Tag Archives: capcom

Monster Hunter States of Play

I did a lot of research before choosing the 3DS, about games and how I wanted to play them. Monster Hunter stuck out because of how epic it sounded, because nothing seemed half done about it. 350 hours later I’m still very happy with the system, and the game. Although,  I’m stuck, the early G-Rank stuff stopped my progression and I put the game down, I would be back a few weeks later refreshed and having a new perspective on progression.

 

Monster Hunter SoP 1

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

 

When I have to put a game down I start telling people that game is hard, Mega Man 1, Zelda 1, any Doom. Monster Hunter is the first game that’s made me throw shit, as an adult. Dangerous when the game is played on a hand held. But the habits I developed to progress in the game remind me of only one other game, World of Warcraft.

My experience with WoW was first as a clueless Night Elf Hunter. I didn’t socialize, I didn’t look anything up, and I didn’t care to, I didn’t understand. I didn’t spend talents until level 60, no professions until way late, I hadn’t even ran a dungeon. I hadn’t found any, why would I. The game was a distraction from college, that was all. I was in the story.

After months I finally met people out in the world that questioned my play and enlightened me. Weeks later I was raiding, and then raid healing. That’s when I started playing 20 hours a week at least. Paying for play time changed the way I thought about my time with the game. Every experience had to be the fullest. Raiding all the time wasn’t satisfying, questing all the time had lost its lustre, but I still loved it all, even fishing for gods sake. I handled what was becoming burnout by defining play modes. Some days I felt like raiding, crafting, fishing, PvP. So I started thinking ahead, I knew we’d be raiding at night, so I farmed in the morning.

My play grew two branches, progression and support. There came point in Monster Hunter when I was playing so much that I had to spend time supporting my progression. At my most obsessive I would multiply items in the car doing the 1 star steak delivery quest for the 20 or so items I use all the time. I got tunnel vision and forgot the complexity of it, the depth that made me love it. It made me remember the thrill of an upgrade, or the completed set. Instead of bashing my head against the difficulty curve I take a side route and build a new hammer. Get guuder with daggers. Play a hunting horn at all.

Coming back after months away I can see when I started to fade. Early on I wanted to do all the quests, but after completing the offline campaign, early into the high rank stuff I started skipping things and playing only to unlock the next tier. I obviously love this game, so even as I was burning out, and knew I was trying to put it down, I knew I would come back.

When I did pick it back up I fell in love with everything again, all the sounds even. It felt so much like my long break from WoW. No one should be embarrassed by what they chase down the rabbit hole, but at some point, after the hundred and howevermanieth death chasing the 2% Meat Boy achievements, or wiping non-heroic Lich King even after all the nerfs, up until a few weeks before Cata drops, a person may start to reconsider their definition of fun.

 

Monster Hunter SoP 2

Legion’s on 8/30, Horde side, Emerald Dream

 

I’ve tried to go back to Wow, I don’t know why, the magic of that experience is well into the sunset (though new magic is not out of the question). Monster Hunter is closer to the high that I am looking for, with WoW I loved raiding, but burnt out on groups that were never going to have anything on farm. It doesn’t matter at all anymore, I spent too much time beating my head against the math and coming up short. Biggest lesson learned, as Legion is about to drop and Monster Hunter Generations is a fresh DL on my 3DS, is that time does a lot to invigorate nostalgia along with your game.

 

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Busted Hell Hunters Down

I wish I could track stats more specific to individual quests to see what resources it took to bring this Molten Tigrex down. For each run I bring Mega Pots (and pots and honey to make more Mega Pots), stones and steaks, and also Demondrug, Armorskin, Max Pots (though on this quest they give you two), Deodorant (for the love), traps, and mats for more traps. Molten Tigrex (MT) doesn’t stay trapped long though, traps were more for those perfect moments when I’m loaded up and sharp and MT is enraged, I’ll try to trap and get a nose shot with the big attack (but somehow pay for it).

 

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Busted Hell Hunters down, feels so good to have all these checked.

 

For a long time I switched to  Charge Axes, Arachnoscythe, from Dear Rose for the sharpness, which still didn’t make it happen. It was the Dominisect that did it. I’ve always like the Seltas Queen weapons. Sharpness was a pain to deal with but the extra damage was enough to make it happen.

After so many encounters my most fine tuned insights are about patience and practice. I realized that I was making it 15-20 minutes into the fight, MT is drooling and flopping around, I pounce and push it to enrage and then I die quickly. I felt like I had to push it because I was “running low” on resources, pots, deodorant. First off, I really wasn’t, but after burning through the ebb and flow of attack and dodge, after 20 minutes or so I was anxious and it was caused me to misstep. Like a live band, sometimes its hard not to speed up, things get a little scruffy.

Another insight has to do with practice. Before I downed this boss I had just spent 20 minutes dying. I play so often that I normally only try a challenging quest once so I don’t get frustrated. That day I did it back to back, I had been building up to it and I felt good about trying it one more time. I still got carted twice but focused practice let me stay ahead of him. MT’s body language gives up his attacks, often enough I could guess where he was going to finish his attack and land harder hits without taking damage or contracting blight.

I enjoyed this fight but it was one I was stuck on at a serious plateau, so I’ve never tried it again. During the hunt though I took it at pace and respected it, it was cool to get it done.

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Molten Tigrex

Monster Hunter is throw shit hard. I studied a little before I bought it and read that Monster Hunter 4 U is the softest entry point into the series to date. Beats me if that is true but I believed it when I started playing and sensed some definite hand holding going on. How fucking ever…there are a few little beasties that seem to trigger random damage at whatever distance no matter what is going on and that, is why I love and hate the softest entry point into the Monster Hunter franchise to date. One of my favorite in the WTF catagory, the Molten Tigrex.

My first fight with the Molten Tigrex was at the end of the caravan quests, which I finished most of before I realized I was going to have to do the online stuff too. I was happy to have something to focus on other than those higher quests, so I was happier to see my system work, playing low level online quests while chipping away at the offline end game, to finally beat those monsters once. One time was all it took for me to congratulate myself and hopefully never look back. But you do have to go back.

I made it to G-rank and things are increasingly difficult, so like before, after a break from the game I am going back and doing quests that I left out trying to forge ahead to the G-rank quests. The low-level advanced stuff was fun in my Seregios gear and Glaive. The high-rank stuff same way, but I have found myself up against the Molten Tigrex again and have been reminded of how cautious you have to be to take some of them down. Don’t get me wrong, I know I can beat it, with worse gear I farmed Tigrex tail and fang for weapons, but its monsters like this, and the Shiguru Magala, and Teostra, that require such a muster of focus over time, that make this game one of the hardest to get to the end game of.

At the same time, at this level every little upgrade has a noticeable impact in a fight. Less health lost, more damage done, more flinches, mounts, pieces. This thing though, that has me running around like a bomb scarfing stacks of deodorant to avoid myself exploding is just ugh, it is to be wrestled with. It’s my feeling that the glaive is the best weapon for it though because once you get MT fired up there is a rhythm to each attack that lets me hit while on my way to the safe side of an attack. The glaive lets me stay super mobile and out of the way of the bomb dusts that ignites over time. Don’t forget too that while you are smoking like a fuse if he hits you it causes extra damage, so when its all enranged and trying over and over to hit you with that roar, that’s because its a one-shot, I would spam it too.

Molten Tigrex plushie, I’ve been cussing sweating mad at this monster, but look how cute…

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