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In an unusual move, Enchanted Arms is a Japanese style RPG for the Xbox 360. Already out in Japan, it is currently being localized and tailored for the American market. The representative took us through a demo area to show off the battle system and graphical prowess. The visuals are absolutely incredible and will hold their own against anything out on the market; it is clearly a Japanese style of visuality with lots of vibrant colors, maintaining an anime influence without directly being anime.
The little bit of the background story that we got told of a story that dates back 1,000 years. A vast number of powerful beings called golems held a great war that ravaged the world; as their power decreased, the remaining golems were sealed away. The story of Enchanted Arms will concern a dark power who is apparently trying to free golems for its own nefarious use. The hero is a youth who is blessed with an enchanted arm. Due to his unusual ability he is training to be a wizard. Not much was told about his past. The story is also not supposed to be completely linear and will allow for exploring different character backgrounds.
The battle system is a bit unusual also; the representative described it as a Speed Tactics System. Basically, it's a turn-based system played out on a grid that is meant to be as fully customizable as the player wishes. Enchanted Arms is designed to appeal to both hardcore RPGamers and casual users. The party can be formed (and customized) from over 100 golems, but an included auto-battle option also allows players who don't care for the nitty-gritty to skip through much of it. Since it's not a full strategy title, the grid system is quite limited, a somewhat smaller version of what is seen in the early Ultima titles. While special attacks have beautiful animations that can be viewed in full each time, players can also fast forward through them. Attacks can be combined between characters, and this, added to the sheer number of customizable characters, ought to offer up an incredibly deep level of strategy for those inclined.
Enchanted Arms is also supposed to contain an online element in which players can battle against others using their own golems. It is expected to be released in late summer of 2006.