A group of developers with credits across a number of Final Fantasy games - including the composer of Final Fantasy XII and a former Final Fantasy XIV artist - have unveiled their own upcoming JRPG headed to PC next year.
Lost Hellden is set on the planet of Era, where inhabitants are connected to one of the Seven Deadly Sins - be it gluttony, greed or what-have-you - through a religious ceremony. The ritual requires them to resist the temptation of falling into their sin, with those who fail becoming beasts that are subsequently hunted down by the religious order. So far, so JRPG premise.
As you might expect, Lost Hellden follows a unique protagonist who falls outside of the usual order of things. Cyphel isn’t able to be bound to any of the seven sins, while his twin brother Leht is mysteriously tied to all seven during the ritual. The game opens with Cyphel joining forces with two religious Arkhons - those responsible for maintaining the status quo - Gram and Enki, to track down Leht after he leaves the capital city of Avilah: a major no-no in the eyes of the religious order.
Cyphel, Gram and Enki will be joined by five more playable characters during a story that developers Artisan Studios describe as focusing on the classic RPG themes of self-discovery and destiny.
Helping bring the world of Era to life will be the music and audio direction of Hitoshi Sakimoto, who has an impressive list of credits including Final Fantasy XII, Tactics Ogre, Final Fantasy Tactics, 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim, Valkyria Chronicles and more.
Complementing Sakimoto’s soundscape will be illustrations by Takeshi Oga, who has worked on Final Fantasy MMOs XI and XIV, as well as Gravity Rush and Siren. Oga’s work will be used to achieve what Artisan calls a ‘Deep 2D’ style, with the handpainted artwork applied to 3D character models against 2D backdrops, combined with a dynamic weather system - a reveal trailer shows a town shifting through sun, rain and snow - and lighting.
Gameplay, meanwhile, will apparently mix together strategy and action in its battle system, with all eight characters having what’s promised to be a high level of customisation. Snatches of combat seen in the trailer show what looks like real-time actions - with buttons for attacking, extra actions such as spells and the ability to guard or evade - with the ability to optionally ‘focus’, which may well swap things to a more turn-based feel as glimpsed in onscreen text for a ‘Battle Phase’.
Lost Hellden is planned for a release on Steam, GOG and Epic Games Store in 2025, with a demo due to drop later this year.