Monster Hunters rejoice! The latest game has finally come to Nintendo Switch, bringing with it a slew of new monsters and mechanics. It's a rather hefty game, too, so make sure you have enough room on your microSD card for it. After spending some time with it, we feel like it is one of the best Nintendo Switch games and, as we've said in our Monster Hunter Rise review, we think it's the best Monster Hunter Game so far. Let's dive in, shall we?
What is Monster Hunter Rise?
Monster Hunter Rise is the latest mainline game in the Monster Hunter series, following Monster Hunter World on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
In Monster Hunter Rise, you'll find yourself in the "ninja-inspired" Kamura Village. You'll discover the locals telling you that a horrible beast has been spotted nearby, and it threatens to plunge the world into chaos, just like another monster did half a century ago. The villagers will turn to you, as a Monster Hunter, to slay these dangerous monsters and prevent another disaster.
Like the other Monster Hunter games, you will hunt monsters by slaying them or capturing them for even more rewards. The loot you gain from carving up monster remains and captures allows you to craft new armor and weapons, making it easier to take on tougher monsters. The different armor sets not only look cool, but they provide useful skills for your specific playstyle and preferred weapon — there will be a ton of options, so experimentation is critical.
Monster Hunter Rise continues to have the 14 weapon types from other mainline games: Great Sword, Long Sword, Sword and Shield, Dual Blades, Hammer, Hunting Horn, Lance, Gunlance, Switch Axe, Insect Glaive, Charge Blade, Light Bowgun, Heavy Bowgun, and Bow. Unfortunately, the Prowler mode that was introduced in Monster Hunter Generations will not be returning.
One of the new areas that Monster Hunter Rise will feature is called the Shrine Ruins. It was once a spiritual place, but it appears to have fallen into shambles and has been taken over by monsters.
What is the gameplay like in Monster Hunter Rise?
Before Monster Hunter World, the Monster Hunter games did not have open-world maps. It was cumbersome to use items during battles, and gathering resources and making items on-the-fly was slow and tedious. However, Monster Hunter World brought about many quality of life improvements to the franchise, and those changes are being carried over to Rise.
In Monster Hunter Rise, there is open world exploration for each map, so there are no longer loading screens between areas. The map is just one large locale to explore seamlessly, just like in Monster Hunter World, but with slightly toned-down graphics. There are also several QOL changes from past games when it comes to item management and gathering.
Rise introduces a new gameplay element: the Wirebug. It looks like a bug that stays with the player, similar to the Scoutflies that debuted in World. With the Wirebug, hunters are able to easily traverse and explore terrain like cliffs and elevated platforms that they wouldn't be able to reach otherwise. The Wirebug can also be used to perform special weapon attacks called 'Silkbind attacks,' giving players new options in battle.
Wirebugs even have the ability to briefly take control of monsters using a new gameplay feature called 'Wyvern Riding.'
After doing enough damage with aerial attacks, Wirebug attacks, or even getting monsters to hurt each other, you can even mount a monster. While riding, you can attack other monsters using the one you're currently riding or slam your steed into walls to do some serious damage.
You will need to master all these new mechanics in order to stop The Rampage.
The Rampage is an unnatural phenomenon where monsters of all kinds have joined forces to destroy Kamura Village. You must defend your home from wave after wave of monsters using siege weapons and traps provided to you by the villagers. After dispatching enough monsters, the leader of the pack will appear. These monsters are classified as Major Threats or Apex monsters. Defeating the Major Threats and Apex monster will repel the horde and save Kamura Village.
In addition to your feline friends, the Palicos, Monster Hunter Rise also introduces a new companion: Palamutes.
What do the Palamutes and Palicos do in Monster Hunter Rise?
Palicos are not new and have always been a part of the Monster Hunter franchise. They are cat-like companions that you can take with you on your hunting quests, and they support you in battle by healing you or getting hits in on a monster. They can also take some heat off of you if you need to use a potion or item. And when you're not in combat, Palicos can help you gather useful resources. Players get to customize the look and coloring of Palicos when they start the game.
Palamutes, on the other hand, are brand new to Monster Hunter Rise. They are dog-like animals that can help attack monsters, and they also double as a mount to traverse the map quicker than by on foot. Similar to the Palicos, Palamutes can wear armor and themed skins, offering players more levels of customization. Players also get to customize the look and coloring of their Palamute when they start the game.
You're allowed to take two animal companions out on quests. You can take two Palicos or two Palamutes, or one of each. Hunters can also interact with Palamutes by doing things like shaking paws, giving them a treat, or just petting them.
Are there new monsters in Monster Hunter Rise?
As with every new Monster Hunter title, there are new flagship monsters that are introduced. If you're interested, check out our list of confirmed monsters for more details on what monsters you will face. Here are some of them:
- Magnamalo: This is the new flagship monster for Rise. It is a Fanged Wyvern that "relentlessly attacks foes." It reminds me a bit of my personal favorite, Zinogre.
- Aknosom: This is a new Bird Wyvern that is also very territorial.
- Great Izuchi: Another Bird Wyvern, but with a scythe-like tail that is deadly to its prey.
- Tetranadon: This is an amphibian beast with a gigantic, rotund body. It appears to be very gluttonous and can swallow anything that moves.
Will there be any returning monsters in Monster Hunter Rise?
A wide variety of monsters from the older games have been confirmed to return for Monster Hunter Rise.
- Rathalos: The mascot of the Monster Hunter franchise. This Flying Wyvern is known as the 'King of the Skies', as it hunts its prey from the sky by breathing fireballs and striking with poisonous talons.
- Khezu: This is a disturbing Flying Wyvern that lurks within cold, dark caverns. It has the ability to paralyze its prey with electricity and extend its neck out to devour them from afar.
- Tigrex: This flying wyvern is a cross between a tiger and a tyrannosaurus rex. Its powerful jaws can crush through rock, and its scream is so powerful, it can damage your whole body, not just your ears.
- Mizutsune: This beautiful creature was one of the flagship monsters from Monster Hunter Hunter Generations Ultimate. It has the ability to produce giant bubbles that will hinder the mobility of anything that gets soaked by them.
Any monster returning from Monster Hunter World will be using the armor and weapon designs from World. Monsters from older games will be using the older designs, but they will be polished up a bit to look better. For monsters that have made an appearance in older games as well as World, they will be going with the World design for armor and weapons.
Can I play with friends in Monster Hunter Rise?
Multiplayer has always been a big part of Monster Hunter games, and Rise is no different. Up to four players can experience the multiplayer components at the same time. Each of your animal companions battles alongside you and your teammates, which is a change from previous games where you could only bring a Palico companion if the group was only two hunters.
Monster Hunter Rise goes back to the older method of separating single-player village story missions from the multiplayer online Gathering Hub quests. Quests in the Gathering Hub have cutscenes, but players are able to skip them at any time instead of being forced to watch them in its entirety. Some of you will be glad to note that there is no required story progression point before you can play online with friends.
When you play online with other players, the monster HP will be scaled for the number of players.
As with many Switch games, a Nintendo Switch Online subscription is required if you want to hunt with friends online.
Will there be any special event quests?
Since Monster Hunter Rise is on the Switch, where players may not be online all the time, the game goes back to the old system for special event quests. This involves downloading event quests in advance before you play them.
Does Monster Hunter Rise work with amiibo?
There are three amiibo available for Rise: Palamute, Palico, and Magnamalo. The Monster Hunter Rise amiibo will be store-exclusive, and the store depends on your region:
- US: GameStop
- Canada: EB Games
- Europe: My Nintendo Store
What bonuses come with Monster Hunter Rise?
Capcom includes a few different bonuses with the purchase of Monster Hunter Rise, depending on whether you pre-order, and if you get the Deluxe Edition or not.
If pre-ordered the game before the March 26, 2021 release date, you get the following:
- Palamute Retriever Costume layered armor (changes appearance)
- Palico Forest Cat Costume layered armor (changes appearance)
- Novice Talisman: Helps your stats early on in the game
If you get the Deluxe Edition ($70), you get the following:
- Kamurai layered armor set
- Shuriken Collar Palamute layered armor piece
- Fish Collar Palico layered armor piece
- Samurai pose set
- Kabuki face paint
- Izuchi Tail hairstyle
- Gestures (4 Jumps)
And for the die-hard fans, there is also a Collector's Edition ($100), you get everything in the Deluxe Edition, as well as these extras:
- Kamura Mark – enamel pin
- A Magnamalo amiibo
- 10 Monster Hunter Rise stickers
How much does Monster Hunter Rise cost?
Monster Hunter Rise costs $50 for the standard game. The Deluxe Edition is $70, and the Collector's Edition runs $100.
Is there a limited edition Nintendo Switch console?
You can also purchase a limited edition Monster Hunter Rise Deluxe Edition Nintendo Switch Console for $370 at GameStop. This bundle includes a special edition Nintendo Switch console that is decorated with Monster Hunter artwork on the Switch and the Doc. Plus, you get a digital copy of Monster Hunter Rise, along with the Deluxe Kit DLC.
There is also a special Monster Hunter Rise Edition Pro Controller available. This Pro Controller features Monster Hunter art on the faceplate and will cost $75.
Updated March 2021: Changed info throughout to reflect that the game has launched.
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