Over the weekend, we reported that XSEED was localizing Unchained Blades as a 3DS download. The publisher officially announced the title today, revealing that it's actually localizing both the 3DS and PSP versions of FuRyu's dungeon RPG, for digital release. It's an oddly fruitful day for first-person dungeon RPGs!
XSEED talked up the old-school Game Arts cred of the game, which is directed by Lunar writer Toshio Akashi and features a story by Grandia's Takashi Hino. That story involves a group of monster people ("cowardly golem prince," "medusa priestess," etc., all designed by different artists) questing to win back the transformative power of a "dragon emperor."
Dungeon-Style Japanese RPG Title from Lunar and Grandia Series Veterans Coming as a Digital Download in 2012
Torrance, Calif., (March 28, 2012) – XSEED Games, an independent-minded publisher, is pleased to announce today that the company will be bringing the dungeon-crawling RPG title, Unchained Blades, to gamers in North America on both the PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system and the Nintendo 3DS™ hand-held system in 2012. Originally released as UnchainBlades ReXX in Japan last summer and developed by FuRyu, Unchained Blades is a role-playing game set in a monster-filled world, and was directed by Toshio Akashi of the Lunar series, while the game's story was penned by Grandia series veteran Takashi Hino.
"We at XSEED Games are delighted with the opportunity to bring a title like Unchained Blades to North American gamers," said Ken Berry, Director of Publishing at XSEED Games. "Unchained Blades represents a collaboration between some of Japan's most high-profile developers and artists, offering a unique blend of classic RPG gameplay paired with an eclectic mix of art styles."
Unchained Blades follows the story of the dragon emperor, Fang, who after being stripped of his powers by the goddess Clunea, embarks on a journey for revenge and to regain his true form. Arrogant and vengeful, Fang is joined in his quest by a cowardly golem prince, a shy medusa priestess, a young phoenix clan maiden, and many other mythical beings seeking to meet with the goddess.
Due to the collaborative nature of the game's design, each of the 13 main characters was created by a different artist. The main character Fang was designed by Pako, most famous for his work on the Shining Force series, while other characters were fashioned by artists such as Toshiyuki Kubooka (Lunar), Shinichiro Otsuka (Summon Night), and Kazushi Hagiwara (Bastard!!), to name a few. As such, each character has its own distinct and signature style.
In Unchained Blades, players journey through the game with a party of up to four characters, moving through dungeons in a first-person perspective and engaging in turn-based combat along the way. Using the game's unique "Unchain" system while in battle, players are able to try and convince monsters to follow them. If they are successful in using the Unchain system, the enemy monster will then join their party and help them in the future by blocking attacks or supplying players with special offensive abilities. Each character in the player's four person party can hold up to four "unchained" creatures, ensuring plenty of combat variety. The game has also been completely redubbed with new English voice-overs and boasts over 60 hours of gameplay.
Developed by FuRyu and published by XSEED Games, Unchained Blades is currently in production and will release as a digital download on the PSP system and Nintendo 3DS in 2012. XSEED Games will be sending out more product info in the coming months.