As I eagerly await the release of Monster Hunter World, I have been reminiscing about the hours I have poured into the series. I have spent a fair amount of time on the Monster Hunter series since Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. I have made great friends as well as wonderful memories playing it. By far the hardest thing I have ever done in Monster Hunter, was getting started. So, in the hope of Monster Hunter World taking off, here are some things I wish I had known when I started Monster Hunter.
Firstly, always be prepared for the hunt you’re going on. Obviously your first time hunting a particular monster you won’t know exactly what to bring, but you can still prepare a jack of all trades item set for general use, and other ones for more specialized hunts. The most difficult hunts I have gone on were due to a lack of preparation.
It may be a real time action game, but try and think of it as a turn based system. You have your turn, and the monster has its own. When the monster is attacking you, it’s not your turn. Until you learn how a monster will act and react, don’t try to be fancy. Just dodge whatever it throws at you and use down time in the monster’s attacks to attack or use items.
The quest timer is actually very generous. (The time limits in the demo are much shorter than the full release’s) This can give you enough time to learn a fair bit about a monster during your first encounter. Dancing with a monster (not attacking, but just moving around it and dodging) is highly effective, allowing you to just learn its tells, ranges, and recoveries. If you first focus on not getting hit, then you’ll have a better feel for when attacking will be safe.
Early on you’ll focus on not getting hit while attacking the monster. As you become more experienced that will become attacking the monster while not getting hit. It’s a matter of priority.
Build weapons for a variety of damage types. Exploiting a monster’s weakness can be more of an advantage than using a weapon type you’re more familiar with.
Always eat your meals before you hunt.
Always check your items before you leave. Don’t be that guy who didn’t bring cool drinks to the desert. Actually, I guess you can never be that guy who didn’t bring cool drinks, because the environmental mechanic is gone, but the thought remains. Never be the person who didn’t bring the thing.
Don’t be afraid to turn tail and lick your wounds a bit. Sometimes you’ll have a bad run of luck and be down on health, need to sharpen your weapon, and have some affliction. If you can, duck out of the action for a bit to patch yourself up and recenter your focus. Do it. Losing a couple minutes and coming back fresh is better than hastily trying to scrape yourself back together while still focusing on the monster. Also, you’ll lose less time healing up than if you have to jog back from getting carted.
Don’t pick one weapon and stick with it initially. I started with one weapon type and used it for 80 hours before trying other ones, and subsequently found 5 other weapons that I enjoyed more. I did not dislike my first pick, but the others felt better to use for me.
Try not to get knocked out and taken back to camp on the cart, but if you do, do not beat yourself up over it. Everyone has bad hunts, and if someone is going to give you flack over having a bad hunt, then you don’t want to be hunting with them anyway.
Potentially irrelevant tips from an old hunter:
(I have purposely avoided looking into Monster Hunter World in depth, and the next tips are from older games that may or may not still be relevant.)
Sleep status sucks, but if the falling asleep animation makes you fall off a ledge you’ll wake up immediately.
Energy drinks restore stamina and can counter sleep status if used before falling asleep.
Be aware of your attack range when playing with others. You can hit them out of their attacks and briefly stun them. Getting carted because someone hit you at the worst time feels bad. Getting someone carted because you hit them at the worst time feels AWFUL.
Yes, you are hunting an apex predator. Yes, there smaller creatures that are your target’s prey. No, they will not hesitate to charge you from across the map and knock you out of your perfectly timed attack. F*** you, Rhenoplos.
Don’t be a corner horn. You can play music and knock out a monster at the same time. That’s why you’re awesome.
When you get the capability, always be multiplying materials at the farm. You can never have enough honey.
Do not sell materials unless you have them in surplus. It’s not the end of the world if you do, but it’s nice to have materials readily available. Especially if you find out a certain weapon can’t be made from scratch, but needs to be built from another weapon tree. (And it’s like, some jobber monster weapon from super early in the game and you go back and stomp it, and you feel bad. Sometimes you’ll do too much damage. So if you miss the spot you need to break one too many times it dies before the part breaks, and your chance of the one material you need goes from like 30 percent to 2 percent. No, this never happened to me. Why would you ask that?)
Remember to bring traps for capture quests. Forgetting can be embarrassing.
Fashion Hunting is the true endgame.
Have fun! Monster Hunter is a series about challenging yourself against a variety of creatures by yourself or with friends. I have a great deal of fond memories of long nights playing with friends, and helping each other to grind specific parts from monsters to finish our weapons and armor. This series and its community are by far some of my favorites around.
One last thing, you can find someone to take you under their wing and tell you what all I have missed, and how completely wrong I am about everything at https://adoptahunter.org/.