The latest Monster Hunter entry garnered a lot of new fans, fans who had previously found the series daunting, or who held a passing curiosity in its premise but never got around to it.
Similarly, Yakuza received some newfound recognition with its prequel, Yakuza 0, and its remake, Kiwami (at least around Waypoint adjacent outlets). If I understand correctly, Yakuza always had its cult following in the west but never struck a mainstream cord, I don’t know if it has yet, but removing the story barrier by setting it before the 6 game series is a really smart move in on-boarding folks who’d rather not go all the way back to the ps2 entries just to follow the story.
These two situations has me thinking about other series that haven’t caught on and why; whether it’s its platform of choice, confusing UI, overly complex systems, expansive story / lore, or simply entering the market at the wrong time.
Patrick mentioned on a recent Waypoint Radio episode that he probably wouldn’t give Monster Hunter the time of day if it had come out at the end of last year, where it was already a packed game season; I believe the timing, along with releasing on main current gen consoles (and the technical improvements that comes with that) helped a lot. I don’t know if I would’ve been as interested in the game had the environments not been as vertical and intricately connected, as well as the sheer detail on the monster animation.
What are some niche games you wish caught on, and how do you think they could improve or change to make that more likely to happen?