Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate is out as of March 19th. This is my first video review so feel free to unleash your inner troll on it.
I have always been a avid fan of Monster hunter ever since I was a beta tester for it back in the PS2 days. This version is just like is stated in the name, “Ultimate”. What we have with the Wii U version of the game is a HD remake of Monster Hunter 3, which came out for the Wii about three years ago. Now, some of you might want to argue about the PS3 release of Monster Hunter Portable the 3rd in Japan, but for this review I will focus on US released products.
Now this Wii Version is beautiful, it looks like they took their time to use a brighter color palette to give the characters and areas a more vibrant design. Many of these textures are the same as the previous version but they have definitely put the work into other parts of it. The amount of content that they have added to this game is staggering. They have added almost 4000 new things to this game. ranging from 211 new quests, new monsters, and thousands of new equipment and armor, I have a bad feeling that this game might put you in the multiple 100+ hours of play. If you are a fan of the series, that will be no problem at least. But if you are new to the series, the learning curve in this version is not as steep as it is in previous editions, but the drawback of that is that it could take you an hour or more to get into the seeing of how the game operates. It would have been nice to see them incorporate a ‘skip’ element so those of us who are familiar with the game could proceed directly into completing the hunting quests that come later.
Once you get the basics of the game, such as farming, picking mushrooms, and learning what animals drop certain items. It is a great time to start to get the basics of the crafting system which is one of the strongest points of the game. The formula is balanced in such a way so that every time you may spend 30 minutes plus on a battle, that item that it drops makes it so much more valuable to the player and when you are able to complete the custom armor set based on that beast, you get a sense of accomplishment. Now you don’t have to have a matching set to complete the game but it does give you a bit of status for when you play online.
My greatest enjoyment in Monster Hunter comes from the online play. It is unlike other online games which tend to rely heavily on competition, in this, it is all about your ability to be cooperative with other players online in order to achieve the same goal whether is would be getting a certain drop from a monster or raising your hunter rank to the glorious G-Levels. Sadly, if you do end up playing this game in single player mode only, you will be missing out on many tougher battles that this has to offer and of course the online interaction.
Another great aspect into how this game works is the inclusion of being able to share the save files between the 3DS and the Wii U, So now, if you have a long commute, you will be able to play a mission on the train and then when you get home, you will be able to import all of what you have done into your console version. The only drawback of this is that you will have to buy both games which will set you back about 100 dollars. If you look at the dollar per hour entertainment value, I think that you would find that a steal.
My biggest gripes about this game is that it is a port but they have greatly improved what it has to offer to make it new and exciting for anyone who has played a game from the series before.
That aside, if any game can be a system seller for the Wii U, this would have to be one of them. With over 100 hours of game-play online co-op, and cross play capability with the 3DS, This is a must have for the system. I Have to give this a 4/5 simply because they didn’t embed a way to speed up the beginning part of the game.