Publisher Atlus and developer Studio Zero have shared a video interview of the developers of Metaphor: ReFantazio, who discuss story beats, gameplay, music, and more. The game will launch in Fall 2024 for Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC via this Microsoft Store and Steam.
This 14-minute clip answered all the questions I had regarding this latest title. Well, it also left me super intrigued, even more than its initial reveal during the Xbox Games Showcase in the summer. Metaphor: ReFantazio is new, yet it also feels utterly familiar. It looks so good.
Metaphor: ReFantazio is being developed by Studio Zero, Atlus’ third creative department production division. As you may already know, the fantasy RPG is spearheaded by the visionary minds of Persona 3, 4, and 5—Director Katsura Hashino, Character Designer Shigenori Soejima, and Composer Shoji Meguro. In addition, the team is working with other talented people in the industry. For one, Metaphor: ReFantazio‘s stunning background was created by Concept Artist Kazuma Koda (NieR: Automata), while Mechanical Designer Ikuto Yamashita (Neon Genesis Evangelion) designed the gauntlet runner vehicles as seen in the trailers.
Fans of turn-based and action RPG gameplay will be pleased as the team showcased a unique hybrid battle system during a year-end Japanese livestream. Credits to Gematsu for translating the presentation, a portion of which is reproduced below.
New Metaphor: ReFantazio Details
A world separate from our own, inhabited by eight tribes.
In this world is a land known as the United Kingdom of Euchronia.
The union, founded by the heroic first king and ruled by a strong royal family that inherited powerful magic, has gradually succumbed to corruption over the years, and is descending into a “virtueless nation” torn apart by inequality and discrimination.
In the vast realm, dangerous animals and mysterious monsters known as “Humans” run rampant, making the lands outside city walls seldom safe. And the assassinations of Euchronia’s prince and king have unleashed further chaos and unrest unto a kingdom now without a ruler.
The Eight Tribes in Metaphor: ReFantazio
A tribe characterized by the horns on each side of their heads. Their physique and physical capabilities are average. They occupy a number of important positions in the royal family and monarchy, and are often considered the central tribe of the kingdom. They themselves tend to subconsciously internalize the sense that this is true.
A tribe characterized by their long, protruding ears. With a remarkable physique and physical capabilities, many of them are soldiers or occupy important positions in the military. Many possess a combative nature, fixated on victory versus defeat and seeking to determine the inferiority or superiority of anything and everything.
3. Ichthyia (spelling to be confirmed)
A tribe characterized by the elegant wings on various parts of their bodies. They possess greater intellect than other tribes. Many hold high positions in intellectual labor, such as scholars and clergymen, and many are wealthy. Coupled with their appearance, they are a tribe that is sometimes admired, but as there are also those who tend to look down upon others, they are equally despised.
4. Rogue (spelling to be confirmed)
A tribe characterized by their long lifespan. Some live more than twice the average life expectancy of other tribes. Their aging is unique, with middle and old ages occupying the majority of their lifetime. In traditionally seniority-based positions, they consequently tend to hold higher positions. Their culture emphasizes great value in “passing down” knowledge and purpose.
5. Nydia (spelling to be confirmed)
A tribe characterized by their large eyes and eye color. Despite lacking any particularly extraordinary traits, many are said to be sociable and charismatic. However, their nature is often taken negatively by some, who consider them “untrustworthy smooth talkers” or “weirdos.”
6. Palipas (spelling to be confirmed)
A tribe characterized by their beast-like ears and tail. While physically very strong, their senses are also physical, and they are for better or worse pleasure seekers. While their love for feasting and liveliness, and their carefree cheerfulness can at times be a strength, it can also manifest as an impulsiveness that does not favor deep contemplation. They lack political dominance and are looked down upon by other tribes.
A tribe characterized by their bat-like wings and ears. Due to their difference in appearance and abilities compared to the humanoid tribes, they are often seen as creepy and discriminated against. For that reason, the majority live life without wealth and are lower in rank among the other tribes. They are generally mild-mannered and cooperative. However, they are not good at making big decisions and tend to hesitate due to their constant concern for others.
8. Mutsutari (spelling to be confirmed)
A tribe characterized by the “third eye” on their foreheads. They are often viewed as strange due to their unique masks and traditional attire. Since they follow their own faith separate from the state religion, they are often persecuted as “heretics” in the mainland, and are somewhat mysterious.
The Monstrosities Known as “Humans”
Unidentifiable creatures with bizarre appearances unlike any other known animal. Each one harbors a substantial amount of rampant Magra in their systems, prompting them to indiscriminately attack everything around them. While generally unintelligent and aggressive, their biology is a mystery, such as their use of a magic far too advanced for people to easily handle. Their bodies are robust, and the larger ones are capable of annihilating even entire armies.
Metaphor: ReFantazio Sound Preview
As someone who constantly jams to Meguro’s Persona OSTs, it’s a must for me to share this brief preview of Metaphor: ReFantazio‘s soundtrack. The musical approach seems to deviate from his previous works but I’m looking forward to hearing the full product.
Metaphor: ReFantazio releases for XSX, PS5, PS4, and PC via the Microsoft Store and Steam in Fall 2024. Stay tuned here at RPGFan for future updates!