Learn About Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate’s Biggest New Feature

By Ishaan . June 20, 2014 . 6:31pm

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate has a number of new features. There’s the new focus on verticality that lets you perform jumping attacks. There are the new weapons—the Insect Glaive and the Charge Axe—both of which look very stylish. There’s the Feral Wyvern Virus that can infect monsters as well as players. There’s the fact that the game is much better paced than in the past.  None of these, however, are as prominent as the feature that no one’s really talking about—Guild Quests.


If you’ve played Monster Hunter Tri or Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, you’re familiar with the concept of the Free Hunt mode, where you could simply venture out into the wild without taking on any specific quest. You could pluck mushrooms, mine for ore, go fishing, hunt whatever monsters you happened to come across, and generally take it easy. Free Hunt mode was fun because there was no specific goal or time limit—you could just get out there, have some fun, and return to the village once you’d had enough.


The downside was, you got no rewards from Free Hunt mode. However, that is no longer the case in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate.


Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate takes a very different approach to Free Hunts. Free Hunts take place in an area called the Unknown Forest whose layout is randomized every single time you enter it. Monsters in this area have a chance of dropping “Guild Quests”. These can be taken on like regular quests in the game, but they’re actually rather different. In both the Unknown Forest and in Guild Quests, you can acquire “Excavated Equipment” with randomized properties (such as attack power or number of slots), similar to more regular loot-based action RPGs like Diablo or Torchlight.


Speaking with Siliconera, Monster Hunter series producer Ryozo Tsujimoto said that the idea behind introducing these Guild Quests and their randomized loot to the game was to reward players for having fun, and to increase replayability as well as interaction between players.


“The big difference is that the standard quests are a little rigid in their structure,” Tsujimoto said. “You get a very specific task, and you go out and do that task—kill that monster and come right back. It feels a little bit like work in that sense.”


“What we wanted to do was have something a little lighter, where you can goof around a little bit. Maybe you don’t fulfil the objective you intended to, and just get some items or whatever and come back. It still feels like you did something. So it’s kind of a lighter affair, and this is where the Guild Quests come into play.”


“There’s an element of randomization to the Guild Quest system, where you’re not entirely sure what kind of map you’re going to get, and what’s going to be out there,” Tsujimoto explained. “Within this randomized system, there are maps we consider to be ‘good’ and maps that are ‘not so good,’ and you can actually exchange these back-and-forth with other players.”


So, what’s a good map as opposed to a bad map? That’s another area where the Guild Quest randomization comes into play, Tsujimoto says.


“The way it works is that you’ve got these pre-determined [map] parts, and all that really changes in the randomization is how they’re connected together, since the Monster Hunter maps are always a big ‘master map’ with smaller ones within,” Tsujimoto explained. “When we talk about the idea of there being good or advantageous maps versus bad ones, the best kind that you’re really after is where, as soon as you leave your camp—boom—there’s a big monster for you to fight. There’s lots of elevation shifts so you can do jump attacks. That sort of thing.”


Randomization adds a lot to Monster Hunter, which up until now has always had a very rigid structure. You’ve always known exactly what monster you would need to hunt for a particular crafting material, and what kind of equipment you would end up with after putting in hours of work. That isn’t the case any more, says Tsujimoto.


“Up until now, you could collect all the weapons in Monster Hunter, and once you’ve collected them all, you say, ‘Okay, now what? I’ve got all there is to get.’ No more. Because now there are randomly-generated parameters, so you will never truly have all of them, and there will always be something for you to get your hands on.”


It bears mentioning that Guild Quests do not replace regular quests in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate—you’ll be able to do both when the game comes our way in early 2015.


Note: A couple things to note: first, terms like “Excavated Equipment” and “Guild Quests” are not official localized names. Capcom are still working on those. Second, this feature originally debuted in Monster Hunter 4, but most western players will only see it beginning with 4 Ultimate.

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  • SlickRoach

    2015 can’t come soon enough, my bowgun will be ready!

  • RedSuisei

    If there was one thing I disliked in newer MH, it’s the highly luck-based charm system, where there are thousands of them, and the difference in luck can mean a mediocre skill build or a broken build. And this whole random dropped equips with randomized stats seems to be another mechanics like that.

    I’m still gonna get it, but the charm farming was one of the reason I couldn’t get into gen 3 for more than 200 hrs.

    • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

      I played Mon Hunt 3 Ultimate for around 300 hrs and i never really care about the charm mechanic here lol.^_^

      I just simply ended up get some of the charm i really like there.^_^

    • GameTaco

      At least it seems like MH4 has gone back to your loot table changing every time you load, rather than it being locked in at character creation. :x

      Still, the knowledge of its existence is a little disheartening. Kinda like EV training in Pokémon. If Game Freak can start introducing new ways in influence hidden variables in Pokémon, I’d say Capcom can figure out a better way to influence loot table assignment than a spreadsheet and a stopwatch. :P

      • RedSuisei

        That’s good in the sense that we’re not locked out of certain things thanks to something randomly determined at start, but still means that the RNG will work on even larger options.

        But then they have to introduce a new mechanics that further increases build dependency on RNG. Even worse since this affects equip stats, which have more direct impact than the passive skills.

    • Oni.

      There are different charm tables, some which claim to be ‘cursed’, the charm table you are placed in is dependent on the time (or should I say exact moment) you create your character. If MH4’s charm system is the same which is highly likely, before you start the game/create a new character, just look up some charm table infos online, plently around by people who’ve done all the legwork. Check which tables that consists of charms that would suit your playstyle, change 3DS system clock to match, create char within the time frame and voila.

      • RedSuisei

        I actually was in a charm table that has 3-4 charms I wanted to have. Except that after farming hundreds of charms, I never got a single one that I wanted to have. The problem is, there are literally thousands of charms in each charm table.

        • Oni.

          Haha yes, that’s the other big bummer too. To add even more to the headache inducing techniques.

          Charm Sniping. Every charm in the game is assigned a random number between 1 (possibly 0) and 5400. The charm is not assigned a number until *after* it is Appraised after the quest. For example, when you mine an Enduring Charm from a rock, the game hasn’t determined exactly what Talisman it will be until the quest is finished and the charm is appraised. These random numbers (RN) move in one direction: forward. RN will not go backward. Once it hits 5400 or so, it starts over from the beginning. Think of RN as a clock, with “5400” being where 12 o’clock is. RN will constantly tick up until it hits 5400. So, if the charm you want has an RN of 1972, and your current RN is at 2000, you must increase your RN all the way past 5400 so that it starts over from 0. Unfortunately, RN (the hands of the clock) do not move in a consistent pattern. Sometimes RN jumps ahead by 1,000 or 2,000, when other times it crawls up by 200. Nearly everything in the game influences the speed at which RN ticks up. For example, loading Moga Village will move the RN
          about 100 units.

  • AdhesiveBoy

    Question, are Guild Quests free of time limit like Free Hunt? Do they all happen in the Unknown Forest?

    I thought that the Free Hunt mode was a good idea, but rather lacking, and the unknown forest sound much more exciting.

    • glenngunnerzero

      If it’s anything like the Guild Quests in MH3, then no.
      50 minutes (usually, sometimes it’s 30 and I’ve had one that was 10 minutes.), 3 tries (3 deaths shared between any members ended the quest.) and whatever goal was stated (generally kill/capture monster.)

      • Ruins72

        he meant the new guild quests, not the ones from 3U.

    • Charlotte Buckingham

      I have a Japanese 3DS and MH4.

      Guild Quests are just like normal quests after you unlock them. 50 minute time limit. The only difference in that they get tougher every time you complete them. Monsters get stronger.

  • 하세요

    Sometimes it’s annoying trying to find quests online like this – some people only do things a certain way. For example, Kirin and Kirin Sub are sleep-bomb only, so you better stack up on those.

    Overall it’s a neat feature, but sometimes shit really gets tough. Lv100 monsters pack a massive punch that will OHKO, even with 600+ Def.

  • 無尽合体ブランタコブスキ

    you are now at the mercy of rng for the best equips

    • Heisst

      But isn’t that just for the ”Excavated equipment” that the article said rather than the armor you craft yourself?

      • 無尽合体ブランタコブスキ

        Yeah, that’s correct.

    • Cazar

      I love your avatar.

  • konsama

    Dammit i want this game so freaking badly.

  • Joshua Myers

    Free hunt sounds amazing i absolutely cant fking wait to try it this here just being Monster Hunter is a golden console seller for me.

  • glenngunnerzero

    I liked Free Hunt in MH4U as I mostly went out with a Long Sword, BBQ Spit, few Pickaxes, and would almost always run out of space before deciding I needed to dump all the food, ore, potions and whatnot I got into my box at the cabin house, and then I just go into the menu and select “Back to Village” without having to go to base whenever I was ready to move on.

  • Go2hell66

    Wonder if the weapons are really randomised or if they drop from a premade sets at specific times like the charms in MH3U.
    Would rather not have to do 100 hours of charmsniping again to get the best equipment

  • SetzerGabbiani

    I’m at a news saturation point with MH4U unless there’s a significant new development. Just need the game so I can dig in.

  • Mckrongs

    Corrections: Charge Blade and Frenzy Virus are the official English names. :)

    • exrazer

      I think I’ll keep my feral wyvern virus

      • Mckrongs

        Feral – (especially of an animal) in a wild state, especially after escape from captivity or domestication.

        I think apart from the small monsters used for purposes, most monsters aren’t even domesticated to begin with. Frenzy actually makes more sense.

  • wahyudil

    which version will come to US? the normal 4 or the ultimate?

    • Vash bane


    • JMaster3000


  • James Enk

    i have a feeling MH4U will become my favorite 3DS game

    • Jadfish

      I have a feeling I can’t resist getting a 3DS XL once MH4 and SMTIV land in EU

  • Vash bane

    “interaction between players.”

    the one thing … I will never do (I’m lonely lol) but all this sounds cool I’m reconsidering getting this. usually on monhun type game (of course monhun it self) I normally quite playing after I get all the gear I want (sexy or cool looks…I’m sorry im just creepy like that XD) and the only time I would come back is if it has dlc or a friend gets it (again….all alone)

    • Shippoyasha

      Nothing wrong with being sexy/cool in games. It’s all for fun.

    • JMaster3000

      Playing alone MH…. what? No, impossible for me.
      Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on 3DS was so lame without online.

    • Jadfish

      I always play hunting games alone. Other players tend to ruin everything by either dying, getting in the way or being so high level or good that they beat the boss without you getting to feel like a boss

      • When your skill reach certain point you will do find solo is better than multiplayer sometimes. The average hunters that i play with in 3U are either die alot or leechers and having l33t gears doesn’t help any better

    • Dylan Anantha

      Don’t worry, I’m sure many of us prioritize style over function. Anyway, MonHun 4U will have online, so you don’t need to worry if your friends don’t have it.

  • Lemski07


    • Ric Vazquez

      Same here

  • Take my money

  • MrJechgo

    I’d love to love MH, I’d really do, but after trying several styles on a demo, it’s just too slow for me. The attacks are so sluggish and slow. Yes, you’re wielding large weapons… but aren’t you supposed to be a hunter who sufficiently proficient with them to speed things up?

    Look, don’t go hatin’… If you like it, more power to you… for as for me, it’s just too slow for me… especially after playing other action games where the pace is much faster.

    • Zeik56

      There are faster weapons in the game than the big weapons, if you’re willing to sacrifice some power for speed and mobility.

      Monster Hunter is not a character action game though. Much like the Souls series, animation priority is very much what makes Monster Hunter Monster Hunter. You can’t go into it expecting God of War or Devil May Cry, because it’s not meant to play anything like that.

      I can understand why not everyone likes it, but it also feel like a lot of people go into it with the wrong impression of what it should be and are inevitably disappointed when it’s not that.

    • Bobby Jennings

      Yeah i agree with you, its always been slow for me as well. Just couldnt get into it.

  • MaidKillua

    Hopefully the online community on this will be as good as 3U. Met a lot of helpful people on there. Not helpful in a “G rank guys carrying through the game” way, but in a “willing to repeat quests so you can get keys and do everyones urgent” way. Fought Miralis 4 times in a row with a lobby full of HR7’s trying to rank up with me yesterday. Was the only one to shoot any higher than HR8 after the fight because I spent a lot of time helping out beginners. That’s the kind of thing we need more of

  • 60hz

    doesn’t pso2 have a feature like this… sigh… we will never know…

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