I can’t stop playing Monster Hunter. Guys, I can’t stop. Seriously, my 3DS is turned on and at my desk right now waiting for me when I finish writing this. I seriously cannot wait to go fishing again.
In case you can’t tell, I am clearly doing something wrong. In case you don’t know, the Monster Hunter series is exactly what it sounds like–you hunt monsters. So why can’t I remember the last new monster I fought?
- Gathering. I think the caravan I work for is filled with hunter-gatherer and nomadic sort of folk, yet for some reason, they are incapable of none of the above. In normal video game fashion, the only one able to do anything is me–even fishing and mining. Seriously, one of the first towns to which you travel has a career miner and yet I’m the only one who can take a pickax out to the fields. While the fetch quests is probably only filler, I still spend more time picking leaves and weeds up off the ground than anything else. Oh, there’s a giant dragon terrorizing a band of kittens? Eh, there’s limitless honey over here. I know my priorities. I even do the Harvest Tours where your only goal is to aimlessly pick flowers for fifty minutes before battling a new monster. It is Dragon Age: Origins all over again where I enjoy the busy work that others criticize the series for. Don’t ask me to get you eggs though. They are useless except for the puns (Egg-speditions. Really, Capcom?). I don’t know why I can carry a hundred mushrooms without dropping one, but this giant wyvern egg is out of my league. How about I scramble it out here on my BBQ pit and pack it in Tupperware instead?
- Choosing a weapon. I can’t do it. Ideally, you are supposed to find one or two weapons your prefer–maybe one melee and one ranged–and stick with those, learning all the intricacies and crafting the best possible builds. Instead I keep finding more and more weapons I love. Out of all the ones I tried, the only one I didn’t like was the traditional bow. Currently I’m trying to get the best dual blades, hunting horn, insect glaive, and light bowgun, and I haven’t even tried half of the selection. This means my rare resources are stretched further. Luckily, the closest I’ve come to a gambling addition is playing the probabilities on what ore I’m going to mine.
- Expeditions. I know these are new to the series, and I don’t know how much time the average player is supposed to spend on them, but I think I’ve done more of these than traditional quests. If it says a wild palico or poogie might appear–or in normal worlds, cats and pigs–I disembark without a second thought. Who needs story progression and new raw materials when I can get a ninja outfit for my pet pig? Also the treasure areas mean I can possibly get battered, broken, and rusted armor and weapons, also known as more time to play the probabilities. At least I’m only wasting away my valuable time instead of my meager finances.
- Single Player 4 Lyfe. Outdated language aside and forty hours in, I have yet to hunt with friends. I’ve talked about my aversion to multiplayer before, and it still applies here. I already know I don’t play right and don’t want to either be reminded or make anyone else suffer that. Instead of slow and methodical movement and combat, I take the angry toddler approach–all might, no thought, and a good bit of running away. I have fun when I play, and I know I’m not great; it’s more fun for me to relish that in solidarity instead of putting it on display for other people. Let’s ignore how me writing about it here totally contradicts that.
Basically no matter what I do wrong, I still can’t get enough. By the way, if you have ever tried the series before and found it slow, confusing, or impenetrable, check out some of the following Youtube channels. They help a lot and are each done in a different style, so find what works for you. I highly recommend it.
- Kitty Kat Gaming melds walkthrough and casual Let’s Play perfectly.
- ProJared does a lot of great beginner’s guides. The link is to his material on MH3U, but the advice is still great and applies.
- Arekkz Gaming has detailed tutorials on all the weapons, game modes, and quests that are edited to perfection.