Parents' Guide to

Wild Hearts

By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Fantasy adventure brings big game hunting to new heights.

Wild Hearts cover art featuring a hunter facing off against a mythic beast

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What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If that's true, then Wild Hearts would best be described as a gushing love letter to Capcom's hit Monster Hunter series, with a bit of a flirtation to Epic Games' Fornite tossed in for good measure. From the sprawling landscapes to the diverse arsenal of weapons to the massive beasts you're called on to hunt, everything feels like it would be right at home in a Monster Hunter spinoff, albeit a streamlined one. The number of weapons available in Wild Hearts is surprisingly small, though each one feels completely unique from the others, with plenty of distinct tricks up their sleeves to master. Where Wild Hearts really stands apart, though, is through the use of Karakuri. These mechanical devices can be built out of thin air on the fly, providing players with all sorts of ways to change the course of battle. Face to snout with a raging boar? Craft a bulwark wall for cover and stop its charge. Or maybe piece together a repeater crossbow to ding it for damage and distract its attention. The use of Karakuri opens up a slew of monster slaying options.

Wild Hearts' streamlined gameplay and controls put a lot of focus on the action. Attacking Kemono creatures has more of an arcade-like hack and slash feel. Whether sliding underneath a massive beast or striking from on high after launching from the high ground, the key to victory is a constant ballet of move, build, strike, dodge, wash, rinse, and repeat as needed. And if you find yourself in a particularly tough fight, calling in some extra help from fellow online hunters is a breeze. Even so, keep in mind that, unless you've specifically partied up with a couple of friends, you never know who will join your hunt. You might gel like a well-oiled hunting machine, or your team could fall apart like a scrapped Karakuri. Finally, while the game is generally inviting and fun, it still feels a bit rough around the edges. Technical glitches sometimes rear their ugly heads, such as Kemono getting temporarily stuck in or on Karakuri constructs or cutscenes and voiceovers getting out of synch. These aren't game breaking, but they do make for the occasional hiccup in an otherwise polished hunting experience.

Game Details

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