Star Ocean and Valkyrie Profile developer tri-Ace has been acquired by Japanese mobile company Nepro Japan.
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Released within weeks of one another, Final Fantasy XIII and Resonance of Fate present two fiercely independent visions of the contemporary Japanese role-playing game. The former is a retreat into the formative traditions of the genre, a linear trek along narrow interactive lines that link endless CG cut-scene pitstops.
Its orthodoxy may be cloaked by an advance into dazzling new technological stomping grounds, but with character designs focus-tested to within an inch of their personality and a celebrity endorsement from Leona Lewis, Final Fantasy XIII's populist approach is a concerted attempt to appeal to the everyman gamer.
Gone is that lilting arpeggio signature theme that soundtracked every preceding game in the series, a shrugging off of the trappings of convention, despite the fact that the underpinning mechanics are often as old as videogame time.
SEGA's dated Resonance of Fate (once End of Eternity) for 26th March in Europe.
Blending genres seems like the very best kind of unpredictable fun - and the developer in charge is often the magic ingredient. Take RPGs and gunplay: in the hands of a seasoned Western FPS team like Gearbox, you end up with the twitchy, procedurally-generated madness of Borderlands - a bubbling stew of headshots, loot drops and perks. With tri-Ace in the kitchen, however, you get Resonance of Fate: a JRPG with random battles and bizarrely satisfying turn-based shootouts.
It's about time tri-Ace had another hit. The studio scored a big fat 9/10 with Valkyrie Profile 2 but that was nearly two years ago. Neither Infinite Undiscovery nor Star Ocean: The Last Hope impressed our reviewers, despite the fact one of them was Simon Parkin - a man who likes JRPGs so much the first dance at his wedding will be Aeris' death music.
Gunslinger for PS3 and Xbox 360.
SEGA will bring tri-Ace role-playing game End of Eternity to Europe next spring under the name Resonance of Fate.
Valkyrie Profile and Star Ocean developer Tri-Ace has unveiled a futuristic RPG called End of Eternity for Xbox 360 and PS3, according to Japan's Famitsu magazine.
This will be a collaboration with SEGA, and the first project Tri-Ace hasn't partnered with Square Enix on. The Famitsu article (translated by 1UP) forecasts a Japanese launch at the end of the year.
End of Eternity - around 65 per cent complete - sets the scene in the massive machine-city of Burzel, where day-to-day life revolves around an unspecified one-god religion. Just imagine.