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A Few New Details on The Last Story

Some background details on the hero and heroine, and new bits on the Gathering system.

The hero and heroine.

Jump shared the names for The Last Story's hero and heroine earlier in the week. For further specifics, we turn to Famitsu, which has a sweet two page spread on the game in this week's issue.

First off, the official romanizations of the character's names. The hero is listed as "Elza," not the more masculine sounding "Erza" that some had speculated. The heroine is listed as Kanan.

The magazine provides just a few details on the hero. Elza lost his family in his childhood and has since continued to fight as a mercenary in order to make a living. He has the dream of becoming a knight.

You'll recall that in the world of The Last Story, there are two types of soldiers, mercenaries and knights. The former are looked down upon while the latter are respected.

Details on Kanan are even less forthcoming. Aside from her name, Kanan is still a mysterious character, writes the magazine. Based off her dress, the magazine speculates that she's of high class.

It looks like you'll take control of Elza as a member of a mercenary group that has come to Ruri Island seeking work. You'll take on a variety of missions with your fellow mercenaries, although you only control Elza, with the CPU controlling your party members. Screens show three party members running alongside Elza through fields of play.

The magazine has something we'd previously not seen from The Last Story: in-game battle scenes with status displays. The battle screen looks pretty clean, with information about Elza and his party members shown in the upper left.

The screens show between three and four battle members aside from Elza. They have such names as "Quark" and "Jackal." Are these actual NPC characters, and do the numbers shown in the screens mean your party can extend up to five? We'll have to wait for further details.

Concept art for the battle system.

The magazine also shares a few new details on the "Gathering" system. As previously detailed, this skill, usable only by Elza, can force the enemies to turn their sights away from allies and on to Elza.

When Elza casts Gathering, a blue light emerges from his right arm. The enemies turn their attention on Elza and may even come over and surround him.

One use for Gathering is to allow your allies to cast magic. When your fellow party members cast magic, a counter appears over their head. Once this counter reaches zero, they cast the spell. Using Gathering, you can draw the enemy attention away from the spell casting ally until the spell has been successfully cast. If you don't do this, the enemies will turn their attention to the person casting the spell.

Sketches from the official blog show the Gathering system at work.

Incidentally, Elza doesn't have the Gathering ability from the start of the game. He gains the ability following an event during an early mission in a cave on Ruri Island. It seems that figuring out the identity of the mysterious power that comes to rest within Elza will be a part of the story of The Last Story.

There are a bunch of must-see screens and some gorgeous artwork in the Famitsu article (Mistwalker CEO Hironobu Sakaguchi recently Tweeted that he is particularly fond of the new character art). With Xenoblade's release about a week away, Nintendo will hopefully begin opening up on The Last Story to the online world shortly.

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