(Warning, spoilers for iceborne and other games in the series) This is kind of a long post, but its a topic that's honestly important to me. I'd like to get the cat out of the bag here and say I never grew up with these games, in fact I've only been playing them for about 5 months. I remember when I was younger always being curious, wanting to try them, but for whatever reason I just never picked it up. Eventually I picked up World and then the games before it, and never once did these developers skip out on their immersive genius. Despite being so new to the series I feel like I've had an affinity for it for a long time, and that's just the power of the work put into this series. In every game I've played everything in the environment immerses me and sets a scene when necessary. Sure the older games didnt have the best graphics, but they were amazing when it mattered, and this is coming from a guy who started with World era graphics. Every section on the maps were their own hints on the whereabouts of a monster. If you know your map details then you can make an assessment based on a monsters design for where they reside. It all just makes perfect sense, and I feel like Iceborne in MHW is perfect in its immersion.
In the games we typically hunt an elder dragon cause they're this powerful environment destroying monster. With Kirin we always kinda understood the danger as seemingly everywhere it goes a thunderstorm follows. However in iceborne something about it was different, the dire intensity of these elder dragons prescense is done so phenomenally. Probably my second favorite fight in Iceborne is Blackveil Vaal Hazak. The spore consumed Ancient Forest you explore while trying to find Blackveil sets the tone for how important this hunt is and the consequences of failure. No monsters in sight as they were presumably consumed or evacuated, just a foggy infested atmosphere. As for the smaller monsters that cant survive anywhere else? Blackveil's prey. This one creature spread spores and viruses that consumed the whole environment. And seeing this brightly colored flourishing landscape you've been to for months, being completely rotted in seemingly hours of the monster's precense is incredibly eerie. This scene we're thrown in absolutely captivated me, I felt the intensity of the impacts these creatures have and why they're so dangerous in foreign territory.
You then have Kirin in Iceborne when it's in Hoarfrost during Rajang's quest. Kirin by itself is an intense fight, but fighting in a dark and cloudy winter thunder storm while taking into consideration that this Kirin is supposed to be drastically weakened by losing it's horn? It's a visually bombastic and powerful scene, constantly being reminded that the Kirin causing all of this and kicking your ass is supposed to be weak. We're meant to be fighting something else's prey, something we want to fight, and if this predator's weakened prey is decimating us, it makes you feel so small. This whole struggle of a fight keeps reminding you that there's always bigger fish beyond this one.
The immersive design these art directors, sound designers, concept artists and animators have been doing this for YEARS. All lead by dreamers who want to design an immersive world from their imagination and the care put into it, was so unfairly unrecognized outside of Asia. And to this day at least in North America, still doesn't get the attention and recognition it deserves. I was pretty dumb for not picking these games up as a kid, but at the same time I'm glad my first experiences with the series is at an age I can see and truly appreciate the work put into every game (Outside of a few hitboxes and a certain monster's hip.). Its important to give recognition to a video game with devs who truly care, too many video games nowadays will be built solely for a cash grab or with nothing in mind other than just having a product. Devs might care, but the directors might not. It's incredibly important to appreciate the work and genius that a video game, or just any media based off imagination, that can be achieved when you let imaginative people with a passion for their project use their ideas. It's what made Nintendo the inarguable king of video games for decades in the past, it's what created the beloved Dark Souls series, and it's what created Monster Hunter.
If you read all of this then hey thanks for listening to me ramble on about the visable passion in these games and why I've fallen for it in just 5 months. There we so many other examples from other games, but they'd make my rambling even longer than it already is. What was probably YOUR favorite immersive experience in this game? Theres so many others and I'd love to know other people's "holy shit this game is amazing" moments are.
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© Post "Can we just appreciate the genius levels of immersion and thought these games have? Along with how criminal it is that they arent more popular?" for game Monster Hunter World.
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