Saturday, 19 February 2011

Will The Last Story Stay Japan-Exclusive?

Many of you will probably know that I'm really looking forward to the UK release of The Last Story, the creator of Final Fantasy's last game and what looks to be one of the best Wii RPGs ever. Unfortunately, that release may not happen at all. After many rumours and much speculation, it has become clear that The Last Story might not be coming out in NTSC and PAL regions. Shocking, no? The Last Story was released in Japan a few weeks back, and it received one or two great import reviews (and no bad reviews, for that matter). With all this praise and much anticipation from gamers here in the UK and over in the West, why shouldn't Nintendo publish the game outside of Japan? This is Sakaguchi-San's last game, after all.

The Last Story looks truly brilliant. Some sites have even been calling it the best looking game on the Wii, and for good reason too. The shading effects are truly phenomenal and the character models look really well animated and are pretty realistic. The music also seems awesome, as it has been composed by the same guy who worked on previous Final Fantasy games. And that's not all, either. The bulk of The Last Story is in its battle system. You and multiple party members take the fight to the enemy in real-time, but you also have the ability to pause the action mid-battle to give your homies commands and think over what you're going to do next to outdo your foes. Speaking of enemies, The Last Story looks to include some fairly ridiculous beasts, including a shiny blue and white tiger, the game's first boss.

There's a distinctive range of characters in The Last Story. Not a bland/generic hero in sight!
Judging by these first impressions videos I've been watching, the story of the game kicks off straight away. The protagonists are apparently tasked with defeating several god-like beasts, much like in something like Shadow of the Colossus or even the Monster Hunter titles. Your party will take different forms throughout the game, thanks to the inclusion of more main characters that you'll find in most games. Each character seems to have a distinctive look, and hopefully each of them has an interesting back-story. The Last Story's developers have clearly spent a lot of time designing the protagonists in terms of looks. From muscular knights to eyepatch-wearing grey haired teenagers, you'll have a wide range of eccentricities join your party to fight alongside you. It's great to see that the developers have gone all out with the character designs in The Last Story, since we do see a hell of a lot of bland and generic 'heroes' in so many RPGs these days.

You can even get The Last Story in a Wii bundle over in Japan! That is one awesome box...
I've spent the last few paragraphs praising The Last Story and for good reason - It really does look like an excellent game and one of the best RPGs in ages. A wide variety of characters, an awesome looking real-time battle system and some incredible visuals form up to make what looks like an incredible Wii title, and it'd be a sin to not consider releasing it outside of Japan. So why aren't they? Of course, they have to do ALL the voice acting in multiple European languages, but they've done that with so many other dialogue-heavy RPGs in the past. Even if The Last Story would take a year or two to arrive in English, I wouldn't care and I'm sure many other gamers wouldn't either. There is apparently a slight glimpse of hope that they will translate the game, but it's unlikely for now. What a shame. Maybe The Last Story will see the light of day in other regions later on in the Wii's lifetime. Only time will tell...

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