Tokyo RPG Factory, Square Enix’s glamorously-named retro RPG studio behind 2016’s I Am Setsuna, have announced their next game. Lost Sphear [official site] will be another throwback JRPG with some modern stylings, this time telling the tale of a lad trying to stop his world from vanishing. Squeenix say Lost Sphear is “expanding upon the beloved features” from I Am Satsuna, rather than being a whole new thing. Lost Sphear is due some time in “early 2018” but, for now, here’s the announcement trailer:
And here’s Squeenix to explain what’s going on:
“The adventure of Lost Sphear begins in a remote town where a young boy, Kanata, awakens from a devastating dream to find his hometown disappearing. To stop the world from being lost forever, Kanata and his comrades set out to rebuild the world around them with the power of Memory by manifesting thoughts into matter.”
What’s changed beneath the story since Setsuna? Squeenix say that Lost Sphear “features an enhanced gameplay system with a revamped ATB battle system where players can strategize and freely adjust their placement mid-fight, seamless environments, and various locations to explore.”
Improvements sound good. Kirk McKeand told us Wot He Thought of Setsuna as a throwback JRPG and he wasn’t best pleased:
“Those golden-era JRPGs are beloved because they were packed with memorable locations, characters, and combat. I Am Setsuna unfortunately falls short on all three counts, and instead delivers an average and forgettable adventure, albeit one with wonderful music.”
Tokyo RPG Factory is a grim name, isn’t it? Very industrial. Rote repetition. The only worse name that springs to mind is GameMill Entertainment, a studio where I imagine children losing their fingers in the gamelooms.