Monster Hunter World Face-Off: PC vs. PS4

Monster Hunter World took the world by storm earlier this year, but those who were promised a PC version were unfortunately left to wait a little over half a year. It’s a game everyone should at least try once to see if they enjoy it, as it’s unique in its own right, but that’s not why we’re here today. We’re looking at the console version, specifically PlayStation 4, and how the PC version stacks up against it. Capcom has done well over the last few years in publishing some of the best PC ports, but has the lengthy wait been worth it?

Well, sort of. Monster Hunter World is technically the best way to play Monster Hunter World as you’re able to achieve 2160p (4K) with an uncapped frame rate going beyond 60fps. It’s not even all that difficult to hit a smooth frame rate at lesser resolutions such as 1440p and 1080p, but only if you turn off Volume Rendering Quality. You can set this between low to high, with a variable setting available, but really, we found this to only add what looks like added fog and atmosphere, somewhat diluting the vibrant art Monster Hunter World has to offer. It’s also very demanding, especially at higher resolutions, dropping our frame rate as much as 30%. Outside of that, Monster Hunter World features a bevy of graphical options, from your typical texture quality and ambient occlusion, to some more advanced settings, such as LOD Bias, Resolution Scaling, Z-Prepass, and SH Diffuse Quality. There’s a lot to play around with here, which goes beyond its console counterpart’s capabilities.

As for differences, the shadows in the distance are better on PC compared to the PS4 “Prioritize Graphics” mode, and environmental textures are a little better. Because this PlayStation 4 mode uses a stronger depth of field technique, you won’t be getting a crisper image, though, with environments, such as the shot where Nergigante faces off against The Hunstman, the rocky background is blurred quiet a bit, even though the definition is more than the “Prioritize Resolution” mode. Speaking of which, this graphical setting on PlayStation 4 Pro allows for a checkerboard rendering at 1800p, which shows off the crisper image quality than the other PS4 modes. Unfortunately, as you can tell in the screenshots below, the LOD has been severely impacted as geometry has been removed from the environment, and models have lower-poly assets in its place. The PC allows for the best of both worlds, as you’re able to get that crisp 4K resolution while being a tad better with additional LOD, but there is one thing that didn’t make the transition well: textures.

Unfortunately, one of the problems we ran into was texture quality on character models. While the environments maintain the same texture work as their console counterpart, if not better in some spots, the clothing and armor on your avatar and NPCs seem to be that of a lower quality on PC. This might be an oversight on Capcom’s part, but it’s definitely something we took notice of as cutscenes just looked off with beautiful backgrounds mixed together with low resolution characters. You can definitely see it in, well almost every shot a character is in, but most especially close-up. For example, the Field Team Leader’s armor in the shot where The Handler is looking at a Pukei-Pukei feather is a mess, and our protagonist standing in front of a fiery boulder, her arm pieces and shoulders are less than what we’ve come to expect, not to mention her chest piece. Hopefully this will get addressed in a future patch. If Capcom can fix the consistent crashes we experienced prior to launch in a timely manner, hopefully they can do so with this.

Due to storage limitations, namely because 4K PNG files are massive, if you want to see uncompressed screenshots, you can check here.

Left is PC, Middle is Prioritized Graphics, and Right is Prioritized Resolution: