A port of the original Monster Rancher is officially coming to Nintendo Switch, per Nintendo Dream and as relayed by Gematsu. It was previously known Koei Tecmo would be re-releasing the game in some capacity, but platforms were unknown. It is still possible the game will come to more platforms, but Switch is all that is currently confirmed.
Monster Rancher first released for PlayStation 1 in 1997, and its exciting gimmick revolved around PlayStation’s disc-based games. Basically, to play the game, you first inserted any random CD you owned into your PS1. The game would then spawn a unique monster for you based off of the disc you inserted. A lot of fun could be had just from seeing what monster different CDs would yield. What kind of monster do the Backstreet Boys make? There’s only one way to find out!
However, how the monster-spawning mechanic will be adapted to the disc-less Nintendo Switch remains to be seen.
Our own Mark Kelly recently wrote passionately about the Monster Rancher franchise and how it is by no means a Pokémon rip-off. He explains that it’s most like animal husbandry but with monsters.
Monster Rancher will release for the Nintendo Switch eShop in Japan at some point in 2019, and there is a teaser website. No international release has been announced yet.
[Update: Monster Rancher will use a custom CD database for monster creation.]