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A Solo Hunter's Guide to Monster Hunter: An Introduction

Nothing's more satisfying than tackling a giant monstrosity on your own and fighting the good fight--but how do you go about it without carting over and over?

Ah, nothing more satisfying than taking down giant beasties of the Monster Hunter series with a team, from the giant enemy crab Shen Gaoren to the world-eating snake Dalamadur. And with Monster Hunter Generations coming out on July 15th for the 3DS, you'll have a chance to fight against even more monsters of new and old!

"Yes...I also can't wait to hunt...hunters, that is." *evil brute wyvern chuckles*

...But the question I'd like to ask you is: have you ever thought you could tackle the challenges on your own? (Even the multiplayer ones?)

Surely you must have wondered at some point if fighting a giant behemoth of a creature on your own is possible. I've seen many a forum thread asking about "Is soloing this monster viable?" with mixed replies and advice.

"Could I really do this, all on my lonesome?" thought the hunter.

The answer, of course, is yes! And if you need a hand, fellow solo hunter Flame (uh, that's me) is here to help! I've done a ton of hunting on my own these past few years, so I can tell you that while the journey for a solo hunter is a long and arduous one, it is definitely possible and fun! I'm excited for Monster Hunter Generations too, so I can continue my solo hunting tradition of "solo a quest before you play it with another".

 

Here're some potato-quality phone pictures I recently took of some of the late-game hunts in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate--no speedrunning demon here, just a stubborn solo hunter who refuses to give up after a few carts!

I figure while we wait for the release of MHGen, why not write about solo hunting? Thus, in the weeks leading up to Monster Hunter Generation's release, I will focus on several "core concepts" about solo hunting, and how it can help you better yourself as a hunter.

However, before we get started on specific topics, this week's piece will be a clarifying introduction with three basic questions:

Question #1: What is solo hunting?

Do I mean the story mode where you play on your own? Eh, a little more than that. By "solo hunting", I mean doing any of the quests in Monster Hunter without another hunter, ranging from the story mode quests to the more challenging online multiplayer quests. There are hundreds of quests in each Monster Hunter game for both offline and online play, but a key point is you don't need to hunt with others to beat any of the quests. You don't have to be online either--with your little companion palico or shakalaka, or even on your own, a solo run is doable. Even the mightiest health sponge will dry up and fall--you just have to have a decent armor set and game plan.

 

Not like this: Okay, maybe this wasn't the best idea I've had...

Question #2: Why should I solo hunt?

 Time and time again I see this question whenever a solo hunter posts a crazy accomplishment. "Why should I hunt by myself when I can go kill something with a team? Is it for bragging rights? The adoration of your friends?"

Perhaps, but there are plenty of other reasons to be hunting solo:

  • You don't have the means to play online: There are many reasons behind this phenomenon. Maybe you're playing Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate for the 3DS without a Wii U, or perhaps you live in a place with a poor internet connection. Maybe you're in for a long 15-hour flight to a fancy vacation spot, and you want something to pass the time. In any case, having no online capabilities means you have little choice but to hunt on your own.
  • You're looking for a challenge: This is my main reason for hunting solo--there's just something special about being able to say "I did this all by myself", and snap a picture of victory to put on the fridge--er, screenshot album. People warn fellow hunters online about the soloing horrors ("you're fighting a boss that's designed for multiple players!"), but that only eggs me on more. Monster Hunter is a game series with a very open-ended agenda. Since you set your own challenges, so why not have a solo challenge for a change of pace?
  • You want to "git gud": self-improvement is a wonderful thing--maybe you feel you can't do enough damage to a monster online, or you want to stop carting to the same move over and over. The best way to improve is to practice and learn a monster's patterns, which is best done alone. (I'll go more in depth about this in one of the following articles, so keep your eyes peeled!)

With these few reasons, I hope you can see why a hunter would choose the life of a solo career in hunting (or at least temporarily).

Moving along to the final question! *pole vaults away*

Question 3: How do I solo hunt?

Comical Short answer: You accept a quest, go to the gate, and hunt a monster or two.

 

"All done, let's go home, fellas!"

Okay, I wish it was this easy for all quests. (But you wouldn't be here if it was this simple, yes?)

Actual Long answer: As I mentioned before, for the rest of this guide series, I'm going to try to respond to this question by focusing on a few core concepts that are essential for solo hunting.

Core concepts include:

  • Self-Improvement
  • Resource Management
  • Building Armor Sets/Weapons

Again, these core concepts are also applicable and important for successful hunting in general, so I encourage you to stick around! Maybe you can learn something to help a fellow hunter!

...And on that note--that's all, for now, folks!

The following Solo Hunter's Guide will cover more about self-improvement!

See you then, and happy hunting!

~FlameKurosei

For more game-specific guides on Monster Hunter, check out the various Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate Guides for more tips and tricks on how to be a better hunter, here on GameSkinny!

[Images retrieved from Imgur, Monster Hunter Wikia, Redbubble, Reddit, Youtube, and myself]

Published Jun. 19th 2016

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