That’s according to GamesBeat journalist Jeff Grubb, who claimed in a Giant Bomb show (currently behind a paywall [update: now public]) on Thursday that Microsoft had actively courted developers to make a co-op title in order to differentiate its Game Pass lineup.
“They’re working with Certain Affinity on what seems like a Monster Hunter style game – a Monster Hunter clone,” Grubb said. “They see this gameplay style succeeding, and Microsoft’s like, ‘hey, we should try to make one of those, is anyone out there going to pitch one?’”
He added: “They want more variety in the kinds of games they’re putting on Game Pass and this is an example of that.
Monster Hunter Rise - Steam / PC Trailer
“They’re like, ‘we probably can’t get Monster Hunter on Game Pass – that would be pretty expensive – but we definitely want a game like that, because we see the potential for that to grow and be a big thing with long-term support.”
UPDATE: A separate report claims Certain Affinity’s Monster Hunter-style game has been in development since the summer of 2020, and that it’s likely planned to be revealed next year ahead of a release in 2024. The report suggests Certain Affinity could be working on a new Halo Infinite game mode too.
ORIGINAL STORY CONTINUES: Certain Affinity is a prolific support studio based in Austin, Texas, which has collaborated on instalments in the Call of Duty and Halo franchise since 2007, as well as shooters Left 4 Dead and Doom.
The company is led by CEO Max Hoberman, who is the former multiplayer and online lead for the Halo series.
Last year Certain Affinity announced that it had signed an agreement to lead development on an original IP, which is possibly related to the project it’s reportedly working on with Microsoft.
The company said: “Are we excited to take on a genre and style of game that we’ve always loved? Thrilled beyond words! Are we honored to be bringing this game to market? Indescribably so! Are there any other tantalizing details regarding this new venture? More than we can say!”
“We have been building towards this project for the past few years. We’re thrilled to have signed an agreement to lead development on our most ambitious title to date,” added CEO Hoberman in February 2021. “This game is our creative vision to lead and our team is exceptionally passionate about it.”