Now that we're 15 numbered entries into the Final Fantasy series, some folks have started wondering if Square Enix will ever offer up a new property in the realm of roleplaying games. Well, it looks like they're working on exactly that. Oh, and there will be dragons!
We realize that Square Enix has developed/published a handful of unique RPGs over the years, but nothing on the scale of what they are talking up concerning a new venture known as "Project Prelude Rune." According to Polygon, the game will be a new RPG entry for the publisher, and they've even got a fresh studio working on it.
Since this is Square Enix we're talking about, the working title (and likely the final title) have us sort of scratching our heads. What, exactly, is a Prelude Rune? Well, whatever it is, it's the focus of the new RPG coming from Studio Istolia, based out of Tokyo. If it is pedigree you are looking for, then you'll be happy to know that Hideo Baba, bearer of one of the coolest names in the world, is serving as president of the studio. And if that name isn't ringing any bells, then all an RPG fan really needs to know is that he is the former Bandai Namco producer of games in the Tales series.
There aren't a lot of details available yet and, honestly, the only thing we can say about what we've heard so far is that, yeah, it sounds like a big ole RPG. In a statement from Square Enix, they explain that the game will establish a new fantasy, which will take place across a "vast land teeming with life." The only other details are that the folks who inhabit this magical land are not afraid to fight "for what is just," so we imagine there's going to be some sort of epic struggle at the heart of the tale.
The above image is concept art for the game, and that about wraps up all of the info we have at this time. No news on platforms or even the hint of a release date has been discussed, but maybe we'll get a super early teaser during one of the upcoming conventions like E3 or Tokyo Game Show.
Either way, consider us intrigued. Square Enix has proven that, along with tried and true ventures like new releases in the Final Fantasy series, they're still capable of pulling off some nice surprises. I am Setsuna, for instance, was a pretty great return to classic RPG standards that launched this winter at a smaller price point. As for Project Prelude Rune, it sounds like they're aiming for a much bigger experience this time around.