I accidentally killed a Rathian today. I felt bad. (Because I wanted to capture it.) 😛
Large Monster #5: Jyuratodus
I call it “Nessie”. I don’t have to explain why, right? Nessie hangs around the marshy, muddy areas of the Wildspire Wastes. You’ll see it cruising around, minding its own business, popping its head out occasionally, savaging the local wildlife, and starting turf wars with Wedge. Of all the monsters we’ve met so far, Jyuratodus has the most limited range; since it never leaves the water areas, you will never have a hard time finding it during the hunt.
Yesterday, I alluded to how Nessie was something of a retread of the Barroth: they share the same, mud-based armor layer, and mud based attacks. The biggest difference on that front is that Nessie can accurately spit mud at you, not just shake it off in your general direction. It also has a good chance of causing Water Blight when it hits you with its mud, a status effect that slows your natural stamina regeneration to a crawl. Pack some Nulberries, though, and it isn’t too big a problem (and conveniently, there are several of the plants right in the center of Nessie’s range.) Other than that, the Jyuratodus has a suite of sweeping and lunging attacks to smack you around with.
There is something very strange about the monster though… See, you can see from the pictures that it is pretty huge, right? And it cruises around the marshes partially submerged, and in certain attacks, completely submerged, right? But… the swamp is never more than waist deep on your hunter. So it isn’t just swimming through the water, but swimming through the earth underneath as though it were water… I mean, it doesn’t seem to be burrowing, because you can still see ripples as it moves… so confusing. Oh, and if you see it submerge, move, because it is about to burst out from under you.
Fighting Nessie is, again, a remix of the Wedge fight — use a water weapon or Puddle Pod to knock off its mud armor, then wade in with strong attacks. If you are fighting alone, I would suggest using Puddle Pods over a water weapon, since the unarmored Nessie takes less damage from water element attacks. Of course, you are also fighting in the water, so be aware that your speed and evasion is going to be hampered. Other than that, watch for Nessie’s forward lunge, 360 degree spin, and of course its submerge & breach assault. It’s just a personal opinion, but Nessie feels like less of a hit-sponge than the Barroth, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble putting it on the ropes. Just expect it to refresh its mud armor a few times; you’ll recognize it by the way it starts twisting around in a spiral in the mud after getting a bit of distance. (It’s actually a good moment to find some cover, and heal up and sharpen your weapon.)
If there is one major takeaway, I’d say it would be customizing your radial item shortcuts (accessed by holding L1, and moving the right stick to the item you want to use.) It is inconvenient to rotate through your full item inventory whenever you need to switch between healing potions and Nulberries, so assigning the berries to a shortcut can potentially save you in a dangerous situation. This goes for any item you use habitually, like the Well-done Steak, Nutrients, or in my case, Whetfish Scales. Otherwise, if you can handle Wedge, you can likely handle Nessie. 😉
And as is my tradition, here is the full Jyura set:
…pfft, those shoulders… Yeah, a bit too ornate for my tastes. 😛
Small Monster #5: Gajau
So, if you were thorough in exploring the Ancient Forest, you might have come across a couple of these toothy fishies lurking in a pool slightly off the beaten track; if not, you will definitely come across them in the Wildspire Wastes. They are vicious little jerks, and possibly the most violent of the smaller monsters in the first two areas, as they will attack you if you loiter nearby for any amount of time.
Gajau attack by launching themselves at you in a straight line, like a tackle with teeth, and the potential to send you flying. Well, it sounds worse than it is, really — they don’t do a lot of damage, they’re just irritating, mostly. Since they live in the water, they can be annoying to target with your melee weapons, since the water slows you down.
Unlike large monsters or Vespids, the Gajau don’t get a full armor set, just a pair of greaves for your legs:
This footwear does have two good points, though: first, it has a good amount of Water defense, and secondly it has the skill Aquatics Expert, which makes it easier to fight in water. In other words, great equipment for hunting Nessie. 😉
Well, much as I would like to tell you about how dangerous the Diablos is (on a scale of one to ten, it ranks “yikes” 😯 ), it is time to leave the Wildspire Wastes behind and travel back to the Ancient Forest, where “Fluffy” is waiting for us. See you tomorrow! 😀