Monster Hunter World
A COMPLEX BUT REWARDING ACTION RPG SERIES GOES BIG TIME. From $99.95 | PC, PS4, XO | www.monsterhunterworld.com
MONSTER HUNTER HAS long been one of the most popular RPG series in Japan, which is a surprise, given how complex it is. After a period wallowing in Nintendo exclusivity and a number of outings to PlayStation, Monster Hunter World marks Capcom’s attempt to bring Monster Hunter to multiple platforms— and with it, the mainstream. Given the success of cooperative games like Destiny, now’s the perfect time to make that move, as World shines when played with a few friends.
The premise is simple enough: you’re a hunter, your quarry is monsters, and that’s about it. The truth is, these are eminently complex games, and while World blunts some of the more arcane elements of the series (mostly through streamlining the userinterface), it will still be confusing to most players. Tutorials are thorough and abundant, but for a generation of players accustomed to all modern blockbuster RPGs using the same systems, World will present a learning curve.
Once surmounted, though, what’s unique and appealing about the series will shine through. Across each of the game’s biomes, unique and often terrifyingly huge monsters roam, and you must learn the strengths and weaknesses of each before daring to make an attack (or to trap the creature, which is also possible). Doing so in the company of friends is great (the game supports up to four-player cooperative), though it’s possible to tackle the whole game on your own.
Though the best thing about World is that it simulates hunting expeditions: it’s not your usual adventure RPG where you’ll be moving from point A to Z during the game’s duration. Instead, you’ll hunt, stay fed, look after your material, upgrade your material (prepare to spend hours doing this), and go back to camp to take stock. There is a story narrative, and it does attempt to lend a sense of urgency to proceedings, but Monster Hunter World is a strangely meditative game: even the combat is paced slowly, though that’s not to say it isn’t challenging.
If you’re after a game to invest hundreds of hours into, you can’t go wrong with World.