I’ve been playing Monster Hunter since the days of the Sony PSP and yet I’ve never being able to finish a single game in the series or even come close. I think it’s because I get frustrated with the difficulty curve and just end up giving up. I do really love the series but I think I’m more in love with what the series represents: bringing friends and strangers together in a close-knit community sharing a common passion.
Having said all that, I really believe Monster Hunter Generations could possibly be the first entry in hugely popular monster hunter series that I will continue playing past HR2 Rank, and here’s why.
Capcom have molded a really smart game in the series and introduced a couple of new additions to the game which help out newbies like myself. First off, there’s the new Hunting Arts, abilities which you can choose and vary depending on which Hunting Style you select during the character creation. There are four Hunting Styles: Guild Style, Striker Style, Aerial Style and Adept Style. Depending on which one you choose determines how many empty slots you’re allocated which you can then fill with Hunting Arts. You’re allocated anywhere from one to three spaces for the Arts.
Speaking of the Arts, these are abilities which come in handy during battle and can get you out of a tight spot. Abilities such as being able to run away from large monsters for a short period without using your stamina or being able to unleash a circular attack which is perfect when you’re surrounded by numerous creatures. The abilities need to be charged up first, normally caused just by attacking monsters, and then when the on-screen gauge is fully charged, hit the touch screen to release some carnage! The Arts are also specific to which weapon is currently equipped as well. So Arts that you have access to with one weapon may not necessarily be there for another. This keeps you on your toes and adds a new layer of strategy to the mix.
Speaking of the monsters, the monster count for the most part has increased from past games. Small creatures now number 34 and large monsters, 71 for a total of 105 compared to Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate which had 98. As usual, you can choose to hunt alone or in local multiplayer and online co-op.
As we’ve come to expect, the game is beautifully animated with stunning artwork in the monsters and the world they inhabit. And the game is huge, quite larger than what I remember in past games with lots of lush backgrounds and nature to interact with on those all important foraging quests. Generations also seems to be better drawn with the art assets looking more clear than past games. Sometimes with MH titles on the 3DS, I’ve had to squint to make out some of the details and wording. I’m playing this on a New 3DS and I’m having no trouble with viewing everything, it really looks that good.
For the hardcore fans out there, you’ll be pleased to know that there are also new Deviant Monsters. These are mutated forms of monsters from previous MH titles which if you’re successful in bringing down will yield some very precious and hard to get materials for forging equipment.
This is one of the better looking entries in the series and I’m always blown away by how much more Capcom is able to squeeze out of the 3DS in bringing these games and their massive worlds to the handheld. Everything is better and bigger from the hometown you start in, Bherna to the very cute Palicoes, you the hunter and of course, the monsters. Fans of the series will love it and newcomers should enjoy the improved entry level difficulty curve all round. I need to run now, there’s a pesky Maccao causing some havoc which I need to hunt!
PS. Before I forget, Nintendo are also releasing a stunning New 3DS XL Monster Hunter Generations edition console which looks amazing. I’ll be picking this up on launch day as well!
Final Score: 9/10