Progressing through a Monster Hunter game and getting better at Monster Hunter are two very different things. We recently wrote about transitioning into High Rank from Low, and all of the changes that you have to make in order to do so. That info, however, is rather small fry in the grand scheme of things if we’re honest. Here we are aiming to cater for those that want to take things a little further, those that want to begin the process of mastering their craft. For as much as there is a difference between Low Rank and High Rank, there is an even bigger gulf between this and actually getting good at hunting. Some of you may play these games long enough to experience true comfort with certain monsters, but for those that are still seeking to achieve such things, the following hard truths need to be understood.
Full Preparation, No Really
Sure, you’ve heard this before. Make sure you have a full stack of consumables for your hunt, etc. By now, statements such as this are a given. We’re not talking about surviving on a little stockpile that you occasionally refill. We mean real, actual preparation. Using the Meowcenaries and grabbing spare bits of loot isn’t going to cut it. If you really want to take it to the next level and prepare yourself for long nights of solid hunting, consider undertaking the following:
- Multiple Expedition Quests to gather additional materials.
- Go out of your way on every hunt, to gather items and slay small creatures.
- Always set the Meowcenaries and Argosy going on time, every time.
- Gather from the Cahoot spot at every opportunity, allowing it to ‘grow’ into Lagniapples as much as possible.
- Purposefully hunt opponents that drop essential items, such as Dash Extracts.
- Always keep a liberal supply of additional items, such as Barrel Bombs and Traps.
- Take advantage of shop sales to restock Ammo in an efficient way.
- Use the Melding Pot at every opportunity.
Mastery Through Experience
There are some games and indeed genres that can be conquered entirely through knowledge. Take Fire Emblem for example. It’s a tactical, grid based RPG title that relies upon strict movement and probability, the result of which means that a guide showing you how to complete a level will, in the majority of cases at least, get you to the same point should you simply follow the instructions. This is absolutely not the case with a Monster Hunter title. In fact, it’s probably the most starkly opposed to our example that you’re likely to find in the gaming space as a whole.
What you need here is time and experience. We’ve all sat down and watched master hunters confidently wade their way through the hardest hunts in minutes, and that is truly impressive, however it should be noted that these videos are the result of hundreds, if not thousands of hunts worth of experience. These people are capable of dodging everything that a Bloodbath Diablos throws at them because well, they’ve faced hundreds of Bloodbath Diablos hunts in their time. The point here is that no amount of watching, thinking and indeed reading will make anywhere near as much of a difference as actually going out and hunting the same monsters, again and again.
We’ll be the first to admit that we’ve fallen foul of this particular point, on more than one occasion. Often this happens when we first pick up a new title in the series; we’ve taken down plenty of these targets previously, so surely we’re good enough and don’t need to worry about bringing a full stack of potions every time, right? It would be shameful to prepare for such a small target! You can see where this is going no doubt, but we’d like to tie it into our above point about viewing ‘master’ hunters online. You may not notice it, but they’re always chugging the same buff potions and flinging a huge amount of flash bombs no matter what they’re taking on.
Our point here is that there is absolutely no shame in a Monster Hunter game, to the point where we are going to show you a list of examples where you absolutely should humble yourself to what is, all told, a very difficult game.
- Trap enemies when they’re low, if you want. It’s even a valid backup strategy for hunts going wrong.
- Bring flash bombs to take on a Rathalos, even Low Rank. In fact, bring materials to make more. There is no shame in doing so.
- Head over to multiplayer to take on a difficult Hub quest. None of the hunters there care why you want them to join, they just want some jolly cooperation and fun times.
- Bring a full stack every time if you want to. We’re talking normal Potions, Super Potions, Lifepowder, Max Potions, the whole lot.
- It doesn’t matter how you take down a target, only that you eventually do so. The pursuit of such is where these games truly shine. You could use the single stab attack of the Long Sword to grind a beast down over the course of 30 minutes – the records will simply show that you managed to do it.
There is no achievement system here that encourages you to feel challenged to the point of breaking, so take advantage of every single positive that you can.
We cannot tell you just how important this last note is: Give every single one of the fourteen weapons available in Monster Hunter Rise a good try. No, we don’t mean taking it out for a spin against the easiest target possible, we mean really getting into deep territory with it. You will not truly know how good each of them can be until you find yourself in a sticky situation, nor will you fully be able to grasp the possible methods for taking down difficult targets until you do so. It’s not until we are truly tested that we realise how capable some of these things are.
It may well be that you are perfect at hunting every other aspect of a monster, but it’s fire breath completely destroys you, and as such the simple addition of a shield to block may solve your puzzle entirely. Similarly, you might find yourself butting heads with a nightmarish opponent for days on end, until you remove yourself from the danger zone by utilising a ranged weapon. Take heed of our ‘no shame’ rule, and take advantage of the entire arsenal available to you here.
Not only is this a sound way to experience the breadth of options that Rise has to offer, but it’s also the best way to learn brand new foibles. Did you know, for example, that the Charge Blade has seen major changes to it’s Guard Point methods in Rise? Or that the Sword and Shield has also seen minor buffs to it’s blocking ability? Moreover, just learning the shape and feel of these things is more fun than ever, thanks to the fluidity of movement afforded by Rise. As much as they like to throw ever increasing levels of difficulty at you, these games are essentially sandboxes in which you play with one of fourteen toys at a time, so get out there and experience them all. We even managed to fall in love with the Hunting Horn of all things!