Square Enix recently unveiled a teaser site
as the launchpad for the newest entry in the Star Ocean series -- Star Ocean 5: Integrity and Faithlessness. In the last 48 hours, we've gotten to know a fair bit about the title's development and a just a shade about its story. We have not, as of yet, learned why its subtitle sounds like a Victorian novel.
The above-linked teaser site has since been edited to include a brief trailer. Star Ocean 5, like its series predecessors, will be developed by Tri-Ace and published by Square Enix. We don't have any hint of a release window, but we do know it will be released for both PS3 and PS4.
Fans of the series (prior to the divisive SO4, that is) have much reason for excitement. Shuichi Kobayashi, the Square Enix publisher working with the new Star Ocean, told Famitsu that he wants to channel the "essence of Star Ocean 3" into this next entry in the series. Kobayashi has been campaigning for a Star Ocean 5 for several years now, pursuing series creator Yoshiharu Gotanda and series veteran Hiroshi Ogawa; he makes it clear that this is both a labor of love and intended to garner support for additional future Star Ocean titles. To this end, Gotanda also spoke with Famitsu, promising a "grand story" with plenty of material for future expansion.
SO5 will take place after Star Ocean 3 chronologically, making it the furthest advanced in time (SO4 having taken the series back to a time before the original SO). It will take place, at least to begin with, on a planet named Feycreed, some 6,000 (only!) lightyears from Earth. Famitsu has provided us with the basics of three primary characters: Fidel, a swordsman do-good, Miki, Fidel's (female) childhood friend, and Lilia, a young girl who has lost both memory and feelings. Well, that sounds nothing like a
Star Ocean game!
Star Ocean 5's combat system will be familiar to those who have had prior experience in previous titles, featuring combo attacks based assigned to button combinations that vary depending on the distance to the target. Event scenes, another series staple, will persist in Star Ocean 5. This time around, plot events and dialogue can be interrupted by enemy encounters; the results of these battles can change the path of the story and even its ending.
But alas, there is bad news as well: once again, my greatest hope for Star Ocean -- that its games will be named like SO2, i.e. Star Ocean 5: The Fifth Star Ocean -- has been dashed.