[dropcap size=small]F[/dropcap]or the unfamiliar, Nintendo’s upcoming Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, for the 3DS, is a pre-historic hack-and-slash adventure. Over the weekend, I was fortunate enough to have received advance access to the demo. I’ve never played a Monster Hunter title before, so the series was fresh to me. Upon booting up the demo, you’re given two difficulty options to select from: Beginner, for n00bz like me, or Experienced, for the veteran Monster Hunter-ers. The beginner option has two quests, whereas the experienced option has three. You can also play with friends, both online or local.
I selected the beginner quest: Hunt the Great Jaggi – where I had to take down a Velociraptor-like creature. I ended up breezing through this and decided to test the intermediate waters with Hunt the Tetsucabra. Not a huge difference in difficult levels, but the monsters were a tad harder to take down. Most of the time, I was just frustrated that I’m not able to kill Francis and Alberto. The demonic meowing was embedded into my brain after the 25-minute demo hunts. I may be playing the full game on mute.
You’re able to select from 14 different weapons. They’re individual characters, but you’re not selecting the character, you’re selecting the weapon. I found most comfort in the melee selection. Ranged weapon controls were a bit awkward. Mind you that I’m using a 3DS XL without the Circle Pad Pro attachment that was offered with the previous title. I can, now, see how useful that little nub on the New 3DS will be with MH4U.
The game looks good. The visuals can be blocky, at times, but the large maps are nice to look at. Be sure to tune in for a full game review, when the game releases, on February 13th, 2015.
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is developed by Capcom and published by Nintendo.