December 9, 2022

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Square Enix is ​​flooding 2022 with RPGs, and we're here for it

Square Enix is ​​flooding 2022 with RPGs, and we’re here for it

A collection of screenshots from six different games coming from Square Enix.

picture: Square Enix / Kotaku

2022 is a great year to be a fan of RPGs, especially Japanese games. The holiday season is usually crowded with new releases of games, but Square Enix seems to be releasing games like Christmas all year round this year. With so many already out there, and more to come, are SE’s saucy roads good or bad for RPG fans?

Back in March 2022, Square Enix had a string of big releases throughout the month: fall of Babylonlive action game; triangle strategyRPG strategy game. Chocobo GB, an episodic racing game from the Final Fantasy series; And the Stranger’s Paradise: Final Fantasy, Action RPG game in collaboration with Koei Tecmo.

Square Enix has always been releasing a handful of games in a hurry, mixing and combining big names from trusted IPs with more experimental ideas. However, this year, Square Enix not only released more of these mid-level games, but also released in higher quality. games like Sound of Cards: Beasts of BurdenAnd the The DioField ChronicleAnd the Valkyrie Elysium I’ve had an overall positive reception so far. Upcoming titles like Harvestella (November 4th) with A fun blend of simulation farming and RPG In addition to the game of hunting monsters, and the game of treasure hunt Dragon Quest Treasures (December 11) has also received Positive receptions towards their demos.

It was very confusing to see Square Enix release a new game week after week. What kind of strategy was this? But then she remembered that her fiscal year ends in March, which means it’s time for the company to measure its revenue and profit on an annual basis. Releasing a lot of things at once might be an unusual way to tackle the problem, but it certainly guarantees sales to go up one way or the other. Although, it can be argued that it was not necessarily a move that paid off for Square Enix.

Read more: Buncha Square Enix JRPG Classics Headed To The Switch

release fall of Babylon Near elden ringPerhaps you didn’t help – the de facto Game of the Year winner – avoid the ultimate path of shutting down their servers and seeing Stores like GameStop dump the title. And the Chocobo Racing GP He was disappointed to learn it was full of microtransactions and was going through a crunchy season. The reaction was so bad that even Square Enix I had to go out and apologize.

Despite the hiccups, Square Enix production stabilized at a more complex pace in the few months since March. We’ve seen games like Chrono Cross: Radical Dreamers Edition, A modified version of the classic JRPG; The Centennial Affair: The Story of Shijima, full motion video game; And the live alive, A remake of the classic SNES game, all of which have added a more interesting variety of genres to the Square Enix release schedule.

With all those games, you would think Square Enix blew up its pregnancy this year already, especially after the announcement of the big action game, forsbook, Back until 2023. But as it turns out, Square Enix is ​​equipping the hose with more versions, starting in the fall.

A stack of cards from Voice Of Cards.

screenshot: Square Enix

2022 was one of Square Enix’s most experimental years. Combined with the sudden move to cede most Western IPs and studios to the Embracer Group, major games such as Tomb rider And the The former godIn comparison to previous years’ stricter focus on standard third-person JRPGs, the company has released a handful of games that branch out into different subgenres. Although not every game has been a critical or financial success, it is still exciting to see the publisher strive to be creative.

For example, file sound cards The series, developed by studio Alim, is one of the most unique series Square Enix has published in recent memory. first game, Sound of Cards: Dragon Island’s RoarReleased in October 2021, with the launch of Square Enix two Additional follow-up titles this year: Abandoned virgin And the beasts of burden.

What sets the games in the series apart is the aesthetic of the tabletop. Unlike running in 3D environments like most recent JRPGs, sound cards It has its characters navigate the world by flipping cards nearby. Battles are presented via cards as well, and are laid out in a tabletop fashion, similar to a file Yu-Gi-Oh card game or encryption. Drawing game art style Kimihiko Fujisaka, the artist behind hibernation Drakengard String, so the cards are aesthetically pleasing to look at as well.

Everything from the characters to the dialogue within the game is represented as a card. It’s definitely a stylistically exit, but it’s also a breath of fresh air. dragon island roar It’s been well received, so it’s good to see Square Enix continue to roll out more games in the series – it’s great to see creative endeavors like this blossom.

A collection is assembled as part of the investigation into A Shijima's story.

screenshot: Square Enix

the aforementioned Shijima story It is a more experimental game because of its FMV format. These types of games play a bigger role as interactive movies using real actors, similar to those released recently. immortality. FMV is a specialized genre compared to others such as RPG, platformer, or first-person shooter, and Shijima story He told an incredible account of a detective who solves a series of murder cases spanning more than 100 years, and traces them to this day.

Square Enix has also been more creative with its strategy games. The Dewfield Chronicle It has real-time strategy gameplay similar to that of league of legends or halo wars. It’s also a new franchise, but I highly doubt we’ll see more. take play it, the entire game just screams the taste of the sequel. The main cast members break up and go their separate ways throughout the story, all ending with the cliffhanger ending. However, it lays a solid foundation on which to build thanks to the personal struggles between the main characters, as a result of conflicting political ideals, as well as an interesting real-time strategic battle system.

Thank goodness for games like The Dewfield Chronicle And the triangle strategyBecause one aspect of the Square Enix experience I’m concerned about is how it’s changing some of its old franchises from RPGs to RPGs. This is most prominent with Final Fantasy Franchise business. Final Fantasy VII The remake turned into an action RPG, and Final Fantasy XVI It will be. I understand wanting to update, but turn-based games can be fun too! While Final Fantasy VII Remake I was able to pull off the transition successfully, and I hope this trend doesn’t go too far within the Square Enix catalog. Next front mission The remakes, the first of which is slated to release in November, maintain the network-based combat RPG strategy, so I’m at least happy to see that. The ghoul tactics The remaster also comes in November and it does the same too.

A tabletop view of snowy mountaintops in The DioField Chronicle.

screenshot: Square Enix

The latest culprit of this trend is Valkyrie Elysium. The Valkyrie’s Profile The series has always been based on a role and watching the Paradise Such an RPG is kind of frustrating. However, since I’m playing the full game now, I’m enjoying it. Play like a comfortable version of devil may cry. As someone who consistently scores C ratings in devil may crystyle ratings, the ParadiseFighting feels more comfortable to me. even so, Valkyrie’s ProfileThe turn-based combat legacy still exudes a certain charm that I miss, as its slower pace matches the franchise’s somber tone.

To emphasize how many releases are still coming from Square Enix this year, in our release order: Sound of Cards: Beast of Burden (13 September), different daily life (Sept 16), The DioField Chronicle (22 September), Valkyrie Elysium (29 September), Ocean Star: Divine Power (27 October), front mission (November), Harvestella (4 November), Ghoul Tactics: Reborn (11 November), Dragon Quest Treasures (December 9), and Essence of Crisis: Final Fantasy VII Reunion (December 13). Phew.

By comparison, it looks like Square Enix will return to its usual slate of big RPG releases in 2023. forsbookAnd the Final Fantasy XVIAnd the Final Fantasy VII Rebirth She is the most prominent. I really hope Square Enix will continue to publish more creative and experimental games along with its main franchises. It’s possible that the publisher would have undisclosed titles that fit into this canon — after all, we didn’t know what the company would release in the latter half of 2022 after the Big Bang in March. Only after the summer game shows did we get a clearer picture of what Square Enix had planned for the rest of the year.

Assuming none of these titles are late, this is one of the RPG’s challenges. end of the year with The essence of the crisis This is also the statement because the original PSP game from 2007 was much loved for its amazing story and characters. Fans have been waiting for years for this game to be released on other platforms, and it’s a good way to beat Final Fantasy audience by Final Fantasy VII Rebirth and final Sixteenth fantasy Release.

If you enjoy strategy games like fire emblemand then triangle strategyAnd the Ghoul Tactics: RebornAnd the front missionAnd the The DioField Chronicle She is yours. The first three use grid-based movement during tactical battles, which will be familiar to anyone who enjoys Nintendo’s Tactics game. triangle strategy And the ghoul tactics It also has fancy settings like Fire Emblem, while front mission It is more science fiction and focuses on mechanics.

A magical spell cast by a female character in Harvestella.

screenshot: Square Enix

If action-oriented gaming is more your speed, S.tranger from heavenAnd the Valkyrie ElysiumAnd the Ocean Star: Divine PowerAnd the HarvestellaAnd the Dragon Quest TreasuresAnd the The essence of the crisis Fit the bill. It’s such a pleasure that we’re getting two big Final Fantasy games this year. strange paradise He plays like a great middle between Nioh And the jaden ninjaHe also has the best Jack Garland champion ever. Final Fantasy VII Remake was a great RPG with exhilarating combat so we have good reason to hope so Basic crisis reunion will provide as well.

There aren’t too many JRPGs with sci-fi settings, so Ocean Star: Divine The strength of a person yearning for mass effect-like experience and Harvestella He has farming mechanics that will make him successful with Stardo Valley crowd.

As you can tell, I’m really excited about the upcoming Square Enix lineup of games coming out over the next year, and RPG fans will eat well. It remains to be seen if releasing too many games in one year will hurt the sales of each individual game, but for fans of the genre, we’re spoiled for choice.

(But Square Enix, can you also get rid of Stupid things nft too while you’re at it?)

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