Square-Enix has made an announcement out of left field with a remake of Secret of Mana for PS4, PS Vita, and PC. Releasing early next year.
Secret of Mana is a special game. It’s highly regarded as one of the greatest RPG’s to ever grace a console, and for good reason. I have some very personal memories playing the game for hours on end when I was a child, and still regularly go back to the game. It’s design is timeless, and it has aged exceptionally well over the years. Although, many people, including the newer generation of gamers have never had a chance to play the game, and sadly, many don’t even know what it is. Square-Enix looks to change that with this recent announcement.
The announcement trailer that was released at Gamescom is more of a teaser than anything, but it does give us some stuff to go on, so let’s break it down.
The first thing you will notice is the 3D graphics this time around. The time honored classic is getting an entire facelift to join the “current generation” of hardware. Although, it’s also immediately evident they aren’t going for a remake in the vein of Final Fantasy VII where they’re making it with the best graphics possible. For this remake, they look to be keeping true to the art style of the original game, while making it more playable for gamers of today. It still has a very cartoon/anime style about it, and Randi looks almost exactly like his Super Nintendo counterpart, albeit with polygons instead of pixels.
The next thing you’ll notice is voice acting. Yes, Square-Enix has decided to add voice acting to this classic, and so far, by Randi’s two lines, it sounds like it will be decent enough. It’s something I’m sure will be sort of divisive within the community, but I’m glad that fact didn’t deter Square-Enix on making the decision. Personally, I think the time of the silent hero is gone from gaming, and it just shouldn’t be done anymore (I’m looking at you Link).
The last thing of note you can glean from the trailer is the new musical score. Those who have played the original know and love its MIDI-board classics, but musical scores in games have progressed light years since then. And Square-Enix isn’t about to let that potential go to waste. It’s clear from the 1:14 minute video it’s going to be a grand orchestral score, and yet another one to remember.
Another thing that’s new, and that will drastically change the way you play the game is Local Co-Op! You read that right, up to 3 people can play the game simultaneously and enjoy this fantastic game at the same time. It will take some getting used to I’m sure, but it’s a breath of fresh air in todays gaming environment, and one that’s very welcome.
This is where the trailer and everything else gets a little less set in stone. As with all remakes, things are bound to change here and there with modern mechanics, controllers, graphics and so on.
We know that the remake, “faithfully tells the story of Randi, Primm, and Popoi as they battle a treacherous empire in order to reclaim the power of Mana and bring the world back to order.” So worrying that the story will change is unnecessary, while at the same time the game will have, “upgraded gameplay”. Whatever that vague term means.
The above screenshot appears to show gameplay that is faithful to the original, and the zone even looks like it’s original counterpart. The trailer doesn’t show us any of this, but we’re likely to get more information rather soon if the games release date is anything to go by.
What You Can Expect:
While any remake is always exciting, and a bit worrying at times for fear the developers will change too much about what made the original game so great. Square-Enix looks, and sounds to be taking this very seriously, and so far it looks like it’s on point. From a similar graphics and gameplay style to a new beautiful musical score, voice acting, and even local co-op. Fans and new players alike have a lot to look forward to with this remake.
Those who preorder the game can look forward to some exclusive costumes and avatars on PS4 and Vita (seen below). If you decide to preorder or buy the PC version of the game within a week of launch, you’ll also receive those costumes as well as an exclusive wallpaper.
The game currently doesn’t have a rating, but it does have a release date. Which is February 15th for all platforms, so we won’t have to wait too long. For more information on the game, head on over to the official website, or check back with us for more information as it’s released.
So what do you think fellow Coin Droppers? Was this out of left field or what? Does this have your nostalgia bone tingling? It sure does for us. Sound of in the comments below what you think.