Monster Hunter on PC feels like a match produced in heaven, but the series has surprisingly only seen two mainline entries on Steam. The very first of which was the belated port of Monster Hunter World, which arrived a couple of months following the PS4 and Xbox One versions and always felt enjoy it took a backseat to the console counterparts when it came to post-launch support and updates. Now, Monster Hunter Rise is the second Monster Hunter game hitting PC, also it feels like Capcom has finally realized the huge potential the franchise has on the woking platform.
As expected, the PC port of Rise is miles much better than the Nintendo Switch version. Both versions are functionally identical, but a greater framerate and resolution really do make much of the difference. Rise is a lot faster-paced than its predecessors, largely due to new additions like the Wirebug and Switch Skills that add an entirely new layer of mobility during combat. Due to its action-oriented nature, being able to play at 60 FPS or higher just feels right. It’s easy to nail those last-second dodges, and hitting shots with ranged weapons like the Bowgun feels a great deal easier.
Rise also shows that your personal computer form of Monster Hunter doesn’t need the fancy graphics of World. The core experience is satisfying enough, and it really seems like there were zero gameplay concessions made as this was originally a Nintendo Switch game. It is really an uncompromised Monster Hunter experience that only feels held during the visual department, although it’s not much of an issue because the game does still look very good at high resolutions thanks to its strong art direction. Rise already looked surprisingly good on Switch, which style scales up very well on PC.
All of these technical improvements should be expected with regards to your personal computer port, but that’s the main reason people would be interested in laptop computer version of Rise within the Switch port anyway. You lose out on portability (at least until the Steam Deck releases later this season), but you obtain a sharper resolution, higher framerate, ultrawide support, faster load times, and all the bells and whistles you’d expect.
Moving past the PC-specific enhancements, Monster Hunter Rise continues to be a fantastic game on its own. The franchise has gotten better and better with each entry, but many would agree that Monster Hunter World was the biggest jump the series makes in a long time. It made Monster Hunter more accessible than ever before having a streamlined upgrade system, open-world maps, along with a stronger focus on environments, and all of those features have thankfully remained in Rise.
Of course, the environments are much less detailed in Rise compared to what they were in World due to the game’s origins on Switch, but that open design philosophy has remained present. Environments are packed with endemic life that can be used in various ways while on hunts, and glowing Spiribirds are scattered throughout levels that provide stat buffs when collected. Loading screens between areas are thankfully still gone, and environments come with an unprecedented level of verticality that players can take advantage of while using game’s new mobility options.
Wirebugs and Palamutes appear to be a little addition in writing, however in practice, they completely change the way you take part in the game. Palamutes could be mounted to get around areas faster, plus they can drift around corners to gain a speed boost. When a monster flees, you can usually keep up with it while mounted, which eliminates a lot of the downtime that was once present during hunts. You may still take your time to sharpen, heal, or return to camp to seize ammo if need be, but that downtime has become basically optional.
Wirebugs, however, can be used during foot and also have a variety of uses. The main me is essentially a grappling hook you can use anywhere anytime. You can pull yourself in almost any direction, even upward, and you can run up and along walls if you launch yourself into them. If you are using the Wirebug to land aerial attacks on the monster, then you’ll allow it to be more susceptible to being mounted. Wyvern Riding replaces traditional mounting, allowing you to visit a monster’s back and slam it into walls or use it to attack other nearby monsters. Outside of movement, Wirebugs can also be spent to unleash powerful special abilities called Silkbind attacks.
All of these new additions make Rise the most fluid Monster Hunter game up to now. The game’s combat still maintains the heavy, deliberate feeling the series is known for though, so don’t expect to be able to swing your weapon around without much thought but still pull through high-rank hunts. However, most of the weapons don't have the oomph that they in World. Weapons felt a lot more impactful in that game than they do in Rise. It’s not too weapons feel below par in Rise, they actually feel much like weapons from previous 3DS Monster Hunter games, it’s exactly that World was such an upgrade within the audiovisual department that Rise’s weapon feedback feels like one step back.
That’s a very minor gripe though, and there’s a great deal to love about anything else in Rise. The new Rampage mode, that is basically a tower defense minigame in which you place ballistas, cannons, and automated defenses to defend against waves of monsters, is surprisingly enjoyable, particularly with friends. It’s not compelling enough to exchange the standard hunts, but because a side mode, it’s a nice addition. Additionally, it gives special rewards you can use to improve your weapons, which any serious hunter may wish to take advantage of.
All in most, Rise is really a standout entry in a series that already includes a long type of excellent titles. Monster Hunter Rise combines all the quality of life features introduced in World and keep the best parts of the sooner games in the series, inducing the most refined Monster Hunter title up to now. There are some improvements that may be made, mostly regarding the endgame loop, but those issues are but guaranteed to be remedied using the release of the Sunbreak expansion later this year. Everything we said about Monster Hunter Rise in our original Nintendo Switch review still stands, and also the PC version is better still.