I’ve spent the last couple hours tearing through the Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate 3DS Demo (available on the 3DS eShop and also on the Wii U eShop), and here’s what you need to know.

Demo Contents

The demo consists of two quests. The “Easy” quest requires you to hunt down a Lagombi, a giant polar bear-rabbit thing. The hard quest has you hunt a Plesioth, a sort of aquatic dragon monster. Yeah, I know, it’s awesome already. The demo puts you right into the gameplay. You pick a quest, pick a weapon scheme, and you’re on your way.


The demo is what you would expect from a franchise called “Monster Hunter.” You have 20 minutes to find your target and bring him down. You can pick from eight different weapons–everything from the heavy, powerful Gunlance to the more maneuverable, defensive Sword & Shield.

I started with the default Sword and Shield and just sort of explored the area, figuring out controls, and then died before running out of time. Good first try. I restarted with the Gunlance, quickly found the Lagombi, and was pretty impressed with the power of the huge weapon. However, it made my character really slow, and the Lagombi murdered me again. My next try was with the Bow, and I fared a little better. I was able to easily dodge his attacks. I experimented with different types of arrows and exhausted the time limit dodging his attacks while raining arrows onto him. Finally, I started the game again with Dual Blades. With these fast and deadly swords, I was able to dodge his attacks and bring him down within the time limit.

The game is definitely challenging, but bringing down the giant polar bear bunny was very satisfying. And fighting the Plesioth while underwater was very rad.

Look and Feel

It’s a pretty game on the 3DS, and I can only imagine it being gorgeous on the Wii U. The music that ramps up as you approach your target monster is thrilling. The monsters are really well designed, and exploring the landscapes gives you plenty to look at.

I’ve had a lot of fun with the demo, and I’m interested to see how the full game compares. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate will be released on March 19, 2013.