Monster Hunter Rise is one of the brand new Monster Hunter games for Switch, unveiled at September’s Nintendo Direct Mini. As the latest entry in the mainline titles, Rise is jam-packed with many new improvements to the whole monster hunting experience. And I personally think Monster Hunter Rise‘s new features will become a mainstay for future titles as well. Let’s break it down one by one from the juicy stuff Capcom has shown us this week.
1. Robust Mobility Options
Features and gameplay mechanics come and go throughout the series. Such as Dos‘ PVP mode, Tri‘s underwater combat, or Generation‘s Prowler Mode. But sometimes, something stuck. And this time, it’s the grappling mechanics.
The Slinger and Clutch Claw grappling systems used in World seems to have been revamped and combined into a brand new mechanics called ‘Wirebug’. In the Monster Hunter Direct presentation, Monster Hunter series Producer Ryozo Tsujimoto said that you will be carrying “several of” Wirebugs in a hunt that lets you grapple in any direction. You can use it for scaling towering cliffs or structures and even adding new attack moves to your arsenal.
This doesn’t simply change the way you navigate the map, but also how combos work. As you can see in the video above, the slow and lumbering Gunlance could even do some sort of guard point counter through the use of Wirebug. Or quick Morph Slash (or maybe even Element Discharge) for Charge Blade. The game’s combat could get end up being faster in the next entries.
2. More Land Verticality
Since Monster Hunter Tri, Capcom has been experimenting with verticality in the game. Although their first attempt with underwater combat was met with mixed reactions from fans, climbing and mounting that debuted in 4 were deemed as the better, more natural progression for the game. And with the arrival of Wirebugs, it opens up platforming segments to the hunting areas where actively jumping around and wallrunning is a possibility. You’re no longer confined to climbing on select walls indicated by vines or cracks. And who knows, maybe they’ll revisit underwater again and can finally make it work thanks to this new feature.
3. Seamless Open Maps in Handheld Titles
From the first Monster Hunter to Generations, hunting areas have always been segmented by loading screens. People used to think that only a Monster Hunter title released on a dedicated home console like World can deliver a seamless experience that has no transitions between areas. But Rise has proved that even a handheld-exclusive title is able to do it. And now, for better or worse, gone are segmented areas with loading screens. You can bet future games will keep making wide, open maps like this.
4. Completely New Hunting Companion
World‘s Iceborne expansion introduced the Raider Ride system that allows you to ride small monsters that automatically move from one point to another. And as another upgrade from World, Monster Hunter Rise new features expanded that idea with the new ‘Canyne’ companions called Palamutes.
Unlike the changes between Shakalaka and Palico, which are basically the same thing just with different skins, Rise makes sure that both Palamutes and Palicoes are distinct from each other. You can ride on them, directly control their moves, customize how they look, and will join in attacking monsters in fights. Meanwhile, Palico is turned into a hunting partner with a support role by focusing on healing or buffing instead. Although Capcom seem reluctant to add a playable Wyverian race, future installments could give us more companion varieties instead.
5. More AI Partners in Online Hunts
Four-player co-op has always been available in any Monster Hunter title. But in a full multiplayer session, you cannot bring AI partners with you. At best, each hunter can only be accompanied by one Palico in two-player hunts. This time around though, even in a four-player session each hunter can bring along one Palamute or Palico. Obviously Capcom will have to tweak how the monsters interact with so many targets and balance their health as well, since they can be dogpiled by eight enemies at the same time.
6. A Talkative Hunter
In the trailer above, you could hear that our hunter no longer simply grunts but shout battle cries as they tear monsters apart. Yelling stuff like “Take this!” and “You’re done for!” It could also mean that our hunter is no longer mute and will be more involved in the story as well. So, if you think English/real world dub was added to World only because Capcom targeted Western audiences, think again.
Monster Hunter Rise and its new features will surely be a welcomed addition to the whole Monster Hunter family when it drops on March 26, 2021. Can’t wait to get your hands on it? Let’s speculate on the game in the comments below.