You are totally right. I've played almost every MH since MH Portable for PSP and I think they made a pretty bad job porting this. I feel that everyhting worked better on Tri.
For me, Tri was a huge step forward in terms of monster behavior and combat dynamics, not so much at the graphical level. In Tri Ultimate they have reduced difficulty TOO much, not only reducing monster's life and damage power but also decreasing their speed and removing attacks (what is particulary obvious and dissappointing in the case of Barroth, who reacts far more slowly than in Tri, making it a lot easier to kill). Also, the new monster appearances doasn't fit with the story since it remains the one seen in Tri (WTF is that firs appearance of Duramboros?? Totally out of place). At least in Portable 3rd you had a totally new story and location that gave some sense to the new monsters. Here, they just appear and doasn't matter if they fit or not.
At the graphical level it's not that bad considering it is an HD port, but still could have improved MANY things. For example, try to light the torch into the cave of Area 4 in Moga Woods and prepare your eyes to BLEED. Horrible... Also, despite monster colours and textures have been improved, landscapes still look as washed as they were in Tri, nothing to do with the colorfull locations of Portable 3rd.
You've also mentioned the removal of submissions, and I agree with you. Submissions added new targets and challenges, but also rewards. Removing them has been a big mistake. Same with the removal of Day/night cicle (wich later in the game is reincorporated, but, again, it doasn't make sense).
Overall, I'm finding it good, but not as good as Tri was with its difficult-to-difficult progression inestead of the "extremely easy-to-extremely hard" model of MHFU.
So... People (specially newcomers to the series) can say whatever they want, but this is a cheap port and could have many things improved.
Wow, this post makes me kind of depressed. They REMOVED attacks? Damn... I checked the cave with the torch and you're right, the lighting is ridicilously bad. It looks glitched, even. Even some N64 games had more advanced lighting engines. Thank god I never used torches anyway.
Also, the charm table system has been fucked up. Man, what were Capcom thinking? They completely nerfed the game.