Capcom and Niantic have announced the official launch of Monster Hunter Now, a new augmented reality mobile game inviting players around the world to fight towering monsters in the ‘real’ world. As in Niantic’s flagship hit, Pokemon GO, players will be able to travel around real world maps in MHN, with monsters transplanted onto certain regions.
According to early details, these regions are based on real-world ecology, with certain eras spawning specific monsters. While Niantic has yet to dive deep with the game, we can assume this means water-based monsters will appear in wetlands or nearby lakes, while mountainous beasts will be more likely to appear in arid areas.
That will likely encourage players to explore in different regions as they work towards hunting down and fighting a range of classic Monster Hunter enemies. In-game, players will be able to take down towering creatures in solo or multiplayer co-op battles, using crafted weapons and armour.
These fights will last a maximum of 75 seconds – which is rather short, compared to typical Monster Hunter battles – and will require participants to tap and swipe controls to perform effective hits. Weapons and armour used in these battles can be upgraded as players discover new crafting materials in the game’s world.
A brief teaser trailer for Monster Hunter Now has revealed a cinematic look at the game’s impressive scope:
Additional screenshots shared on GameSpot reveal a look at the game’s multi-layered map, and a third-person exploration mode that strongly resembles Pokemon GO. If you enjoyed that game, and you’re a fan of Monster Hunter, this spin-off should certainly be of interest.
Those keen to grab the game early should head to the Monster Hunter Now website to sign up for its upcoming closed beta. These tests will begin on 25 April 2023, with only 10,000 participants being selected, worldwide. Given the survey questions, it appears Niantic and Capcom are searching for a range of participants, including new, current, or lapsed Monster Hunter fans.
In other Niantic news, the company is also currently on the cusp of releasing its AR pet rearing simulator, Peridot, which utilises similar AR gameplay to involve players in an adorable, Tamagotchi-like world. Peridot is currently set to launch for mobile devices in May 2023.
Keep an eye out for the full release of Monster Hunter Now in September 2023.