So what IS a Gobul, anyway?

It’s a spiky-toad-angler-ray thingy. It’s the first aquatic creature that’s actually easier to fight on land. It’s also dead.

Though, admittedly, I’d have timed out on the first attempt if I hadn’t got really frustrated and given up a few minutes before the deadline. I… lost Gobul a few times, had problems hitting it, and got eaten a few times. I don’t know where the rest of the time went, though. I guess the damage I was doing was rather poor.
So I tinkered around with my bowgun and came up with something that let me rapid-fire Sub 1 and Normal 2 ammo – Royal Launcher frame and stock, and Light Bowgun barrel. It also will happily load two Cluster shots at a time, but as I can only carry five at once and don’t yet know how to make Cluster shot, this isn’t really a grand advantage; I also suffer from recoil on that one without Rhenoplos armour or a different bowgun, but… actually, with Cluster shot that’s a good thing. Less chance I get caught in the ensuing explosions.
Anyway, Gobul is just painful and yet I know I’ll probably have to fight it again in order to put together paralysis-inducing weapons such as a sword and shield I’d had as a potential upgrade for a while. I’m coming back later with a better gun.
Gathering tours. These are something else that was present in MHF2, but was until-now absent in Tri, and I was wondering – Moga doesn’t produce the better-quality materials, after all. So now I don’t have to pretend I’m interested in Delex or Ludroth to go gathering in these places. Pelagic… Pelagri… whatever. BETTER ore here I come.
Now all that’s missing that comes to mind are… longswords. Still. I understand holding back on the gathering tour quests, as they allow a player to get materials more easily than otherwise, and hence better sets of weaponry and equipment, but on a basic weapon type? Monster Hunter is a game about practice, and holding back on the introduction of certain types of weapons just mean players get less practice with those types
Not that I really use that type. Of large edged weapons it’s the most tolerable for me, but if I must melee then in most cases I’m still happier with a hammer.
…oh, yeah. Treasure-hunt quests. I miss those.

Wait, what?

So apparently you need to host your own urgent quest in order to get completion.

This sucks. Though we beat Barroth already, it was my friend’s urgent quest, not mine, so… well, he owes me. And this is here so he can’t get out of it.
That said, on to the actual fight. It went well; better than the time I solo’d it; I only fainted once, and judicious and well-aimed use of Recovery 1 kept my friend from fainting. He was using a lance, I was using my trusty bowgun. Have I mentioned I love Crag ammo? Well, I do; it seems to deal KO damage on the head, too, but mostly it’s great for breaking parts. Other than that, I brought Cluster, Water, Flaming… couldn’t use Cluster and Flaming due to not checking my bowgun before entering…
Various levels of Normal and Pierce. Slicing. Paint, as always. I can’t remember if Barroth’s tail CAN be pierced, but I spent some of the fight trying. I don’t think I’ll bother next time.
Actually, next time I may bring traps and tranqs. And a bowgun that can fire Flaming and Cluster shot, in addition to the rest.
I can’t understand how anyone can do melee on large things in this game. I mean, the shield definitely helped his survival, but about half the time he still got hit. Overall I got hit less than Barroth, but took one of his charges full on; I’m not sure how it fainted me as I’m sure I was at near full health beforehand, and hadn’t been hit by an Altaroth. Though I do think this Barroth was smaller than usual, its reach was still somewhat ludicrous. Mud is still really annoying, but as my friend took the Cleanser, I had to retreat to another area to be safe whilst waiting the status out.
Anyway, the fight took over forty minutes; we got the ten minute warning not too long before finally taking Barroth down. We could both do with better gear, though we were both hitting weakness on the thing, so next time we take it on, we could do with bringing others along.
I still dislike Barroth, but it was more manageable this time with an intelligent decoy, probably on both our parts. I can see myself taking it on again… willingly, rather than as something mandatory to advance.

Two Rathians and Counting

Almost every single chance it’s had today, a Rathian has barged in on our quests. Once for a Qurupeco – understandable – and once for a Royal Ludroth – less understandable. Unstable environments, though… might try to get a Rathian early next time. After a while the game either wised up or started going easy on us and ‘just’ gave us Qurupeco instead.

Also, capturing Qurupeco seems a rather poor way to get scales. I need lots and the last one gave me… one.
Traps take a much longer time to break if nothing steps on them, in Tri. This is both a blessing and a curse. You don’t need to be almost underneath a monster when you finish setting up to catch it, but if you set it up in the wrong place… you have a long wait ahead of you. It seems much longer when you have a Rathian around.
Also. Never hit friends with Cluster. It seems to hurt. A lot.
Anyway, today’s mostly been a lot of online play. I want that Qurupeco set, and it’s being annoyingly stingy on the scales. Additionally, the first time we attempted to kill Royal Ludroth, we got it to its last few legs and then… connection problems. Whoo. Kolma’s reached HR8 and has been told he’s not eligible for higher, but as he hasn’t done all of his quests, may be why he hasn’t gotten a quest to advance yet, or… something. Not sure. He only did hunting quests rather than gathering quests, which are a bit slow without chat, I guess.

Barroth is dead, long live the Hunter

So Barroth is dead, finally. And I only fainted… twice.

So it was a bit of a close call. Barroth’s pretty hard-hitting and becomes much more deadly when enraged, because in addition to being very painful, it becomes fast enough to make dodging tricky, especially when it walks past you and outside your view. I also need to learn not to hang around near the edges of areas, where it can corner me. On a couple of occasions it knocked me into adjacent areas because I was hanging around the exit, but that isn’t really something I can rely on. I imagine that Rathian will also become more deadly through speed when it enrages, but knowing that one it might pick up extra attacks in that state, too.
Some things like Qurupeco and Royal Ludroth are just pathetic and easy to dodge even when enraged, though.
Also, I captured a Royal Ludroth. It never managed to hit me when it was underwater; all of the damage I took was either out of the water – I got hit with its breath a few times, caught by its tail when it rolled, and it charged over me once – or in the water, from the normal Ludroths which, whilst annoying, still aren’t enough of a threat to warrant attention.
Now I get to take on a Gobul, which I hear has qualities of both Plesioth and Gypceros; you can fish it out, and it has a bright thing on its head which can stun you. And here I am without my stun-proof armour sets; joy. Gypceros was another one I had problems with working out how to beat in Monster Hunter Freedom 2, and was actually the creature that got me using Hammers after a couple of failed attempts with a bow. I think my main issue with the fight was that it tended to be in the Swamps, at night, so in addition to stunning I also had to be careful where I walked, ran or dodged, else find myself dealing with poison on top of everything else.

Today Qurupeco called…

…a Rathian.

Which, incidentally, turned out to be easier to dodge than Barroth, for all it’s a larger creature. Yes, with Qurupeco and a bunch of Jaggi running around. Though that may be because Rathian – or whatever; Royal Ludroth, Great Jaggi… – considers Qurupeco and the additional small things to be additional targets. I know Great Jaggi will sometimes attack Qurupeco rather than me, though maybe Cha-Cha was running around nearby. I’m not sure.
Rathian may be slow, but it did manage to hit me once, taking off two-thirds of my health and leaving me with fireblight. Rathian doesn’t need to be particularly fast if two hits, potentially, will take out a hunter. Outside of the treasure hunting missions in Monster Hunter Freedom 2/Unite, which don’t really count as that version is weakened, I don’t think I’ve ever fought a Rathian. Run from one on certain missions, definitely, but not fought a proper one. For the most part it’s a typical wyvern with the usual moves; a breath attack, that charge and trip, flying around out of easy range and diving or breathing on you, and the usual spin and bite moves that everything seems to have, now. But Rathian also gets a rather painful flip, and can poison you with some of its attacks.
All in all, pretty nasty. Though I may think it easier than Barroth to dodge, I’ll still have to defeat Barroth to fight it legitimately; I could abuse Qurupeco, but… I don’t really want to have to fight Rathian with other things hanging around.
The reaction on the map when Qurupeco called Rathian definitely suggested Rathian came from an adjacent area, and the quest – Trapping a Trickster – does have an unstable environment. I still can’t shake the hunch that Qurupeco will only call things that wander onto the map, whether it be Great Jaggi, Royal Ludroth, Rathian or whatever else. Since I’m not wearing the Hunter set for this, I really can’t tell.
Oh, yeah. I tried Barroth again, with a Light Bowgun. I failed slightly miserably, as I lasted a fair length of time before being fainted once, but then got taken out twice in quick succession; somewhat embarrassing. It raged almost immediately on the final attempt and just walked all over me.
Still, I have made progress.  I actually managed to dodge reasonably well, for a while, and at least managed to wash the mud off its claws.

Qurupeco called down a Royal Ludroth on us again

So, trying online again, this time with a keyboard and a different friend, and a fairly strict deadline of about an hour before I had to go do something else. Though it’s still not really feasible to type when fighting something, it does let you make quick warnings that a Royal Ludroth is about to eat your friend, or something. As opposed to ‘ffff’.

We each had some trouble connecting to each other’s cities – error code 11688 for me, shorthand for ‘something went wrong’ – but eventually it worked out and I was able to connect to his city. However, by the time we’d managed that, I only had half an hour left for questing.
So we decided to take on Qurupeco. Who called a Royal Ludroth on us, just like last time. Despite this friend and the other not knowing each other, we ended up doing the same tactics; I painted the Ludroth and then we dodged both it and the bird before one ran away. I guess there isn’t much else you can do, but as major creatures the bird summons hang around, Qurupeco might be… abusable.
This time I tried out the bowgun on the out-sized bird, rather than a hammer that bounces. My friend was using a hammer that doesn’t bounce; he’s a bit further in than I am, though granted I haven’t tested out that tiny sliver of green on the Qurupeco, yet. Rhenoplos Gunner armour is nice, helping combat recoil and working well with Crag ammo; Crag ammo is strong enough to knock the Qurupeco out of whatever it’s trying to sing, and Cluster might also work, but needing to switch to either and load the ammo takes enough time that it’s only really possible to use it on Qurupeco’s longer things, the restorative or buffing songs. This is mostly due to my unfamiliarity with how the ammo is sorted, though; I never had to learn that kind of thing with bows, as there were only four or five coatings at most.
I guess I now know how monsters feel when I go into recital mode in MHFU. Overall, I think Qurupeco fell faster today than on the last online attempt – my ally’s weapon might have been stronger, and I was able to hit much more easily with a bowgun. My attempts at using Pellet and Cluster tended to more often hit my friend, though, and sometimes led to him getting hit by Qurupeco, so I’m going to have to learn to take quite a bit of care where I fire things. Happily, I also managed to correctly aim a shot of Recovery at him, which was pretty effective.
I also attempted to take on Barroth earlier today; looks like a smaller Monoblos with mud instead of a horn. Mud functions similar to the snowball status, keeping you from using most items or attacking whilst under its effect. It might not affect your movement speed, though, and you can certainly still roll to dodge things. I also made the rather bad decision to go with a medium-weight bowgun combination rather than light-weight; I think, though I’m not entirely sure, that it slowed down my walking speed. Either that or I’ve stopped being used to larger monsters and my normal weapon-out speed just seems slow in comparison to the thing. I effectively got nowhere, spending more time rolling to dodge than attacking, and then I had to give up to get breakfast and head out for something.
My next attempt will be with a more sensible light bowgun, I think. With lots of crag ammo.

Royal Ludroth is surprisingly bad in its own element

Yes. Really. It’s both easier to dodge and easier to hit when it’s swimming, much like its little siblings, and I’m not even screwing around with the extra dimension available in the water. I think most of its attacks have a more narrow affected area down there, and of course it doesn’t do that blasted roll.

Honestly, I did try to take it on with a hammer first. Truly. Then I saw it roll over a few times and remembered why I use the Bow so much in MHFU; deep down, I want to live. The hammer is all well and good for minions and smaller bosses with less ‘screw you’ attacks like that, but I’m just not that good at reading enemies at close range, or dodging if I do realise what’s going to happen.
So Royal Ludroth is down due to clever application of pellet, normal 2 and flaming shot, and the fishermen now have another boat. I just got told a boat is just a ‘bunch of planks’, so… why did they need me to hunt a giant monster for parts? I suspect this is all some scheme the elder and Junior cooked up to get in much-needed practice before Lagiacrus decides to eat the village again.
Does anyone have any thoughts on the Switch Axe? Whilst seeing about getting some water- and ice-resistant armour made before going off to fight the sponge-lizard, I noticed that the option to make them had unlocked. I’m pretty much slipping back into my ranged ways, so I’m probably not going to seriously use it for a while, but what are they like?

Monster Hunter Tri – Online Play

Just finished playing online with one of the people who got the chance to start playing weeks ahead of me. It’s nice to see someone happy with a greatsword, rather than ceaselessly stating it’s the worst weapon out there.

However, I’m sticking with hammers; I am now the proud owner of a Bone Bludgeon. It has a very small sliver of green sharpness, but it’s better than nothing and it has an impressive amount of attack.
Flutes – the buffing and healing set, not the one that attracts enemies – are actually very useful, though I guess it’s a matter of luck whether they break on the first use or not. They’re pretty difficult to get off in enemy-heavy areas, but when the only thing you’re dealing with is a Qurupeco, they’re very good for support.
…that’s me, finding the ways to be a healer-type in a game called ‘Monster Hunter’. Admittedly a healer with either a very big hammer or a light bowgun. I’m not sure whether I’d dare to use healing shot, though; my aim is good for monsters, but those are predictable.
Chatting through the game is pretty tricky, though. I need to get a keyboard; disconnecting the PC’s one tends to screw up the PC.

Great Jaggi, Qurupeco. Qurupeco, Great Jaggi. Oh, and Cha-Cha..

Great Jaggi started off being difficult, like any boss; it’s far larger and has a much greater range than the other ‘prey ‘dromes. I guess it’s only fair, since Jaggi and Jaggia are so much worse than the ‘preys. Then I got used to dodging large things with a hammer, again, and all of a sudden it got rather easy.

So then I beat on it some more in non-missions, and captured one. It’s starting to feel as pathetic as Giadrome. Granted, toting a war hammer around is helping, and as soon as I get two more Killer Beetles I’ll have a better hammer off the bone hammer path.
Also, Jaggia? Hip-check, or whatever you call Plesioth’s evil ‘much larger range than you think’ side-tackle nowadays.
Cha-Cha… I miss having a proper Felyne companion, but now I know why the Hunting Horn isn’t in the game. Cha-Cha’s dances pretty much duplicate the recital mechanic, though it seems much more random when he’ll actually use it at the moment, and otherwise they’re just hammers with a couple of non-standard slow attacks. Maybe some of his later masks will look better than the acorn.
Also, they got a true escort mission in my Monster Hunter. Raaar, grrr, argh, et cetera. Still, hopefully I shall never have to do that again. Eggs and firestones are bad enough.
Qurupeco has potential to be mean, but the main problems I had during that fight were not quite having the right level of sharpness – but I use a hammer, so it’s not too much of a combo lost – and not yet having a good set of armour that isn’t weak to fire. Jaggi Armour is nice, but I didn’t know the outsized-bird had flints in its wings.  It also called the Great Jaggi in a few times, but by now that thing is really just a nuisance; I killed G.Jaggi’s twice on a trip to Moga Woods. I’m pretty good at dodging it, now.
I’ll be going back to that one once I have a sharper… hammer. Why do we even need to sharpen those things? The one I’m using currently is an anvil on a stick.
So mostly I’ve been using the hammer. Last night, I was talking about weapons with someone on Mabinogi who also plays Monster Hunter games. They turned out to be the complete anti-me as far as preferences go – they thought bows, hammers and hunting horns were some of the most difficult weapons to use.
So apparently they’re now in awe of me, or something. I honestly have problems using things like the lance, or the sword and shield on anything larger than a ‘drome. I’ve been trying out the bowgun, but though I’m getting used to aiming it without needing to focus, I’m still in mild bow withdrawal. I miss having infinite piercing shots. I also want a paralysis-inducing weapon again.
Going to attempt to get the Wii working online, later today. Until then, we shall see how things go.

Jaggi: a new, smaller ‘prey

Monster Hunter tends to add at least one new ‘prey breed each major version, recently. Monster Hunter Freedom 2 got the Giaprey, at that time the weakest ‘prey breed yet. Previously, it was the ‘White Velociprey’ in Freedom, but MHF2 made it the ‘prey breed of the Snow Mountain, and gave them their own boss version.

Now we have the Jaggi, which has surpassed the Giaprey’s weakness and set a whole new low. They’re smaller, being only about a hunter’s height at most. They’re weaker, barely even having the strength to jump. They even sound like they have perpetual colds, sneezing their way around each fight.
Jaggia are slightly more credible as a threat, but are still weaker than the average Giaprey. They’re just not mobile enough.
I joked last night with a friend that the villagers are probably even afraid of Aptonoths. I think I can safely add Jaggi to that without it becoming less insulting.
As that friend observed, though, they do launch well. It’s rather satisfying.
As an interesting note, though, Jaggi and Jaggia have a couple of attacks that previously belonged only to true bird wyverns; Jaggi can spin, though the attack has abysmal range and will only hit you if you’re standing right on top of them, and Jaggia… I saw them doing something, but I’ve forgotten now.
I’ll probably remember if I get caught out by it.

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