The Thrill Of The Hunt – The Joys Of Monster Hunter
A problem shared is a problem halved, this is especially true in Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. I’ve never played a Monster Hunter game, mostly due to not knowing much about them. I’ve always heard about how good the franchise is and how fun every installment has been. I felt slightly guilty that I had never made a real effort to get into the franchise. That all changed last month with the release of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on Wii U.
Admittedly, I’m not sure I would of bought Monster Hunter if it wasn’t for the lack of games on the Wii U. I had entertained the idea of pre-ordering the game, but my mind kept changing. Gears of War: Judgement was releasing the same week as Monster Hunter, and Gears felt like a much safer bet. I know Gears, I know how it plays and I know what it has to offer, it was a safe investment. As the weeks rolled on, and the two games came closer and closer to release, I decided against pre-ordering Monster Hunter and went with Gears instead. I regretted my decision on release day, a embarrassing lapse of judgement (no pun indented) indeed.
Monster Hunter was the perfect excuse to dust off my Wii U and boot up a new (well more of a remake, but you get the idea) game to enjoy. After seeing a number of positive reviews, and general discussion, about the game I decided that it was time to finally get into Monster Hunter. The main selling point was the online co-op play, which former Screwattack staff member and Youtube uploader, Projared, streamed via Twitch on a almost daily basis. Watching a bunch of players team up to take down huge monsters was a pretty awesome spectacle. The tactics, the preparation, the fight, it was all awesome to witness.
After tracking down a copy I jumped head first into the world of Monster Hunter. There was a lot to learn, but thankfully the game supports new players quite well. After learning the basics and taking down a few minor monsters, I took to the online portion of the game. I was being shamefully naïve, but heck I just wanted to jump in and fight the larger creatures. Thankfully the community in Monster Hunter is one of the most forgiving and helpful I have ever came across. A number of players offered advice on weapon types, what armor sets to go for and which monsters did what attacks. The welcoming nature of the players made Monster Hunter hugely more enjoyable, and this was even before I had jumped into combat.
With each hunt comes the preparation. What traps should I take? What meal should I eat? What armor should I equip? All of these questions were answered by my team mates. The first hunt I embarked on was to slay a Qurupeco. The players I was grouped with led me to the target and allowed me to initiate combat. They stood by allowing me to adjust to the Qurupeco’s attack pattern allowing me to learn the monster. As the battle went on I was given further advice and feedback on how to improve. It was a learning process that was immensely fun to experience. My team mates had joined me in slaying the creature and our quest was complete. My sense of achievement was strong , until my team mates pointed out it was the most basic of monsters.
We continued to hunt down more monsters, each of them larger and more complex than the last. This is where the sense of team play truly came into play. As one player grabbed the creatures attention, another would lay a trap. While all this was going on a few us unleashed a volley of attacks on the target. In a swift move, the monster landed in the trap and met its end. The battle had lasted much longer than the first, and require a lot more communication, but the experience was fantastic.
The sense of team work, the sense of community, that Monster Hunter provides was amazing. There’s a awesome sense of satisfaction when everyone’s efforts result in a massive creature hitting the floor and the victory music pops. My first few hours in the Monster Hunter franchise had been nothing short of epic, and most importantly, memorable. It has taken me way too many years to get into Monster Hunter. But I’m so glad I finally have. I can’t recommend Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate enough, it’s nothing but sheer fun. The co-op is one of the best experiences I have ever had with a video game, and that’s partly down to the awesome community. This was just my story with Monster Hunter, I whole heartily recommend trying out the game and crafting your own tale.