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From Software Unveils 3D Dot Game Heroes

The fight for retro gaming begins!


The screenshots do the talking for From Software's new PS3 action RPG:

You can see more screens of 3D Dot Game Heroes at the game's newly opened official site. (the screens cycle through automatically in the background).

As usual, first information about 3D Dot Game Heroes was leaked out via Famitsu earlier in the week. You can see the full writeup I did for IGN here, but here are some additional details now that the magazine is actually out on news stands.

3D Dot Game Heroes' background story starts off in the Kingdom of Dotnia, a world not unlike a 2D 16-bit era sprite-based RPG. Long ago, the Kingdom was protected by six wise men and six orbs which contained the power of the gods. However, the Dark Demon King, seeking their power, stole the orbs and captured the wise men. Demons began to flood the Kingdom, whose end was thought to be near. But it was at that time that a young warrior appeared from seemingly nowhere, saved the wise men and returned the orbs to their rightful place. Following a great battle, the warrior and the wise men combined the orbs into one and sealed the Demon King away.

The Kingdom prospered for some time after that. However, as time passed, and the story of the young warrior became a legend, visitors stopped coming to the Kingdom. It was then that the King made the decision: "From now on, it will be the 3D era." Under orders from the King, the Kingdom was changed from 2D to 3D, and began progressing towards a restoration of past grandeur. But just as people began to get used to their new life, something happened.

What that "something" is has yet to be detailed by From. It does appear to be a pretty big happening, though, as your goal in the game is to save the world. To do this, you'll have to go about the Kingdom and gather the ancient orbs.

The game's combat system is said to be simple.

You play as the grandchild of the young warrior of legend, the only person in the Kingdom who can wield a sword of legend. Incidentally, your character doesn't have a name -- you're free to set it at the start of the game.

While your character is nameless, 3D Dot Game Heroes does have a full cast of characters. In addition to King Dotnia, there's also Princess Iris, who, upon learning of the dangers to the Kingdom, left the castle on her own and is now missing. Also introduced in Famitsu is the Dark Priest, the official Priest of the Kingdom who's been possessed by evil and has hidden the orbs that sealed away the Demon King.

All the expected RPG paradigms appear to be in place, including treasure boxes.

All the characters in 3D Dot Game Heroes look like sprites brought into the third dimension. This includes enemies and bosses. Screens in Famitsu show the main character facing off against giant golems and fire breathing dragons. The only time when the game appears to break from its sprite theme is in the fire effects, which look like actual fire effects.

Just how you'll go about fighting all the foes is a bit of a mystery right now. Famitsu says that the game offers a simple control scheme which allows you to defeat enemies by simply swinging your sword. Once you've defeated an enemy, it explodes as a mass of blocks.

3D Dot Game Heroes is being developed by Silicon Studio, the developer of June's Onore no Shinzuru Michi wo Yuke. According to Famitsu, the studio also does middleware development for consoles, perhaps explaining why 3D Dot Game Heroes looks so great.

The official site is currently lacking in content.

The wait to play 3D Dot Game Heroes won't be long. From Software plans a release in November. The game is currently 80% complete.

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