There’s a mixture of emotions at the end of a long hunt in Monster Hunter: World. As the adrenaline subsides, masking anxiety and fear, excitement takes over; it’s time for the reward! Each fight in Monster Hunter is part of larger metagame, as you pray for the right combination of drops to let you upgrade weapons and armor. The game doesn’t hand over those drops, though, as players must carve them from the beast’s corpse.
Or not, as it turns out.
Monster Hunter has a frustrating trolling problem, wherein people use attacks, stuns, and other techniques to prevent players from cashing in on their earned prize.
“So me and my buddy are killing the final boss and we call some people to help,” writes a Monster Hunter player on reddit. “i get kicked cause the online features of this game are wonky, but my friend stays with the randoms, they kill the beast and as they loot one of the randoms stuns my friend so he could [sic] carve the monster, does anyone know a way around this? Since i know capcom dont give a shit.”
They’re not alone, either. You don’t have to look far on reddit, Twitter, or even in Waypoint’s own Discord (both Danika and Joel have run into the issue) to find examples of people encountering trolls deploying the same tactics.
It’s particularly devious because Monster Hunter doesn’t automatically pick up loot for you. Carving is a requirement. If you don’t carve the monster you just fought, the drops disappear—forever. The only way to advance in Monster Hunter is by acquiring drops, and as evidenced by Austin’s piece yesterday documenting our own encounter with Nergigante, some of the later fights are not only physically and emotionally taxing, but they can take more than 30 minutes to finish!
The game doesn’t recognize trolling because players colliding into one another is part of Monster Hunter. It’s why people have to be aware of where others are, and what they’re doing, during combat. You can’t hurt one another by accidentally swinging your sword into them, but you might prevent them from nailing a crucial blow.
The solutions players have come up are ridiculous, such as putting your Xbox One or PlayStation 4 into sleep/rest mode for a few minutes, which will disconnect the machine from the Internet, kicking other players out. If you do this after a monster has been killed but before the game boots you back to camp—generally, players are given 60 seconds—you can turn the game back on and collect without issue.
Another option is to be the person running the quest, which lets you kick other players out. When the fight is over, kick everyone else out and start carvin’. (This doesn’t literally boot players from a quest, only the session—they can still collect their loot.)
Possibly the most absurd solution is to make equip the rocksteady mantle, a piece of optional gear that prevents players from flinching. Unfortunately, even acquiring the rocksteady mantle requires jumping through an absurd number of hoops—it’s an endgame item for high-level players. There are also certain pieces of armor with a bonus called “flinch free,” which also stops players from being knocked around.
Capcom is, thankfully, aware this is a problem.
“The team is actively monitoring player feedback,” the company told me in a statement this morning. “This is definitely one of the concerns they have seen raised and they’re currently looking into it.”
Capcom didn't outline what might change, or when it will happen.
There are a couple of solutions Capcom could look to. Given how often I’ve accidentally left drops behind, especially after breaking something off a creature mid-fight, it’d be convenient if the game just picked everything up for you. There’s no reason to punish players who fail to spot a tiny, sparkling object in the middle of the battlefield, and the same could be applied to carving. Just bring it all back!
Capcom could also alter the dynamics of player-to-player interactions after a fight, preventing knockbacks and stuns from having an impact. You're invincible.
I’m rooting for option one, but one way or the other, I’m glad it’s probably getting fixed.