Tri-Ace is one of my favorite game developers, making classics such as Star Ocean: The Second Story and Valkyrie Profile. They’ve basically been responsible for my blooming love for RPGs and innovative game mechanics. However, they’ve been awfully quiet since last year’s Resonance of Fate for the 360 and PS3, an RPG which is arguably better than Final Fantasy XIII yet bombed because the idiots at Sega decided to release it alongside Square-Enix’s strongest franchise.
Anyway, the wait is over (temporarily) as Tri-Ace teases the world with a tech demo of their latest in-house graphics engine, which looks absolutely amazing! Hopefully, it’s an accurate representation of the product because the attention to detail is too good to be true. Tri-Ace claims that the rendering is in real-time and the tech demo doesn’t represent their current project(s) in development, so be excited for the former and don’t get too worked up on claiming that this is Star Ocean 5. One notable improvement over their previously released games in this tech demo are the expression-filled faces of the character models. Tri-Ace games always looked good due to the unique environments and detailed character models, but they’ve never gotten the facial animation up to par…until now. The plastic and inexpressive faces in Star Ocean: The Last Hope really bugged me.
I’m glad to see Tri-Ace hard at work despite the lackluster reception of their last game. It’s kind of weird though…because the developer doesn’t usually tease gamers with their in-house engines. It makes me wonder whether this new video was made for different intentions. Maybe they’re trying to grab the attention of publishers out there as Siliconera suggested. While they’ve been exclusively in a contract with Enix for the past three decades, last year’s offering was their first breakaway from the company by working with Sega (with mixed results I might add). Perhaps it’s time for a new publisher to step in.
By the way, this video marks the debut of Tri-Ace’s official YouTube channel, so show them support by subscribing!