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Monster Hunter Rise release date, trailer and characters - What we know so far

On Sept. 17, 2020, Nintendo released a Nintendo Direct Mini: Partner Showcase video. The showcase featured a surprising number of, well, surprise announcements, such as Disgaea 6: Defiance of Destiny and Fitness Boxing 2. However, the crown jewel of the video came first: Monster Hunter Rise.

Thanks to the success of Monster Hunter: World and its expansion DLC Iceborne, Monster Hunter madness has reached new heights. Audiences wondered if the games would release on the Nintendo Switch, but now fans won't need a Switch port because of Monster Hunter Rise. Of course, even though this new game has been announced, questions are cropping up, such as when it will launch and if we will see any returning faces. The answers to all these questions and more lie within this article, so get ready to find out everything we know so far about Monster Hunter Rise.

When will Monster Hunter Rise release?

The pre-order page for Monster Hunter Rise states in no uncertain terms that the game will hit store shelves on March 26, 2021. Normally, that would be the end of it. However, these are not normal times.

Monster Hunter Rise was unveiled during the Nintendo Direct Mini: Partner Showcase, which was prefaced with a COVID-19 disclaimer. This disclaimer stated quite clearly that "release dates and other information presented in this video are subject to change." So, thanks to the current pandemic, that March 26, 2021 launch date is not as solid as you'd think. Also, even if you pre-purchase the game, its pre-order bonuses might not be available at launch.

Moreover, Monster Hunter Rise isn't just one singular product. The game will feature dedicated Amiibo that, when scanned, unlock cosmetic armor. However, the game site doesn't give any solid dates for these Amiibo.

Is there a trailer for Monster Hunter Rise?

Monster Hunter Rise was announced via a trailer that combines what might be pre-rendered graphics with what is presumably in-engine gameplay.

The announcement video sets the stage for Monster Hunter Rise, demonstrating it is the most aesthetically Japanese entry in the franchise. From the shinto-esque buildings and shrines to the accompanying shamisen and shakuhachi instruments, the trailer screams Japan. Moreover, the video puts Monster Hunter Rise's additions front and center, including new monsters, a new wolf-like partner/mount, and a storyline revolving around a calamity caused by the game's flagship monster, Magnamalo.

The announcement trailer also hints at various other inclusions, such as the return of open world levels and turf wars introduced in Monster Hunter World. However, the biggest takeaway from the video is that playable characters now talk.

If you want a deep, deep dive into Monster Hunter Rise, Nintendo also posted a Monster Hunter Direct. While not a trailer per se, it features 12 minutes of info on Monster Hunter Rise, as well as a smattering of details for Monster Hunter Stories 2.

Who are the main characters in Monster Hunter Rise?

Monster Hunter is not known for featuring main or even secondary returning characters. Each title is its own self-contained experience starring a customizable character as the protagonist, and Rise will probably be no different. However, the game will also feature a man strikingly similar to Monster Hunter: World's Admiral. Maybe they're related. Regardless, Monster Hunter focuses on the monsters, so the real question is, "What are the main monsters in Monster Hunter Rise?"

So far, only four huntable monsters have been named. These include the crane-like Aknosom, the sickle-tailed Izuchi (and its pack leader, the Great Izuchi), the unholy union of turtle and hippo that is the Tetranadon, and the flagship monster Magnamalo. The announcement trailer also teases a weird lava spider, as well as returning monsters such as the Tobi Kadachi (or at least a monster that looks similar to one) and the Arzuros.

However, it's not all doom and gloom for players in Monster Hunter Rise. Palicos will return to lend a hand ... er, paw ... and they will be accompanied by the new Palamute buddy, which is a wolf-like creature that gives you a ride so you don't tire yourself out before the fighting starts. Plus, players will get one more companion in the form of the Wirebug, which acts as a living grappling hook and lets players Spider-Man around the game and attack/dodge in ways previously impossible.

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