Wild Hearts Hands-On Preview: Beautiful Monster Hunt with Building

I’ve known there are monster hunting games other than the quintessential Monster Hunter, but none have really captured my attention and drawn me in quite the same way. Maybe until now. Need to see more before I can say for sure, but after playing more than 10 hours Wild HeartI maybe Speak this can only be one of these. So far, Wild Hearts looks like a fun combination of hunting, challenging crafting, beautiful semi-open world environments, and flexible building mechanics that make it able to stand on its own on all fours. .

First, some housework – in general, what people want to know: Wild Hearts is released on February 17, 2023 for PC and next-gen consoles. Yes, crossplay is supported for three-player co-op – which is huge for a game that focuses on co-op like this. That sounds like a odd digital – but during the digital presentation, EA Originals executive producer Lewis Harvey said it’s easier to put two friends together than three, and that balancing four players doesn’t work well due to the mechanics. construction processing. We’ve learned that there’s no limit to joining friends – join anytime, no matter how you complete the story.

It seemed like I had to make a lot of progress in Wild Hearts, but I got to the “end” of the story content available in this initial build pretty quickly. I have Wanted to play more, and ended up completing every optional mission there. Wild Hearts’ handcrafted hunt loop isn’t too unfamiliar to me, but the presentation and seamless storytelling are unexpected. This can change down the line, but it looks like you’ll have the main story missions active in the world, shown at the top left of the screen, separate from the optional quests that you need to enable it manually. These main quests can range from hunting a specific Kemono – giant beasts that have merged with nature – to landing a new spot on the map. In the meantime, you can take a “break” to hunt specific monsters you’ve encountered in the story by starting optional quests from any campfire or map.

Completing these quests unlocks more optional quests, grants points to unlock new building abilities, and rewards those sweet rugs for upgrading your gear, which is an easy process. understood, well-arranged. This has me worried about the longevity of Wild Hearts, but maybe the music is just right for the ears of others who prefer a less milled, less min-maxy experience. This can also change as the game progresses – I can only fight three monsters and unlock four different upgrades, in the end.

There are eight completely different weapons to master; have technical difficulty from very easy to grasp, like Karakuri Katana; comes simple but requires skill, as Wagasa is like a parasol; requires both knowledge and skill, like the bow. There’s a mechanical bear friend to help you learn ropes, but these instructions are pretty bare-bones bones and left me to put two and two together to discover the best weapon usage.

Wild Hearts is more than just using giant weapons against giant animals so you can create new pants

All in all, Wild Hearts’ battle feels good and leads to a lot of hype moments. There was a bit of difficulty in the build that I played with, especially with the camera and aim. It tends to come with fighting large, agile creatures in games in general and has some feedback I’d like to be a little more “crunchy” and clear, but learning the systems and uses a bit of jank are just part of the genre at this point. However, Wild Hearts is much more than just using massive weapons against giant animals so you can craft new pants – you can craft stuff on the fly in the middle of battle. .

This Karakuri mechanic really sets Wild Hearts apart from anything else in the genre, to my knowledge. (No. The third “basic” Karakuri I’ve unlocked is the torch which, once erected, allows me to cover my weapon in flames or inflict a fire attack on the original Kemono. plants, vulnerable.

Building Karakuri in certain ways leads to completely new structures. If I build six crates in a rectangular shape, it will create a Bulwark. This massive wall prevented Kingtusk from following its tracks and hilariously knocking it away – if I built it correctly. I’ll eventually develop the skill to do this under pressure, but losing six more Karakuri at once without paying off could be an unfortunate step backwards. See, building Karakuri requires yarn, which is usually too much, but it was scarce in the area we fought. You can climb any Kemono and attack weak points to replenish these materials, but I am frustrated that I can’t get to the only ones left. Unable to build, dodging monster attacks becomes very difficult, especially with katana. I was shamefully knocked down before finally claiming victory.

Despite the difficulty I’ve described in this case, I’ve only “died” once and I’ve never failed a quest. I also can’t help but blame my inexperience with Wild Hearts at the time, and that frustrating (nearly) failure led to finding the cause. do work more rewarding than all. I killed Kingtusk in less than half the time with my parasol-like Wagasa, as I could rely on horseback riding instead of trying to shape my path through a wall of fleshy vines.

In addition to combat, you will need to use Karakuri to move. Fortunately, what you build is persistence. Meaning, once you build something, it stays in your world. At least, until Kemono (or you) destroy it. There is also another class of Karakuri, called “Dragon Karakuri.” This category includes structures that you may want more permanent, like a hunter’s tent, that allow you to rest; or a flying vine, allowing you to set up giant zip lines for better getting around. Once the Karakuri dragons are built, you can always kill them to release the resources they originally used, but finding them again is a bit difficult as they are not marked on the large map.

Discovery is a bonus in itself – some of the nooks and crannies are breathtaking

Although I was able to discover most of Every nook and cranny of Wild Heart’s first “hunting ground”, Hanagasumi Hill, still has a lot of work to do. Exploration in itself is a bonus – some of the nooks and crannies are breathtaking, the kind of scenery you’d call a friend just to show off. However, there are plenty of reasons for a thorough investigation. The aforementioned dragon veins are especially important (and very loose for fast travel), but there are also ingredients for cooking meals that increase stats and resources needed to upgrade weapons and shirts. armor. There is even a collection in the form of 50 Tsukumo. Finding the first one will unlock a small round robot hunting companion, and each one after that leads to unlocking more and more buffs for it. Plus, adorable robot friends stack up around the camp to keep you company. I also found more secrets, but I’ll leave those secrets for now.

And to clarify, this is just one of at least four hunting grounds, each styled after one of the four seasons. There is also the central town of Minoto, accessible just beyond the reach of this initial build and will play an integral part to Wild Hearts.

Hunting games are not new to Koei Tecmo’s Omega Force. While primarily known for the Dynasty Warriors series and related spin-offs, such as the recent Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes, the studio has also created numerous Toukiden games. However, they definitely say that the Wild Heart is Not a spiritual successor to Toukiden – rather, an entirely new game that they hope will evolve into its own new series.

Overall, Wild Hearts is promising and I’m looking forward to exploring more beautiful, feudal-inspired environments – Japan and monster hunting with once inaccessible PC-only friends mine.


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