The Monster Hunter franchise is certainly a favourite among many in the Nintendo Life team, with the recent arrival of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate being very welcome indeed. While the formula for the franchise has remained largely consistent, Capcom is now planning to shake things up with a cartoonish RPG experience - Monster Hunter Stories; even better news is that it's coming to the 3DS.

So far we only have a cinematic trailer, which shows a young hunter and Feline / Palicoe being chased by a Tigrex, only to hop onto a mini Rathalos and ride it; that's one of the most pleasing sentences this Monster Hunter fan's ever been able to write. Check it out below.

The game was announced at the "Monster Hunter Fest '15 Finals" event in Japan, and series producer Ryozo Tsujimoto explained that this is an RPG experience in which you play as these Riders. He expanded with the following, as reported by Siliconera:

After having passed the 10th anniversary last year, this is a new challenge for the Monster Hunter series, that we've began designing since about five years ago.

While staying true to the world of Monster Hunter, and a story that can only be told through an RPG, we'd like to pack it with fun and enjoyment that we can't even begin to describe with words.

It is still in the middle of development, we'd like to offer you a new kind of excitement that is different from the conventional series, and the development staff are working on it in full-spirit.

It's pegged for a 2016 release in Japan, and we hope that Capcom's efforts to continue expanding the franchise will ensure a route to the West. It's also promising news that it's coming to the 3DS, as we await the likely announcement of Monster Hunter 5 later in the year.

Are you excited about this Monster Hunter Stories? Let us know in the comments section below.