Shin Megami Tensei Devil Children: White Book

   Among scores of Pokémon clones, Atlus' Shin Megami Tensei Devil Children achieved reasonable success - enough to generate a TV show, collectible card game, and game sequel. Unlike the original Red and Black Book editions, however, the sequel White Book will be a stand-alone title with no "partenered" release of another color. With all of the development focused into one game, White Book looks to better blend the Megami Tensei franchise with the monster-raising game formula.

Devil Children White
Syo speaks

   Devil Children: White Book stars two new main characters: curious and careless Kuzuha Masaki and gentle and obedient Ougi Takaharu. Born on the same day, the boys' births were marked by the mysterious appearance of a cupid, Puck, and an imp, Harmil. Ten years later, the two are now students at Harajuku Elementary School in Tokyo and best friends. The boys' peaceful life is interrupted when Takaharu's young sister Syo is possessed by a devil unleashed from a subway construction site. In order to find the medicine to save Syo, the boys must journey across five regions: Heaven, the Magic Fields of Ice, Earth, and Wind, and the Central Land.

 Devil Children White
Rei in action

   While players will be able to befriend and fight with numerous kinds of devils in the adventure, each character has a specific partner: Kuzuha teams with a chimaera named Clay, while Ougi is assisted by a phoenix named Rei. The partners will take an active role in helping the party with action RPG-style functions: Clay can move rocks, while Rei flies the party over pits. The heroes will also bump into protagonists of the Red and Black Books, Kai Seshina and Kaname Mirai, who also attend Harajuku. What role these returning characters will play in the story is unknown.

   White Book will feature all 250 monsters from the Black and Red Books and 80 new monsters for a total of 330 characters. Monsters from the original games can still be pitted against players with a Red or Black Book game; of course, the new monsters will not be backwards-compatible.

Devil Children White

   An unusual gimmick can be used to acquire new monsters in White Book. As in the Red and Black Books -- as well as most of the other Megami Tensei games -- two monsters can be fused together to produce a new one. However, the White Book introduces a new factor: By pointing infrared remote controls at the Game Boy Color's infrared port and pressing different buttons, players can tweak the results of the fusion. Some rare monsters can only be produced in this manner.

   White Book also adds an additional factor to consider besides monsters. New "power units" can be equipped in the Devilizer, the gun-like device that Masaki uses to capture and store devils. Some units raise attack or magic power, while others have supplementary effects like making monsters easier to recruit or monitoring the difficulty of random battles. Only one unit can be equipped at a time, so players will have to carefully choose which effect will suit them best.

   With the Game Boy Advance already topping sales charts, Game Boy Color titles such as Devil Children: White Book unfortunately stand little chance of being picked up for North American release. Import-minded gamers, however, can look forward to a title with a little more style and story than your usual monster-raising RPG.

Preview by Fritz Fraundorf, GIA.
Shin Megami Tensei Devil Children: White Book
Developer Atlus
Publisher Atlus
Genre Traditional RPG
Medium Cartridge
Platform Game Boy Color
Release Date  07.27.01
Atlus announces Shin Megami Tensei Devil Children: White Book
16 screenshots
7 character designs / 5 devil designs / World map / Title artwork and wallpaper