Square Enix introduces new characters, locations, and more for Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin
Square Enix has graced us with another extensive look at Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin. This time, the focus is not only on gameplay but also the story, cast, and settings. This follows details on the story and the main cast released last month.
The publisher has noted that Team Ninja's "brutal take" encompasses the entire Final Fantasy series, but fans of the first game, in particular, will no doubt note some familiar beats. Based on today's reveals, that seems to track.
Here's our first look at Pravoka, a town from the original Final Fantasy.
After crossing over the northern bridge to the continent, you will find the port town of Pravoka. The people of the town are looking for crystals with aid from the king of Cornelia.
After winding your way through the caves, you discover a pirate ship moored in the Pravoka Seaport.
New characters have been introduced, though a few of them are only "new" in the sense that they're newly-rendered iterations of people who populated Squaresoft's inaugural 1987 entry.
(voiced by Jake Eberle in English, Kousuke Gotou in Japanese)
“It’s poor form not to laugh at a pirate’s jokes, lad.”
A pirate captain who rules the town of Pravoka in place of a governor. In battle, he swings a two-handed axe with wild abandon.
With the oceans wreathed in darkness, the piracy business has dried up, as the ships he would normally prey on are no longer venturing out with the treasures he would normally plunder.
King of Cornelia (voiced by Fred Tatasciore in English, Mugihito in Japanese)
“Deliver this world from the clutches of darkness.”
The ruler of Cornelia. The king sees something extraordinary in Jack and his burning desire to stop Chaos, pinning his hopes on him.
Minister Lagone (voiced by Tom Taylorson in English, Akio Hirose in Japanese)
“And so their quest began.”
A sagacious minister who searches tirelessly for someone who matches Luhkan’s prophecy. He decides to record the journeys of Jack and his comrades for posterity.
Queen Jayne (voiced by Mary Elizabeth McGlynn in English, Miyuki Ichijou in Japanese)
“You look every bit the warrior. I can imagine it serves you well on the battlefield.”
Mia (voiced by Isabella Crovetti in English, Natsuki Inaba in Japanese)
“Cornelia is counting on you to save us from the darkness.”
Just like her older sister Sarah, Mia has a strong concern for the citizens of Cornelia and at times has been known to confront the ministers.
A handful of story moments are given contextual blurbs...
The king of Cornelia believes that Jack and his friends could be the warriors of light and reveals to them the Prophecy of Luhkan in its entirety.
He places fresh hopes on the four warriors, that they will banish the darkness clouding the crystals.
Sarah plays the lute while observing the comings and goings outside, as Mia listens on enthralled. The tune Sarah is playing is the Final Fantasy prelude.
After crossing the northern bridge to Pravoka, the team encounters the pirate Bikke.
...and more information is here on gameplay systems like the Break Gauge.
Combos and abilities will reduce the enemy’s break gauge, shown as a yellow bar above an enemy. Once the gauge is depleted, you can unleash a powerful Soul Burst to crystallize them and take them out in a single blow!
It’s not just enemies that have a break gauge - Jack does too, shown above in the bottom-center of the screen.
Jack’s break gauge depletes when he guards against attacks or uses Soul Shield. The gauge will recover over time, but Jack will be staggered if it ever reaches zero. So be careful!
What is the Soul Shield, you may be wondering? If you use the Soul Shield to block an ability with a purple name, you can capture and store the enemy’s attack to use as an instant ability back at them!
The quest to lift the darkness is not an easy one - the world of FINAL FANTASY ORIGIN is full of dangers that can leave Jack bloodied and bruised. That’s what makes these cubes such a welcome site - touching one will heal your HP and MP and restock your potions.
Be careful, though! Using a cube will also resurrect all the monsters in a dungeon. At least if you’re wiped out, you’ll start at the last cube you touched.
Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin launches for PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and Epic Games Store on PC on March 18, 2022. Players who pre-order the Digital or Digital Deluxe editions will have 72-hour early access to the game on consoles and 24-hour early access on PC. They'll also receive the Braveheart and Rebellion weapons and the Lustrous Shield.
A limited-time trial was available back in June, and RPG Site's James Galizio was pretty pleased overall.