Monster Hunter Tri Interview

Hands-on with Capcom’s third and possibly greatest full Monster Hunter sequel, followed by extensive chat with Capcom UK’s Leo Tan.

By Edwin Evans-Thirlwell, February 8, 2010

And I don’t care what machine it’s on as long as it’s that universe, as long as it’s got what I’m looking for – everyone gets together, you go out on a mission, you kill your monster, you get your stuff, you take it back, you improve. That’s all I want. It could be on anything, it could be on a microwave.

Combat doesn't get any easier underwater.

Combat doesn't get any easier underwater.

VGD: It probably will be at the rate it’s going. So you don’t think that, say, the PSP brought something particular to the franchise?

Tan: If you look at the PSP sales and you put the graph over Monster Hunter’s release, you’ll see a huge spike. I think that some analysts have said that Monster Hunter is solely responsible for PSP continuing to be a commercial success. I’m sure Sony wouldn’t tell you that, it’s just something that I’ve read, but it’s definitely a correlation there. It’s more about Monster Hunter players than it is PSP players.

VGD: I do get that impression, though I think the PSP’s local wireless functionality was quite important for Monster Hunter in Japan.

Tan: Yeah, I think maybe one of the things about Monster Hunter on PSP is that it’s brought people together in Japan? Like, we gave permission recently for the music to be used at somebody’s wedding. Actually, Rathlion [one of the monsters] in Japan is named after this guy’s daughter. Although the Japanese name for Rathlion is much nicer and more female – he’s not quite as crazy as that!

I remember reading this love letter from this guy who felt really alienated in the workplace, and then he found his boss playing Monster Hunter, and he played Monster Hunter, and then the whole department changed, the way he looked at it… It’s really brought people together.

And that’s important because in Japan the culture is really… they’re not as comfortable with strangers as we are, maybe. They’re a bit more closed off. So maybe we don’t need Monster Hunter to bring us together as much as they did but hopefully…

VGD: I can see how online would be so much more important over here, then. Maybe because we open up a little more easily, people in the West are much more comfortable with online…

Tan: Yeah, absolutely. Western gamers need Wii Speak, you know, but in Japan it’s not even an issue. No one even considered voice communication – we’ll have a little bit of text and that’ll do. It’s another barrier that prevents them from getting that bit closer to another human being.

Besides being slow and powerful, the great sword can be used as a shield. Jackpot.

Besides being slow and powerful, the great sword can be used as a shield. Jackpot.

VGD: There have been noises about the Wii reaching its peak in Japan, which seems slightly ridiculous as it still regularly outsells every other console save the DS, week on week. Assuming the doom-and-gloom crowd are right, though, do you think Monster Hunter will herald some sort of “Second Coming” for the Wii?

Tan: It did for the PSP! I don’t know, I certainly hope so. For me, the dream is everyone’s playing Monster Hunter, and in the same way I can meet some of my friends, talk to them about football, we have that common language – if we can do that with Monster Hunter that will be incredible. And if it took over here the way it does in Japan that would be the case.

VGD: I’m with you. I tried playing the PSP versions over Xlink Kai, but could never find anyone to go hunting with.

Tan: Ad hoc party as well has too many barriers to entry – you need a PS3 as well as a PSP.

4 Responses to “Monster Hunter Tri Interview”

  1. Brush says:

    I had the PS2 one online…the lobbies were quite fun, you could have a pint pre hunt.

    I think this series, as long as it stays free online in the west, could bring together a whole lot of audiences, all the dreamcast PSO players will love it, anyone who likes a bit of co op, the mmo players. It could/will be huuuuge in the west.

    This is possibly just moi, but…my Wii does not seem to connect to my Wifi with as fast a connection as my 360, hence it never really gets used for online games.

    In fact, if MH frontier online came to the west, i would play that over Tri, because i’d be happier with the online setup (and do like those cheives). Despite the fact it’s an ‘older’ iteration of MH.

    I think Cpacom (go on Leo, lobby away) should, just as an experiment, bring fronteir online over to European and American Xboxes some time after Tri, because they will get an audience…if they had to do subs to make it work, i even think they could (hope they wouldn’t though). Given Peter Moore headed up Xbox after Dreamcast, that old PSO audience, are mostly there (prob have Wii’s too no doubt).

    I reckon Tri will be the next step..but it’ll take until there’s an Xbox/PS3 multiplat release for this series to absolutely be huge here.

  2. Brush says:



    And while we’re at it…could you ask them to release ‘black tiger’ on arcade/psn

    when i was young, i recall it being the mutts, and it seems to have been lost in time, sniff.

  3. You’re in luck – Monster Hunter Frontier is now Xbox-360-bound :)

    Personally, I’d just like to see another PSP iteration (or even PSP2 iteration?) with proper online multiplayer. Doubt it’ll ever be huge in the West – it’s too skill/action-based for the MMO crowd, but too resource-management-ish for the action crowd. One can dream though.

  4. Brush says:

    Yep, they released a trailer for it

    however, as per the PC version, it’s likely to stay asia only i suspect.

    Which is where Leo, and my unrealistic views of where PR sits in the overall scheme of Capcom’s business, comes in.

    He sends an email off, to some head honcho in Capcom…tells him…nae demands

    they release it in the west because he knows there would be an audience for it (me). They listen, we’re all happy, Leo gets knighted for services to UK gaming, and the tale ends on a high.

    That’d be great.

    I think they’ll get a bit bigger on each UK release, more PSP sure, but i’d like to see more console versions, or PC, where it would surely find a suitable home, they have made a PC game (fronteir online) so surely translating it, just as an experiment,then selling on steam..wouldn’t be that risky..will pick up Tri sometime.


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