During today’s Nintendo Direct event, Nintendo revealed new details about Project Octopath Traveler, one of several featured titles shown during the presentation. The game is due for simultaneous worldwide release in 2018.
Developed by the company responsible for Bravely Default, Project Octopath Traveler (the name is still a working title only) is a Nintendo Switch exclusive. Players assume the role of one of eight heroes, and each one possesses a unique “path action” that affects interactions with characters they meet around the world.
For instance, the warrior Olberic can challenge virtually anyone he meets to a duel, which might root out evildoers or just get someone out of the way. Primrose, a dancer, has the “allure” ability. She can bring people under her thrall, which makes it easier to track down missing persons or to lure enemies into a trap. She also is able to summon allies under her power into battle, to fight on her behalf.
Combat will feature turn-based battles, with a unique “boost” mechanic that allows players to use accumulated points to take certain relevant actions. For instance, you might increase the strength of an attack or ability, or chain attacks together. If an ally is in trouble, a boost at the right time could turn the tables, which means you must be careful about when you take advantage of that capability.
The game employs an art style reminiscent of Final Fantasy VI. It mixes CG and visual art, in a style the developers are calling “HD-2D.” Fans have been clamoring for new information since the game was revealed in a previous showcase, and they certainly got it today.
Nintendo also said a demo version of Project Octopath Traveler will be available later today on the eShop. Later, fans will have the chance to participate in a survey, which will presumably have some impact on the direction game’s development before its completion sometime next year.