Hey…wait a minute. Isn’t Monster Hunter Rise months old? Why aren’t you reviewing Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak instead?
Valid questions! Here are the answers in case you’re wondering. The reason our Monster Hunter Rise’s review is a bit later than usual is because our gaming PC bit it a couple of months back and we had to get a replacement.
Now that it’s here, we’re back to reviewing PC games, with Monster Hunter Rise being the obvious first candidate.
As for Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak, that review’s coming too! Capcom’s provided us with both and we’ll be publishing that review in the next few days as well. I just need to get through the main game before I can move on to the Sunbreak expansion content.
In the meantime, here’s what our review of Monster Hunter Rise!
What is Monster Hunter Rise?
Monster Hunter Rise is the latest Monster Hunter game after the seminal Monster Hunter World. Developed and published by Capcom, the game is available right now on the PC and Nintendo Switch.
Monster Hunter Rise follows the general template of Monster Hunter games, with players hunting and gathering materials from their kills to upgrade their gear, which will in turn allow them to hunt more fearsome beasts. The game allows for solo or multiplayer hunts, though this time with a heavy dollop of story to go along with the hunting.
It makes for a much more memorable incentive all round. In fact, I prefer it over Monster Hunter World’s ‘Explore, Explore, Explore The New World’ story. Rise’s plot is much more personal, which makes it more relatable…well, as relatable as a story of you hunting huge monsters can be.
Despite the game being on the PC, Monster Hunter Rise feels a bit more restrictive than Monster Hunter World due to it being shackled by its need to run on the underpowered Nintendo Switch. Visuals aren’t as rich as Monster Hunter World’s, the maps are more confined and restrictive and its presentation suffers as a result.
Thankfully, its great core gameplay manages to provide an extremely fun experience in spite of that.
New traversal options, new attacks, the ability to ride your palamute into battle (and to give chase escaping monsters) means that the flow of battle is much, much better now. Hunters are more agile, even when using the heavier weapons, allowing for more proactive combat.
The new Wirebug mechanic lets you zip around like you’re a Monster Hunting version of Spider-Man. As a Great Sword main, I’ve never felt more agile playing than in Monster Hunter Rise. The Wirebug also gives you evasive options, allowing you to zip up, back or even to the sides. You no longer have to depend on rolling like you’re on fire to dodge.
Jumping onto monsters, riding them and even pitting them against each other is possible now, thanks to Monster Hunter Rise’s overhauled combat system. It’s the Monster Hunter we all know and love, but given a booster shot of turbo.
Monster hunts feels much more dynamic now with more monster interactions than before. Even in Monster Hunter World, it feels a bit artificial when some monsters only appear during certain hunts. Rise has improved that somewhat by having more hunts with multiple monster types roaming around in the map at once. It can get chaotic but it’s pure fun adapting on the fly when a rampaging monster suddenly swoops in out of nowhere and makes your one on one duel with a monster suddenly a free for all brawl.
Solo hunting is much easier too, with both your palamute and felyne able to help out in fights. They can distract, heal and attack though not as efficiently as human hunters. If you play solo though, you’ll probably take all the help you can get so there’s really no reason to complain.
One thing I wish that the game has more of are crossover content. Monster Hunter World had Resident Evil and even The Witcher 3 crossovers and Rise has nothing major to compete with. It might seem like a dream, but I hope one day a Monster Hunter title will finally cross over with Jurassic Park/ World!
Thanks to the PC, cases where the game might have slowed down on the Nintendo Switch hardware now play without a hitch. I’m using an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060Ti, 16GB RAM and I run the game on the highest setting with 60FPS no problem. It doesn’t take a behemoth rig to get the most out of the game, which is great for those with older hardware.
If you can run Monster Hunter World comfortably, you’re able to run Monster Hunter Rise just as well, if not better.
The Bottom Line:
Despite having to follow up Monster Hunter World, Monster Hunter Rise capably manages to step in its older brothers’ shoes with barely any effort.
While it’s true that the game could use with a visual upgrade, the much improved gameplay present in the title blows away what Capcom’s already accomplished in Monster Hunter World. That’s saying something too, considering that Monster Hunter World was the best Monster Hunter game before Rise came along.
Unfortunately, the game’s isn’t perfect, but that’s an issue with it being developed for as a Nintendo Switch title.
Perhaps with Monster Hunter Rise 2 Capcom will make the Playstation 5 or Xbox Series X the lead system, so we can finally get a Monster Hunter title that looks and plays great.
Monster Hunter Rise might not be as visually impressive as Monster Hunter World but it’s gameplay additions make it a much more enjoyable experience.