Today Nippon Ichi Software sent another juicy press release with more information, screenshots and artwork of the upcoming PS3 exclusive action JRPG Battle Princess of Arcadias, that will hit the Japanese shelves in just three weeks on September the 27th.
First of all we learn about the Information Strategic Force of the kingdom of Shuvert: under the direct command of the king himself, they collect intelligence within and beyond the borders and report directly to the sovereign (who happens to be stuck in the uncomfortable form of a goose). They have a very important role, as the information they gather is used to make political decisions every day. They are divided between Road Warriors, that keep watch outside of the kingdom, and the Inner Circle, that monitors the kingdom itself. Two more character that will join Plum’s band and accompany her in her adventures belong to those corps.
Marianne is the leader of the Road Warriors. She’s cool and intelligent, not to mention an excellent soldier that has few rivals in battle. However she can be a little problematic as she loves women and hates men. As a result she dotes on Plum, but she completely ignores Shigt, despite the fact that he’s her king and direct superior.
She fights with a gun and bayonet, and she can unleash devastating close range attacks and long range ones as well. She’s light-weight and agile, so she can literally leap between long and close range delivering a continuous stream of damage. Her special attack is “Lapin Reine,” and allows her to shoot a consecutive stream of bullets that unite into a shock wave that annihilates the enemy.
Diche is the leader of the Inner Circle and the King’s eyes and ears. He’s an honest man and extremely straightforward. Actually he’s way too straightforward, as he’s an unrepentant skirt chaser and doesn’t have any qualms about hitting on any lady that gets in his sights. This creates trouble when it happens with Marianne, who isn’t interested in men, to use an euphemism. He will often make jokes in the presence of ladies that could easily be identified as sexual harassment.
While most characters in the game have quirks and odd personalities, Diche seems to beat them all. He’s able to flawlessly complete any mission he’s assigned despite the fact that he often wastes time to go peep on his favorite cute girl of the moment, including Marianne. King Shigt has to face all kinds of trouble and complaints due to his improper behavior.
In addition to the new characters we also learn about some of the systems that will come with the game. The Favor System regulates the relationship between different characters. When characters complete stages together or perform support attacks, their favor increases, making battles easier.
When two characters are in the same party and stand side by side, if they have an high favor rating, they can execute support attacks. For instance if one launches the enemy in the air, the second can launch a follow-up and hit before the enemy touches the ground. In addition to that up to three characters with high reciprocal favor can perform special moves that can easily wipe out a large mass of enemies or deal considerable damage to a boss.
Characters are also able to level up in perfect JRPG fashion. By leveling up, characters can learn new skills like new attacks, abilities like double jump, buffs for the corps they lead or passive abilities that enhance resistance to status anomalies. By combining different attack skills and weapons it’s also possible to unleash powerful combos. There are dozens of different combinations available, allowing the player to create a fighting style of their own.
When a stage is cleared there is a ranking system based on the time it took to accomplish the mission, up to rank S. Achieving a higher rank will grant better items as a reward.
The Iceberg Zone from this update gets fleshed out a bit more, and we find out that there’s a Grotto hiding the remains of an ancient city in its deepest parts. Unfortunately, there’s also a Gigantic ancient monster residing in that same area. It uses a bubble attack to cause status anomalies and any of its other attacks with cause massive damage if it connects. To defeat this monster, you’ll need to use enhanced weapons, combination attacks and just plain level up. But apparently there’s treasure hidden in this area too….
Below you can see a nice gallery full of the assets released today, showing off the elements mentioned above. One thing is for sure: Nippon Ichi’s galleries never disappoint.