Navigation & Changes


Rebalancing Progression G Rank Solutions Other

Recent Changes:
Added some Gacha Coin information.
Clarified some Point Store information.
Clarified some Caravan information.
More information related to Raviente handling
Added plans for transmogs
Added plans for premium cuffs
Added plans for premium armour
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Older Changes:
Added information about handling of premium weapons.
Clearer information on new endgame upgrades.
Added information about changelog handling.
Added information about what Conquests actually were.
Added information about intended Furious changes.
Changed what David Bowie lyrics display above this message.


How Rebalancing Will Work


This is going to go over changes which are planned for the game in general in order to give it better structure. It will identify problems in the game and what will be done to tackle the issue.

This will be a lot of words but you should read it all if you actually care about changes being made or have any doubt about the legitimacy of them.

As is mentioned elsewhere; a vanilla server will exist alongside everything else but it is not the focus for what I feel are obvious reasons.

For clarity, most of this details the state Capcom left the game in. Planned solutions to the issues are detailed further down the page.

As always discourse on the planned changes is encouraged, especially if you have differing opinions.


General Initial Progression Issues


Historical Progression


Hunter Rank originally consisted of a Dos style progression where you would unlock new Monsters every couple of ranks and do urgent quests based on that.

The original format had an urgent quest for reaching HR11, HR17, HR31 and HR51. You would then have a non-standard system for reaching HR100 where you could pay a lot of money or solo a specific monster to progress, you had one of these for each 100 Hunter Ranks culminating in fighting Fatalis, Crimson Fatalis and White Fatalis solo as the final challenges for HR800, HR900 and HR999 respectively.

Style Rank was an addition later in Frontier that started at HR300 (originally HR500) and unlocked buffs per weapon class and Weapon Styles for each of the classes you had it for.


Ranking Compression


Compressed Hunter Rank has 7 ranks total before G Rank and as a result hundreds of ranks were turned into as little as 2 quests total.

The raw rank number compression looks like this:

With each section having the following content:


Monster Nerfs


Outside of the above ranking compression monsters at every point during Hunter Rank were repeatedly nerfed over time. This was not because they were too hard but rather to avoid people hitting any walls before G Rank because it lowered subscription rates.

In general you can assume anything that was turned into a Key or Urgent for the redone compression got hit with a nerf of of around 20% to everything. Meaning 80% of their original health and attack values. Many got far harsher nerfs ending up at below half of their original strength.

As said, these numbers were not outliers. Most were nerfed after being consistent for several years. The changes were purely to push people to the subscription wall and to their advertised new expansion content faster.


Armour Compression


Originally all armour in MHF needed materials to have their level upgraded, armour spheres as seen in the mainline games were not a thing.

Armour also was not always crafted directly, with many pieces originating from a parent set. This means something like a Blue Yian Kut-Ku armour would fork from the base Yian Kut-Ku one rather than being crafted immediately at the smith.

As part of their changes to rush people even faster, they replaced any material requirements past initial crafting with armour spheres.

Because the material compression was done in an incredibly lazy manner, a number of carves and breaks no longer have a purpose at at any point in the game as they were exclusively used in upgrade paths that were compressed out of existence.


Ongoing Summary


Functionally the above points thus far result in several problems:


G Rank


G Rank at its core was a poorly designed mess that solely functioned by virtue of the game being subscription based with new content being added every couple weeks to months.

All monsters were immediately unlocked at GR1 meaning there was never a reason to actually revisit or grind earlier release monsters as their skills were simply weaker due to natural power creep over time in a live service environment.

Early G Rank also had incredibly easy to make armour added over time, this means you could have a set easily capable of taking out the hardest non-event monsters in the series within a couple hours of starting G Rank. with the only thing stopping you doing this solely being that you needed to be G Rank 800 to fight them at all.

To exacerbate the above issues further, MHF-Z introduced Extreme Style which was entirely designed around fighting Zeniths, but which was made immediately available at GR1.


Extreme Style


Extreme Styles have incredibly high mobility, buffed motion values, added defensive options and can run at any point including while your weapon is unsheathed.

You unlocked this immediately at G Rank after it was added.

The game had 25 large scale expansions before MHF-Z, with most having smaller expansions before the next large scale expansion was released.

This means that every single one of the monsters added for more than 25 expansions was 100% designed around Hunters being limited to Earth, Heaven and Storm styles.

If you distil Monsters down to their core and HC versions this comes out at what is functionally around 190 different monsters.

If you count G Rank versions separately (as they do in fact have differing hitzones and new moves) and various special variants that aren't formally new sub or rare species the number drastically increases further.

In contrast to this; MHF-Z had 23 Zeniths, 5 challenge monsters and 8 normal monsters during its life cycle including all large scale expansions.

Of the normal monsters, one was delayed from G10 originally, meaning it was designed around a lack of Extreme Style and one was released as GR1 and GSR1 content for MHF-Z during the time when GSR300 was required for Extreme Style, implying it was also designed with non-Extreme styles in mind.

This obviously results in an incredibly low number of Monsters that were designed around Extreme Style and means that the vast majority of things you would fight during early GR are massively outclassed.


Conquests


Conquests were originally implemented as a roughly monthly event that had quests you could level up.

Levelling up the quests added new moves to the monsters over time and increased all core stats such as Attack, Health, Status Resistance etc.

The monsters available were Black Fatalis, Crimson Fatalis, Disufiroa and Shantien.

Conquest materials were used for upgrading GR Weapons and Armour to full power.

Quests started at Level 1 and would go up a minimum of 1 to a maximum of 15 levels per run with a maximum level of 9999.

Any serious player generally aimed for something around Lv200 minimum for every monster and each monster had a leaderboard with the highest levels getting extra material rewards. Lv9999 was not uncommon for first place on leaderboards.

Conquests were eventually turned into a permanent availability static set of four quests per monster and a pack of mass amounts of conquest materials were given out to all current and future players.

Functionally this meant there was no longer a reason to touch the quests outside of completing the hardest variant once for a transmog unlock.


Hunter's Road


Hunter's Road was added with MHF-Z's first large scale expansion. It's basically an arcade version of monster hunter where you choose one of a random pair of monsters and fight it to get points.

Road had a points store. It had every standard G Rank carve and break material in the game. You did not have to have hunted the monsters you could get materials for.

This meant you could get materials for everything in the game except Zeniths without ever hunting or even seeing the associated monsters.

Or to be even more blunt, it patched out the core Monster Hunting loop from a Monster Hunter game.


G Rank Decorations


G Rank decorations were originally one of the big long term investments in Frontier, you had to fully upgrade a piece of armour to then convert it into a decoration.

A new smithy section was added during the first large scale MHF-Z expansion that completely removed this grind and made it so you could make decorations with a single material instead.

The materials were available on the Road store.

This meant the best way to get any decoration in the game that wasn't an event one was to run road.

To put what this actually meant in terms of the core loop into perspective; you could make the strongest decorations from the strongest Elder Dragons by killing five Kut-Kus.


Zeniths


Zeniths were added in the MHF-Z update. They have four variants that increase in power, these are generally referred to as GR200, GR400, GR600 and GR800 or ā˜…1 through ā˜…4.

They were initially pretty well specced but GR200 and GR400 saw some pretty heavy nerfs at the lower end for the MHF-ZZ update. These nerfs were mostly done because the game was already dead at the time MHF-ZZ released and COG were focused on just having people blast through content as fast as possible to see it before the game was closed.

Ultimately this means that without any changes the GR200 and GR400 Zeniths are notably weaker than normal monsters added during G10 and earlier updates. This is in spite the game having power creep pushing your DPS to potentially tens of times that of G10.


Zenith Weapons


Zenith Weapons had their material requirements lowered drastically because people wanted to spend more time grinding Raviente. They went from pretty grindy to nearly grindless.


Zenith Materials


Outside of their signature break materials (for which all Zeniths had a version exclusive to each rank band) all Zenith materials came from all ranks of Zeniths.

This meant that the best way to approach Zenith equipment was to get your rank locked break materials and then grind whatever rank you could do the fastest. Generally this meant most grinding was done at GR400 where the monster was relatively weak and lacked harder moves.


Pay to Win


To put it bluntly, the game was in fact Pay to Win.

For raw gearing it was generally a temporary power boost that newer non-paid gear would replace but the simple fact is that gearing was easier if you paid and the result always objectively better.

All premium armour that was relevant came with a flat damage reduction that applied before anything else. This started at 10% with 1 piece and went to 30% with 5. This means that if you had a Premium and a non-Premium set that had with identical Defence, Resistances and Skill Points the Premium set would simply take 30% less damage from everything in the game than the non-Premium set.

These sets also came with health regeneration, defence boosts and attack boosts depending on the quest taken.

Most grinds could be drastically reduced by subscribing to various paid premium courses.

Some courses reduced all taken damage by 70%.

DS and SnS were especially notable in that their best in slot weapon was premium for most of the game's life.

You could skip grinds entirely by buying Gacha coins and using them instead of doing quests.

The Frontier equivalent of Charms or Talismans had Premium options that were always drastically better than non-Premium.

While marginal in benefit compared to the above, the Japanese version had an additional subscription for using town boxes.


My Mission


After you hit HR5 you unlocked the option to complete 'My Mission' tasks, these gave various passive defensive boosts but also increased the maximum amount of attack you could have.

They functionally amount to a checklist of monsters you had to hunt in a linear order that got repetitive and wasn't very engaging.

Because you will always need some levels they were basically compulsory and the only way to skip the grind was to pay.


Endgame Grinds


Raviente was the ultimate endgame content in Frontier from MHF-G9 onwards. If your class wanted a Raviente weapon it was always best in slot and nothing else could ever compete with it.

For the few classes that didn't want Raviente weapons, best in slot was either a paid weapon or a Blue Tenrou weapon.

Blue Tenrou weapons needed about 3 actual hunts of materials and the rest came from the Hunter's Road store. These weapons were customisable and eclipsed everything else in the game that wasn't Raviente at a fraction of a fraction of the time investment compared to even Zenith ones.


Solutions To Problems


This will summarise the above and state what is being done to address the perceived problem. It will also summarise problems I didn't mention and state what is being done to address the problem.

Monsters were heavily nerfed over time

Get monster stats from all previous releases of Frontier we have access to in order to extract official pre-nerf stats for them.

Restore these and have people of varying skill levels test the monsters to refine them to the best appropriate value between the original and the overly nerfed versions.

Unlocking Styles comes too late

Unlock Earth, Heaven and Storm Styles from HR1.

Adjust Keys and Urgents to be Hardcore variants of monsters for the closest emulation of fighting them at low ranks of Style Rank.

The new Hardcore quests will have higher tiers of Roar, Quake and Wind earlier

Add access to decorations for Evasion, Wind Pressure, Hearing Protection and Quake Res that can be obtained from HR1.

You do not fight enough monsters during HR and there's no reason to gear

Add a much larger variety of monsters during progression as key quests.

Having more monsters required to progress and removing the nerfs all monsters faced should be enough to justify gearing for anyone who isn't being carried.

Equipment compression removes reasons to fight monsters

Get material requirements from the last version of MHF which had them and restore a ramped down version of the old requirements

Specifically swap out rare materials for equivalent less rare ones where too many rare materials are required for very little power gain.

HR1-2 and HR3-4 is a bad split for Low Rank and High Rank

Have HR1 cover the entirety of Low Rank and HR2-4 cover High Rank.

Low Rank being one section results in a better spread of quests across higher ones and avoids a full menu section devoted to 10 incredibly low power monsters and nothing else.

HR5 Exotics are generally poor compared to GR and cause balance issues

Move exotic monsters to G Rank exclusivity so that people get the best possible first experience for the monster.

The HR5 versions ultimately only existed because you needed to subscribe to reach HR5 and and people would subscribe to fight something like Zinogre or Deviljho.

Exotic Armours and Weapons are simply so strong within HR5 that it's never worth making any other pieces or exploring the mechanics of them, bringing them in line with other equipment be a nerf of such a degree that it would be tantamount to removing the equipment anyway.

To put their strength into perspective, equipping any piece of Seregios armour at all (e.g. just the legs) will grant you Critical Eye+5, an armour skill that needs 50 points otherwise as well as the skill points on the armour piece.

Some HR5 versions of monsters added during MHF-G are overly weak

Move monsters that stand out as incredibly poor at HR5 to G Exclusivity.

The biggest offender is Guanzorumu who only has a repel and leaves before he even goes into his second phase. Inagami is a secondary consideration but isn't as poor as Guanzorumu.

Weapon classes can feel bad without gearing

Give access to decorations for the skills that are required for weapons to feel good from HR1 or HR2 instead of HR5 upwards. Currently this is intended to cover the skills below.

* Auto-Reload is Fast Charge for Bow, it basically bricks Bowguns by giving them maximum recoil.

The Caravan or Hunter Gem takes forever to level

Drastically lower the colour requirements for the Gem so you finish levels naturally over time.

It was hundreds of quests to max out colours and if you didn't upgrade you could have overflow which was actively wasted.

Hunter Rank Caravan Routes are terrible and repetitive

Update the routes to cover more monster variety and be more enjoyable in general.

I'd avoid using the term terrible but fighting multiple Yama Tsukamis that can only die at the top of the tower and take over 10 minutes to reach it counts as terrible.

Caravan Routes give too few Caravan Points compared to Raviente

Raise CP granted by all routes.

Add more G Rank Caravan Routes with higher fixed CP rewards at the end.

My Missions are highly repetitive

Increase the variety of monsters and sync it with the progression so you will naturally unlock most levels you might initially want.

Have early ranks only need you to kill a single monster per level to avoid repeating easy monsters.

Vanilla had you fight 78 monster types over 250 missions, most of this variety came very late in the process.

G Rank has no progression and all monsters were unlocked at GR1

Add Key and Urgent Quests to G Rank.

Convert Gā˜…1-7 to G1 to G10 and have progression based on the monster release order.

Release order based progression results in weak monsters in later ranks

There is not a concrete plan for this, but this is commonly agreed on to be a good option.

Move outliers that came very late in the MHF-G lifecycle to appear earlier in the game.

Alter decorations of moved monsters to not have skills that came much later.

The biggest outliers are below:

Extreme style ruins early G Rank

Unlock Extreme Style after the G10 urgent so you have to fight monsters released during G1-10 with the styles you'd actually have.

Free G Rank equipment is overly strong

Remove the free aspect entirely.

Make weapons that are initially crafted at maximum strength instead have actual upgrade trees to reach that level.

Make the armour pieces available only after hitting an appropriate point in progression.

G Rank decorations are basically free

Swap the direct crafting at the smith to the GF variants instead of GX.

Lower total material requirements for GX Lv7 and restore GX armour conversion as primary source of decorations.

Conquests are badly structured but will be actively relevant again

Raise the static level Conquests are available at to Lv200/1000/2000/9999 to reflect the actual levels you would have grinded them to during the event.

Ramp up rewards more heavily per level.

Add the Low% break and carve rewards to higher level quest reward pools to avoid your best option always being resetting the weakest form.

Vanilla levels are Lv1/200/1000/9999. Lv1 has no health or attack at all.

Road replaced everything except Zeniths and Raviente

Make the Road Store primarily a source of its actual unique materials and special consumables instead of a generic best source of everything.

Only have monster materials sporadically available on road and in limited quantities instead of permanently to avoid it replacing actual hunting.

Point stores became actively detrimental to the core loop

Raise prices on, stagger access to or remove materials in point stores as appropriate.

GCP has a very solid niche in Partner upgrades already; losing some material buying power is fine.

N Points will be incredibly scarce in general as there will not be a method of constantly generating them (5 a day from a daily only) allowing for them to serve as a solid mercy system for active players.

Festival Points are not really an initial concern but they have the least use outside of raw material buying of these points.

Lv50 G Weapons are not viable long term

Add Z Upgrades for all G50 weapons that are powerful early in the Zenith cycle but eclipsed by actual Zenith equipment after GR400s.

Add endgame grind upgrades for after the Zenith cycle.

Most Sigil recipe results are weak, have no niche and are not worth engaging with

Group monsters similar into similar classifications (e.g. Status, Elemental, Raw).

Come up with a generic set of skills for that group (e.g. Elemental, Attack, Affinity, Dowsing).

Balance around a core chase skill at all levels with the rarest material recipes guaranteeing.

Earliest monsters should have high values in useful flavour skills like dowsing (increases rates of rare gathering materials).

Things that alter moves or motion values should be easily available but shouldn't come with any huge buffs to stats.

For a practical example: Gasurabazura and Gypceros are Raw and Status. Gypceros would be more likely to roll utility skills such as dowsing and Gasura would have those removed from the pool and have a higher maximum Attack value.

Zenith materials reward mindless grind

Lower the drop rates of rarer materials on the easier versions and increase it on harder versions.

Zenith weapons need too few materials

Set material counts to a midground between the pre-nuke and post-nuke values.

GR200 and GR400 versions of Zeniths were nerfed

Revert the nerfs. Buff GR200 and GR400 versions of monsters added after the nerfs to put them in line with earlier monsters.

Zenith weapons without Skill Slots Up are brick

There is not a concrete plan for this.

Potential solutions are swapping weapons to utility Zenith Skills instead or lowering the power level on anything granting skill slots.

The prior will probably feel better for all involved as people would just use the weaker weapon to get armour skills instead.

Premium armour has an exclusive defence layer making it always best in slot

Remove the raw incoming damage reduction from premium equipment so that it functions like all other armour instead.

Make premium armour have traditional upgrade trees instead of needing a single material to hit maximum power.

Premium armour is crafted too easily

Make premium armour have normal upgrade trees and crafting mechanics relevant to their release period.

Things added in G or Z updates will lose their HR versions to enable more appropriate levels of challenge to obtain them.

Premium armour pieces have very high skill points

Scale up grinds so they are a bigger investment over a longer period than standard pieces.

Tone down pieces that give absurd amounts of skill points (e.g. 20 points in Focus for an instantly maxed Focus+2) as appropriate.

Premium weapons need very few materials

Make premium weapons have normal upgrade trees and crafting mechanics.

Premium cuffs were always best in slot compared to Standard ones

Make the premium cuffs require larger grinds than the standard variants.

PZ cuffs especially should become relatively high investment grinds given their insane power in enabling sets.

Cuffs are basically Frontier's equivalent of Charms or Talismans.

Some skills are only realistically enabled by Premium Armour

Add more decorations or create new ZX pieces for skills that have very low availability outside of premium pieces such as Focus or Reflect.

Magnet Spike pin is overly strong and there is a static resistance against it

Add variance to monsters' magnetic pin resistance value in the same manner they have varying KO, Sleep, Poison, Blast and Sleep resistances instead of having it be a binary value.

Lower the motion value on the pin finisher from 600-750 to something more reasonable like 200-250.

To put Magnet Spike in perspective, the pin completely locks down a monster in the same way paralysis would and then does the full motion value on whatever part you place a marker on at the end, this includes things such as Fatalis' horns which are nearly impossible for normal melee weapons to hit.

In comparison, a great sword charge is under 300 motion even if you invest 20 points in an armour skill to explicitly buff it which can whiff and leaves you open to counter attacks.

Vampirism is best in slot for both offence and defence at only 10 point investment

Lower the True Raw bonus from 80 to around 10.

Skills with active negatives generally granted around 50 true raw and skills without them generally need 20 or more points for 50 true.

A 10 point skill that actively heals you while you attack should provide something far below actual offensive skills.

Furious is an easy to activate 10 point skill that rewards playing normally heavily

Numbers are not final for this. Generally the idea is to move the (lowered) power to the final stage primarily to make losing stages a real consequence.

Lower the maximum True Raw bonuses: 70/100/180 > 15/30/100

Lower the maximum Affinity bonus: 10%/25%/40% > 5%/10%/40%

Lower the maximum Status and Elemental: 1.05x/1.10x/1.20x > 1.025x/1.05x/1.15x

You gain buffs for a combination of Guarding, Evading and Attacking. You lose one stage on taking a large hit. There are no other downsides.

Hiden grind was either too long or too free

There is not a concrete plan for this but a few ideas have been thrown around.

Allow the direct creation of a G Lv1 armour piece to skip the Hunter Rank portion of Hiden grind entirely.

Lower total numbers of Souls, Ribbons and Merits required for completing a piece to convert into a deco.

Completing something arbitrary like reaching G Rank could grant you a single full set of Hiden decorations.

Completing a specific number of quests with a weapon class could unlock access to a Hiden material quest that would contribute a lot of the required materials to speed it up.

New decorations could be added that are easy to get but take up 3 slots and grant no extra skills, this would allow access to the skill but would not be viable for long term set creation.

No one did the Hunter Rank portion before hitting G Rank, this meant it took longer to find monsters you killed than to kill them for that entire section of grind. Without paying for boosts, this was historically around 800 quests.

Raviente is functionally PVP and creates an environment where you actively want everyone else to be worse than your group

Make the gap in terms of rewards between being the best group and a normal group far lower.

Raviente Weapons take over 1,000 hours on average to complete

Lower item requirement totals so that you don't need to grind Raviente for 1,000 hours.

Add alternative sources for earning Gg Gems.

This is not actually hyperbolic. A Z100 requires 1,500 Extreme Ravientes assuming decent performance on every one. Even spamming premium and getting nothing but perfect Ravientes would come in at over 300 hours.

Raviente or Premium Weapons are always best in slot

Add new endgame weapon upgrade paths for non-Raviente and non-Premium weapons that allow them to hit similar power levels with similar long term grinds.

The intention is to include literally every possible unique model in this over time, including old premium weapons that were never given stats to be relevant. As previously stated these weapons would also now have normal upgrade trees prior to endgame upgrades.

This would not be 1,000 hours and would be after hitting their vanilla maximum upgrade at GR800 level.

Raviente heavily disincentivises Monster Hunting

Nothing here is final.

Have Raviente available on a rotating cycle with event quests that grant Raviente related rewards available during downtime.

Raviente should always be the best source of Raviente related materials but people should not actively feel pressured into joining all Ravientes they see while online.

There's not a perfect solution for this, all ideas will inevitably upset someone at some point.

Berserk and Extreme Raviente needs 24-32 people to function properly.

Practice Raviente already exists as a 4-8 player option sharing the fight of Berserk and Extreme.

Buff the rewards moderately on the Practice Raviente to make them a real alternative to normal Berserk for small groups.

Practice Raviente is a very diluted experience and realistically should remain as a weaker alternative rather than a replacement, likely its rewards would scale based on the schedule aspect above.

Blue Tenrou is overly powerful

Drastically lower the power level of all Blue Tenrou weapons.

Add alternative endgame variants of all Tenrou weapons in general, not just blue.1

1This has not been tested to be possible. If it's not, relegating Blue Tenrou to endgame and making them need actual work is also a viable choice.

There's not really an elegant way to handle something that's 80% of a Z100 at 0.8% of the time investment, heavy nerfs seem the only real way.

Determination fundamentally breaks the game

Don't have Determination available outside of the hardest challenge content or a speedrun only server.

Raviente Decorations all have Determination

Swap Determination points for larger values in Issen as it is a 30 point skill that Determination directly replaced.

Raviente will no longer be the only grind anyone cares about if it doesn't have best in slot everything

This isn't a problem.

A lot of armour never got added as a transmog option

Add all armours with unique visuals as transmog options.

A lot of transmogs were paid or code redemption only

Create events or event quests to get all transmog options or tie them to existing related ones.

Gacha Coins were paid only

Create alternative avenues to earn Gacha Coins; they will never be tied to real money.

The actual uses Gacha Coins will have has not really been discussed. They were used for in a special item store, for caravan colours, for my mission skips and naturally for actual Gacha rolls.


Other Points and Clarifications


Activated skill limits will not be reduced outside of the zenith weapon skill changes mentioned above.

There's probably not a way to stop people being carried outside of forced solo quests, which is more likely to upset people rather than actually fix the issue.

There's probably not a way to stop people always wanting specific weapon compositions on a Raviente. Harassment in this regard would not be tolerated.

Combining Low Rank and High Rank might happen eventually. HR5 is itself a new ranking category and having the progression being a hybrid Low Rank and High Rank straight to HR5's Goushu/Henshu/Kishu structure would probably be better pacing wise.

If it isn't mentioned and it was a premium feature, you can probably assume it'll be tied to either an event quest or actual normal materials.

There is no intention of anything being tied to real money. If this ever changes it will never be something that actively impacts questing in a meaningful way.

A fully comprehensive changelog is not planned but raw numbers will be given where relevant along with clarifying what changes are actually implemented.

If something isn't addressed I either forgot about it or there's nothing concrete planned. As always, you can simply ask on Discord about things.

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