In this preview we will talk about Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin, the new turn-based JRPG set in the world of Monster Hunter
Monster Hunter Stories is one spinoff of the series Monster Hunter first published by Capcom in 2016. The title differs greatly from the main series, as it is mainly based on monster breeding and turn-based JRPG gameplay.
At launch the title got a fair success and consequently Capcom has decided to develop a follow-up that will be published now in a few days. In view of the release of the new Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin we therefore decided to try the demo released recently on Nintendo eShop and in this preview we will share with you our first impressions.
The wings of destruction
As usual, we would like to start our preview by briefly talking about the history by Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin. The title is set in Mahana, a simple village located on the coast of the island Hakolo. This very peaceful village is inhabited entirely by Raider, that is, human beings who they live in communion with monsters and ride them into battle.
The lifestyle of these people is in stark contrast to that of the hunters who see monsters only as prey, and consequently don’t get along very well with each other. The head of the village of Mahana, however, intends to mend relations between the two groups, and to do so decides to invite his rivals during a typical Raider celebration. Unfortunately, however, the hunters use this opportunity to go hunting for the island’s guardian Rathalos, which will suddenly become hostile due to one mysterious red light.
After this unfortunate accident the guardian will disappear without a trace, thus leaving the island at the mercy of many ferocious monsters. In this crisis situation the task of find out what happened to the Rathalos it will be up to our protagonist, who will immediately set off for follow in the footsteps of his grandfather, the best Raider I’ve ever lived on the island.
This is just the beginning of the story of Monster Hunter Stories 2, but already from here it seems to be really very interesting. Compared to the main series, in fact, there seem to be many ideas here that, if treated correctly, will allow us to delve into some aspects of the Monster Hunter world that are often almost completely ignored. Of course, until we have the full game in our hands it will be impossible to fully judge the story, but for the moment it looks very promising.
Monster Breeding – Preview Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin
Raiders are very skilled warriors able to use different weapons, but to win fights they rely mainly on their peers. Monsters are usually hostile towards humans but Raiders have been raising them ever since they are nothing but eggs, thus forming an indissoluble bond that lasts for life.
At the beginning of the game you will be given a monster to start your journey with, but over time you will have several opportunities to obtain new ones. Exploring the various areas of the island you can in fact come across some monster lairs, that is, small random dungeons where you can find eggs. These precious eggs are hidden inside a nest, but unfortunately it will not be easy to collect them. Generally in fact the dens teem with monsters of all kinds ready to protect their territory at all costs. Fortunately, however, the most dangerous creatures will not be alert at all times and at times they could fall asleep or even leave the nest unattended.
Once you are sure you are safe you can finally head to the nest for start harvesting. Whenever you interact with the egg pile you can get one randomly but, since they are all very similar to each other, it will be very difficult to understand which one to take out of the den. To find out which monster they belong to you will be enough learn to recognize the colors and symbols of the shell, but understanding the actual potential of the puppy hiding inside will be much more complex. Fortunately, you can always count on the help of your companion felyne Navirou, that will rate the eggs based on smell and weight. The heavier an egg and the stronger it smells, the more powerful it will be geni of the monster that hides inside.
Genes are a kind of passive bonuses attributed to each monster when the egg hatches and can provide very different power-ups. In total each monster has 9 slot where you can freely place these power-ups which, if aligned in a precise order, they will have even greater effects. We also know that in the full game it will be possible transfer genes from one monster to another to give them unique abilities, but we didn’t get to try this feature during the demo.
Morra cinese – Anteprima Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin
Just like most turn-based JRPGs, Monster Hunter Stories 2 also features a party with which to face the clashes. The group will be formed by the protagonist, the first monster of your team (composed of a maximum of 5 creatures) and in some cases from a Raider ally with your companion. During the battles all allies they will act on their own initiative and you can only directly control your PC. Fortunately, however, the actions that your companions are about to perform are always shown on the screen, so you will be able to coordinate your actions.
So far Monster Hunter Stories 2 doesn’t seem to stray far from the classic turn-based JRPG, but that’s because you don’t know its yet. particular combat system. In the game, in fact, almost all the moves are available in three variations: power, technique and speed. These “attributes” can easily be associated with the rock, paper and scissors of the Chinese morra, since each of them will have an advantage or a disadvantage in a fight with the other two.
Whenever you attack an enemy that is also targeting you, a head to head and, depending on the attribute selected by both, you can win, lose or draw. In case of victory you will inflict greater damage and you will suffer less, while in case of defeat it will be the opposite. In addition, in case your monster companion attacks the target of the head-to-head using your same attribute, you can unleash a very powerful double attack capable of inflicting tremendous damage e cancel the opponent’s move.
Damaging enemies and especially winning head-to-head will also allow you to fill your bond bar. This indicator will allow you to execute powerful skills and issue some orders to companions, but most of all will allow you once full of ride monsters. As soon as you get on the saddle, both you and your mount you will recover a large number of HP and later you can unleash one devastating bonding ability. Also, should your fellow Raider do the same thing, you can even activate a double bond attack really powerful.
Cooperating in Nature – Preview Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin
In the Monster Hunter Stories 2 demo there was only one area, the island of Hakoto, but at least we had the chance to explore it freely. This initial area is rich in natural resources to be collected as honey, mushrooms and berries, but also hides many treasure chests. The rarer items, however, will not be comfortably at your disposal, but they will have to be reached with the help of your fellow monsters. During the exploration you will always have the opportunity to ride the first monster of your team and while you are in the saddle you can also use his special ability.
In fact, each monster has its own unique ability usable only when riding it out of battle. Some are capable of sniff out the location of objects or treasures, while others can scare the weaker monsters with a roar. The most useful skills, however, are those of movement, since they allow you to reach otherwise inaccessible places. For example some monsters are capable of jump, to swim or even to fly, and as a result they will allow you to explore each area in depth. Also it sometimes appears that some of these skills are necessary to continue in the game, so it’s important to bring monsters with different abilities.
Mostri anime – Anteprima Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin
The graphic style of Monster Hunter Stories 2 differs greatly from that used in Rise, since it is much closer to that of anime. Despite the simplicity of the models, the game still turns out really enchanting thanks to an excellent use of colors. Furthermore, the animations (especially those in combat) they really are very neat and they manage to make the title seem much more alive and dynamic.
Unfortunately, however, it seems that the game suffers a lot from a technical point of view. In fact, during our test we noticed a large number of frame drops which in some cases were really annoying. During the battles it seems that the game continues stable on 30 FPS, but in more hectic situations you soften goes even under 20. In particular, the most annoying drops are perceptible durante le cutscenes and in areas where there are many effects such as fire or flowing water. Overall these dips they won’t hurt your experience much but, considering the excellent work done with Rise, it is a real shame that they have not been able to optimize the title better.
Now the point of our preview has finally arrived in which we sum up Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin. From what we noticed during our test, the game looks like it really is very promising. Monster Hunter monsters have always had truly exceptional designs and consequently you will surely have fun collecting them all and to take them with you on your journey. Even the Chinese morra style combat system, as simple as it is, it really is very funny and pushes players to learn monster behavior to get the better of them.
The only flaw is represented by the unstable performance, but fortunately in a turn-based game this problem is not blamed much. In short, Monster Hunter Stories 2 seems to have all the credentials to be an excellent JRPG, and thankfully we won’t have to wait much longer before we can try it out.
Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin will be available from 9 July for PC and Nintendo Switch. If you are interested in staying up to date with all the news on the world of video games and much more, then continue to follow us here on TechGameWorld.com. Furthermore, in case you want to buy some games at an advantageous price, we suggest you take a look at the many offers on Instant Gaming.