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Come one, come all, and welcome to another riveting edition of Go West!, your [semi]-weekly column about the latest Japanese game releases of the week. There are games out this week. Imagine that: games!

I know, this might be hard to wrap your mind around, but we’re finally seeing a string of semi-notable new titles this time, which means we actually have stuff to talk about. 

Or get angry about.

I’m not really sure anymore.

Let’s get this show on the road!

Keep reading

A new five minute trailer for Spike Chunsoft and tri-Ace’s upcoming PS4 and Vita RPG, Exist Archive. 

We’ve translated lots of info on this one, but it’s basically the spiritual successor to Valkyrie Profile in a lot of ways. 

It’s looking real good.

Exist Archive scans and translations from this week’s Famitsu.

  • This week we’re introduced to the Trial Event. The Trial Event is a series of objectives that can appear while you’re exploring the field at any given time. By clearing these objectives within the time limit, you can get special items, raise your friendship points with your buddies, and get all sorts of other goodies. The example Famitsu gives is taking out a specific monster on the field, except this one is a variant on the usual creatures, making it easy to spot. By defeating it, you clear the event.
  • There are also Sonzai Kesshou Events/Existence Crystal Events. Long story short, the main characters are trying to revive Amatsume’s power after she uses it up summoning you all. In order to do that, you collect memory crytals called Existence Crystals. When you find one relating to a party member, you see a story about their life back at home, deepening your understanding of them. 
  • The relationships between your characters is important here, and the game has an emotion system that effectively dictates how characters feel about you and each other. Depending on the actions you take, these feelings change. For example, being in the same party together and winning raises those points. Running from battle or cancelling quests drops them. Basically, you need to be very aware of every action you take, especially because having good relationships results in more skills and special events. 
  • There are also subevents which happen when you return from the field back to what is effectively homebase. If you’ve cleared certain requirements, subevents will take place. These are mostly stories about the main characters’ daily lives in this weird world, strange devices, the weird clothes they have, etc.

The opening to Spike Chunsoft’s upcoming not-Grand-Knights-History game, Grand Kingdom. Nothing particularly special here, just some rad music and sprites moving about.

The Lite version of the game will hit on the 12th, giving us all some time with the game before it actually launches.

Exist Archive feature from this week’s Famitsu.

This time we have a bunch of new character classes, along with some details on the item creation system and online modes. Let’s dive in!

  • Samurai: Kiriya Tokihisa starts off as this class. Uses a katana. Heavy armor type. Reach is smaller than the broad sword, but has top class damage against single enemies. Able to smash enemies down from the air, or throw them up from the ground, so is very useful in combos for dealing damage.
  • Grim Reaper: Myouji Ema starts off as this class. Uses a death scythe. Light armor type. Throws the scythe like a boomerang. Once the weapon is in the air, and can move along several different trajectories to do damage. Can deal damage to multiple enemies, but requires great skill in order to maximize damage output.
  • Tamer: Himuro Suzaku starts off as this class. Uses a blade whip. Light armor type. Super good reach. Able to hit multiple enemies in one go. Lacks the power of other classes, but due to the reach and hit number, it’s very useful in combos.
  • Storm Mage: Tsukishiro Mayura starts off as this class. Uses an orb. Magic garment type. One of the multiple magic types, is able to throw out multiple tornados. This class centers around wind attacks. Capable of healing magic as well. Can serve as the party’s healer.
  • Lightning Mage: Mitosagi Yui starts off as this class. Uses a rod. Magic garment type. Primarily uses magic revolving around lightning. Very strong attacks with multiple hits. Also capable of stunning enemies. Can learn magic that drops enemy’s stats. Bad at healing.

Item crafting system called Materialize. The goddess Amatsume can take items you don’t need and convert them into energy, thus creating a new item. She’s basically like a shop. 

Exist Archive also features two different online modes: Hot Spot and Speed Run. 

Hot Spot: The game looks at which areas players are playing in the most, and then ranks those areas by their popularity. The areas high up get better item drop percentages and other bonuses.

Speed Run: This mode lets you re-fight bosses and attempt to complete them under the standard time. This time is then uploaded to an online scoreboard. By getting good times, you can receive various different rewards.

What a bizarre world we live in. It’s still hard to believe that tri-Ace itself is still alive and doing well, and it’s even more surprising that they’re going back to the concept that resulted in Valkyrie Profile.

Exist Archive is very much the spiritual successor to tri-Ace’s seminal RPG, complete with combo based combat, 2D dungeon exploration, and sending characters off to another dimension, in this case Earth.

The latest trailer digs into the large cast of characters, all of whom look ridiculous. I still can’t get over how good that skull outfit design is.

Exist Archive got a four page feature in Famitsu this week, so let’s go over some of the new information!

For those of you not in the know, Exist Archive is Tri-Ace’s new Vita/PS4/Everything title that’s basically Valkyrie Profile in all but name. Huzzah!


The Class System:

Combat style varies heavily based on which class a character is. These are divided into three different styles: close range, long range and magic. There are different weapons for each class, and even equippable armor changes based on the class. For example, a warrior will wear heavy armor, a long range class will use light armor, and a magic user will wear magic garbs of some kind. 

Classes:

  • Gunner- Mitsuhide Yasakata is the first one to gain access to the Gunner. Uses two guns to deal long range damage. Wears light armor. One shot isn’t particularly powerful, but multiple shots can be fired off quickly and with a high measure of accuracy. Good at responding to multiple combat situations. 
  • Berserker- Namerou Todoroki is the first one to gain access to this class. The Berserker wears light armor and wields a grenade launcher, making it a long range class. It has a variety of tricky attacks, like blowing enemies into the area, circling around them and launching them into the sky, etc. The Berserker is difficult to use, but if you can string together its combos effectively, you can maximize attack patterns.
  • Fencer- Kanata Kujou is the first one to gain access to this class. Uses a great sword and wears heavy armor. Its attacks are capable of wielding several different effects, like launching enemies, smashing them down, etc. It’s good against multiple types of enemies, and is the safest option in combat. It also has good guard abilities, so placing a Fencer in the front of the party as a shield is effective.
  • Lancer- Ranze Miwakawa first gains access to this class. Short range. Uses a pole weapon and wears heavy armor. Able to attack multiple enemies at once with its long spears and staffs. Also has strong single enemy attacks. 
  • Flame Mage- Koharu Nagi first gains access to this class. Magic user. Uses jewel bangles and wears magic garbs of some kind. Damage output is high compared to other magics. Can learn resurrection, attack buffing and weakening magics as well, so it also works as a support class.
  • Freeze Mage- Ren Ogami first has access to this class. Wields a baton. Wears magic garbs. Magic user. Learns primarily ice magic. Not good at group attacks, but has a lot of magic that launches enemies or sticks them to the ground. Good for combos. Also has healing magic and defensive magic.

If there was any doubt that Spike Chunsoft’s Grand Kingdom game for the PS4/Vita looked a bunch like Grand Knight History, this trailer certainly makes it clear as day.

The combat looks a ways more complex, but the overall style of the game (board game-like overworld, fighting in a giant online war, etc) is extremely similar.

Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing! Grand Knight History was a wonderful little game with a neat gimmick, and if Grand Kingdom can repeat that same quirkiness, I’d be more than happy to join the party.

I really liked One Way Heroics.

If you have know idea what I’m talking about, go pick up a copy on Playism’s site for $1.99, or grab it on Steam.

Fushigi no Chronicle: Furikaerimasen Katsu made ha is Spike Chunsoft’s remake/reimagining of the indie game for PS4/Vita. It looks rad as hell. 

It’s something like a 2D rogue-like in which the world is constantly being destroyed while it moves to the left. The indie version had a ton of neat multiplayer/networking features, and I’m very curious as to whether Spike Chunsoft is gonna hold onto them.

Either way, this looks fabulous.

Also, for those of you wondering, “Fushigi no” is the labeling that SC uses for the Mystery Dungeon series. Looks like they might be trying to start a new series.