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Screenshot
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It was a Monster Mash!

After the hit or miss from its predecessor Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is a breath of fresh air in this ten year long running series. As a longtime fan of the Monster Hunter series of course I was excited to hear that this new entry in the series was finally heading for a release in the west and after an assurance that there would be no more water combat in this title I was even more ready to dive into this entry.

guild care

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate starts off like any other game in the series. You the brave hunter are on a journey to fight off these massive beasts to become the best hunter out there and build up your arsenal using parts broken and carved from these fearsome monsters at least in the multiplayer. In the single player side they have introduced a sort of “story” where you are a new hunter in a traveling caravan lead by the Caraveneer (yes that is his real name) to travel around and search for the origin of a giant shiny scale he discovered in his travels. Apart from the Caravaneer and yourself your caravan is comprised of many colorful characters including the Item shop woman, the guildie who gives you guild sanctioned quests to take down these giant monsters and the chef cat who prepares all your meals before you head out on your next adventure. Through the story you visit many vibrant areas that start out as tutorials on how to use all the weapons including the Insect Glaive and Charge Axe both of which are brand new to the series this part is not required by the way which can be easily accessed from the start with a few quick taps on your touch screen. The game designers understand that veterans of this series do not need their hands held through this part of the game because you already have the knowledge of what to do at this point and that is hunt monsters.

mount

 

In this title as I have previously stated the not so fun water battles have been removed and replaced with new vertical elements of combat which are by far the biggest and best addition we have seen to the series in a long time. The vertical movement allows you to climb higher and gain the upper hand on the big monsters with a new mechanic simply known as mounting. When you mount a monster you go into a kind of button mashing mini game which has you attacking the monster until you either knock it over or it throws you off. The first time you do this the game tells you all the queues on how to hang on and almost always have successful mounts which will inflict major damage on the monster and give your fellow hunters or your Palico companions ample time to strike before the monster gets back up again.

Speaking of the Palico when you start this title you are given the option to customize your character and also the option to customize your faithful cat companion known as the Palico (pal + calico = Palico). These cat companions will join you when you are solo hunting in the story mode or when you are hunting with just one other person in online mode. They will help you set up traps, throw bombs, heal you, and maybe even launch a special attack of their own. You can also craft armor and new weapons for you little partners through a new mini game that is unlocked in the first few hours of the story.

This title is by far the biggest in the series not just in the way of new features but also monsters boasting a total of 98 monsters to hunt. This includes new monsters like the flagship monster of this title the Gore Magala and returning monsters such as the Tigerx and the Congalala. Many of these new and returning monsters take advantage of the new vertical battle style and have you jumping off vine covered walls and climbing pillars to avoid their new attacks or get the upper hand from a higher vantage point.

palico

Beating these monsters nets you resources to craft a ton of new weapons and armor that will help you and your fellow hunters along the way on your journey to become the greatest hunters in the world.

With all of this daunting complexity Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate has done the best job at introducing new players to the fine art of slaying monsters than any previous title in this series. I have never seen so many people interested in this title and I am so happy to see so many people enjoying it. That said, some things could still be better conveyed to new players. And since most of this game relies on text to tech you things the smallest decision like choosing the right weapon can be overwhelming but once you find that right one and with a little practice you’ll be hunting like a champ in no time.

Just when you think it is all said and done Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate throws something new at you and pulls you back into the game ready to hunt again and again. So few games can make me sink this much time into it in one sitting but this entry into the series with its new weapons and environments has me constantly lusting to get to the hunt.

Pros:
  • New weapons for newcomers and veterans to get their hands on
  • Beautiful areas to explore
  • Vertical game play is fresh and fun
  • Many tutorials for players new to the series to ease them into hunting
Cons:
  • Some random disconnects in multiplayer
  • Small things are not laid out as clearly as the big parts of the game
Graphics Pixl Score 4 4
Story Pixl Score 3 3
Sound Pixl Score 4 4
Controls Pixl Score 5 5
Fun Factor Pixl Score 5 5