Months ago, I was keen to play Monster Hunter on my Switch. With such a huge push of the series with Monster Hunter World, I thought that the Switch game in Japan, then called XX, would be making its way here too. Unfortunately, it didn’t, but almost a year after it’s release in Japan, XX has made its way over to the Switch as Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate. Yeah, it’s a bit late, but it still represents one of the best Monster Hunter experiences you’ll get, even if it’s a very different beast to Monster Hunter World.
The crux of the experience is essentially the same as World. You’ll head out on various quests of varying difficulties to gather resources and battle a variety of creatures both big and small. While it sounds simple, every creature you take on might require a different approach to take it down. Some are geared more so towards a group of people, but most can be conquered solo. Whether it be setting up traps to debilitate them before taking them down or mounting them to attack a key weak spot, there’s a variety of ways to take on the games hundred or so monsters.After each hunt, you’ll be rewarded with components that can be used to craft even better equipment. As you’d expect, equipment is king in Monster Hunter – the better your equipment, the better quests you can embark on and the bigger hunts you can take on. There is a little bit of repetition, and as a gameplay loop it seems rather simple, but there’s always been something oddly addictive about the Monster Hunter cycle.
When Generations hit the 3DS three years ago, it played out a little bit like a “greatest hits” of the Monster Hunt franchise up until that point. While it’s missing some key features like underwater battling and the whole concept of frenzied monsters, it was an ambitious game filled with quality experiences. Generations Ultimate builds upon that already ambitious sentiment. Adding to the hundred or so monsters found in Generations, Ultimate introduces a brand new “flagship” monster to hunt as well as five or so deviants of the flagship monsters from the previous game.While some of these monsters build on the design of creatures that have already appeared, their behaviour and move sets have changed up enough that they feel fresh to track and take down regardless. Similarly, Generations Ultimate introduces G-Rank hunts back into the mix. These quests appear in almost every Monster Hunter expansion and are some of the most difficult you’ll ever encounter, almost always requiring a squad to finish. Despite this, the rewards are great too.