|System: Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Capcom||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Capcom||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Apr. 20, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-4||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
As far as the combat system is concerned, Monster Hunter Tri uses a very simple mechanic where you can build on simple weapons-based attacks. There are three different control schemes: a traditional button-based system, a right-stick combat system, and a motion controlled scheme.
Although the motion controls sound the most intriguing, they just don't work. I don't even recommend trying them out, as the button mapping is awkward and swinging to attack gets old pretty quickly. Fortunately, there are two Classic Controller options, which allow you to chain together combos with the face buttons on your controller or use the right stick to fight. The only downside to the Classic Controller schemes is that you have to keep the Wii-mote close by, as you have to put it in "Pointer mode" in order to add monsters to your index. This Controller-Wii-mote shuffle feels awkward at best, and when you have a hungry monster charging towards you, it's difficult to juggle both controllers without losing half your life. Still, if you can manage this shuffle mechanic, both of the classic control schemes work very well.
The visuals in Monster Hunter Tri start off quite promising, with some pre-rendered cutscenes that featured stunning detail and fast-paced animations. However, the in-game visuals are a huge step down, and they barely resemble the pre-rendered scenes. Still, despite the huge step down, the world of Monster Hunter Tri is lush and vivid. Just don't expect too many monsters to render on-screen at once.
Monster Hunter Tri is an exhilarating game. There isn't another game on the Wii that can match it in both size and scope. Although there are still a few small issues holding this game back from perfection, if you are a fan of MMO-type games or RPGs in general, you owe it to yourself to check this one out. The single-player mode is great by itself, but the real reason to pick this game up is for the multiplayer. It is the best multiplayer available on the Wii, and it might even be the best console-based multiplayer RPG of this generation. Though the monster-based combat may not be for everyone, if you like sprawling, open-world RPGs with plenty of quests to undertake and lands to explore, Monster Hunter Tri is definitely for you.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor