Monster Hunter: World will have 14 Weapon Types and Extensive Field Interactions
The announcement of Monster Hunter: World, the newest game in Capcom's popular franchise Monster Hunter at E3 2017, has attracted a lot of attention, including those from Japan which have been seeing title after title of the mega-hit series selling millions of copies each.
A multitude of Japanese media have since spoken to the series producer Ryozo Tsujimoto; one of them being Game Watch, which interviewed him along with Kaname Fujioka who is both the executive director and art director of Monster Hunter: World. We have translated this interview which talked about the sheer amount of new interactions in fields that are no longer segregated by areas, as well as confirming that all 14 weapon types currently existing in Monster Hunter series will be available in this game.
Game Watch: Is this game an open-world type?
Tsujimoto: It’s not entirely so, as there are loading times when you’re going to quests from the base, but the one area (field) that you visit will be seamlessly connected. One area here is 2.5 times as large as before.
Fujioka: In addition, you can now play on much denser fields. Think of it like if you move even a bit, you’ll find out things like foraging points and gimmicks. These should still have high affinity with the way of playing the series until now.
Game Watch: With areas getting seamlessly connected, does that mean you’re not able to do things like… moving to another area to prepare equipment?
Fujioka: That’s right. Which is why in this game, we’re making it so that the action doesn’t stop.
Tsujimoto: For example, you can do things like healing while walking, and you can also cancel them in the middle. Action stiffness is being reduced, and the image is that you’re playing while moving.
In the trailer, there are scenes like hiding in the grass where it feels like a safer place to hide. You can also eat meat while walking.
Game Watch: How are the details on the production of this game?
Tsujimoto: We received many requests of wanting to play [Monster Hunter] on home consoles, especially the PS4. The concept is [seeing] what would happen when we create a Monster Hunter with current technology.
So in the end, it’s still just a Monster Hunter. We’re basing it on Monster Hunter while adding or changing gameplay systems as we see fit.
Game Watch: Are you considering a Nintendo Switch version?
Tsujimoto: We have no plans for that for now.
Game Watch: What parts would be greatly changed in the action gameplay?
Fujioka: There’s an action using the Slinger that is attached to the hunter’s arm. Slinger is a [piece of] equipment that supports you by hurling objects located around you such as fruits and stones. Until now you had to select items one by one to use them – including things like Pebbles – but now it has become more simple to take and use them.
Also in the trailer, you can see actions using a rope; that is also one of the standard features of the Slinger. Wire Action is not the main feature as we place it in a supporting position instead, so if the requirements are fulfilled, you can do things like moving quickly to another location, or recovering stance in the middle of getting blown away.
Tsujimoto: There are some weapons and armors that appear here the same way they were before. And on top of that, there is also an image of playing while using the environment.
Fujioka: For another example of field objects that can be used, there are plants called Luminous Moss. They can serve as a source of light in dark places, or you can also stimulate them to light them up in places where monsters can’t find you.
Also, there are Guide Bugs that will act like hunting dogs. They will point you to things like surrounding items that can be used, or traces of monsters. Guide Bugs can remember traces of footsteps, mucus to crawling traces, so the more you can find them the more accurate they will guide you to the monsters.
Game Watch: This game is going to have multiplayer, but what kind of communication methods will be available?
Tsujimoto: We’re thinking of Voice Chat and Text Chat. You can have [the language] match with the entire world, or you can also filter it by language. But there are also stamps and fixed texts, so it will be also possible to play with people from overseas.
Game Watch: When the player is fighting Anjanath in the trailer, there is a scene where Rathalos shows up and attacks Anjanath. Does that mean in this game’s areas there are many monsters not designated as quest targets loitering around?
Fujioka: There will be various monsters. There is some sort of hierarchical relationships in the monster ecology, so it’s also possible for monsters to clash with each other. Normally each of them has their own territory so they wouldn’t interfere, but you can also try to intentionally [lure a monster to another’s territory and] make them clash, so if I had to say, it will feel like the options for using the environment have increased.
You can make your equipment stiffer (read: upgrade) and do battles with them, but if you make use of the environment you can also consume fewer items.
Game Watch: There’s also a scene where you’re wearing something like a Ghillie suit, but what kind of feature would that be?
Fujioka: That is also a special equipment which can temporarily raise your rate of concealment.
Game Watch: What about the weapon types?
Tsujimoto: There are 14 types of them.
Game Watch: How’s the way to receive a party?
Tsujimoto: Basically you receive them at the base, and you would enter together. However, in this game, players will also be able to participate in ongoing quests from the middle.
At the end of the trailer, there’s a scene where the player launches an SOS flare, and that will cause people on the server to see that quest with the SOS flare and can go rescue them. There are requirements like Star levels, but anyone can join in if they fulfill the requirements.
Game Watch: What is the game engine being used here?
Tsujimoto: We have an engine called MT Framework in our company, but we modified it into a next-generation engine tailored for this game. Our engineers have been working hard to tune it up, and right now we are calling it the ‘World Engine’, even though it’s still not the official name for this yet.
Monster Hunter: World will have a simultaneous worldwide release in early 2018. It will be released exclusively for PlayStation 4 in Japan, but North America and Europe will also get Xbox One and PC versions, the latter of which would be released at a later date. You can also read the press release here.