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  3. Should MH resurrect worldbuilding aspects of MH Dos w/ World's QoL changes?

User Info: Astragon

Astragon
1 month ago#1
So I’ve heard a lot of people talk about Monster Hunter 2 or Monster Hunter Dos at varying times. It was a highly experimental game of the series that predates Freedom 2 & Unite. It was also a rather rushed and buggy mess of a game that when combined with all the inconveniences made the game’s reception in Japan extremely poor, so much so that it never got an English localization.

This was the game that introduced the decoration stuff, and the Gen2 Elder Dragon trio.

It had entirely unique soundtracks compared with Freedom 2 & Unite that followed it.

It also had a lot of stuff thrown in not related to hunting, expanding the game as a whole beyond “kill it, carve it, wear it, repeat it” that we’ve been using since day 1. Tough and gritty in a lot of places.
- A day-night cycle of maps, which could alter map layouts
- A season cycle that would alter difficulty in various ways, summer making things generally stronger while winter reduced the number of drops from things. Various items were available only in certain seasons.
- non-hunting related fun things like a shooting gallery minigame and (supposedly) a monster fighting gambling arena where players could control monsters with special horns
- endgame gear could not be normally crafted at the usual smithy but rather only from an NPC Wandering Legendary Blacksmith
- this game introduced the “Elder Dragon Attacks Dundorma” concept

Now after all this time has passed, I’m wondering if they can recycle a lot of this stuff in a future title and not be afraid to shy away from difficulty. Pair this sort of worldbuilding with a fully open map the size of what we see in BoTW, and an actual good, gripping storyline with real characters and not just “The Caravaneer” or “The Handler” or “Where’s My Dragonator” general guy.

I’ve played this series for 3500 hours, but Monster Hunter 2 was not one of the games I played. I feel like there’s only so much further the combat as a whole can improve. We can add more verticality to where some fights happen in the tree canopy. We can reintroduce a fixed underwater system. We already have verticality in the context of mounting. But beyond that the game just hits a hard wall.

World brought a lot of actually good Quality of Life changes the series needed, but it left an alarmingly large gaping hole where a lot of the difficulty associated with that used to be. Despite its name, World has not actually made the civilization of Monster Hunter that much clearer. They have made some nods to MH2 in the form of some music tracks, such as Kushala Daora’s remade theme.

So that’s what spurred the following questions:

Should the game start really focusing on the storyline and giving it real characters, and going towards a full scale open world like what Breath of the Wild pulled off on a significantly less powerful system, paired with recycling worldbuilding elements from Dos and MHW’s QoL enhancements?


There would have to be some compromises on the inconvenience, at least for a small handful of items used in huge stacks 24/7 that currently you just multiply at the farm/trader. Others could be seasonally available to stock up for lean times from other traders. Spring would be lots of flower-based items, Summer would be other plant items, Fall would be fungus items, and Winter would be bone items like Bone Husks & Wyvern Fangs/Claws.

I also feel like with proper nurturing of the mostly brushed over parts in story, worldbuilding, and exploration of the environment beyond just hunts, this series can go from just being “good/great” to “one of the best game series ever made.”

Capcom has made enough of a killing on World and will continue to do so on Iceborne. They have the chance to break the yearly release cycle and make the game as a whole bloom into something far better. It took Zelda 7 years to make BoTW but they delivered a masterpiece, no reason Monster Hunter cannot do the same.
"When roughly half of a gaming board uses hacks in the game that board is about, something is obviously wrong with that game."

User Info: ALEXx7UP

ALEXx7UP
1 month ago#2
These all sound like good ideas on paper that could be ruinous in execution.

As such the best thing I could possibly recommend is making a new franchise with these mechanics and calling it monster hunter conquest, or any verb involving exploration or new beginnings.

I never want franchises to radioactively change between sequels. I would rather they improve on what they do best in sequels but go the Nintendo route and make creative spin off that can became their own franchises outright if they are well received enough.

User Info: Astragon

Astragon
1 month ago#3
ALEXx7UP posted...
These all sound like good ideas on paper that could be ruinous in execution.

As such the best thing I could possibly recommend is making a new franchise with these mechanics and calling it monster hunter conquest, or any verb involving exploration or new beginnings.

I never want franchises to radioactively change between sequels. I would rather they improve on what they do best in sequels but go the Nintendo route and make creative spin off that can became their own franchises outright if they are well received enough.

I mean if its still Monster Hunter at its core but just massively builds upon the framework the game has, is it really a spin-off anymore? Case & point Generations Ultimate being still very much as good as or better than main series stuff (and often referred to as “Gen 4.5”) but technically a “spin-off”.

Unlike back when Dos released, now we have hardware powerful enough to fulfill the vision the devs of that game had for the series, and then some.

The reason I’m suggesting this is that from the perspective of its core, there isn’t all that much left to improve regarding the combat.
- They can make verticality more of a feature on certain maps with some monsters only fought in the canopy or above it. Nests could be in the emergent treetops above that for some of the top predators.
- They can reintroduce underwater and add fully underwater locales. With World’s QoL improvement to the skill system, the skills boosting underwater mobility/duration from Gen 3 could be easily recycled and made much less taxing to implement.
- Unless we go the route of mounted aerial combat (which would be either broken useless or broken cheesy overpowered, guaranteed) there is no further to expand things. We can see existing combat forms recieve small touchups and new attacks sometimes but that’s about it.

Beyond those points, what else is there to improve?
- Story: adding real characters and a plot beyond “see that monster? now go kill it because of some odd reason or some noble’s flaunting of money”
- Map: we have strong enough hardware that we no longer need separated hunting regions. If the Switch could pull off a much bigger world with some rendering limits on things at distance, no reason a PS4, XBOne, or PC can’t do that with better graphical quality. We can add transitional environments between existing regions to fill out the world, and take a nod from LoZ by making everything climbable.
"When roughly half of a gaming board uses hacks in the game that board is about, something is obviously wrong with that game."

User Info: Caroniver

Caroniver
1 month ago#4
I wouldn't define any of these as "worldbuilding". They just sound like weird mechanics. Worldbuilding is giving us more of a glimpse into how the ecosystems actually function, and how every single monster fits in to the place it lives. In Tri, you had the "Monster Life" videos which showed monsters going about their day-to-day, and the scope of a breathing ecosystem is part of what made Deviljho, the ecosystem ruiner, so terrifying.

In World, sure, the monsters fight each other. But that's about as far as the actual worldbuilding in this game goes, besides introducing a new mythology. The worst thing about the crossovers, to me, is that they ruin the world that's been built by just randomly throwing in s*** from other worlds that just show up. I wanted to play Monster Hunter World, not Monster Hunter Different Worlds
Mixer of Mega Dash Juices, slayer of giant monsters.
Self-proclaimed leader of the Tri Hards. http://tinyurl.com/y8s94446

User Info: ALEXx7UP

ALEXx7UP
1 month ago#5
@Astragon

Dude I completely agree with everything you're saying and would personally love all these changes. but I feel like the Core monster hunter fan base is too institutionalized to want any broad changes.

The main story sucks butt but people are calling it a massive improvement. The characters have less depth then ace hunters from 4U.

But when the Witcher quest rolls around for some reason people aren't having it. They claim Geralt talks too much and they miss their silent emotionless doll mannequin of a character. Hardly anyone even praised the amount of depth they gave to the 4 people you interact with in the quest (Endemic researcher, Botanist, lynian researcher and Gajalaka tribe).

These seems like changes that the average person would immediately like but monster hunter fanatics would ignore.

But since half the player base that bought the game dropped it after Anjanath this might be what world needs to have successful sequels.

User Info: DukeLukewarm

DukeLukewarm
1 month ago#6
MH2 is still Fujioka's most fondly remembered project, and MH4U had a lot of callbacks to it, so it's not entirely out of the question, but there's the matter of whether it's something people would actually want, and if it'd be profitable. The issue with MH2 was that its "vision" required it to basically stack every possible advantage against the player. You'd be going up against elder dragons laughably unprepared, facilities were sparse at first, there was a lot of time wasting, and maps were full of endlessly respawning, aggressive, durable small monsters. The game was sadistic, plain and simple. But it was also broken, and people were coming off MHG and MHF, whose monsters themselves were actually more difficult than 2's - 2 simply had a problem with the balance being skewed all the way towards the monsters, in the most obnoxious ways. On top of that, it was full of poorly thought out mechanics (including decorations being impossible to remove without destroying them, and being largely kind of inconsequential before F2 massively improved skills), tying party bonuses including extra drop rates to matching ARMOR DYES IN YOUR PARTY), and massive balancing issues - lance's random range nerf made it obnoxious to play, SnS's shield was comically weak even by that weapon's standards (couldn't even block a Mosswine without knockback), GS's charge attack was initially poorly received for making the weapon too one note and monotonous, the addition of KO for Hammer turned it into a complete balance breaker, DB's buffs also made it rise in the ranks, meanwhile the new weapons all basically bordered on unusable. Elemental weaknesses were a bit of a joke with how elder dragon focused the endgame was, and while the Dos EDs had varying weaknesses, they also had a universal vulnerability against Dragon, and Dragon was the only element that could break their parts and shut down their abilities.

Dos may have tried neat things, but a good game, it was not. Not by any means.

By the way - one criciticsm raised against Dos back in the day was that its more fantastical monster designs were immersion-breaking. Funny in hindsight, huh?

User Info: DukeLukewarm

DukeLukewarm
1 month ago#7
ALEXx7UP posted...
@Astragon

Dude I completely agree with everything you're saying and would personally love all these changes. but I feel like the Core monster hunter fan base it too institutionalized to want any broad changes.

The main story sucks butt but people are calling it a massive improvement. The characters have less depth then ace hunters from 4U.

But when the Witcher quest rolls around for some reason people aren't having it. They claim Geralt talks too much and they miss their silent emotionless doll mannequin of a character. Hardly anyone even praised the amount of depth they gave to the 4 people you interact with in the quest (Endemic researcher, Botanist, lynian researcher and Gajalaka tribe).

These seems like changes that the average person would immediately like but monster hunter fanatics would ignore.

But since half the player base that bought the game dropped it after Anjanath this might be what world needs to have successful sequels.

Capcom's Yuri Araujo actually asked people on Twitter whether quests with more in depth dialogue like the Witcher collab featured would be something they would like to see become standard in future MH titles. Most responses were negative.

User Info: Astragon

Astragon
1 month ago#8
Caroniver posted...
I wouldn't define any of these as "worldbuilding". They just sound like weird mechanics. Worldbuilding is giving us more of a glimpse into how the ecosystems actually function, and how every single monster fits in to the place it lives. In Tri, you had the "Monster Life" videos which showed monsters going about their day-to-day, and the scope of a breathing ecosystem is part of what made Deviljho, the ecosystem ruiner, so terrifying.

And why not update things so what we saw in “Monster Life” videos was what actually took place in the real world, not monsters just aimlessly wandering around and resting/eating sometimes waiting for a greedy hunter to attack them?

Things like a day/night cycle and seasons would also be parts of worldbuilding, seeing changes in monster behavior as a result. A place like the Ancient Forest would be mostly the same from season to season, but a place that’s normally icy would have a flurry of activity for 3-4 months as a rushed Spring, Summer, & Fall proceed before Winter resumes.

The Day-Night cycle could be as simple as progressing through one part of it on each quest you take. If you need something that’s off-season, you would have at least one month beyond the end of a season to buy stuff from traders who stocked up, but after that you’re rightfully s*** outta luck.

Monsters may not be just in a single area but instead move around with the seasons. There could even be weather complicating things a little bit, where the quest board would have sections on it for checking the expected weather. The player would need to learn what does what and adapt to the rhythm of the game, not whine about it being too much to handle until it gets stripped down to a generic action game. Weather could affect behavior of some monsters, making some fights easier while others are made harder. For example a big storm could make visibility not so great but it would also stop things from flying (RIP Raths).

In World, sure, the monsters fight each other. But that's about as far as the actual worldbuilding in this game goes, besides introducing a new mythology. The worst thing about the crossovers, to me, is that they ruin the world that's been built by just randomly throwing in s*** from other worlds that just show up. I wanted to play Monster Hunter World, not Monster Hunter Different Worlds

Crossovers can have a place in a truly fleshed out game but they need to be restricted to their own mini-locales like offshore islands.
"When roughly half of a gaming board uses hacks in the game that board is about, something is obviously wrong with that game."

User Info: nuke2099

nuke2099
1 month ago#9
DukeLukewarm posted...
ALEXx7UP posted...
@Astragon

Dude I completely agree with everything you're saying and would personally love all these changes. but I feel like the Core monster hunter fan base it too institutionalized to want any broad changes.

The main story sucks butt but people are calling it a massive improvement. The characters have less depth then ace hunters from 4U.

But when the Witcher quest rolls around for some reason people aren't having it. They claim Geralt talks too much and they miss their silent emotionless doll mannequin of a character. Hardly anyone even praised the amount of depth they gave to the 4 people you interact with in the quest (Endemic researcher, Botanist, lynian researcher and Gajalaka tribe).

These seems like changes that the average person would immediately like but monster hunter fanatics would ignore.

But since half the player base that bought the game dropped it after Anjanath this might be what world needs to have successful sequels.

Capcom's Yuri Araujo actually asked people on Twitter whether quests with more in depth dialogue like the Witcher collab featured would be something they would like to see become standard in future MH titles. Most responses were negative.

While the collab did flesh out one of the misc NPC's such as the farm dude I think it's for the best that it doesn't become standard.
Gamertag: Nuke2099

User Info: Astragon

Astragon
1 month ago#10
ALEXx7UP posted...
@Astragon

Dude I completely agree with everything you're saying and would personally love all these changes. but I feel like the Core monster hunter fan base is too institutionalized to want any broad changes.

The main story sucks butt but people are calling it a massive improvement. The characters have less depth then ace hunters from 4U.

But when the Witcher quest rolls around for some reason people aren't having it. They claim Geralt talks too much and they miss their silent emotionless doll mannequin of a character. Hardly anyone even praised the amount of depth they gave to the 4 people you interact with in the quest (Endemic researcher, Botanist, lynian researcher and Gajalaka tribe).

These seems like changes that the average person would immediately like but monster hunter fanatics would ignore.

But since half the player base that bought the game dropped it after Anjanath this might be what world needs to have successful sequels.

Exactly, the “stodgy veteran” portion that doesn’t want their game to change needs to adapt with the times.

Likewise I feel like silent protagonists should be done away with, it was originally a hardware limitation but now there’s no excuse even in series where the concept is grandfathered in like Mario, Zelda, Witcher, and others. They could have a large repertiore of lines the player character would say, modified by each of the voice types we can pick from the character creation screen.
"When roughly half of a gaming board uses hacks in the game that board is about, something is obviously wrong with that game."
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