Nothing stands out more about Monster Hunter games then the monsters themselves. Creatures like Diablos, Rathalos, and Tigrex have become iconic due to their eye-catching designs and the level of challenge that they present to the player. The latest game within the series Rise introduces nine new large scale beasts and the majority of these stand up there with the best that the series has to offer. Here's our ranking of the best monsters in Rise based on both their design and individual mechanics (small creatures are not included here).
I don't think any of the new creatures that have debuted in Rise are particularly bad, but obviously, somebody has to take the spot at the bottom on the list. Many of my favourite creatures in the series are imposing beasts that have striking fantastical designs, but Aknosom is simply just a large bird that resembles a crane. I honestly completely forgot about my encounter with this Bird Wyvern until putting together this list, but that doesn't mean its design is a complete write off. Aknosom can push out the feathers on its head like an open umbrella to block attacks, and it will charge at you like a bull whilst in this phase.
8. Great Izuchi
Great Izuchi holds a special place for me as it was the first monster that I took on within the game when I played its demo earlier this year. This Bird Wyvern has a bony hook-like blade at the end of its tail that it will attack the player with by spinning around rapidly. It will also attempt to overwhelm the player by summoning several creatures to join the fight. The reason I have placed this creature so low is because fighting it as an absolute breeze, and as a result, it doesn't feel the most memorable. It's attacks are really well telegraphed and even if you do get hit, only its tail swing attack will have you reaching for a potion.
From this point forward, I pretty much love all the monsters included within this list, but obviously there were a few that stood out more than others. Tetranadon is an adorable mix of a turtle crossed with a platypus, and it's covered with green moss to help it camouflage. What I love too is that it will eventually puff out its chest like a frog to try and stun you so it can retreat. It's not the most agile fighter, but it can punish you if you're not careful by digging up and throwing rocks and slamming down the full force of its body weight.
Somnacanth might just be the prettiest creature we've seen to date in Monster Hunter, but that doesn't mean it can't pack a punch. Somnacanth resembles a mermaid and it really stands out with its light blue eyes, yellow scales, and the purple fins running down its body. This creature has an interesting movement pattern as it moves through the water backwards and can dip underneath its surface to launch a surprise attack. Perhaps its most annoying move is that it can spray you with powder out of its mouth to send you to sleep temporarily.
Hailing from the Flooded Forest, Bishaten is pretty much a Frankenstein monster of several different creatures. It resembles both a bat and monkey, and it behaves like a cobra, as it stands upright on its club-like tail, patiently waiting to strike. It also attacks its prey by throwing fruits and some of these can be toxic, so be sure to pack yourself some antidotes. With many of the series' monsters being birds or large dragons, Bishaten feels completely unique, and that's why it earns a spot this high on the list.
If you're not a fan of spiders, then I'd recommend you look away now. This giant eight-legged monster can breath fire and it spits out blobs of silk that will leave you temporarily paralysed and vulnerable to its attacks. Upon lying eyes upon it, it reminded me an awful lot of the Armor Spider from Demon's Souls, which certainly isn't a bad thing. Along with its nightmare-inducing design, Rakna-Kadaki also earns high praise from me, as it produces one of the coolest looking armour sets within the entire game.
Narrowly cracking the top three is Almudron, a giant Leviathan that has a giant scorpion-like tail and resembles an ancient Chinese dragon. What I liked about this fight is that it offers a sense of verticality like no others and it encourages you to use the Wire Bug. During battle, Almudron attempts to shield itself by creating walls made from mud, and you can use the Wire Bug to scale these and land a hard hitting attack from above. This Leviathan's other attacks see it slam its bulky tail down like a wrecking ball and spew out mud from its mouth.
Just narrowly missing out on the top spot is box art star Magnamalo. This majestic beast not only has the most lore significance out of any creatures within the game, but it's also well designed and puts up quite the fight. Magnamalo has a formidable appearance, as it is covered with rows of yellow spikes, and it has a set of four razor-sharp fangs protruding from its mouth. It's a force to be reckoned with from a distance and up close, as it will fire purple projectiles at you and will attempt to slam you into the ground using its powerful front legs.
1. Goss Harag
Goss Harag is the obvious frontrunner here, as it knocks it out of the park with both its level of challenge and terrifying design. It resembles an abominable snowman and it can transform both of its arms into blades of ice by breathing its frosty breath onto them. Using these blades, it hits like an absolute truck, and I found myself fainting twice to it even though I headed out appropriately stocked up on explosive barrels and potions. I did criticize Rise for its lack of challenge within my review (which you can read here), but Goss Harag was able to create a sense of danger and unease like no other creature.