Mike Salbato
Death is No Joke in Final Promise Story
Also, Imageepoch has HOW many titles in development?
04.19.11 - 11:31 PM

It's something we've seen before in an RPG - in Nintendo's Fire Emblem series or Final Fantasy VIII's cheap final boss - but when playing Imageepoch's Final Promise Story, you might not want to let your characters die, since it could end up being permanent.

There's two kinds of 'death' in the game - if a character loses all their HP, they simply become incapacitated as in most RPGs. While in this state, a character cannot fight, but can still be attacked. With their HP drained, damage will be done to that character's SP (which can also be used by performing special attacks). The danger is that if a character loses all their SP - seemingly regardless of their HP level - they become 'Lost.' As in, gone forever, not stranded on a weird island with a smoke monster somewhere in the Pacific.

While a deadly proposition, and one that enforces Imageepoch CEO Ryoei Mikage's plan of making Final Promise Story incredibly hard, there's a twist to the feature as well called the Miracle of Illia - something we previously discussed (with video).

Another quirk to the battle system is the invisible "hate" level, similar to an aggro level in an MMORPG. Like an MMO, having a character target a single enemy will cause that enemy to build up their 'hate' level and target your character in return. Not only that, but if they hate you enough, they may unleash a devastating attack in retaliation. It goes without saying you'd want to avoid that, so battles may require more strategy than beating on one enemy at a time.

Final Promise Story is due out next week in Japan, so this week developer Imageepoch held a pre-release event this week. At said event, company CEO Ryoei Mikage revealed his company has ten more titles in development after FPS. While we already know of Black Rock Shooter: The Game and Chevalier Saga Tactics, there's also several mystery titles, most going by code names such as Remus Project, Type-Moon x Imageepoch, Ark Project and Mars Project. Combining all these with a mystery collaboration with SEGA still leaves three complete mystery games. While some think this is overly-ambitious of the young studio, no release dates for these titles has been revealed, so these ten titles could be Imageepoch just planning things out well in advance.

Finally, join me in hoping that, once Final Promise Story releases, NIS America can let us know if they intend to bring it (and Black Rock Shooter: The Game) to North America.