Previews

Taking a Ride in the Monster Hunter Stories Demo

(Monster Hunter Stories, Capcom and Nintendo)

It’s almost that time of year when a new Monster Hunter game reaches the shores of North America. Next month Monster Hunter Stories will arrive in retail stores and the Nintendo eShop on September 8th. The next few weeks can feel lonely and empty for hunters, so the eShop holds a treat in the form of a Monster Hunter Stories demo that allows players to experience the first few hours of gameplay for free!! Plus all the save data will be able to be transferred into the full game if you purchase it. Even if you haven’t played any previous games in the franchise, this demo is definitely worth trying out. And if you are a seasoned hunter, you have all the more reason to download the free demo and experience this new way of hunting.

Right away the opening scene sets up the entire premise of this story-driven game. You are a child of a village who lives in peace alongside monster companions. Some of the villagers earn the right to become a Rider and use the Kinship Stone to enact a bond between themselves and their monster. As fun as this sounds, you learn quickly that a dark presence lurks in the shadows: a presence that has the potential to end the village. The cinematic graphics look amazing on Nintendo’s 3DS and looks all the more phenomenal when using the 3D function. Every scene and area looks more in depth and the monsters appear more life-like in 3D even with the adorable bright color schemes.

Multiple changes are in place since Generations. The main difference is the fighting style. Originally, players hunt in real-time and are forced to take heed of their environment. In Stories, hunters fight in turn-based fights alongside their monster companion. Based on the simple early fights found in this demo, the new way of fighting is both fun and less stressful. Now, there is time to think through each attack instead of having to run away from the monster in order to view it’s attack style. Since everyone playing this game will be new to this style of playing, there are a couple of fighting tutorials that explain the process simply and quickly.

One of the best new elements to this game is the anime style characters. Creating the playable avatar is fun to try out. And the hard work of deciding on the face, eyes and hair pays off because the graphics show off your avatar hunter in close ups that were lacking in previous MH games; Now, the cutscenes and playable portions of the demo, and presumably the entire game, give adorable shots of your avatar. It’s a feature that long-time monster hunters will greatly appreciate.

A bonus for playing through the demo is in the form of a gift. After using the save data in the demo and adding it to your full game’s save file, you will be rewarded with a costume for your Felyne mascot – Navirou. This demo will most likely help persuade you to join the ranks of monster hunters and experience the world of fantastic monsters and humans (of course you can’t forget the lovable poogies).  You can learn more about Monster Hunter Stories demo by visiting the official website. Have you played the demo yet? Leave us your thoughts in the comment section below!

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