It won’t be long now until hunters will be able to get their first taste of Monster Hunter: World’s upcoming Iceborne expansion, with the game’s first beta test kicking off on PlayStation 4 for PS Plus members this Friday, June 21st, and a second, all-access test a week later. And for those who want to know more about what goes on behind the scenes to bring Iceborne to life, Vice has published a new interview with Producer Ryozo Tsujimoto and Executive Director/Art Director Kaname Fujioka.
Tsujimoto and Fujioka dish the deets on various aspects of Iceborne’s development process, such as creating new features for the game’s myriad weapons while keeping their unique playstyles intact, bringing new monsters from concept to (virtual) reality, and making monsters seem more realistic without making players feel too bad about repeatedly slaughtering them. They also address the reasons that everyone’s favorite web-spinner Nerscylla (or other unconventional MH critters) hasn’t shown up in World yet. Spoiler alert: It’s a matter of resources, not arachnophobia. You can read all about it for yourself in the full interview over at Vice.
And in more downcast Monster Hunter news, Capcom has announced that Monster Hunter Frontier Z — the Japan-exclusive MMORPG entry in the series — will be shutting down at the end of 2019 on December 18th. Originally launched simply as Monster Hunter Frontier back in 2007, the title has had a solid 12-year run, but it would seem that Capcom’s shift to focus on World has rendered Frontier obsolete. With its closure, the only remaining Monster Hunter MMO will be the China-exclusive Monster Hunter Online, which will follow in Frontier’s footsteps soon thereafter with its own sunsetting slated for December 31st.