The Ninjabot

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate Review: Rodeo A Rathian

Posted on April 9, 2015 at 5:17 pm by Victor Chaves

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Let’s make this quick: Did you like Monster Hunter 3? Do you have a 3DS? Then you should already have this game. Review over, let’s meet up and take down a Rathian. You need to farm Zamtrios for the super-cool armor? Of course. I’m here for you.

For everyone else, this is the best Monster Hunter to start with. The idea of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is that you, a rinky-dink human, is going to fight some big monsters for some awesome armor and weapons. There is some cursory plot regarding the shard that the owner of a Caravan has, and how a disease is seeping into other monsters, but screw that. YOU ARE FIGHTING MONSTERS WITH BIG WEAPONS. This is the Power Rangers game that you always wanted, especially when you are playing with others online.

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You, as a hunter, get to use a wide array of weapons to take down monsters, some varying from giant bug lances, long Katanas, and obnoxiously large swords. Each weapon feels great to use, as well as some weapon-specific moves like the bug lance can launch a bug that saps buffs from monsters and feeds to yourself. Other weapons like the Hunting Horn has songs you can use to buff party members, and the long Katana allows the player to raise their attack from building and expelling an action meter in a specific combo.

There are issues with the ranged weapons, like the bow guns and bows need a bit more variety in capability than other weapons, as shooting and reloading can only be so interesting. Furthermore, the 3D effect makes first-person shooting nearly impossible because of the double-focus on the reticle and target. Finally, the third-person reticle jumps around way too much to be reliable, when holding [R] and moving left and right, that target reticle hops too much around to be able to be used capably. Honestly, stick with the melee weapons if this is your first rodeo; I enjoyed using my Light Bow Gun for sure, but I know I had a lot more fun using a short-ranged weapon.

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No Seriously, What Big Teeth You Have!

What I really enjoy about Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is the monster variety. Although there are some old ones returning, new ones like the Zamtrios and the Gore Magala are incredibly fun to fight! Although they are both quadruped creatures, they use the environment or have different move sets that make each monster very different from each other. Others even hang around like the early Kecha Wacha, which force you to use the terrain and climb up and down areas.

Speaking of climbing, I was apprehensive at first regarding the climbing mechanics being introduced as not really adding much, but with the addition of leaping and riding on the monsters I can easily say this game has added a great new dimension. Because of the climbing and monster riding, the player is now paying attention to the environment and using it to their own advantage much like the monsters do. It’s like playing Smash Brothers on Hyrule Castle versus Final Destination, it’s different yet fun either way.

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The game pops in its colors, and if you have New Nintendo 3DS, it’s going to look even better and load that much faster (no seriously, the load speeds are fantastic). One of my favorite areas has a set of watery steps under a tall grove with red flowers floating on the water; it’s like fighting in the Garden of Eden, I am honestly breath-taken whenever I enter the area. Lest the visuals be perfect, the area designs are fantastic as well. Each area never feels like it repeats itself by having multiple variances in height, and the verticality of the levels makes running around a pure joy.

The Problems

Although this has been a mostly positive review, this is where I grab Icarus by the sandals and cast him below the atmosphere: the tutorials still stink, the characters talk too much, and time sink to prepare for missions is exhausting. I will admit the tutorials have gotten better by having interesting situations with them, but because the game only communicates in text rather than a visual representation, keeps the tradition of the Monster Hunter series having a slow start. The too much talking applies here, and wherever you are doing something. Every time I want to talk to the quest giver, the shopkeeper, the blacksmith, they all have two or three lines of dialogue trying out their latest jokes. I know I can mash through them, but I don’t want to! I just want to go Go GO. Finally, the time it takes to prep for missions in later levels is excruciating; I don’t want to farm honey and bone husks and whatever other important resource after every fight. I just want to fight monsters. The game is called Monster Hunter not Bee Keeper or Herb Gatherer. I’ll play Story of Seasons for that.

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Final Thoughts

Beyond that, most of the time you are fighting extremely well-designed ferocious monsters, and that makes this game all the worthwhile. Stick with the game’s slow start, and like the previous titles you’ll find that there is a lot more value in this game than an entire month of video game releases. I would suggest downloading Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate via eShop because if you’re like me, you’ll never want this to leave your system.

Presentation: 8

Gameplay: 8

Replay: 9

LEGACY SCORE: 8.4

Geek Legacy’s review scores are on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest possible score.

Follow Victor on Twitter @fake_brasilian and yell at him.

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