Monster Hunter Rise: Update 3.0

Monster Hunter Rise: Update 3.0

Monster Hunter Rise

With the second major update of Monster Hunter Rise a few days ago, a circle has closed around the release of the Capcom title, which at least for the next three months should slow down the development of new content: according to the road map published towards the end of the last one. Digital Event, the next updates should not include new monsters, but only missions and special rewards related mostly to the launch of Monster Hunter Stories 2.

An understandable slowdown, after the two months of fire that followed the release of the game last March: in the space of a few weeks, Capcom has added nine monsters and various extra functions that have enriched the already fed endgame. However, it was an unusual approach for the series, which made us reflect on its nature and Capcom's intentions. In short, the 3.0 update was an excellent opportunity to analyze the strategy of the Japanese software house and understand what works and what doesn't, but above all what the future of the series could hold.

road to the finale

The value of narrative in Monster Hunter is still at the center of heated debates among fans today: how much weight can a plot have in a game where you have to hunt monsters to make weapons and armor? In reality, very little. However, a good screenwriter can still narratively justify the gameplay with a shrewd plot, without necessarily falling into the ridiculous or grotesque.

Capcom in recent years has tried, even implementing a series of cinematics already starting from Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate to sketch a kind of storyline that actually did not help much, but contributed to at least give a greater luster to the entire production.

Monster Hunter Rise followed the same philosophy, narratively justifying the Fury mode and the entire premise of the game through its final bosses, Ibushi of the wind and Narwa of the thunder.

Monster Hunter Rise : the Magnamalo. Considered to be the cause of the sieges on Kamura village, these legendary elder dragons are male and female, king and queen respectively, and their union promises untold damage. We faced the first boss about mid-campaign in a Fury mission: the Ibushi of the wind attacks the gates of Kamura along with a horde of monsters but our intervention puts him on the run. Later, however, we discover that the two Wyvernian twins who work as missionaries in Kamura, Minoto and Hinoa, can resonate with the two monsters despite themselves. In practice, it is as if the Ibushi of the wind and the Narwa of the thunder possessed them briefly, causing them to repeat a threatening chant.

This allows hunters to locate the Thunder Narwa and fight it in the Coral Palace during the "Goddess of Thunder" mission. It is one of the most original battles in the franchise, because it mixes the typical siege mechanics, and therefore the use of ballistae, cannons and dragonatore, with quasi-platform dynamics in which you have to use the wire insect to reach the suspended platforms or dodge some particularly insidious attacks.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Tigrex. Once defeated, the Narwa of Thunder plunges into a chasm and the player's victory is celebrated in the village. Monster Hunter Rise, in March, ended like this. The credits appeared, followed by a final skit in which Hinoa and Minoto, still under the influence of the two ancient dragons, prophesied their union. A real cliffhanger that anticipated a sequel: Capcom immediately warned players that the story would in fact continue in a subsequent update with the "new" ending.

A bizarre mechanism. What was the point of coming out with a fake ending, but sticking the credits to it anyway? Why postpone it for an update? On the gameplay front, then, the situation became even more bizarre as the weapons and armor of the two monsters, especially those of the Thunder Narwa, appeared quite mediocre, not to mention useless: not surprisingly, the players began to "farm" the Narwa of Thunder only to deliver the materials to Kagero the merchant and make amulets.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Somnacanth. We therefore awaited the first update with some interest, hoping that the story would continue convincingly, also because the question of resonance was quite intriguing, although barely mentioned, and Capcom could have worked on it. In the game, one of the two sisters seems more susceptible than the other to the influence of the ancient dragons. We asked ourselves: what if Capcom wanted to give the storyline a decisive twist by killing one of the two missioners?

It would have been a brave move, and for the first time the story of a Monster Hunter would have taken a dark turn, decisively influencing the game scenario as if to say: "hey, I exist too". The first update of April, however, while introducing six new monsters, left the plot still pending, limiting itself to enriching the endgame content with the iconic ancient dragons, strangely absent at launch, and some new Apex and non-Apex monsters. Specifically, Update 2.0 unlocked armor style crafting and hunts for the first Apex monsters outside of Fury mode.

Update 3.0

Monster Hunter Rise: The Rathalos Apex. To intrigue us - to make us suspicious, indeed - were two choices made by Capcom. The first concerns the publication of the 3.0 update, just one month after the previous one. At this point Monster Hunter Rise was updating for the second time within two months of launch, and not even Monster Hunter World in its state of grace had gotten so much content that fast. This has in fact led many players to believe that Capcom would have continued with the same cadence afterwards, but the Digital Event has thought to cool the minds, revealing that for the whole summer there would be no equally important updates.

The other curious choice concerned the Fury mode that we ourselves, already in the review, had considered controversial: original, yes, but not particularly fun or productive when playing alone.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Chameleos. Right from the start, the players had clamored for Capcom to allow Apex monsters to be hunted out of Fury mode, and the Japanese developer had incredibly agreed: starting from the first update, players could face the Apex monsters available to launch in hunts. traditional, while the new ones (the Rathalos and the Diablos) remained confined to the Fury mode. Update 3.0 does even more. Adds traditional hunts for Rathalos and Diablos Apex; then he introduces the Zinogre Apex in Fury mode, but it is enough to defeat him once to unlock him immediately as the objective of a normal mission. In this way, the Fury missions only serve to "farm" above all the Defender Coupons needed to build and upgrade the Fury weapons up to the new rank S.

The Zinogre Apex is one of only three monsters added with the update 3.0. Once the update is downloaded, if the player meets certain requirements - if he has completed the previous campaign and reached a certain Hunter Rank, in effect - a new urgent mission immediately appears in the Coral Palace. Predictably, the Narwa of thunder is not dead, and indeed is about to join the Ibushi of the wind to unleash a real apocalypse. It's up to us to stop them.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Goss Harag. The "The Creator" mission is essentially a two-phase battle. In the first, the hunters face the Ibushi of the wind, but this part of the battle does not last long and soon we all end up in the crater in which the Narwa had sunk: the latter, surprisingly, devours the monstrous consort, transforming into a creature significantly different, Narwa the creator. It is an ancient dragon even more harassing and aggressive than the one we faced previously, it deals a lot of damage, especially if you have little resistance to the thunder element, and has a complex lethal attack in two phases: in the first, while charging it, some Dragonatori will emerge from the ground and begin spinning around the map as the monster draws the hunters to it, who then have to run to the edges and dodge the dragoners at the same time.

At some point the dragonborn will crumble and platforms will appear moments before the new Narwa launches her final attack, killing all the players still on the ground.

It's a tough fight, well, but at some point the hunters get unexpected help when the Magnamalo joins the fight: using the wyvern mount, it is possible to inflict a lot of extra damage to the Narwa of thunder and knock it down temporarily. At that point the Magnamalo will leave and the mission will enter the final phase.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Tetranadon.

Final Thoughts

Monster Hunter Rise: Narwa of Thunder and Ibushi of Wind. The defeat of the Thunder Narwa marks the real end of the Monster Hunter Rise campaign, but the epilogue is truly disappointing and does not justify the two months of waiting. Our hunter returns to the village and is welcomed with enthusiasm by everyone, including the two missionaries. Some short, cloying dialogue follows, there is talk as usual of a lavish banquet, and that's the end of it. We have already seen the credits, so the cutscene suddenly closes, sending us back to the Hunting Base where Hojo, the guild leader, will warn us that our work is not finished yet. Reaching Hunter Rank 100 unlocks a new monster to fight: the crimson Valstrax.

Let's stop for a moment, though, and think about the Monster Hunter Rise ending. Well, although we had hoped, Capcom did not try too hard to write a more engaging story, but what was proposed after two months of waiting remains really weak. The clash with Narwa the creator is very engaging, and the rewards are considerable: with the new materials you can upgrade the weapons and armor of the Bushi of the wind and the Narwa of the thunder, which become much more interesting. However, our impression is that this content should have been available as early as launch, or with the first update at the latest. This was not the case because, in our opinion, Capcom was unable to complete the game before the expected release date and put it on the market anyway, vowing to close it with the updates soon.

Monster Hunter Rise: the Mizutsune. Now, an attitude like this, usually, would scream scandal, but in reality Monster Hunter Rise is such a rich, long-lived and varied title that it managed to stand on its legs even with a campaign that remained truncated for two months. In this sense, in fact, Capcom may even have discovered the best modus operandi to manage the launch of a new Monster Hunter.

Siping the endgame contents over the two months immediately following the launch, she succeeded in two businesses. First of all, it projected the image of a decisive, concrete and committed support, implementing an important amount of content a few weeks after the release of the title in order to satisfy the players and ride their enthusiasm. Secondly, he had the time and opportunity for some last-minute balancing: he changed his approach to the Apex monsters, listening to user feedback, and tweaked the difficulty curve, which many considered too soft.

We also have the impression that he acted promptly on the meta, immediately stemming the spread of Nargacuga weapons that dominated until the first update, thanks to the introduction of specific jewels and bonuses.

After Valstrax

"The Crimson Glow" is the mission that closes the circle on the infamous leaks that had anticipated the roster of monsters some time before the game was released: the crimson Valstrax is in fact the last monster to appear in that list, after which the future remains shrouded in mystery. This ancient dragon is a variant of the cover monster that first appeared in Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate, a kind of jet dragon characterized by real reactors under the wings.

The Monster Hunter Rise variant is incredibly aggressive and fast, so we strongly recommend that you upgrade your armor before facing it and bring everything you need to survive attacks that can kill you in no time. The crimson Valstrax, in particular, tends to splash into the sky, where you can see it in the form of a comet, while the game warns you that it is about to launch an Ambush: at which point the monster will fall on the battlefield after a few moments, killing anyone. nearby and did not dive to dodge the attack.

Monster Hunter Rise: the crimson Valstrax. The crimson Valstrax armor, visually very hi-tech, is characterized by some great pieces - like the gloves with their Weak Point 2/3 which are practically the new meta - and by a very particular bonus that partially weakens the hunter, but at the same time it works in synergy with other abilities to reinforce the damage it inflicts.

The best players on the web are still studying the meta as far as weapons are concerned: those of the crimson Valstrax are characterized by a very long white sharpness which then immediately changes to red, and for this reason they have a basic attack value content. The introduction of the aforementioned Fury S weapons - which by the way are the only ones that can change their appearance as if they were armor styles - has rocked the meta, however, introducing a variety of combinations that we can't wait to discover in the coming months.

Monster Hunter Rise: the hammer of the Teostra. The 3.0 update, in short, plays on a smaller number of truly unreleased monsters, but enriches Monster Hunter Rise with a variety of content, especially in terms of itemization, which will make the next few weeks very interesting for those who want to continue hunting.

It's an update that also adds a good amount of challenging seven-star missions - complete them all and you'll unlock a welcome surprise - and various secondary objectives that will keep collectible lovers busy. Now, however, the Capcom stock begins a downward phase. The new road map only includes event missions and collaborations for June, July and August, and after this tour de force it is unlikely that we will see new monsters at least for some time.

Capcom will therefore have to choose how to continue the support: we assume that from September onwards, and maybe sooner with a bit of luck, we will return to the rhythm of Monster Hunter World, with bi-monthly content updates that will take us to the inevitable expansion. Bets are accepted on the launch window: we say spring 2022, what about you?

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