Square Enix has largely spent the decade and a half since Chrono Trigger as a specialty game design house tasked with outputting nothing but pretentious, truly irritating RPGs I would never, ever play. But this year's surprise release of The World Ends With You — a surreal, brilliant and truly unique RPG that stars a gaggle of conflicted, androgynous twinks fighting their way through modern Shibuya — really threw my world view out of whack. Had Square Enix lost their cliched, incompetent touch? Or was TWEWY just some bizarre alignment of accidental genius, an example of random inspirational chance in Square Enix's godless, talentless universe?
Enter this preview video for Square Enix's new game, Song Summoner. First of all, it's for the iPod... not the iPhone, not the Touch... no, the terrible clickwheel iPod which no one in their right mind would ever, ever want to play a game on. And it looks utterly fucking brilliant.
The mechanism's just genius, a revelational amalgamation of the gameplay of Monster Rancher and Final Fantasy Tactics. In Song Summoner, you can convert each and every one of your songs into a warrior to battle it out in a Tactics-like battlefield grid. Each time you listen to a song? Your warrior levels up. Your warriors' abilities are uniquely determined by the song from which you choose to create him. And it's available today for only $4.99, both in America and Europe.
I'm slurping it up from iTunes server's now. I'll try to toss up some impressions later today.
Song Summoner [Press Release]