Official Nintendo Magazine

Log in to access exclusive Nintendo content, win prizes and post on our forums. Not a member yet? Join for free

Monster Hunter Tri review

The day of the Tri-ffic has come

Imagine if Steven Spielberg had designed Pokémon and you'd be in Monster Hunter Tri's postcode. It's a true blockbuster adventure, full of jaw-slackening moments that will have you scrabbling around the back of your Wii to make sure it hasn't sprouted a high-powered PC.

Nintendo has given the game so much attention because Monster Hunter has every chance of being a big hit here. The concept of tooling up and lamping large toothy beasts is universal. And the Pokémon reference is accurate thanks to the completist's dream of finding and cataloguing every monster in the game.

Click to view larger image
It's an adventure that you have to invest heavily in. Creating a hunter you're happy to have represent you through countless hours of game time takes hours, days, even weeks. It's not something you can play for a couple of hours and hope to have cracked. Ten hours or more is what it takes.

Pick Your Battle

The game is divided into two: the offline single player mode which packs in well over 50 hours of game, and the online multiplayer component. Previous Monster Hunter games felt sparse played solo; a series of drab and unconnected quests in a flat world. In Tri, the solo mode provides so much more cohesion.

Moga Village is your homestead for the single player game. You're a little known monster hunter called in to rid the once bustling village of the mighty Lagiacrus - the sea monster terrorising the fishing fleet. The village is home to various traders, a canteen, a farm where you can cultivate your own nourishment to take out with you - everything you need in one compact space. As the effects of your success takes hold, it's rewarding to see new traders dock, or fishing vessels be put under your command.

As the village chief's son and various traders ask for favours, sending you into Moga Woods to hunt and gather, you build up Resource Points which help the village rebuild. Eventually you'll have helped get the base camp up and running, and the Hunter's Guild will get in touch to start offering you work. At this point you'll find you've broken through - you've got the knowledge and the basic skill sets, and now you've got the hunger to carry on.

Gotta Hunt 'Em All

There are 35 monsters in all. If that doesn't seem like a lot, bear in mind that well over half of those are boss monsters, and boss monsters mean well over half an hour of tracking and fighting. Your base camp provides you with supplies (maps, rations, and specific items to lure monsters), so whether you're on your own or fighting with others you'll be back there a lot to replenish health, or even just to take a breather. Plus, more monsters make their presence felt online.

Click to view larger image
There are distinct advantages to hunting on your own and with friends. Alone, you get to appreciate the stunning visuals around you - the landscape stretching off into the distance, the incredible detail and animation of each monster and the sophisticated AI underpinning it all, with each species showing recognisable behaviour patterns that alter depending on how many of you are poking it with sticks.

Online meanwhile, you get the kick of working together to bring down huge animals, strategising, covering and communicating. Given how broad the online world is, it's amazingly simple to get connected. It's just a case of walking up to someone and then asking to be in their gang, then getting out in the wild and thumping scaly bottom.

Never has there been such a brilliantly realised, inclusive assault right on the Wii's online front door and if there are any complaints, they concern the slightly clunky combat system that suffers for having no lock-on feature, but even this can be overcome with practise. It's got the best monsters on the Wii, the biggest weapons on the Wii and the best online system on the Wii. It's an outstanding achievement that proves the Wii can do epic and that it can do great multiplayer gaming that doesn't involve doing your back in.

This is an edited version of a review that appears in ONM 55 which is on sale now. For the full unedited version with more in-depth analysis, screenshots and boxouts buy the May issue of Official Nintendo Magazine

Comments

54 comments so far...
Add a comment

  1. boldhoof Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 09:29

    Think this game is going to be stunning, and a huge challenge for me, but looking forward to it. Given I have just finished Alice in Wonderland, gives some idea of the jump in gaming I am making getting this.

  2. lafidel101 Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 11:17

    I agree this game will kick ass!
    im HR9 on mhf unite with full white fatalis and full ukanlos bowgun and blademaster armors.
    can NOT wait for the online multiplayer heheh
    going to game straight after school on the friday to pick mine up 8)

  3. piccadillio Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 13:12

    Even though I'm not going to buy it, I'm glad that MH3 is getting generally favourable reviews. As usual the highest scores come from ONM and IGN, but that's not a surprise. It still got good reviews from the less over-generous publications. It's good news for the swathes of board members who have been looking forward to it for months.

    I really hope it does well, but I'm cynical. It's been a great year for games so far, on all formats.

  4. omegoku Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 13:18

    I really want this, but looks like I will be waiting a few weeks at least before I can get it.
    Wii speak sounds like it will be required once you get online, so I better get that too

  5. HNF1 Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 13:18

    Very likely will be geting this.

  6. SoulSilver IV Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 13:44

    I pre-ordered mine off of Amazon. They still haven't dispatched it, which concerns me - will I get it in tim for the weekend? Especially since I paid for 1st class postage...

  7. piccadillio Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 14:06

    I pre-ordered mine off of Amazon. They still haven't dispatched it, which concerns me - will I get it in tim for the weekend? Especially since I paid for 1st class postage...

    That's been happening more and more with amazon. I'd suggest going with shopto for future pre-orders. As a game site rather than an everything site, they know how important it is to get the game on release day at the latest. In most cases you'll get it the day before from shopto. Plus their pre-order prices are great.

  8. legendwork Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 14:09

    Wow....come on tomorrow, got my name down for a copy with the control pad so i'll be at game tomorrow moring 9 sharpe....
    cant wait!

  9. Icarus_Kid Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 14:33

    What do you mean by "pulled out all the stops for us"?

  10. Tom Nook Rules Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 15:05

    What do you mean by "pulled out all the stops for us"?


    Free online, wii speak compatability and no friend codes.

  11. allanironmaiden Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 15:55

    really cant wait until tomorrow to get it....straight to the gamestore after work!!

  12. daniel barber Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 16:34

    What do you mean by "pulled out all the stops for us"?

    japan have to pay for online, they need friends codes and we get wii speak. i seriously think that the fact that the online is that good i need to get it. online on wii is good but not brilliant,hopefully this will change my view

  13. MARION64WII Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 16:46

    I have already played this. :D It is really awesome, and now it's out tommorow. Perfect! The only downfall I found in the game was...Nothing.

  14. Satanic Goat Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 16:46

    I pre-ordered mine off of Amazon. They still haven't dispatched it, which concerns me - will I get it in tim for the weekend? Especially since I paid for 1st class postage...

    That's been happening more and more with amazon. I'd suggest going with shopto for future pre-orders. As a game site rather than an everything site, they know how important it is to get the game on release day at the latest. In most cases you'll get it the day before from shopto. Plus their pre-order prices are great.

    I can vouch for Shopto, especially as I've just come home from work to find my copy of this game on my Door Mat! You can't beat them for Pre-Orders. They Also have Wii Speak for Ł7.

  15. capmanchris Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 17:01

    Reckoned it'd have got a better score but oh well. Still looks like a must buy so i'll probably get it soon

  16. Daz_Dagon Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 17:15

    Who is willing to join me in this suicidal game?

  17. Mastearl Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 18:41

    i hope this game sells well as if it does, we'll get more like this.

  18. JRush Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 20:02

    I have put off buying this game to fulfil a far greater quest. To get all the Nintendo consoles :D one from each series excluding game and watch and gba.

  19. hqmanpoke Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 20:16

    Im certainly getting this on release day. Being somewhat a fan of 'these types of game' means this game is a must have. Nice graphics, big monsters and bleedin' huge weapons and with online mode, whats not to like? Hoping to get it with PRO controller aswell, looks like its gunna be a good one

  20. Mario20 Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 21:16

    I cant wait to play this!! Its like my dream game 4 the wii to go out on an adventure to track down a monster by yourself or online u cannot get much better than this from 3 party devlopers!! I think i will end up putting ff13 to play this

  21. IPecksU Thursday 22nd Apr 2010 at 23:00

    Got this early by pre ordering from game for Ł40 for the game with the classic controller pro(YAY! :D)

    it is fantastic. dont hesitate. Just go and buy it.

  22. Mart2006 Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 06:44

    Got this early by pre ordering from game.

    I pre-ordered mine from game and it hasnt even been shipped yet :?

    But when I do get it, PM me for my Friend Code :P


    See what I did there? : 8)

  23. rimz790 Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 08:59

    Should be getting my copy today as its been dispatched by The Hut. Will be giving it a bash over the weekend. I'm also glad its getting good reviews.

  24. Onna76_NL Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 09:37

    My version with controller was shipped out yesterday from the UK, so hope to get it in somewhere next week.

  25. piccadillio Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 10:26

    Reckoned it'd have got a better score but oh well. Still looks like a must buy so i'll probably get it soon

    Only on this forum would 91% seem like not a high enough score.

  26. Baradax Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 10:45

    I got mine yesterday from gamestation at 7pm :D
    they rang me regarding my pre order, as i had placed 1 of each down for each edition i decided on the ultimate hunter pack and they then turned round and said do you want to come and get it tonight?
    after you get used to the controls it is AWESOME, easily the best game i have played in a long ass time, (red steel 2 was a bit of a letdown, good but WAYYY to short)

  27. DavidVM Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 12:23

    Has anyone else run into problems with pre-ordering this from Amazon?

    I pre-ordered it weeks ago with a classic controller and WiiSpeak and not only has it not been dispatched yet, it has also disappeared from my orders list. This is not what I expect from Amazon and am still awaiting an answer from them on this.

    Anyone else in the same boat?

  28. Hylian_Grouch Friday 23rd Apr 2010 at 16:47

    been playing this all day on my new classic controller pro. it is GOOOD...

    but i need a break. there is so much to think about, that i have had to come off and surf the web to relax!

  29. Shigeru Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 08:05

    Looks good. Might just get meself a copy.

  30. dwan25 Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 11:46

    i actually cannot fault this game, although i can see how some people may find it too hard, since some quests are just insanely difficult, and the controls could have done with a bit of sprucing up, but otherwise, flawless game :)

  31. master dingley Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 13:40

    I've not had a chance to play much of this game, but so far so good :P

    My biggest criticism is the amount of time needed to be put into it, I'm not able to do large play sessions and so that seriously limits some of the stuff I can do. Still, hopefully I'll still be playing it come the end of exams and can put some serious time into it :D

  32. BlueSoup8 Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 13:47

    So you say "If there are any bad points" and yet you still give it 91%?
    :|

    BTW, you know what I'd like? If your pouch was full, when you got a new item which you couldn't fit, you could use it straight away. It would be perfectly possible. (Only items like mushrooms and stuff though, not Jaggi Scales etc.)

  33. shadow.x Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 18:10

    Hmm, I dont know, it looks good but not sure if it looks good enough for me to swing it that way and get it. =/

  34. 142520452213 Saturday 24th Apr 2010 at 18:59

    Well done ONM! You made it onto national television, the Monsetr Hunter advert used your rating!

    I know you probably already know, but its awesome!

  35. mikey12 Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 09:38

    Reckoned it'd have got a better score but oh well. Still looks like a must buy so i'll probably get it soon

    Only on this forum would 91% seem like not a high enough score.

    People are getting angry over IGN rat'ing it 8.8

  36. linkbob Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 11:58

    ZOMG!!!

    I got this yesterday and played the arena mode with my friends, it's awesome!!!!
    Haven't played much of the main story yet but I'm sure that'll be great too.
    I'm a monster hunter newbie so I'm not sure about all the items and monsters and stuff and the 3rd monster in the arena mode is doing my head in, we get so close to killing him then pow, we're dead...

    Fully recommend!

  37. monthebiffy10 Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 17:25

    I pre-ordered mine on thursday and its been driving me insane just waiting for it! :(

  38. Komodo_Wolfgang Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 19:47

    I pre ordered mine at game when I pre ordered HG/SS, picked it up on release. But they didnt have the controler and game edition, so she sold me the white classic controler with it, but I knew that wasnt the same as the pro but she said it was, so I went and checked n showed her, I was 50p short of getting the game and controller, so she said she'd put 50p in the till for me =P

    Been playing the game near enough none stop, and stuck on capturing the great jaggi =(

    The Lance I find is the best weapon. The bowgun is irritating since you cant propperly aim =(
    Went on wifi on it today, was cool, shame no one wiispoke on it. =(.

    All in all, MONSTER HUNTER TRI RULES <3

    any chance on doing the 1st 2 on the wii too? like with Metroid and Pikmin?

  39. Komodo_Wolfgang Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 20:05

    I've not had a chance to play much of this game, but so far so good :P

    My biggest criticism is the amount of time needed to be put into it, I'm not able to do large play sessions and so that seriously limits some of the stuff I can do. Still, hopefully I'll still be playing it come the end of exams and can put some serious time into it :D

    You can play it in short bursts. Its just irritating how you need to go to your bed and save.

  40. piccadillio Sunday 25th Apr 2010 at 20:17

    Reckoned it'd have got a better score but oh well. Still looks like a must buy so i'll probably get it soon

    Only on this forum would 91% seem like not a high enough score.

    People are getting angry over IGN rat'ing it 8.8

    Ridiculous.

  41. JRush Thursday 29th Apr 2010 at 12:49

    I have now ordered it! just read the review whilst my ICT teacher is talking :D I haven't been able to buy the mag for a while because i have been saving up for this game :D

  42. PokemadKid Friday 30th Apr 2010 at 18:59

    I dunno whether to get this or Warioware DIY :? Can anyone help?

  43. daniel barber Friday 30th Apr 2010 at 19:22

    I dunno whether to get this or Warioware DIY :? Can anyone help?

    mht. warioware is very good (i got mine today) but mht is AMAZING!!! the score of 91 is unjust it deserves 95 at the very least and a spot in onm's top 6.

  44. PokemadKid Sunday 2nd May 2010 at 16:08

    I dunno whether to get this or Warioware DIY :? Can anyone help?

    mht. warioware is very good (i got mine today) but mht is AMAZING!!! the score of 91 is unjust it deserves 95 at the very least and a spot in onm's top 6.

    K thanks.

  45. Nintendo Boy Monday 3rd May 2010 at 09:12

    Reckoned it'd have got a better score but oh well. Still looks like a must buy so i'll probably get it soon

    Only on this forum would 91% seem like not a high enough score.

    People are getting angry over IGN rat'ing it 8.8

    The UK review gave MHTri 9.3 though.

    8.8 was the US review.

  46. DavidVM Monday 3rd May 2010 at 17:29

    This is arguably the most "hardcore" game out there. There's not much story to speak of and building your skills and equipment up is the reason to keep going with it, which means some (alright, a lot of) "grinding".

    Likewise, the controls and menus are not as easy to use as they could be. Combat takes a lot of getting used to, the lack of lock-on makes things doubly hard and aiming the bowgun takes a great deal of skill (though I'm gutted they didn't use the wiimote to aim with, since it still functions with the classic pro). The menus are massively in depth but sometimes take a lot of wading through.

    All in all, this game is the definition of "hardcore", a game that's playable but not easy to play (might as well complete) and where only patience, practise and perseverance prevail.
    It is also a great game and proof that the Wii can still just about cut it with the other consoles for challenging games.

  47. Onna76_NL Tuesday 4th May 2010 at 10:00

    I got the game and played it for a bit today but thusfar I find the game to be utterly overrated. At this point I absolutely wouldn't give it more than a 6. Graphics aren't entirely ugly but not the best on the Wii, absolutely not, Mario Galaxy anyone?! Not a single game has thusfar been able to surpass that. Text is difficult to read as its too blurry, game is not even full wide screen. Standing in the middle of a slaughtered monster isn't what I really call "realism". Plus gameplay I can't really call realism either, my character is at times slaying the monster, blood is being spilled but when you look closely its like she's hitting thin air.

    I'd choose FFXIII anytime over this. Can't really understand why this game is so loved by the Japanese its not even that good. I believe it only got high scores because Nintendo published the game, I think if it were for Capcom themselves we would have seen much lower scores.

  48. microhenry Tuesday 4th May 2010 at 17:18

    I got the game and played it for a bit today but thusfar I find the game to be utterly overrated. At this point I absolutely wouldn't give it more than a 6. Graphics aren't entirely ugly but not the best on the Wii, absolutely not, Mario Galaxy anyone?! Not a single game has thusfar been able to surpass that. Text is difficult to read as its too blurry, game is not even full wide screen. Standing in the middle of a slaughtered monster isn't what I really call "realism". Plus gameplay I can't really call realism either, my character is at times slaying the monster, blood is being spilled but when you look closely its like she's hitting thin air.

    I'd choose FFXIII anytime over this. Can't really understand why this game is so loved by the Japanese its not even that good. I believe it only got high scores because Nintendo published the game, I think if it were for Capcom themselves we would have seen much lower scores.

    Unfortunately you're one of those who have bought Monster Hunter but not appreciated what kind of a game it is.

    The lack of lock on means that only players who stick at it get good.

    Collision detection is far more precise than you might think. For example, when using a longsword, damage is calculated depending on which bit of the blade hits the monster, where it hits it etc.

    As a Monster Hunter fanboy my opinion is almost as invalid as yours - if not more so - but you have clearly misunderstood the game.

    Generally it takes around 10 hours to get into a MH game, 20 to become adept, 50 to become skilled, and over 100 at least to become a master.

  49. AMPster Saturday 8th May 2010 at 16:55

    WOW IT MUST BE GOOD IF SIMON BRAMBLE, YES SIMON 'UNFAIR' BRAMBLE GAVE IT A GOLD AWARD!!!! WOW!!
    :o

  50. daniel barber Saturday 15th May 2010 at 18:39

    I got the game and played it for a bit today but thusfar I find the game to be utterly overrated. At this point I absolutely wouldn't give it more than a 6. Graphics aren't entirely ugly but not the best on the Wii, absolutely not, Mario Galaxy anyone?! Not a single game has thusfar been able to surpass that. Text is difficult to read as its too blurry, game is not even full wide screen. Standing in the middle of a slaughtered monster isn't what I really call "realism". Plus gameplay I can't really call realism either, my character is at times slaying the monster, blood is being spilled but when you look closely its like she's hitting thin air.

    I'd choose FFXIII anytime over this. Can't really understand why this game is so loved by the Japanese its not even that good. I believe it only got high scores because Nintendo published the game, I think if it were for Capcom themselves we would have seen much lower scores.

    so you only think that graphics matters? if you where talking about a game that actually had bad graphics i would agrre with you but monster hunter has the best graphics on the wii and you also must want to find problems with the game because the 'problems' youve mentioned i didnt even notice until you pointed them out. oh and by the way if you dont know games arent real. mht has done brilliantly to capture the feel of being a monster hunter but if you want it to be perfect then find a time machine because if small details like that bother you thats the only thing that youvan use.

  51. Super_Sonic96 Tuesday 18th May 2010 at 19:55

    Got my copy a couple of days ago, my fave wii game to date! Ive just got one problem with it, Rathian+Queripo(?)+Great Jaggi+Jaggi=Multiple brain explosions.

  52. Lucarioguardian Thursday 3rd Jun 2010 at 15:29

    What do u mean "Fidgety fighting early on." I have played on it for 26 hours and haven't fidgeted at all. :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :? :?

  53. pearsonnick Wednesday 16th Jun 2010 at 12:19

    WOW IT MUST BE GOOD IF SIMON BRAMBLE, YES SIMON 'UNFAIR' BRAMBLE GAVE IT A GOLD AWARD!!!! WOW!!
    :o

    true true :D

  54. Gamejunkie99 Thursday 1st Jul 2010 at 18:36

    Wow! This game is absolutely amazing! Got it a few months ago and the combat scheme completely amazed me. If you have only just got into gaming it would be better to start off with resort or mariokart but to anyone who likes Guild wars and other fantasy, this is for you. 8)

Register or log in to commment
Add a comment
Nintendo Co., Ltd. is the owner of certain copyright which subsists and trade marks and other intellectual property rights in certain content, characters, artwork, logos, scripts and representations used in this publication. All rights are expressly recognised and they are used by Future Publishing Limited under licence © 2006 Nintendo Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. "Nintendo", "International Nintendo Licensed Product" "Nintendo DS", "Nintendo DS Lite", "Nintendo DSi", "Nintendo 3DS", "Nintendo DSi XL", "Nintendo 3DS XL", "Wii" and "Wii U" and the associated logos are the trademarks of Nintendo Co. Ltd. All rights reserved.