2018’s Monster Hunter World marked a number of firsts for Capcom’s long-running action-RPG series. It was the first installment to feature seamless, open-world environments; the first to cross 15 million copies sold (making it the publisher’s most successful game to date); and the first mainline entry in nearly a decade to skip Nintendo systems entirely. Whereas the 3DS had hosted every proper Monster Hunter game since Tri, Monster Hunter World instead made its home on PS4, Xbox One, and PC, with seemingly little hope that it would ever come to Nintendo Switch.
As it turns out, Capcom had other plans for the hybrid console. Following World’s release, the publisher brought an expanded version of Monster Hunter Generations to Switch, and this fall it officially unveiled Monster Hunter Rise, one of two new Monster Hunter games–along with the RPG spin-off Monster Hunter Stories 2–coming to Nintendo’s system next year. Like World, Rise is a traditional Monster Hunter game that shakes up the series’ formula with a few new gameplay elements, namely a new canine companion and a special insect that lets you grapple around the environment.
GameSpot recently had the chance to speak with series producer Ryozo Tsujimoto and game director Yasunori Ichinose through an interpreter about the challenges of developing Monster Hunter Rise for Switch, the inspiration behind the new Palamute companion and Wirebug item, and taking exploration even further than Monster Hunter World. The following interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.