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Free-to-play Monster-Hunter-like Dauntless gets full launch next week

UPDATE: Cross-platform at launch on PC, PS4, Xbox One.

UPDATE 21/5/19: Free-to-play Monster Hunter-like Dauntless has launched today with cross-play for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One - making it the first game ever to do so.

Cross-play which bridges the PlayStation and Xbox divide is still extremely limited. Just two games - Fortnite and Rocket League - currently support it.

Developer Phoenix Labs has previously spoken of how it wanted full cross-play for Dauntless one day - to launch with it from the off is a milestone.

"After a year in open beta and a ton of great feedback from over three million Dauntless players, we're proud to bring our game to console and expand our PC audience through the Epic Games store," Phoenix Labs boss Jesse Houston, said.

"When we first started talking about 'One Dauntless,' we knew it was a truly audacious goal. No one has ever launched on console with full cross-play support from the start, but we believed in our vision and, thankfully, our friends at Epic Games, Sony, and Microsoft did too. Keeping the community connected is one of our top priorities, and with all the new players coming in at launch, there's never been a better time to be a Slayer in Dauntless."

ORIGINAL STORY 13/5/19: Developer Phoenix Labs has announced that Dauntless, its free-to-play Monster-Hunter-like action-RPG, will launch on Xbox One, PS4, and PC next week, on 21st May.

Dauntless has, of course, been publicly playable for quite some time now. Phoenix Labs launched its closed alpha back in 2017, and the game officially entered its open beta phase last May.

It's admittedly been a while since I've ventured out to explore Dauntless' wilds (because Monster Hunter World has sort of kept me busy on the behemoth bopping front in recent times), but my previous experiences have been generally positive.

As with Capcom's long-running franchise, Dauntless' focus is on partying up with pals to bring down formidable creatures, and it even features a similar loop of farming to acquire new materials to craft fancier weapons and equipment to take on tougher foes.

It is, however, a far breezier affair than Monster Hunter, with shorter fights, simpler combat, and fewer creatures. Those aren't automatic negatives though; Dauntless is still engagingly entertaining, particularly with friends, and perhaps more importantly, is far more accessible than Capcom's historically impenetrable series.

As for its free-to-play status, Dauntless' micro-transactions have traditionally focussed on cosmetics enhancements, and there's a Fortnite-style tiered Battle Pass system too. In fact, the game's full launch will coincide with the arrival of its fifth Hunt Pass season, which features a free Basic track and a paid Elite track with additional unlockable rewards, costing around £8.

Phoenix Labs says launch will also introduce a new Mastery system and a "massive" campaign rework, with improved questing, crafting, and more.

Dauntless will be available to download on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC come 21st May - but do note that it's restricted to the Epic Games Store on PC. Versions for Switch and mobile devices are planned to release at a later date.

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Matt Wales

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Matt Wales is a writer and gambolling summer child who won't even pretend to live a busily impressive life of dynamic go-getting for the purposes of this bio. He is the sole and founding member of the Birdo for President of Everything Society.