Guide: Transferring Your Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Save Data

Sweaty palm time

As those of you currently diving Jaggi Helm-first into Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate no doubt already know, Capcom — and various retailers — have been encouraging you to buy two copies of the game. Naturally one is for Wii U and the other is for 3DS, with the big selling point being that you can transfer your save data between both versions and seamlessly pick up where you left off on the other system. That means that whether you're slouched in an armchair wearing pajamas or on the bus to work/school/friend's house who also has Monster Hunter, you can continue to smite beasts and grind regardless.

This is made possible thanks to the free 3DS app, snappily titled Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Data Transfer Program; yet as it's only been made available on the respective release dates in North America and PAL regions, we've been unable to test it fully until now. As always we want to make you happy, dear readers, so having gone through the process we'll outline how it's done, including some important tips to minimise potential issues.

For starters, read this guide, then read the electronic manual for the app, read the guide again and then seek legal consul. Going into this we were transferring a 46-hour save back and forth, so we have no shame in admitting that we prayed to any gods that would listen and sold our soul to the devil. Thankfully, our caution paid off, and below is your step-by-step guide to enjoy a similar level of success.

Wii U to 3DS transfer

Let's start with some key points before jumping into the transfer. When it comes to this process, one set of saves is all you need. The app may be on 3DS, but in order to transfer from Wii U to 3DS you need to clear all save data from your 3DS game; if your first transfer is from 3DS to Wii U, you need to do the same on the home console. To clear any save date on 3DS, go to Options and then hold L/R/X until prompted.

This tool doesn't allow you to select a save profile to move, it moves all save data. With that in mind, if you have both copies we recommend resigning yourself to one set of saves (you have three profiles, though most will only need one) that you'll continually transfer back and forth. With that clear, let's get into it.

  • Start up your copy of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on Wii U, and at the same time launch the Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Data Transfer Program on your 3DS.
  • Ensure that your 3DS copy has no save data.
  • In the Data Transfer app, go into options and ensure that Data Backup is On, it's a useful measure to take.
  • Select Data Transfer on the Wii U game and Transfer Save Data on the 3DS app.
  • Select Wii U to Nintendo 3DS on the 3DS app.
  • Select your Wii U system name on the following screen (hit Y to search again if it hasn't appeared), and hit A.
  • The transfer will begin with a cute animation, and should take no more than a minute.
  • When the transfer is complete, simply hit Start on the 3DS app and then quit, while B on the Wii U game will take you back to the front menu.
  • If you try to play your game on Wii U after the transfer it'll advise that save data won't update on the 3DS version (obviously); we suggest leaving it well alone and transferring data back to Wii U before playing the home console version again.
  • Open up your 3DS copy, and your save data will await.

The good thing is that everything will be exactly as you expect, with the exception of your touch screen panel layout. This is lost in the transfer process, so you'll need to set it up each time you transfer — the virtual D-Pad is a must! All of your progress in Moga Village and Port Tanzia will be up to date; it's all exactly the same, except for the online multiplayer option (without the Wii U LAN adapter and separate app). You can go ahead and carry on your game with confidence.

3DS to Wii U transfer

The process for 3DS to Wii U transfer is largely the same, except you do not need to remove or alter the Wii U save data. If you've left the home console data alone after the first transfer, it'll still be there, and when you move from 3DS to Wii U it'll detect that the save data is "linked" and update accordingly. As we've already stated, tamper with the Wii U data and attempt a subsequent transfer at your own risk. Below are the tweaked instructions for moving the data from 3DS to Wii U:

  • Start up your copy of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on Wii U, and at the same time launch the Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Data Transfer Program on your 3DS.
  • In the Data Transfer app, go into options and ensure that Data Backup is On, it's a useful measure to take.
  • Select Data Transfer on the Wii U game and Transfer Save Data on the 3DS app.
  • Select Nintendo 3DS to Wii U on the 3DS app.
  • Select your Wii U system name on the following screen (hit Y to search again if it hasn't appeared), and hit A.
  • The transfer will begin with a cute animation, and should take no more than a minute.
  • You'll be asked whether you want "Set extended data save settings..." on the Wii U - this includes Guild Cards and Hunters for Hire, so always say Yes.
  • When the process is complete, simply hit Start on the 3DS app and then quit, while B on the Wii U game will take you back to the front menu.
  • Load up your Wii U save and it'll have all of the progress that you added on your 3DS copy.
  • Open up your 3DS copy, the save data will be wiped and the game empty. Simply follow the Wii U to 3DS transfer process to continue on the handheld.

In Summary

Overall, once you're familiar with the process, it should take no more than five minutes from the point you turn on your Wii U, load the game as well as the 3DS app, and get started. The transfer itself is very quick, and efficient when under way. We tested the accuracy of the transfer with pleasing results; after the initial switch to 3DS we completed a quest in Port Tanzia, set a Hunter for Hire on a mission and mixed up the front page of our inventory; all details transferred flawlessly back to Wii U.

While not exactly a flawless process, it could have undoubtedly been worse; most importantly it's quick, which means that if you allow yourself a short amount of time you can shift your Wii U data to 3DS before leaving the house, and vice-versa when you return. We were pretty careful and followed the manual's instructions carefully, not willing to risk a huge investment of time to try alternatives within the setup. To avoid tears, remember:

  • Before your first transfer, delete all save data on the receiving system — if you accept that you'll move one set of saves around, you'll be fine.
  • When you transfer from Wii U to 3DS, leave your Wii U save alone, to avoid synching issues on the return transfer. Your save is deleted from the 3DS when moving back to Wii U, so the process doesn't let you make that mistake on the handheld.
  • When the transfer is happening, don't touch any power buttons or, well, any buttons. Obvious, yes, but we had to say it.
  • Set the backup option to On in the 3DS app, because it makes sense and will help preserve the 3DS data if anything goes horribly wrong.
  • All of this happens on your SD card, so keep it safe and nestled in your handheld at all times.

Overall, it's a decent process that works, and a notable first in cross-play between Wii U and 3DS. If you have any queries about this, hit us up in the comments below and we'll try to help. Happy hunting!