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Square-Enix's goal with Trials of Mana is to "bring the glory back," and pave the way for future installments

This remake is a hugely important

Trials of Mana could be a hugely important entry in the series. Yes, it's a remake of a classic title, but it's taking the entire experience from 2D to 3D, and adding in a ton of new content. In an interview with Kotaku, Mana series producer Masaru Oyamada reveals just how big of a deal this remake could be.

“The ultimate goal would be to get that glory back. With Trials of Mana we really challenged ourselves to provide Mana in a new form, different than how it used to be. And so after the fans see the story and actually play this game for themselves, we would like their feedback on their expectations for Mana games to come, and to take that into consideration for the future.”

In other words, Square-Enix is going all-out, and the way this game sells could impact the series' future moving forward. Hopefully Switch owners are ready to show their support!

Square-Enix considered retaining the top-down perspective for Trials of Mana

Time to modernize

The previous Mana titles from Square-Enix all utilized a top-down camera, but that changes Trials of Mana, which is a remake of Seiken Densetsu 3. In an interview with USGamer, producer Shinichi Tatsuke reveals that the team did consider retaining that original camera style.

"We did consider having the top-down perspective as well, however this time we really wanted to focus on having an immersive experience for players. Additionally, Trials of Mana, this is the first time Trials of Mana is being put out there for these players outside of Japan, so we wanted to provide this sort of modernized experience."

Collection of Mana retail release heading to Australia as well

Magical

The retail release for Collection of Mana was already confirmed for Europe and North America, but now we can add Australia to that list. Retailers have confirmed that the physical option will be out on August 27th, 2019, and it'll include the same content as in other regions.

Square-Enix is interested to see what happens with the Switch's official launch in China

Can Nintendo make headway?

Nintendo is officially launching the Switch in China, courtesy of Tencent. This is going to be quite a big deal when it kicks off, and Nintendo stands to make a lot of money in the region. Of course, that all depends on whether Nintendo and Tencent can make some noise outside the PC and mobile space.

In an interview with GamesBeat, Square-Enix CEO Yosuke Matsuda shared his interest in seeing what happens with the Switch in China.

Also, it’s now been decided that Tencent will be handling the Nintendo Switch in China. This is the first time that Nintendo will be officially selling in China in a major way. They might have gone in through parallel imports in the past, but I’m very much interested to see whether Nintendo is going to have to make any changes around the Switch.

Dragon Quest Riddle Book: Nazonazooma’s Written Challenge seeing release in Japan

How many puns can you handle?

Square-Enix has announced a new book for Japan called Dragon Quest Riddle Book: Nazonazooma’s Written Challenge. The book contains 300 Dragon Quest riddles to solve, and can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Nazonazooma’s Written Challenge launches on August 2nd, 2019 in Japan.

Collection of Mana's limited run physical release due out Aug. 27th, preorders open now

Don't miss it!

Collection of Mana brings the first three titles in the seminal Mana series to the Nintendo Switch in an all-in-one package. The collection is an essential bundle for new fans who want to play the classics for the first time and nostalgia-seekers who want to relive fond memories and high fantasy adventures on the go.

Square-Enix says this retail run for Collection of Mana is going to be a limited release. You can snag a preorder at places like the Square-Enix store, GameStop, and Best Buy. Collection of Mana hits retail on Aug. 27th, 2019.

Thanks to Mock Turtle for the heads up!

Final Fantasy VIII Remastered being handled by Dotemu

In very capable hands

Final Fantasy VIII Remastered was announced for Switch a few days back, much to the surprise and adulation of series fans. Wondering who's handling the work on this game? It turns out Square-Enix has enlisted the help of Dotemu to whip this game into shape for this generation.

Check out another round of Japanese footage for Dragon Quest Builders 2

Dragon Quest Builders 2 is coming to the Switch in NA/EU this Summer. If you're hankering for some more gameplay, you can check out the new promo video above, which features the Japanese version.

Square-Enix wants to make their entire back catalog available digitally, but they've lost the source code to some games

Easy come, easy go

Square-Enix wants to make sure fans can get their fix of Square-Enix games without ever leaving their home. In an interview with Game Informer, Square-Enix President and CEO Yosuke Matsuda says one of the company's goals is to make its entire back catalog available digitally.

"We're working on that in a variety of ways. That is a request that we hear often. As far as our major titles go, most of those, we still have variations out that you can play now. The more classic titles that you might have played on NES, we are still working hard to make it so you can play those. We actually have launched a dedicated project internally to port those, so we are working to make them available on a variety of platforms. Certainly down the road, we would like to see that on a subscription or streaming service, so we're exploring the possibility of creating a dedicated channel for ourselves.

I think everyone is going in that direction (streaming), so we do want to be proactive in considering those options. We still don't know if it would be a subscription service or an exclusive downloading service or what form it might take, but we do want to leverage our catalog."

It's certainly a valiant effort, but there's just one tiny issue. Square-Enix has lost some of the source code for those classic titles.

"I'm embarrassed to admit it, but in some cases, we don't know where the code is anymore. It's very hard to find them sometimes, because back in the day you just made them and put them out there and you were done – you didn't think of how you were going to sell them down the road. Sometimes customers ask, 'Why haven't you released that [game] yet?' And the truth of the matter is it's because we don't know where it has gone."

Trials of Mana details you might not know (co-op removed, 6 main characters, Unreal Engine 4 usage, expanded story, and more)

This project is getting a lot of love

Game Informer put together a feature on 11 things they think you should know about Trials of Mana. I read through the whole list and boiled down the info to bulletpoints. I actually reworked some of the info, but it ended up being 11 points anyway!

- pick from six characters for your protagonist with their own origin stories
- pick two compatriots that join your protagonist's story as party members
- the decision to remake Trials of Mana and bring Collection of Mana over was due to feedback from the western side of Square Enix
- the game uses Unreal Engine 4
- partner A.I. has improved by taking feedback (and complaints) from other Mana titles
- the full game will be voice acted and will allow players to choose between English and Japanese voice acting
- no co-op
- the story is not exactly the same as it was on the SNES, as this game features an expansion on the ideas within it
- the developers had no idea there was a cult following in the West, but found the fan translation after the project was greenlit
- the producers want to remake the entire series eventually
- Collection of Mana is Switch-exclusive because they had to get the code for the games from Nintendo