For a long time, monster hunter The series has a bit of a fascination with cats – look at any official merchandise, Capcom’s clothing line with Uniqlo, or any marketing for a recent game, and you’ll see cats. Capcom even sells them on toilet paper holders. True.
In the world of Monster Hunter, however, these furry companions aren’t called cats, they’re called cats; they’re small in stature (but big in personality), similar in appearance to domestic cats in our world, fully sentient, bipedal, speak our language.
Once upon a time, these adorable creatures were called Felyne Comrades, and they’ve been called Palicoes since Monster Hunter Generations for the 3DS. These mascot characters have become an integral part of Monster Hunter World, from the cat chef in Monster Hunter: World to the bizarrely flirtatious versions of the characters in live-action movies.
But getting them to be so cat-like in the game is difficult.
“Indeed, we did record cat voices — they’re owned by the development team — to get the sounds you hear in the game,” when we asked him if the developers did use their own cats to form the basis for cats.
“Some of the development team’s own cats were featured in the game’s commercials, going back in time, in Japan – that was a long time ago!” he explained. “Unfortunately, if you’ve ever seen cats, you know, they’re not necessarily that cooperative. So you have to take what you can get to record shows and direct them.
“So usually we try to record them when they’re in a good mood and they make some nice meows.”
I told the Monster Hunter team that I might write an entire article about this – why not, it’s a great insight into an obscure development! – A burst of laughter broke out in the room. It seems that the developers themselves are as amused by (trying to) document uncooperative cats as we are. We just need something about Sunbreak to make it relevant…
“From the original Monster Hunter to now Monster Hunter Rise: Dawn, we’ve basically used the same cat sounds,” Suzuki added casually. “The original cat is owned by the director of the Monster Hunter soundtrack – it’s called Migya.
“When additional sounds are required for new actions etc., we use some of the sounds we recorded initially, or use the cats of other crew members. However, it is not possible to make every situation that happens in the game (such as being attacked by a monster) The cat experience is real, so we took the base voice and arranged to use it.
“So all in all, some of the sounds are coming from other cats, but the cat that’s primarily responsible is always the same cat.”
So there you have it! Every time you hear your poor little Palico buddy meow in pain as Seregios absolutely beat it in a master hunt, think about the noise poor little Migya provides.
Monster Hunter Rise – Sunbreak will release on Steam and Switch on June 30th.