The Monster Hunter series has always enjoyed huge popularity in Japan and somewhat moderate success here in the west, but with the latest release, Capcom hopes to change that. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate is a high-profile release for the Wii U and 3DS in the month of March.
Speaking about the success of Monster Hunter both inside and outside of Japan to Eurogamer, producer Ryozo Tsujimoto explained that Capcom hopes the new release will bridge cultural gaps and achieve strong sales by giving fans what they want. In the interview, Tsujimoto also addresses the long wait Western consumers have had to endure for the game.
Monster Hunter in Japan started and developed in a very different way to how it’s been in Europe so far, Japan being a rather densely populated place with a quite prominent culture of visiting each other’s places to play games together. You see kids carrying their consoles taking them to their friends. They already had this basis of playing games through local network, whereas it’s a bit more difficult in the US and Europe where your neighbour is seven miles away.
With Wii U, which is online compatible, and with 3DS with its portability, releasing both of them together, we’re giving opportunity and options to consumers to really pick up the version they want and the one that suits them.
By doing that we might be able to actually have a breakthrough. That’s definitely our intention.
We’re well aware of the complaints from the fans about the time difference of releases. We have been trying our best to try to reduce it.
So this time, with great help from Nintendo, we’ve managed to greatly shorten the delay in release and at the same time we’re releasing it for both platforms, which is an achievement in a sense. So hopefully we can implement a more systematic way of doing this in the future.
Another new feature of the game is the ability to lock-on monsters, which was added to be useful to those playing on 3DS without the Circle Pad Pro. Tsujimoto acknowledges that the series requires a high degree of skill and dedication in order to be enjoyable, but he feels that this is exactly what attracts people to the series. That level of dedication and reward that makes people want to play new installments.
Monster Hunter is an action game. It’s got to be challenging. It’s got to be solid in that sense. Not to the extent that it’s heartbreaking. But it’s got to have significant points to it.
You have a breakthrough. You hit a wall. You ponder for a bit. And then you breakthrough again. There are significant steps where you are satisfied in each, but it’s never heartbreaking. It’s a matter of balance in that sense.
…At the end of the day, the Monster Hunter difficulty is in the action element, not the camera control. We don’t want people to be hindered because the camera control is awkward. We wanted to provide a comfortable environment for the players without spoiling the solidness of the game itself.
It’s nice to see Tsujimoto open up about the development of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate for both Wii U and the 3DS. For those interested in checking the games out, you can find demos in each of the respective eShops. Will you be getting this game when it’s released?