The upcoming expansion for critic and player acclaimed Monster Hunter World, MHW Iceborne is officially releasing to consoles on September 6th, with a PC version following this winter. In this MHW Iceborne: Everything We Know article we’ll catch you up with all the new details revealed about the expansion, from pricing to new locales and armor.
MHW Iceborne: Everything We Know, New Monsters, New Locale, New Elements!
- September 6th, 2019 (PS4, Xbox One)
- Winter 2019 (PC)
- For existing owners, the Monster Hunter World: Iceborne expansion is available as digital DLC for MSRP $39.99 / €39.99.
- A Digital Deluxe version including both the expansion and a Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Deluxe Kit DLC of cosmetic items is MSRP $49.99 / €49.99.
- For newcomers, the Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Master Edition containing both the main game and the Iceborne expansion is available to preorder at retail and will be available for purchase digitally at launch for MSRP $59.99 / €59.99.
- At North America retail only, the Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Master Edition Deluxe option that also includes the Monster Hunter World: Iceborne Deluxe Kit DLC comes in a Steelbook for MSRP $79.99.
MHW Iceborne Features
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne is a paid expansion comparative in size to previous “G Rank” and “Ultimate” categories. This time around, players can expect a new location called Hoarfrost Reach that features freezing temperatures and contrasts with the jungle-like setting of the Ancient Forest.
- Massive Volume of Content – Iceborne builds on every aspect of MHW with a wealth of new challenges and surprises.
- New Story Introduces Hoarfrost Reach Locale – Picking up the plot from MHW, hunters will travel to a snow-covered terrain which progressively expands with the story, eventually becoming the largest region in MHW so far.
- New and Returning Monsters – The new locale is home to brand new frigid climate foes as well as returning fan favorites joining the Monster Hunter: World lineup. Leading the pack is the new flagship monster Velkhana, an elder dragon with powerful ice attacks that is a pervasive threat in the new story.
- Master Rank difficulty option – A brand-new quest tier above High Rank that makes new and existing monsters more ferocious than ever.
- Added Gameplay Mechanics Deepen Combat – Options for the Slinger tool have been added including a Clutch Claw grapple move and Flinch Shot that stuns monsters. With the new ability to use the Slinger while the main weapon is drawn, new strategies and opportunities are available for combat.
- Expanded Weapon Options – Each of the 14 weapon types will get new combos and new elements, offering new depth to master.
- New Gear and Items to Craft – Added monsters means hunters will have new materials from which to craft equipment as they take on new quests and challenges throughout Hoarfrost Reach.
The new location looks absolutely gorgeous and highly detailed, with monster and hunter tracks trailing paths on the snow. It also brings the possibility of Hazards such as freeze being introduced as a mechanic, which we would love to see be combated by the new, warmer-looking armor.
A new item “Hot Pepper” will be used to make hot drinks to combat the frost, much like the Chillshroom was used for Cold Drink. Players can also opt to get into “Hot Springs” – as long as they are willing to share the bath with some monkeys!
Iceborne Progression and Itemization
Monster Hunter World’s endgame became about Tempered and Arch-Tempered Monsters dropping materials for powerful Gamma versions of existing armor sets, so we are extremely excited to see the new Master Rank and its effects on existing monsters.
Players can expect to see new materials, which in turn means a whole new sets of armors and weapons, likely tailored to counter Hoarfrost’s cold and to power Hunters to unexpected levels. Augmentation and Decorations could also be enhanced with this expansion, so existing gear could still remain powerful and help new players catch up to the new content and enter endgame Master Rank.
Based upon previous free DLC, if we expect a conservative Alpha and Beta set for each new monster, we are looking at (in the very least) 10 completely new armor sets. Assuming each monster will provide just one new weapon of each type, this would also add 70 new weapons. This is before considering the impact on Palico Armor, Charms, Decorations and potential Item Crafting.
For new players, a bundled version of the game is being sold for USD 59.99 which means we expect to see a combination of Event Quests that cater to both newbies and veterans alike. This will breathe new life into the multiplayer component and the leveling up of old monsters could enhance the appeal of returning to older hunts and now-obsolete monsters.
The “Hot Drink” and “Hot Springs” hint at an environmental hazard of freeze, but that’s not where mechanic changes end. Capcom is leveling up their Slinger game to bring something fans had been daydreaming about: Clutch Claw. This special grapple will allow you to grapple to a monster and get up close and personal and seems to count as an on-demand mount. We do not know the specifics of how this will work: Will it be for any monster? Will it be only to specific parts of the monster? Whatever they do with this, it is a brilliant idea that we cannot wait to see in action.
That said, the most salient point to me was by far the mention of a new Element and upcoming new moves for ALL weapon types. This is an exciting development and some of the confirmed new moves are Bowgun Evade Reloads, Power Shots on Great Swords, and grapple-chaining for Dual Blade users. This will significantly impact the way weapons are perceived by the player-base as it has a chance to bring all weapon types into the “in range” fold, and might even convert some weapon users to a new type.
The official press release also promises “Iceborne continues the skill-based progression and robust crafting system found in World“. This means we can expect to see new Skills. This will inevitably change the way we approach Builds and likely have an effect on base game, so we are very excited to see more.
Meet the new Iceborne Monsters
Let’s start where everyone wants to get to, the Elder Dragon Velkhana. This icy new monster seems to be somewhere between a Rathalos and a Legiana, and will be the main antagonist of the expansion, in the way that Nergigante was to the original launch. As such we can expect the monster to appear after some story progression only, and its gear to be some of the best in the game.
Banbaro is a Brute Wyvern monster coming with the expansion that was featured prominently in the trailer and looks kick-ass. Featuring large antlers and a furry coat to withstand the cold, this monster will hurl boulders and even trees at approaching hunters, rampaging through the landscape.
Beotodus is a snow-shark of sorts that can swim freely through the ground and emerge for agile and devastating takedowns. It inhabits areas where snow is deep, which slows hunter movement. Most likely a Piscine Wyvern, hunters can use Sonic Bombs to force it to surface.
Nargacuga is a returning Flying Wyvern characterized by stalking and stealth attacks. Since this is a prominent monster, we expect to see it after some initial introductions to the area, and likely as a predator hunting other monsters.
Preparing for Iceborne
We expect we’ll be seeing more information about Iceborne around E3 and Gamescom, but players can start the hype train by jumping on an Arch-Tempered Nergigante hunt for a limited time from May 11th UTC. Defeating this ultimate challenge will yield the powerful Nergigante γ (gamma) armor. In addition, a dynamic theme showcasing the lethal monster complete with custom ravaged system icons and the main game’s theme “Stars at Our Backs” as background music is now available for sale digitally on PS4™ for MSRP $2.99 / €2.99.
For more Monster Hunter World content read next Monster Hunter World: Spring Blossom Festival Roadmap 2019 and Monster Hunter World: All Guild Card Titles. Don’t miss out on all the details in Monster Hunter World: Spring Blossom Festival 2019 Contents, the event ends May 16th!
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