Xenosaga story, battle system details revealed
[05.31.01] » Game set to be fully 3D, subtitled "Episode I: The Will for Power."
Xenosaga's nature as a prequel to Xenogears has been all but confirmed following Director Tetsuya Takahashi latest comments in Famitsu magazine. Takahashi, who also directed Xenogears, states that the game "is not a sequel or remake" and is subtitled "Episode I: The Will for Power." Takahashi also alludes to Xenosaga as a truer vision of what he wanted to achieve previously.
Starring in Xenosaga will be Cion Uzuki, a young woman in glasses who Takahashi denies has any connection to Xenogears's Citan Uzuki. The new game will drop any fantasy themes and instead be completely science fiction.
Xenosaga also leaves behind the character sprites of the original in a move to 3D, including polygonal versions of creations by returning character designer Kunihiko Tanaka. All story scenes will be generated by the engine instead of being animated or pre-rendered, and the player will have no control over the automatic camera.
Battles will be based off a Chrono-style system where enemies are visible and physical contact with them starts a fight. Takahashi was vague on the use of gears in battle, though they will apparently return at least "once."
The game is currently 30% finished, and though developer MonolithSoft is still looking for additional talent, Takahashi is aiming for a December release in Japan. An official unveiling of the game remains set for July 8. Thanks to Nick Rox.