Review – Monster Hunter Rise (PC)
Since the release of Monster Hunter World way back in the ancient days of 2016, I have been hooked onto Capcom’s once niche, now mainstream as hell franchise, all thanks to its addictive gameplay loop that makes it just fun to keep coming back to. Since then, we’ve also had a surprising spin on the Pokémon formula with Stories 2: Wings of Ruin that I enjoyed way more than I was expecting to, and of course, Monster Hunter Rise on the Switch. With Rise finally on the PC, free from the constraints of the Switch’s hardware, it’s time to pick up the Glaive once again.
In my initial review I pretty much had nothing but praise for the game, and as expected, this still rings true here. Across the game’s 12 different weapon types there’s tons of variety and they can really change the feel of the game. From the standard long sword to the airborne insect glaive or heavy bloodborne-style switch-axe, there’s something that fits everyone’s favourite playstyle, and this is what Monster Hunter does best. With that being said, I did mention in my original review that Rampage wasn’t my favourite addition to Rise and that pretty much still rings true here. After spending much more time with the mode, I just don’t feel like tower-defense style mode fits in just yet. It’s not bad per se. but a bit underwhelming compared to the rest of the game.
The level of gameplay variety is superb and this doesn’t just apply to the weapons either. Each of the game’s monsters are incredibly varied with different tactics, weaknesses and fighting styles that doe a great job of keeping the game fresh and exciting, even after a hundred literal hours. For the most part, they are all incredibly fun as well and it never really gets old fighting them. Which is a good thing because you will be fighting them…. A LOT. Monster Hunter’s entire gameplay loop is battling monsters to gather resource for crafting awesome new weapons and armour. It’s addictive and can keep you absorbed for hours.
Surprisingly though, it’s a lot of the quality of life improvements that I appreciated in Rise initially and have an even greater appreciation now. Simple things such as combining the upgrading and forging UI into one place makes it such much simpler to decide on my new weapons. Whilst keeping the hub world nice and small making interacting with all the systems that little bit easier. Then you’ve got the wirebugs, wallrunning and palamutes that just rapidly increase the pace of the game, allowing you to keep the fights going with very little in the way of distractions. No more spending minutes trekking across the map like you would in World and Iceborne.
Moving onto the more PC specific stuff, we have tons to dig into here, as Capcom have done a really commendable job with this port. There’s even full ultrawide support, which is a pretty big deal, and I hope this trend continues. All crossover events are available from the get-go as well, as all post launch content so far. The only gripes I have noticed are with cutscenes are locked to 30fps and a 16:9 aspect ratio. Thankfully, cutscenes aren’t really what Monster Hunter Rise focuses on.
As expected, Rise still very much looks like a game that was designed for the Switch, though a lot of effort has been put in to make the game look much better. Regardless where Rise really shines is in its visual presentation, monster and armour designs, as well as the wonderful animation work that just brings each and every monster alive. There have been moments where I’ve stepped back just to watch a monster perform a new attack. Now on PC it looks even better with a lot more clarity.
With it also being a Switch port we can expect performance to be excellent as well. With an RTX 2060 and a Ryzen 5 3600X I was achieving a constant 60FPS at 3440×1440 resolution, with maxed out settings and plenty of headroom. Sure, it’s not as good looking as World, but considering the limitations of the console it was originally designed for, it’s impressive to look how much Capcom worked on improving its looks. Installed on an SSD, there is virtually no loading as well. Moving around the village is instantaneous and loading into hunts is super quick.
Monster Hunter Rise was one of my favourite games of last year and it will be one of my favourite games from this year as well. There’s no denying the game features an addictive and thrilling core gameplay loop that just keeps me coming back. This PC port improves massively on the Switch original in every regard, be it visual or performance-wise, whilst providing a complete experience with every previously released piece of content. I expect I will be playing this for years to come.
Whilst a massive improvement over the base Switch version it’s still a port. Regardless, a lot of work has been put into making it a solid PC version.
The new PC version comes with 60+FPS gameplay and ultrawide support, giving it that edge when it comes to gameplay.
Same great sound design as before, with fantastic music and sound effects.
Fun Factor: 10
Not much to say here. Monster Hunter Rise is still an absolute blast, and it’s even better on PC with the improvements on visuals and performance.
Final Verdict: 9.5
Monster Hunter Rise is available now on Switch and PC.
Reviewed on PC with an RTX 2060, Ryzen 5 3600X and 16GB RAM. Installed on SSD.
A copy of Monster Hunter Rise was provided by the publisher.