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Hunting Together - Monster Hunter Now Season 2 Interview

We chat with Dan Inamoto and Mark Van Lommel about all things Monster Hunter Now.

Audio transcription

"Hello everyone and welcome back to Gamereactor.
As you can see by the lovely backdrop that we have going right now, I'm currently in Niantic's booth to talk with a couple of the guys about Monster Hunter Now."

"Now, yes, now, now, we're saying that now.
But yeah, the game is already, you know, it's been here for a while.
We're used to Monster Hunter Now because, you know, we've been very familiar with it over the years.
But this is a game that you're supporting."

"You have lots of plans to continue growing it.
And by the time you see this interview, we'll probably be in Season 2.
So tell me a little bit about Season 2.
What is coming to Monster Hunter Now that people should be excited about?
Sure. So Season 2 is all about hunting together, right?
Hunting monsters with your friends or people who are out and about around your neighborhood is always really fun."

"And so we really are introducing new features that will encourage people to hunt together.
A couple of new things that are coming up in Season 2.
Kshala Daura, which is an Elder Dragon, is the first time that we're introducing an Elder Dragon.
It'll be showing up in these special spots, essentially, that are out and about on the field."

"They are called Elder Dragon Interceptions, and you'll be encountering them in these spots.
We also have a couple of new monsters as well.
Kezu and...
Basarius."

"Basarius, yeah, sorry. I always think of the monsters as Japanese names.
I have to think of the English names.
Basarius are coming up as well.
So a couple of these new monsters on the field, too."

"And tell me a bit about those social features you're bringing, then.
How is this going to encourage people to get out there, enjoy the wide world, but also play more Monster Hunter now?
Sure. I'll start off with a new addition that we had that's already launched and live in Season 1 in Monster Hunter now.
And that is matchmaking at Huntathon points."

"So before you had to be in close physical proximity with other players to multiplayer hunt at a Huntathon.
Now we have matchmaking that happens no matter where you are, no matter who's around you.
You can make sure that you fill that whole lobby to get a four-player Huntathon action going on to take down some of the toughest monsters in the game."

"We had such a positive response to that.
We're adding a couple of new social features for Season 2.
One of them is going to be a friend quest.
It'll be a weekly quest with amazing rewards where you can tag anyone on your friends list, and they can join you to help take down that friend quest together."

"And it's asynchronous, so you all work and contribute to that quest over that week.
And you can actually see who's contributing the most.
So you can message your friends, let them know, hey, you've got to kill some more larger monsters to pull your weight.
And then at the end of it, everybody gets those joint rewards."

"And, you know, Niantic have done a variety of different sort of AR games with very big franchises.
How have you, you know, what have you taken from those other experiences that you've looked at with Monster Hunter now and gone, they've done this, what they've done is great, but we can do it better.
Sure. So we have some fantastic partners from Nintendo and Pikmin Bloom and the Pokemon Company and Pokemon Go."

"And, of course, Capcom for Monster Hunter now.
I'll let Dan speak to working with them since he's in our Tokyo studio, and that's where our game development comes from.
But I can say that we do work with Capcom very closely to make sure that we're giving an authentic monster hunting experience in Monster Hunter now.
Capcom has been an amazing partner with us."

"We've been working with them for over four years to develop this game.
And we've been working together to make sure that we distill the essence of Monster Hunter into this game.
So still, you know, giving that excitement of hunting monsters, the action play, the skills that you need to learn in order to hunt monsters.
But at the same time, our game is quite casual."

"You can play anywhere as long as you have a mobile game, mobile phone.
And so mixing this, you know, sort of essence of Monster Hunter into a mobile game experience that is casual enough that anybody can pick up, but also exciting to learn.
So that's been a really good experience."

"And it's a great time to be a Monster Hunter fan.
You know, not only is Monster Hunter now continuing to thrive, but there is so much other Monster Hunter stuff coming out, including, obviously, the big one, which is Wilds next year.
How are you working with Capcom to really benefit from all these coming Monster Hunter projects that are on the horizon?
Absolutely."

"It's been such an amazing year celebration for the Monster Hunter franchise.
The franchise had its 20th anniversary celebration this Patch March, and we had a nice little integration for Monster Hunter Now.
Monster Hunter Stories is being relaunched this month.
And so for Monster Hunter Now, we just had to celebrate the launch of Monster Hunter Stories."

"So we're creating some exclusive layered gear, that's avatar items, for your characters in a special Monster Hunter Stories quest line that kicks off with the start of the Monster Hunter Stories launch.
And nothing I can say about Wilds just yet.
Maybe check back with us as we get closer to that launch."

"And, you know, this is Season 2 that's coming up.
Again, by the time that you see this interview, it will be here.
It's a great chance to go out there in the summer, enjoy the sun, and obviously play the game.
But what else is coming down the line?
What have you got planned in the pipeline for Monster Hunter Now?
Sure."

"So all of the content that we've revealed to date and here at Summer Game Fest for Season 2 is just the tip of the iceberg for the Season 2 content.
We're going to have new monsters coming out in July and August and other features and a lot of exciting stuff that we haven't even touched on yet."

"So hunters can look forward to a lot of content coming all summer long.
And as a sort of a final thing then, obviously the Niantic games are very much geared towards mobile devices using the sort of AR features there.
Have you ever wondered about potentially exploring a different medium for your games, for Niantic's games and for Monster Hunter Now?
That is a fantastic question."

"So most of our game experiences right now are on traditional mobile phones, but we are absolutely an AR company and we want to push the envelope and create new experiences for people on every type of device that's coming out.
So for instance, our pet simulation game Peridot launched on mobile phones, but is now a headset experience."

"So you can go and play Peridot and MetaQuest and have that experience without having to hold something in your hand and be in full mixed reality and enjoy that experience that way.
Nothing more to announce about our other games at this time, but as an AR and tech company, we absolutely are looking at those opportunities."

"Well, I'm waiting for the day when we can go out and slay some monsters in a more immersive and headset format while I'm still out there enjoying the sun.
So that's going to be an experience, but we'll stay tuned for that for another day.
But this has been Monster Hunter Now."

"As we've just been talking about it here, make sure to go check out Season 2.
By the time you see this interview, it will probably be out.
So plenty of stuff to check out in the game.
And stay tuned for some more of those collaborations coming with other Monster Hunter games as well."

"A lot to look forward to.
But yeah, this has been a Game Reactor interview.
We'll see you all on the next one."

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