Monster Hunter Now Announced for iOS and Android
Hunters! It’s time to rise as Capcom is expanding the world of their phenomenal Monster Hunter to mobile as the upcoming augmented reality (AR) game Monster Hunter Now. The game will see you take the role of an elite hunter going around your local parks, landmarks, and other places of interest in order to take down colossal beasts for materials and the thrill of combat.
A familiar face
If that premise sounds familiar, it’s because Monster Hunter Now will be developed in collaboration with Niantic; the team responsible for smash AR hit Pokemon Go, which launched last 2016, easily evolving into a global phenomenon.
In a similar vein, Monster Hunter Now’s appeal will be its setting as well as the creatures you can encounter from different regions and environments (or in this case, your nearby streets and alleys). Of course, Niantic also looks to preserve the fun action and gear crafting that made the original Monster Hunter such a smash hit.
With Niantic’s budding AR chops, players can now track down the large, water-based Lagiacrus to the crevices of a nearby water fountain or fight off a fiery Rathalos that’s taken up roost on the rooftop of your favorite shopping mall in Monster Hunter Now.
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New features and new mechanics
As expected, there will be some differences in how the game is played from its original console/PC outings and this new mobile title. According to details from Niantic, fights will be reduced to quick 75 second rounds as opposed to the hour-long brawls original players are familiar with.
The goal is to help people on the commute, ensuring they have sufficient time to take on their monster of choice. It should also help avoid overcrowding, particularly on landmarks and other high-traffic areas.
Combat has also been adjusted to suit mobile sensibilities, allowing players to fight in either landscape or portrait mode via pressing, holding, and flicking motions, kind of like a rhythm game.
What the controls do however, will vary depending on your loadout. Pressing down with a shield causes a player to block while doing the same for a longsword results in a charging attack instead.
“We have intentionally avoided using virtual buttons, so attacking is simple, intuitive, and engaging,” says Sakae Osumi, senior producer at Niantic.
Go monster-hunting with friends outside and at home!
Despite that, some aspects from the main games do remain. For one, there’s still a focus on community and multiplayer experiences. Players can cooperate locally with their friends or use an in-game matching feature to match with other players in the general area to get help with bringing their mark down.
Busier players can also make use of the ‘paintball’ feature, allowing them to tag any beast they’ve encountered so they can fight it later, even at home. Of course, Niantic plans for you to be able to invite friends and family over here as well in case you need help in bringing down a bigger target.
On a more practical note, this feature should prove useful to those with busier schedules and limited mobile data plans, implemented correctly.
Monster Hunter Now has received a targeted release date of September 2023 for both iOS and Android. A closed beta for the game has also started on April 25 to a small pool of 10,000 users from both platforms.
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