With MH4, Nintendo pulls a coup while Capcom hits the easy button

I've been a big fan of the MH series, having harshed it's unforgiving learning curve and dealt with it's less than intuitive controls for years now. While it's less than a blip on western gaming's radar, in Japan it's the kind of franchise that can make a system. So for fans of the series like me, the announcement of a move to 3DS was big news. For Nintendo it's a gutsy move that probably cost more than a pretty penny. But for Capcom, it's just another in long line of decisions that seems dedicated to keep the franchise always one step behind modern game design. Capcom's move to 3DS allows them to continue to use an older engine and therefore again escape the need to generate next gen graphically assets (which to be fair are time consuming and expensive). Additionally, Nintendo's inept understanding of how online multiplayer works fits perfectly with Monster Hunters' archaic multiplayer design. While the concept video for Monster Hunter 4 shows much more dynamic action than has been generally seen in the series, it's only a concept. Who knows how far those ideas will actually factor into the actual game, especially within the limits of the 3DS.
 
I was really hoping that the next MH would be the leap in game design the series is desperately needing. With the Vita, I feel Capcom would have been more inclined to try for a more interesting online multiplayer experience, and HD graphics the series has been in need of (I don't count the recent MH 3rd PS3 port, or Frontier. Both those games simply use up rezzed textures and relatively low poly models to middling effect). Sony and Capcom have both been silent on if we will even see a Vita version, with Sony execs basically saying the ball is in Capcom's court. My guess is Capcom will play wait and see with the Vita, and watch how things go for their 3DS offerings. But if history is any indicator, they are gonna place their cards on the safe bet as they always have, and keep the bar set at a level behind modern game tech. And I will probably still play the damn thing to death, ridiculous nub add-on and all.

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