Monster Hunter Generations both celebrates and invigorates the series


You can jump!

Compared to many of the Monster Hunter fans out there, I've only gotten into the series recently. I played it briefly during the  PSP days, but it wasn't until Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate and Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate  that it hooked me. Now I can't get enough.

However, I have worried the series might stagnate one day. Yes, adding weapons and monsters will always help, but mechanically, I couldn't help but wonder what Capcom would do next?

Monster Hunter Generations answered my questions immediately.

First of all, it felt real great to have a Hunting Horn back in my hand. Despite not knowing the intricacies of the badass harp weapon the PAX East demo equipped me with, I quickly figured out the crucial tunes to play and was jamming my way to the boss.

Speaking of, the fight was set against one of the new monsters to hit the scene: the Great Maccao. While I was expecting someone along the lines of "Great Jaggi easy," the Maccao put up a decent fight. It's signature attack had it balancing on its tail and kicking its hind legs outward, much like a kangaroo. It hit pretty hard and I wasn't being as cautious as I would normally, but overall it was a pretty straightforward monster fight.

As for me, I had some interesting new tools in my arsenal. First up are the Hunter Arts. These are essentially super powerful moves that can only be used sparingly. Attacking monsters fills up the Hunter Arts meter, and once it is full, it's possible to release the devastation upon those poor, unsuspecting monsters. Depending on which Hunter Style you choose (more on those in a bit), you may have a different number of Hunter Arts available.

Though my time with the game was limited, I did get to see one of the Hunting Horn's Arts. I only had access to one because of my Hunter Style, but it was so cool I didn't need any others! It essentially made my character whirl around the Hunting Horn a handful of times, followed by shooting a giant deafening blast of sound forwards. It felt a lot like using a Limit Break in a Final Fantasy game, except I could completely miss if I wasn't being careful.

Now, my Hunting Style is the most interesting bit. There are four options: Guild, Striker, Aerial, and Adept Style. Guild Style is the all-around build that many people will feel comfortable with after playing previous games. Striker Style seemed to focus more on building up Hunter Arts, since it allowed players to choose three of them (crazy!). Aerial Style was the one I chose, and it replaces the traditional dodge with a short rolly-hop. The fourth style, Adept, was simply explained to me as being the most complex, which was a huge tease but also left me very excited to play around with it once the time comes.

Having used the Aerial Style, I could tell that Generations is not scared to mix things up. Previously, the Insect Lance was the only way to force yourself to become airborne from the ground level. For those who didn't play 4 Ultimate, it had a small pole-vault-esque move that allowed for aerial attacks and the occasional monster grapple. Now any class can jump if they choose the aerial style. That's nuts! It was explained to me that the levels will have much more built-in verticality, though not much was on display from the demo I saw.

The jump-hop was tough to get used to. The basic movement starts out as a roll, but then turns into a small hop, and finishes as a roll. It seemed pretty time consuming when just using it without anything around. However, if it connects with a monster or even another player, the player shoots into the air, complete with awesome visual effect, and can bring down the hammer on anything in front of it. It does move you forward, however, so I ended up missing a lot because the Great Maccao was moving while I hopped towards it. It will certainly take some getting used to, but looks to have an amazing payoff. Kind of like the Monster Hunter series as a whole, actually.

 While this definitely felt like a tried and true Monster Hunter game at its core, the Hunter Styles and Arts completely shake things up. Now, on top of the fourteen weapon choices, players will be able to further customize what offensive capabilities they bring into a fight. I am incredibly excited to see people jumping off of each other while playing online. The teamplay that these changes are sure to bring is going to be magical.

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Patrick Hancock
Patrick HancockContributor   gamer profile

During the day, he teaches high school kids about history. At night he kicks their butts in competitive games like Rocket League, Dota 2, Overwatch, and Counter-Strike. Disclosure: I've persona... more + disclosures



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    Filed under... #3DS #Capcom #Impressions #Monster Hunter #Nintendo #Notable #PAX #Previews



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