From the producers of Bravely Default, Square Enix has opened up about their first major endeavor on the Nintendo Switch — Project Octopath Traveler.
During last night’s Nintendo Direct, information on the upcoming RPG was compiled in a trailer, as well as an overview segment. The first of these offers a cinematic view into the beautiful world of what Square has dubbed “HD-2D”, offering fans their first expansive look at just some of the game’s eight main characters, as well as the stories that will unfold around them.
In Project Octopath Traveler, it appears that each character will possess some form of a unique ability. Of the two that have been showcased so far, these arts seemed to be centered around how the player character will be able to interact in different ways with the world and NPCs around them. The first of these characters — named Olberic Eisenberg — lives up to his role of a “warrior” by being able to challenge and duel any one and anytime. On the flip side, then, there is Primrose Azelhart the dancer, who is able to lure individuals into following her wherever she goes.
Following in the footsteps of such Final Fantasy titles also produced and developed by the teams at Square Enix, this newest RPG to the Switch will feature tried and true turn-based combat mechanics — but with a twist.
According to the trailers, a “Boost” system will be implemented into the game, allowing for RPG fans both new and old to augment and change their characters’ powers as they gain “boost points” with every turn that goes by in battle. This adds a bit of spice to the traditional formula, granting a power up buff, the capability of chaining attacks together, or even letting characters save each other in the midst of battle.
What seems to be the center point of the title is finding both useful and creative ways to utilize each character’s special ability in tandem with the newly evolved combat system. While only just a sliver, Olberic is demonstrated as being able to gain access to hidden or normally inaccessible areas by battling and defeating those blocking the way. For Primrose, her ability works more passively in the context of the world, where she may be able to draw a person out of hiding, return somebody home, or even recruit them to fight alongside her. Each character solves similar situations differently, allowing the player freedom to truly craft their own quest.
While Project Octopath Traveler is still labeled with a tentative 2018 worldwide release date, a demo for the game has been published to the Nintendo Switch eShop for inquisitive gamers to download and experiment with. As stated in the trailer, a survey will be released sometime in the near future to gain feedback from peoples’ various play sessions.