Is Monster Hunter Rise open world?

Is Monster Hunter Rise open world? With Monster Hunter Rise targeting the Nintendo Switch instead of PlayStation, Xbox, and PC platforms, many have asked whether this has placed any limitations on the latest entry in Capcom’s power-selling series.

Having immersed themselves in the sprawling, detailed biomes of Monster Hunter World, it’s easy to see why some fans may be wary of taking a step back to the lower-powered Nintendo Switch, but thankfully that’s not an issue here.


The term “open world” can be misleading when discussing games in the Monster Hunter series. None of the mainline entries (including Monster Hunter Rise) feature huge persistent open worlds like those we see in games such as Skyrim, Red Dead Redemption 2, No Man’s Sky, or Horizon: Zero Dawn.

Instead, Monster Hunter Rise features large maps that almost feel like self-contained sandboxes brimming with wildlife, just like Monster Hunter World. They’re definitely more “open” than maps featured in older Monster Hunter games, where individual areas were separated by loading screens.

Are the maps smaller in Monster Hunter Rise?

Compared to Monster Hunter World, the maps in Monster Hunter Rise are slightly smaller though no less dense in terms of resource nodes and the menagerie of small and larger monsters inhabiting them. At one time there can be three large monsters roaming around each open region, occasionally scrapping when they come into contact. When you kill or capture a monster, there’s a chance that another will appear somewhere else.

One of the reasons why these maps feel smaller compared to the sandboxes of Monster Hunter World is due to some of Capcom’s newest Monster Hunter innovations. Namely the Palamute and Wirebug.

The Palamute is a large canine companion that can be mounted almost like a horse, speeding between areas and letting you cover open ground in no time. Palamutes can jump too and climb surfaces much faster than hunters on foot.

Meanwhile the Wirebug acts as a grappling hook of sorts. You see, while the environments in Monster Hunter Rise may look smaller at a glance, Capcom have stretched them vertically. Navigating these maps can be surprisingly disorientating at first, though you’ll soon memorise pathways and shortcuts as well as ideal spots to employ your Wirebug.

Monster Hunter Rise Guides & more from TheSixthAxis

Written by
Senior Editor bursting with lukewarm takes and useless gaming trivia. May as well surgically attach my DualSense at this point.