For fans of 3D platformers, one of the games to watch for in 2021 is Balan Wonderworld from Square Enix. There isn't a lot known about it outside of what Nintendo has revealed from a Direct Mini earlier this year, but the game's key drawing point is that it's from Director Yuji Naka, the man behind the original Sonic the Hedgehog and NiGHTS Into Dreams. So it's bound to be whimsical and judging by the opening movie that debuted on Monday, it does indeed overwhelm players with whimsy.
The opening movie introduces Balan Wonderworld's two lead characters: Leo and Emma. They follow a strange bouncing creature called a Tim into an unknown lair where they meet the mysterious maestro known only as Balan. Balan shows off some of his parlor magic while seguing into a jaunty musical number. While it doesn't show off a lot of Balan Wonderworld's gameplay, it does offer an idea of what the game will offer in terms of atmosphere.
For those unfamiliar with what Balan Wonderworld has to offer from a gameplay perspective, let's go back to the September Nintendo Direct Mini. The game will feature 12 distinct open worlds with different themes and the object is to navigate them and complete different objectives. Players will have 80 different costumes with unique abilities to aid them. If that's not enough, two players can get into a co-op adventure and assist one another.
Balan Wonderworld may not be the first game anybody thinks of when they hear the name Square Enix, but it is certainly deserving of mention on a lot of anticipation lists for 2021. We'll keep an eye on this game for more information on what players can expect. In the meantime, Balan Wonderworld is set to release on March 26 on PC, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.