In its latest issue, the Japanese gaming encyclopedia notes that the publisher is preparing a "massive, original action RPG" with Dragon Quest IX producer Ryutaro Ichimura at the helm. The project will, unsurprisingly, utilise Epic's Unreal Engine graphics technology.
Apparently the publisher is targeting Western audiences with the project — making clear that it is not a Dragon Quest or Final Fantasy spin-off.
According to the publication, producer Ichimura travelled the world for two years conducting surveys in order to research the art and gameplay direction for the game. The producer's now finalised the basics, with a small team of 35 employees actively working on the project.
A formal announcement is expected next week. We'd be excited if it wasn't for the Unreal Engine. Urgh, muddy visuals and texture pop-in here we come.