What is Monster Hunter without the monsters? Nothing, that’s what. The fanged, winged, fire-breathing, and poisonous beasts have always taken centre stage in the series, and Monster Hunter: World is no exception. Especially now that their scaly hides are able to stomp around on our PCs, the improved graphics making them look better than ever.
The newest entry in the Monster Hunter series is chock full of fan favourites and new classics, each with their own unique design, attacks, and rewards. There’s joy to be found in learning about each facet of these great beasts – when to roll, attack, and what weapon you should develop with their skin. Indeed, this process forms most of the joy of the game as you learn to tame the wilds with the swing of a blade.
As you progress you’ll quickly build up a lot of respect for each of the monsters – not only for their ferocity, but because each of them are special in their own way.
The Paolumu fills its fluffy body with air so it can launch aerial attacks at you. The Kulu-Ya-Ku will pick up rocks and attempt to smash you about the face with them. And let’s not forget the Radobaan and its spiky roll attacks. But there are some monsters that stand out even further from the horns and jagged teeth that make up this gruesome crowd.
Below are six monsters that steal the show in Monster Hunter: World.
The Great Jagras has a poor gig. Its main purpose is to introduce you to the structure of hunts in the opening moments of Monster Hunter: World. As such, it was never meant to pose any real threat – apart from to the Kestodon, which it gobbles up in one, bloating the hideous lizard into a gargantuan ball. The moves of the Great Jagras are clearly telegraphed, it has a large number of weak spots, and it’s not particularly good at escaping. But it does have one aspect going for it: it’s just so satisfying to beat up.
What the Great Jagras lacks in challenge it more than makes up for in goofy charm. It’ll gladly take all your strikes in its stride, offering little-to-no retaliation to your insect glaive barrage or great sword charge attacks. It’s almost enough to make you feel guilty for your unprovoked attack. But not guilty enough to keep you from discharging your gunlance in its face. Sorry, Great Jagras. Your sacrifice is appreciated. And cheers for that starting armour.
After a series of introductory hunts, the Handler offers up a target that puts all your new skills to the test. The Anjanath serves as the game’s first large skill check, and will quickly sway the misplaced confidence of any arrogant hunter. Here, preparation plays an important role – bring armour strong against fire because you’re going to need it when this beast flares its nostrils.
Essentially a fire-breathing T-Rex, the Anjanath attacks quickly and aggressively, allowing you hardly any time to recover from its bites and swipes. Time not spent dodging its charging attacks is usually followed up by rolling to extinguish the fire engulfing your entire body. ‘This is it’, the game seems to say with a roar towards the canopy, ‘the chains are off’.
So you’ve worked your way through Low Rank and bested many formidable monsters. Radobaans, Legianas, and Anjanaths have all fallen to your switch axe, and now you’re ready to take on High Rank marks. There’s just one more road block in your way: Diablos. This bull-horned behemoth resides below ground in the Wildspire Wastes, and is not going down without a hardy fight.
Diablos is a Monster Hunter classic; a true first-generation all-star. It’s fitting, really, that it should serve as the gatekeeper to High Rank. The towering beast boasts a formidable form that seems to scream ‘Come get me, I’m right here!’. Except you’ll be the one screaming when it dips its head and sprints at you blindly. And the way it burrows underground evokes some serious Tremors vibes. The fight is long and brutal, but the sense of satisfaction that comes with victory is nearly unparalleled.
The main story of the game tasks you with tracking and studying Zorah Magdaros – a towering Elder Dragon the size of a mountain – across the New World. Throughout the course of the game, you’ll encounter Zorah Magdaros a handful of times, and each time your efforts to learn about the beast are foiled by Nergigante, another Elder Dragon. Due to these repeated encounters, Nergigante is the closest Monster Hunter: World comes to an arch nemesis, and what a foe it is.
Before taking on Nergigante proper, you must track it across the world by traveling to each area and picking up its trail. It’s a process that gradually builds up to the final showdown, creating a steady tension, as if asking you several times ‘are you ready for this?’.
The actual fight with Nergigante is a frantic and challenging affair. It’ll take all your skills, your best equipment, and a mastery of item usage and dodge timing. But coming out victorious results in a feeling of utmost triumph that bests the elation that comes with defeating most videogame bosses. The fact that Nergigante’s armour set is one of the best in the game is just icing on the cake.
Legiana isn’t the first flying beast you’ll encounter in Monster Hunter: World (that honour goes to Paolumu), but it’s arguably the coolest one to look at. It also lives in the most beautiful area in the game: the Coral Highlands. Pairing this with the monster’s flashy attacks, battling Legiana makes for what must be the prettiest fight in all the New World.
As the only ice elemental monster in Monster Hunter: World, Legiana requires a special kind of preparation, often even necessitating its own armour and weapon loadout. Getting by its ice breath is equal parts beautiful and punishing. As a bonus, the armour that can be crafted from Legiana parts is both stunning and elegant. Make sure to get your friends in an online session so you can show off the full set to them.
The Rotten Vale is home to a whole bunch of terrifying monsters, including the toxic Elder Dragon Vaal Hazak. But the most dangerous by far is Odogaron, also known as the blood dog. This fight is meant to keep you on your toes and make sure you never feel safe. Odogaron’s movements are quick and painful, and it can strike from a distance making it an unpredictable foe.
Odogaron is also the only monster that can inflict the bleeding status effect, which drains your health unless you stop moving and crouch for a short time. Because of how fast Odogaron is, this is an unadvisable tactic, meaning that your choices are either bleed to death or face the blood dog’s claws. Taken as a whole, this might be the most tense fight in Monster Hunter: World.