Over 3 million of you have pre-registered for Monster Hunter Now. It’s launch, whatever way you come at it, is going to be huge. Niantic and Capcom have put their heads together to whittle the now-famous MonHun formula down to delicious 75-second chunks, and let me tell you: this more compelling a mobile game than Pokemon Go ever was. Injecting an augmented reality gimmick into the core gameplay has done wonders, and boiling down the reward loop and condensing the whole experience only serves to show how refined the core hook of Monster Hunter has become.
This is a mobile game I’ve already put 10s of hours into, and I can guarantee it’ll take 100s before I’m even close to being tired of it. It’s already making me take my dog out walking more, and it’s forcing me back into the streets of London, like PoGo did all those years ago. This is mobile gaming perfection – a game that utilises its platform with aplomb, and understands how both gamers and Monster Hunter fans work. It’s the best mobile game I’ve played all year.
And it’s not just because I’ve got a penchant for stalking and skinning the Pukei-Pukeis, Tobi-Kadachis, and Rathalos of the world. There is a very elegant, well-tuned game beneath the Monster Hunter skin – one that’s far more engaging and demanding of your attention than Pokeemon Go ever was. Like its console/PC brethren, Monster Hunter Now mostly revolves around combat: you and up to three other hunters can team up to bring down the eponymous monsters with a selection of the weapons (though not all of them) from the parent series.