Upcoming action RPG Star Ocean: The Divine Force will release for PS5 and PS4 later this year, on the 27th October. The launch date is confirmed in a new trailer (embedded above), which shows off a decent amount of fresh gameplay and some English voice acting.
And if that's not enough, Square Enix has also released a more in-depth gameplay overview, which introducers story elements, main characters, and the fundamentals of combat. You can watch it below.
As you'd expect of the series, this latest instalment has fast-paced battles and what seems to be a colourful cast of party members. Each one of them has a different fighting style, and there's perhaps a bigger emphasis on exploration this time around. The game's debut trailer showed off a lot of large environments, too.
Hopefully The Divine Force puts Star Ocean back on the map after the previous title, Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness, received very mixed reviews from both fans and critics.
How do you think this one's looking? Set your sights on the stars in the comments section below.
Game seems fine but the character designs creep me out so much
It looks WAY better then the very first trailer we saw. Faces still need some work, and you can still see its a low budget game. But hopefully its good. Craving a good Star Ocean game.
On my Birthday day! 😁
Looking forward to this, so that's forspoken and star ocean in two weeks
hopefully its a lot better than last one , any idea when its available to preorder? also graphics don't make a game
Looks ok - not as a good as the best looking games in the genre though.
I'm mildly interested, will wait for reviews.
This has no written all over it. And I used to be a huge Star Ocean fan.
I always find it funny how cool some of the characters look in the artwork, then you see their in-game models and it's a harrowing downgrade.
Why the creepy doll faces. Really Tri Ace, Square..
Looks like a Xenoblade/Trails mashup, I'm interested if it plays well.
Not my favourite art style, but it looks fine to me. Better than these reanimated corpses that arkane always makes, like in prey and dishonoured.
I still need to finish Integrity and Faithlessness, but this is definitely on my radar.
On a side note, I really wish Tri-Ace would remaster Infinite Undiscovery.
Has Square Enix learnt nothing from March? Putting all your games in a very small time window means all but the most popular suffer.
This looks like a game that i will buy, put 20 hours in and then switch to another game.
I will still buy it though
Strange art style for characters, crazy boob physics at 2:05, combat similar to Ys, cool environments. Can´t wait!
Star Ocean fans, what's the main selling point of playing a Star Ocean game?
It always feels to me Star Ocean gets the short end of the stick in terms of budget.
Writing is on the wall with this release date, Forspoken gets delayed into 2023.
Then again it could be good old Square throwing all of their games into a 1-2 month span so what do I know.
The character models are just as strange as the last hope and the voice acting in english is still awful. It's definitely a Star Ocean game
@ThomasHL The idea that inhabitants of futuristic, highly developed planets with advanced technology share a Galaxy with medieval, underdeveloped planets. The story ideas this universe creates as a result is interesting (shown best in SO1, SO2 and SO3). The battle systems are usually always a lotta fun too (with the possible exception of SO5)
There's too many games coming out!!!!!!!!!!!! God damn, this game actually looks a lot better than the 1st showing, hopefully story isn't dreadful this time around and this game might end its way on my backlog.
Why do I get barbie doll vibes from this character art style... Gameplay does seem solid though.
@ThomasHL combat is amazing, well it was in star ocean 3
@Colour This is Square Enix's 2nd half of 2022 so far:
Live a Live - July 22nd
Front Mission 1st remake - Summer 2022
Nier Automata (Switch version) - October 6th
Forspoken - October 11th
Star Ocean The Divine Force - October 27th
Harvestella - November 4th
Dragon Quest Treasures - December 9th
Crisis Core - Winter 2022
The DioField Chronicle - 2022
Valkyrie Elysium - 2022
@Grumblevolcano as someone who loves jrpgs those last seven you listed have me both excited and worried, with other games I want day one such as soul hackers, hogwarts legacy, xenoblade chronicles 3, Pokémon Violet/Scarlet, God of war Ragnarok, splatoon 3, made in abyss game, mario and rabbids 2 and sonic frontiers, how the hell am I going to fit all that in lol I wouldn't mind a delay to valkyrie elysium and crisis core
@Grumblevolcano Wow that is insane. Welp I retract my statement
This looks...... ok? What happened to Star Ocean? It used to be great. Now it feels like a generic clone of itself. It doesn't look bad, and TBH this looks better than what we've seen of FFXVI, but it still looks completely generic.
@Grumblevolcano "Sales of Star Ocean failed to meet expectations"
Guaranteed to invoke epilepsy or your money back!
What’s up with all these games which feature extreme effects?
@Bentleyma "I still need to finish Integrity and Faithlessness, but this is definitely on my radar."
Do you, really, though?
@UltimateOtaku91 This is a weird year. Fans of big AAAA western games are moaning that there's no games in 2022. But this is the most loaded year for weeb fuel across all consoles since the PS2 was discontinued. I'm looking at the list across all 3 platforms, plus add in the big WRPGs (I'm including Hogwarts in there, maybe it's not a technical RPG, but we all know it's pretty much a WRPG in all but name).....and I'm utterly burried. I have like 5000 hours of new gaming added in the next 10 months to add to my 20,0000 hours backlog. I won't dig out from 2022-2023 until the PS7/SeriesZ/Virtual Switch Boy. I won't even have time to bathe for years...like a proper weeb.
@Grumblevolcano I do love how harvestella's switch presentation shows "not actual gameplay footage." At first I thought "OMG this looks amazing, this is way better than the janky RF5". Then I read that and realized we're looking at a pre-rendered PC build. Probably runs like trash.
@Grumblevolcano To be fair to that very crowded release date list, some are Switch only and some are PS5/Xbox right?
I mean sure a lot of people own more than 1 console but some must only own 1 so I kind of see the list a bit more spread out if you do it by console. And while I think it's a mistake to release Forspoken and ST:TDF close together they are different games and they are probably more concerned about keeping Star Ocean as far away from FF7R 2 and CC:FF7 Reunion as possible.
See how I do off the top of my head:
Live a Live - July 22nd -
Switch exclusive remake "retro graphics"
Front Mission 1st remake - Summer 2022 -
Ok I know Switch, maybe also PS4?
Nier Automata (Switch version) - October 6th
Switch as you said
Forspoken - October 11th -
PS5 exclusive? Maybe PS4?
Star Ocean The Divine Force - October 27th -
PS4 exclusive, maybe PS5?
Harvestella - November 4th -
Dragon Quest Treasures - December 9th
Switch, maybe PS4, but it looks kinda mobile
Crisis Core - Winter 2022 -
The DioField Chronicle - 2022 -
Name looks familiar maybe so irrelevant 😉
Valkyrie Elysium - 2022 -
Ringing no bells sorry
It is a VERY busy period for 1 game company but it kind of works when you separate consoles and genres. Does feel Covid related. Forspoken in 2023 feels like a gimme but GoW:R needs to get dated before they move it, need to avoid Kratos, Kratos doesn't need to avoid anything.
Lol. Yeah, I thought so too. They really have no idea how to properly model a 3d character based on their 2d art.
Squeenix have to do a -lot- of goodwill building after the dumpster fire that was Star Ocean I&F. Like, I'm someone who liked The Last Hope (an opinion that is frowned upon in the Star Ocean community as far as I can tell) so when I say I'm forgiving, but not forgiving enough to like I&F, that should give you some idea.
@rjejr But what weeb gamers on a PS site don't also have a Switch at this point? Sure lots of brown-gray GaaS fans own a PS4 and hate "Japanese garbage" games on their western guns, guns, guns, ho's and guns box. But if you're actually reading a thread about Star Ocean at all.........you almost certainly own a Switch.
I'd say Square knows their customers, but actually, I take that back, knowledge of their past 10 years of actions indicates they, in fact, don't.
man that game looks terrible
@NEStalgia I was going to say you're wrong but you got me w/ the "weeb" qualifier. 😝
But, not all Switch owners own a PS4/5 so I don't think Live A Live sales are affecting Forspoken in the least. There's probably more crossover with Mario v Rabbids 2 and Front Mission. Has the Advance Wars 2 pack ever been dated yet? That does seem a little similar to MvR. Probably a question for @Grumblevolcano they know things.
@shadow2k I liked Last Hope. From the cringe voices to the colors so bright who needs HDR to the combat - except those stupid mosquitoes - to the story. Not my top 5 or anything but it was a nice enjoyable JRPG. I never played the new one as it seemed universally disliked but looking forward to this one.👍
The unique setting for a JRPG. Most JRPGs are set in the modern world or in fantasy environments. Star Ocean is pure science fiction in regards to its setting. It allows for some unique story telling.
That said, I haven’t played a Star Ocean game since the one on Xbox 360. Which was millennia ago.
@rjejr for me I loved how it was an origin story for everything Star Ocean is...and Reimi was cute and had a nice...asset. >.> The character development was a liiiiittle cliche and at times overbearing (screw the whole Emo Edge arc...but I get how that made him stronger, just couldn't they have done it another way that didn't make him utterly insufferable?) but as a whole it was a good Star Ocean so I'm glad I'm amongst people who agree there. I&F was absolutely effin' pants, I would have forgiven the atrocious difficulty curve if the story/world was compelling, but it wasn't, and I didn't care enough about the characters to persevere past the boss that cheeses you relentlessly and, for me, impassably. Not Tri-ace's finest storywriting or -telling, at all.
Day 1 for me like most Square games
@NEStalgia 🤣 I know people were disappointed with it, but I thought it was ok. Although I got to the final chapter and stopped playing it for some reason. 🤷
@rjejr I think the Star Ocean and Live A Live markets probably cross over pretty well. Except Live A Live is fantastic and this looks debatable. Forespoken seems to not be really in the J-games category at all from what we've seen. Looks more like a Western action-adventure with RPG-lite elements that happens to have been made by Square, so yeah, that doesn't cross over much at all. Then again, I could say the same for FFXVI. Actually do we still even know what Forespoken is? Nothing in the trailers for it seems to really demonstrate what it actually is. Nothing about it looked remotely appealing until the last trailer that did finally make it look maybe more interesting though. It still looks like a "wait and buy it at a steep discount" kind of thing.
Advance Wars was dated 12/21......and then vanished without a trace. I'm pretty sure it's the same month as Pikmin 4 though, which is a month or two after MP4 and Bayo 3. Which might be a year or two after Xenoblade 5 at current pace.
The problem with the last Star Ocean is that it seemed like it wanted to become an MMO, tried and failed to copy bits of PSO, and ultimately felt like a generic cobbling of disjointed parts that never even went anywhere. "Monsters. You battle them. For reasons" was pretty much the game.
This looks very promising so far! I like what I see. I'm a huge Star Ocean fan, and I've loved every game in the series except for Integrity and Faithlessness. That one was just okay. I'm hopeful that this one will be better, and so far it looks like it very well could be.
Hopefully at some point we'll also get either a localization of the Japanese PS4 port of Star Ocean: Second Evolution or a new remaster of it. Star Ocean 2 is my favorite one in the series, and it's the only one not currently available on PS4 (at least outside of Japan, that is).
@rjejr Xenoblade Chronicles 3 will be affecting Live a Live sales as they launch a week apart. As for your question about Advance Wars, it went from December 3rd 2021 to April 8th 2022 to delayed indefinitely.
I'll grab it, love me some jrpgs
Agreed, worst character designs I've seen in some time. That main character...🤮
@Grumblevolcano An HD port of a GBA game is hard work, dontcha know. Takes years more than expected even after most of it was ready to show in actual gameplay years ago....
I think LaL will do ok despite XC3, only because I think the fanbase for a game like LaL knows what they like, and XC despite being a massive series now still is "too Japanese" for even a lot of hardcore JRPG fans, and it's MMO-ish gameplay turns some off.
Star Ocean in that regard competes with LaL a little more directly since it's also an iteration of a classic series. But, the last iteration really damaged the brand badly. I'm kinda surprised they're even doing another.
Edit: The October release is kind of messy though. It'll be competing, indirectly, against Switch having Live A Live, XC3, Rabbids, Neir Automata, and PERSONA 5, all at once. I can't see many Switch owners firing up their PC/PS/XB to play Star Ocean during that time. Or any. On Xbox, which has struggled with Japanese game sales, it'll be up against Soul Hackers 2 and PERSONA 5 - RIP Star Ocean Xbox. I don't think PXB has even covered Star Ocean at all, it's so low on the radar, even though it's launching on PS/XB/PC. On PS it'll be up against....ok I can't think of any big PS JRPGs inbound during that time other than Forespoken and Soul Hackers 2. It might fare OK on PS just due to reduced competition of bigger JRPGs inbound in that time. It might be OK on PC for the same reason. It's kind of a wash with Soul Hackers in terms of brand recognition at this point, but SH2 can ride the Persona zeitgeist a little. Star Ocean.....just has to avoid reminding people the previous entry existed.
Honestly, this game looks awkward, but I played all SO games and will buy this one anyway. Gameplay seems solid and fun.
@NEStalgia "Monsters. You battle them. For reasons" was pretty much the game.
That was the FF12 game, though they pulled it off really well, it just isn't a FF game.
Pikmin 4 will launch on clamshell Switch 2S. It's Switch 2, but it's also 2 screens. That's the only reasonable excuse I'll accept.
@Grumblevolcano Thank you grumble, can always count on you. 👍 And reading your "delayed indefinitely" did remind me it was due to Russia invading Ukraine so there is that.😢🌻
Oh, and XC3 > LAL I know some people are really looking forward to LAL but Nintendo could probably sell as many Shulk amiibo, if they made them, as copies of LAL.
@rjejr What is an FF game after X? Even the devs don't seem to know. For XIII they told us it's not even an RPG. They seem to be telling us that again with XVI. The bizarrely broken XV was the most FF game since the PS2 (excluding the MMO despite the praise it's fanbase gives it, and unlimited trust in it's producer, it's a whole other thing.) XII had kind of an FFIV vibe to it, really. It seemed generic after the very linear, story driven 6-10, but it was kind of a return to 3 & 4's form. It still had the Sakaguchi charm, but was otherwise the strange one.
Pikmin 4 will be scheduled for Switch 2S clamshell at launch, but will disappear for another 6 years without a word afterward.
Pleased for the having understandings.
It's a shame LaL got sandwiched between mega-RPGs. It's a fantastic gem, but it was never going to be a mass appeal game, and sandwiched during a rare dump of half a dozen megaton JRPGs has to hurt badly. I really wanted to see more classic SNES Square RPGs revived like that, but I fear sales will not make that likely.
If I had the urge to play this, that would have went out the window with the release date. Good idea to release it with a bunch of other games coming out around it. Once October hits, as long as there isn't a bunch of delays, the flood begins. No way am I considering a game that I'm still not sure about over some of the other games I've already been anticipating for months. If it turns out to be good, then maybe at some point next year. Maybe.
Releasing a game in October when you already know what has been penciled in for release already is like Hollywood releasing 12 movies on Christmas Day every year.
How do these keep getting green lit? I love the idea of them but the reality is always a really painful slog of an RPG, there hasn’t been a good one since the early days. Presume they do well in Japan?
Kinda disappointed with the party members since previous games (barring SO5) have Aliens but it's all human here. Also, it's a fixed party member of 6 instead of giving us optional party members akin to SO1-SO3
@UltimateOtaku91 Same here really excited! I won't be buying day one, but will def pick it up during a $20 sale in a few years.
@Kingdom_Hearts95 I was really sad to not see any Star Ocean 2 PS4 news today...hopefully it'll happen next year since it'll be the 15th anniversary of SO2.
@Grumblevolcano Damn you weren't kidding, that's a very packed year, and that's just Square's lineup!
At this moment I only plan on pre-ordering Forspoken and Crisis Core, the other titles I'll wait for deep sales.
@Grumblevolcano crisis core is apparently coming out march 2023
@NEStalgia I'm so not interested in LaL I haven't even bothered w/ the demo, but we have 2 copies of XC3 coming, 1 for each kid, so that should tell you something. And Star Ocean on PS4 or PS5, whichever 1 it's coming out on, seems like a good holiday gift for me. Unless GoW:R, which will release before Pikmin 4.
@rjejr Why no interest in LaL? Just not a fan of SNES era design?
It's not as "retro graphics" as it looks, that's the whole point of their HD2D engine, it preserves the feel of SNES isometric graphics, but is, in fact, a 3D word, so it's more "isometric HD Minecraft" than "retro" graphics. It's actually all new gfx except the character sprites that are sprites on purpose. Personally I think it's a visual step up from Octopath.
Though, Square weirdly hates PlayStation where these HD2D games are concerned. Even Xbox got Octopath, but not PS...
@NEStalgia The whole "HD2D" graphics thing is lost on me, as are sprites, but w/ this 1 I think the name is to blame. 😂
I really only play fantasy JRPG w/ a certain look, which as far as I know doesn't have a name, not even from me, but basically colorful 3D. I'd say "PS2" is as good a name as any but I liked a bunch of PS1 JRPG as well. "Dreamcast JRPG graphics" probably isn't a thing, as the only 2 I can remember are Grandia 2 and Skies of Arcadia, but those both looked good. FFX may have been the pinnacle. I don't need anything better than that, but I don't want anything older than that either.
@rjejr ok the name of awful, but I'm sure it made more sense in kanji.... It was never localized until now
But yeah, visually it makes sense though that's the weird thing about hd2d is it's how our brains remember snes looking and not how it really looked. It's actually sharper than ps2 games. But yeah I can understand that. You kids never learned to appreciate early 90s graphics
@Ashkorsair That is actually something common with every game. Buy to finish ratios are abysmal. Which is mind boggling cause companies keep making huge games for like 5-10% of the audience.
Most people actually like short games.
@NEStalgia I had Pong and an Atari 7800 so I dig 1970's graphics, but then b/c of grad school and no tv for awhile I didn't game in the late 80s & early 90's until the PS1, so yeah, no S/NES nostalgia from me. And I'm not playing Pong.
@rjejr Sounds like now's the time to experience the classics again for the first time
The PS1 RPGs are equally classic, though. And, realistically there's only a handful of SNES RPGs that really hold up today. The Mana/Evermore series, the OG FF's, Live A Live, Chrono Trigger (TBH, CT defines "the best of RPGs" more than anything FF ever did, IMO.) Live A Live reminds me a lot of CT. And that's a very good thing.
I get it though, it's a very.... IDK how to describe it, it's a very specific type of presentation and story telling. It's something only Square did in the 90's, so it's not even an SNES trope, it's a 90's Square trope. And it still holds up. Even if 2x12 tile hallways on a black screen aren't pretty.
@NEStalgia "Sounds like now's the time to experience the classics again for the first time"
You're making a good case for Live A Live. I didn't like Chrono Trigger as much as most b/c I played Chrono Cross first - multiple disc PS1 version in case there are others - and it was so good, setting the standard for um flamboyant French swordsmen, CT could only be a letdown.
So maybe I'll give LAL a try, when it's like $20. I can't pay more than $20 for a game that looks like when XC3 is $60. I'm a graphics guy, what can I say.
@rjejr At least there's a demo (already available) so you'll get a good feel for it if you have any interest or not. If you hate what's there, you'll hate the whole thing and don't have to worry about it
If you've played CT, you know a bit of what to expect, but the graphics are the way you "remember" it looking instead of how it actually looked. Of the 3 stories in the demo, it gives you the first story beat of Imperial China, Edo Japan, and far future. China is the most "traditional" chapter. Japan can be played either combat or stealth. Far future has no combat in the demo, and is mostly wandering and gaining story.
The other chapters (not in the demo) are wild west, prehistory, modern day (90s, lol), near future (modern modern day?), and far future. Eventually all the stores congeal. It's kind of CT meets Octopath.
No flamboyant frenchmen, though
I'll admit I always found CCross a letdown after CT, though. It's just so thematically different.
@NEStalgia If by thematically different you mean CT was a dark serious drama and CC was flamboyant French men on a pink coral beach that's probably why I didn't like CT after CC. 😂
Speaking of old JRPG do you recall which game required you to go into a teepee like tent and find a pink panties hanging on a line to dry? My wife got stuck in that game and I had to.look it up on Gamefaqs or something. Probably PS1 so either of these, Grandia 1, Silver Star Story Complete or Star Ocean. We always joke about it but neither of us can remember what game it was. Such a funny and obscure story block.
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