Capcom has just announced that they're porting Monster Hunter Frontier G, the online-only version of their wildly-popular-in-Japan series of strategic action games, to the PlayStation 3 and Wii U. The news, first reported in this week's issue of Famitsu magazine, means that the series now has a fully MMORPG-style entry on Japan's most popular game platforms.
Originally released for Windows PC in 2007 (and later ported to the Xbox 360 in 2010), MHG is a heavily-upgraded version of Monster Hunter 2 with a wealth of extra content and new Internet-specific features. "The biggest asset of MHFG is how it provides a continually-evolving hunting experience for you to enjoy through its regularly large-scale updates," said director Tatsumi Kimoto. "That's a unique attraction, the way the game changes with each update through its new monsters, weapons, and armor. With MHFG being online only, you can enjoy the game with hunters from all across the country, and we provide a wealth of content that lets you interact and work together with them. For someone just starting, it's packed with so much content that you'll never be able to digest it all."
Kimoto told Famitsu that, while the PS3 and Wii U versions of MHG will run on their own distinct servers, the game's otherwise the same experience. "It's exactly the same content," he said. "We're implementing the 'G3' large-scale update on the current service this fall, so the PS3 and Wii U versions will kick off from post-G3. In addition, we're also considering functions that are unique to each platform, including things like trophies [for the PS3]."
"As for the Wii U version," added producer Kazunori Sugiura, "while we can't make any guarantees, we're discussing something fun that we could do with the Wii U GamePad or Nintendo 3DS."
You'll also be able to access the game the same way as on the PC. The client is a free download on both consoles, but you have to purchase a "Hunter Life Course" (starting at 1,400 yen for a single month) to access the game itself. In addition, Capcom will release a retail "Beginner's Package" for both systems, going on sale for 6,090 yen and offering 2 free months to play and a variety of freebie weapons and armor to start you out, among other bonuses.
Official service will begin in Japan on November 20 for the PS3 and December 11 for the Wii U. However, the game will be available for free starting a week before the official launches as part of a beta-test campaign.