard. From the wire-bug to the Palamute, the new features make Rise shine above all the Monster Hunter games before it. If you are even remotely interested in Monster Hunter Rise, it’s worth trying out as it’s easier than ever to pick up and play. Monster Hunter Rise streamlines the game without compromising on the hunt and features. The game will continue to get large scale updates for years to come and version 2.0 is coming soon. This will keep many players coming back for more as time passes. Capcom has giant shoes to fill with whatever comes next years from now. For now, all I want is to grind for some new Magnamalo armor!
Disclaimer: This game was not provided to Final Weapon by Capcom for review purposes. This copy of Monster Hunter Rise was purchased by the reviewer.