Monster Hunter Tri Diary 11 – Hunting Together

I have finally spent a few evenings with the multi-player mode of Monster Hunter Tri. I like it although in many ways, it feels like the immature precursor to a hypothetical, much better, future Monster Hunter game.

The entire structure of the multi-player mode feels awkward. The lobbies are hidden in an onion of server types, individual servers, city gates and whatnot. When you finally get into the lobby, they feel too small. You get stuck with just 4 players. Sometimes, important functions are being restricted for no apparent reason. For example, you can’t change you equipment once you’ve accepted a quest. You can’t chat once you declared yourself ready to embark on a quest. You can’t send messages to players, who are already in a quest and there is no function to save a message for later either. You can’t even share and exchange items to help each other out building better items.

Also a lot weaknesses of the game REALLY show in multi-player. The game doesn’t explain the combat or the armor skill systems. But because you fight together with other players, people can get quite far without a firm grasp on how the game works. This can get quite frustrating if you realize mid-battle that it’s you who is doing all the work.

On the other hand, a lot of the things about the game make much more sense on-line. The battles are shorter and much less monotonous, yet they retain their epic feel. The fact that many of the details of the game are not well explained make up for some great discussion topics. All the elements come together and can create a great sense of camaraderie. At times it really feels like a you are in a group of hunters, taking on daunting monsters, exchanging old stories and sharing experience.

I’m still torn on the fact that single-player and multi-player are so separated. The single-player has a lot of useful systems such as fishing and farming. They do a great job a providing a steady supply of useful items. But you can’t access those systems in multi-player. Also the quests in both modes are kept separate. So I even though I beat the game in single-player, I start from scratch an multi-player and need to fight almost the same series of quests all over again. I wish at least some part of all the effort I invested in single-player carried over. But then again, it does! I still can use all my advanced gear and weapons on-line and they do help a lot! Still, I feel like there both modes could have been integrated a little bit better.

I’m going to continue with the multi-player for a few evenings. It turns out the multi-player part has two additional monsters and one of them is really a treat. Being so far in already, I want to see this last bit before I move on.

Krystian Majewski

Krystian Majewski was born in Warsaw and studied design at Köln International School of Design. Before, he was working on a mid-size console project for NEON Studios in Frankfurt. He helped establish a Master course in Game Design and Research at the Cologne Game Lab. Today he teaches Game Design at various institutions and develops independent games.

One response to “Monster Hunter Tri Diary 11 – Hunting Together”

  1. Danny

    Two words. Devil Jho


The Game Design Scrapbook is a second blog of group of three game designers from Germany. On our first blog, Game Design Reviews we describe some games we played and point out various interesting details. Unfortunately, we found out that we also need some place to collect quick and dirty ideas that pop into our minds. Hence, welcome to Game Design Scrapbook. You will encounter wild, random rantings. Many of then incoherent. Some of them maybe even in German. If you don't like it, you might enjoy Game Design Reviews more.


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