Monster Hunter: World’s PC Version is a Real Beast to Run


photo by Jaime Bangert

An example of low graphics settings.

Jaime Bangert, Copy Editor

Monster Hunter: World, the critically acclaimed action role playing game from Capcom, has been out on consoles for a little over six months, and has sold over 8.3 million units across that time span.

Since the week after it came out on PC, that number has climbed up to 10 million, making it Steam’s largest Japanese launch ever. It goes without saying that Monster Hunter: World is a fantastic game, but the PC version is far from ideal.

I’ll preface this by saying that I’ve played this series for almost a decade and I was elated to see Capcom finally let us PC gamers have a taste of what Japan has had since Monster Hunter: Frontier came out in 2007. Seeing the graphics improvements from previous titles in the trailers only made me more anxious to experience it myself. However, upon launching it, I realized that this was going to be a bumpy ride through the labyrinth of post-processing and texture options as the title screen hovered between 40 and 50 frames per second. I had read previously that it pushed some pretty heavy builds to their limits, but with my GTX 970M GPU, 16GB RAM and i7-4720HQ CPU at 2.6GHz, I wasn’t too concerned about it.

I definitely should have been, as the only way I got a consistent 60fps at 1600×900 fullscreen resolution was by putting it on the “low” preset. I attempted to fiddle around with the settings a little more to see if I could safely run it while having it maintain a reasonable level of quality, but before a recent update, having the game in fullscreen off of presets seemed to increase your chances of getting fatal errors upon launch or crashing upon an alt-tab. In regards to that, I have yet to experience a launch error since the update, but using alt-tab is still risky business.

According to Eurogamer’s Alex Battaglia, the game isn’t too hard on memory or CPU, but has rather high GPU requirements, meaning those of us with slightly older graphics cards will want to look into getting an upgrade. All in all, be wary about purchasing the game if you have an older rig.

In addition to the issues with how the game runs, there’s also the matter of the DLC for the console versions not being released for the PC version at launch. As of Sept. 9, a free update was released adding in the Deviljho as well as the Vangis alpha and beta armor sets, so it’s not as if the bonus content isn’t trickling down at all, but there is no official timeline for future updates. One would assume that the PC version will catch up to the console versions in time, but many fans are getting anxious.

Considering the performance issues, DLC gap and $60 price tag, I’d personally say that those on the fence about buying the game should wait to throw their money at the screen until the game is a) better optimized, or b) on sale.