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In Monster Hunter Tri, you play as an adventurer who’s been hired by a small coastal village to protect them from vile sea creatures. At first, you’ll be taking on simple tasks such as slaying herbivores the size of a tank, killing puny lizards or gathering mushrooms, but as the games goes by you’ll be a hardened warrior able to take on many dangerous tasks. Quests in Monster Hunter Tri are tiered into various ranks with varying degrees of difficulty. Until you’ve completed a certain amount of quests in one tier, you won’t be able to take on more difficult ones. It’s actually a good system that allows newcomers to get the feel of the game while letting seasoned Monster Hunters to get into the action.
Progression in Monster Hunter Tri isn’t measured in levels or experience but rather by the gear you wear. This is actually a deviation from the usual RPG systems that we know. The only way you’ll be able to take tougher quests is by upgrading your equipment. You’ll manage with the gear given to you at the start, but you’ll eventually need to forge your own weapons and armors. On the first quests that will be given by the Village Chief, you can accomplish this by either buying new equipment from the store or looting creatures you’ve killed and gathering materials from specific environments and the use the materials to forge a new weapon or armor. It can be a bit frustrating to tirelessly grind your way to the sword you’ve been wanting, but there is some degree of satisfaction in seeing your new armor and weapon. This is actually one of the games strong points. If you’re in the mood to fool around, you can take quests given by the villagers while building up your pool of inventory for forging. Or if you feel the need for some progression, take on the main quests which you can do it at your own leisure.
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When it comes to the visuals, Monster Hunter Tri doesn’t exactly bring out any ground breaking effects. On some angles, the graphics looks pixelated but you’re usually going to be too busy dodging attacks from monsters to notice. The cinematics looks good and compared to the other titles on the Wii platform, it has an overwhelming edge. The monsters actually look like they’re living and breathing creatures. The weather effects are a plus, but the frequent load screens when moving to another map can be a bit annoying. One of the other things I’ve noticed is the lack of connection with the NPC’s default action to the things they’re saying. Often you’ll see moving arms and head while the dialog bar is static. But compared to the other good things about this game, this is pretty negligible.
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Players who have been religiously following the Monster Hunter series will know that one of its weak points was the awkward camera control. However in MH-Tri, this issue has been addressed allowing more control and freedom for players. You still can’t lock on the target creatures but not having to fight the camera is definitely an improvement. The game also supports several control styles. Of all, I feel that the Classic controller option gives more viable control as compared to the nunchuck style that uses motion controlled inputs. As with the other action RPGs, the control takes time to master. However, once you do get the hang of it, avoiding creatures under water or chasing that fleeing lizard while getting attacked from all angles, will be a breeze.
See the next page for continued review on Gameplay and Overall conclusion
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Combat is all about getting prepared with the right strategy bearing the right tools for the job. Choosing the right gear and right approach is the key to a successful capture or kill. Things get more int eresting and add another layer of complexity to the game when you need to capture a monster instead of simply killing it. Here lies in the most polarizing part of the game. Simply charging head-on before observing the things around will usually result in your demise, costing you a penalty in reward and precious time. Players who are edgy and don’t have the tolerance to observe each of the monsters habit will have a hard time playing this game. Monster Hunter Tri is all about patience. If you can’t stand the grind or wait for the right moment to strike, this game isn’t probably for you. On the other side, it’s an extremely satisfying game with respect to its tactical combat strategies and actual action packed bouts.
Fans of the series will probably be familiar with the Farm system. Here, in exchange for a few resource points, items can be harvested without the need to go to the actual environments that contains them. Using this, you can also farm for hard to get items, if you have a sample of it and a catalyst. Tri also allow players to command a shipping vessel to go on fishing trips of varying lengths and locations. Upon return, the fishmonger lady will hand over items that were found, some of which are useful items for item customization.
The offline content is only half of what the game has to offer. Monster Hunter Tri’s Wii online support is exceptional which allows players to go online through a virtual lobby and form teams to take on quests. It boasts the inclusion of Wii-speak making the experience more engaging and interactive. The Arena mode also adds to the fun. Although you can only use pre-selected equipment, it is still a challenging aspect whether playing with your friend or hunting monsters on its virtual world. Once you get bored of the challenges that the single player mode presents, you can go online and join a group of three more hunters for a more comprehensive experience of the game.
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If you’re looking for a good single player adventure and the best online experience on the Wii bar, look no further than Monster Hunter 3. It offers an extensive content that will keep you playing for 40 hours and above on the single player while the multiplayer will probably double that. The visuals coupled with the properly integrated sound effects are top notch on the Wii platform. Newcomers will find it very easy to get into the action while the experience is deep enough to satisfy seasoned adventurers. Monster Hunter Tri is a definite must buy.
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