The changes we love:
- Ditching those horrible Gathering Quests as ESSENTIAL to progress. In World gathering quests are available for those that need materials or want to do side quests like leveling up the canteen, botanical center, argosy, etc. but unlike in previous games they are not necessary to progress in the story. Thank god.
- The Selina’s Gathering Hub has nearly every resource you could need. In previous iterations the Gathering Hub had a Quest Counter, a Canteen, an item shop, and a single table for arm wrestling. In Iceborne it has all of this plus the Resource Center for you Bounties and Investigation, and many ways to interact with other players like arm wrestling, a sauna, and a beautiful hot spring with ascetically pleasing surroundings.
- Free DLC and additional monsters and Event Quests regularly throughout the games lifecycle. Previous games offered a single expansion, which was often in the form of an entirely new game purchase. Imagine if MHW had only had the paid Iceborne expansion but never any other updates… Truthfully the game would be dead without the regular support and free addition of new monsters. Huge props to Capcom for the way MHW has been handled.
- Simplifying online play. The overhaul of the online mechanics have been amazing. SOS flairs, Available Quests for your server, server hopping, matchmaking, being able to create a server with tags like Target Monster and MR 100+. It’s easier than ever to jump in and play with people interested in the same things you are.
Yes there’s definitely been a lot of great changes brought to the MH series through World and Iceborne. So what should we be hoping for in future installments in the series? Here are a few ideas.
- The Hub cities should BE the Gathering Hub. What I mean is, players in online servers should be able to see and interact with each other in the overworld, not just in a separate Gathering HUB. While the Iceborne Gathering Hub is great, it limits player interaction to a small portion of the playable location. It’s frustrating in World that you can hear the other players over the microphone in your server but can’t see them or interact with them unless you both enter the Gathering Hub. Neigh-sayers might point out that this can’t happen because of individual progression, ie if one player has upgraded their Botanical Center or Canteen it will look different than a newer player’s would, or perhaps a character is dead or hasn’t appeared in the story for one person and not another. What happens to these NPCs in a shared space? Well this is actually not that complicated and is done in mmo’s and online games across the industry. It’s extra work to load those things individually for players, but with the leaps made in World and Iceborne it’s definitely not outside the realm of reality and would help make the world of Monster Hunter feel like a place where Hunters from different lands and experiences go through their journey together.
- Staying grouped after a Quest. Enable parties to stay together even when not in a mission. Let’s face it, if you’re a player who has a group of regulars you hunt with it’s annoying to have to continually accept quests and rejoin their group. A party system that keeps the party leader in charge of the current mission and auto enrolls teammates would be much appreciated. But this is just as useful for those that find a random or two that they really enjoy hunting with. Look at the Safi or Kulve Sieges as an example of how frustrating it can be to have a great run with a group only to go back to the Hub and find that some else joined their next quest before you could get in. A party system that keeps players together even in the overworld would help with this and many other issues.
- Enemy health scaling needs to have more than just 1 player and 2 player health pools. In MHW and previous games a monsters health scales when a second player enters the quest, but does not increase for the third and fourth player. This means that hunting as a duo is the most difficult way to play and hunting with a group of 4 can feel like a cakewalk. It makes a lot more sense to have it scale differently for 1, 2, 3, or 4 hunters.
- Setting up your own Hunt. Have you ever wanted to hunt a specific group of monster? Want to fight an Anjanath and a Glavinous at the same time, well that quest doesn’t exist so sorry you’ll never get that experience. What about a special arena quest against Jyuratodus, Lavasioth, and Beotodus, it doesn’t exist sorry. But what if all those monsters you captured can be selected and placed into a personalized Arena Quest so you can experience your crazy hunter dream Hunts. This type of thing has been available through modding in the PC version of World and (through methods I won’t divulge) in MH4U and Generations.
- More giant and tiny monsters please! Everyone’s favorite missions, those Event Quests where the sizes of monsters are changed add a new variation on classic hunts. The giant Anjanath, giant Barroth, tiny Odogeron, and the Greatest Jaggris are unique and fun but sadly these quests are extremely rare. I do not think players should be able to adjust monster sizes like modders. Instead I think Capcom should give players more of these amazing Event Quests regularly.
- Stop the console exclusive quests! If you read the previous entry and though “hmmm, I never got to fight a giant Anjanath” then you’re not playing on PlayStation. It’s so sad that so many players totally missed out on these events because Sony essentially bought the rights to the quest. While crossovers are great, they should not be console exclusive. Both the Final Fantasy and Witcher events are excellent examples of good crossovers that everyone was able to enjoy. Personally, as an Xbox player I didn’t even want to special Horizon Zero Dawn Alloy Armor and weapons, but I really reeeeeeeeally wanted to fight that giant Anjanath and I never got the chance because I don’t own a PS4. Every hunter should be able to enjoy every hunt as long as their rank is high enough and they put in the effort.
There’s a list of some improvements I’d love to see in the next MH game. But before anyone rages about these suggestions in the comments, remember that prior to MH World you had to stand still to pop a potion. That’s right, you had to stop mid fight and stand still for 3 seconds to chug a drink. Change can be a good thing friends. Please let me know what you’d like to see in the next MH game. Water combat? A Specific Monster? Returning character? Pick your poison and let me know.
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