The Monster Hunter series is big in Japan--Monster Hunter Freedom for the PlayStation Portable was the first PSP game to sell over a million copies there, and the series has shipped over 4.5 million units worldwide.
The first game, Monster Hunter, was released in 2004 for the PlayStation 2. Since then the games have always been on Sony platforms, with the latest, Monster Hunter 3, previously scheduled for release solely on the PlayStation 3.
However, Capcom announced today that Monster Hunter 3 will be coming to the Nintendo Wii, and it promises it has been "working tirelessly" to make use of the unique aspects of the Wii in the game.
The company explained the latest decision by saying, "As always, we at Capcom will continue to strive to develop new and original games that appeal to a broad audience around the world while expanding our properties for multiple platforms. We believe that by bringing the Monster Hunter series to multiple platforms, it will help the franchise reach an even-greater number of users eager for its unique gameplay."
[UPDATE] After some initial confusion, Capcom clarified to the Thomson Financial news service that Monster Hunter 3 is not only coming to the Wii, but will be completely exclusive to the platform. "Due to high development cost of titles for PS3, we have decided to switch the platform to which we release our Monster Hunter 3 title," Capcom managing corporate officer Katsuhiko Ichii told Thomson.
Also speaking to the wire service, Nintendo president and CEO Satoru Iwata said the deal was part of a new phase in the global Wii strategy, "aimed at expanding the game-player population."