RPGamer Treats The World To a Preview of Upcoming Showcase Event, The E3

Click here to be taken to a list of confirmed titles from Aidyn Chronicles to Ogre Battle
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Parasite Eve 2
Square will be showing their follow up to the cinematic cross between Resident Evil and Final Fantasy VII at this year's E3 after it surprisingly debuted at last year's show. The game takes on a more action-like role and Square's ATB (active time battle) is no longer in place. Gamers can now move at will and fire as they please. Also, the terrain is interactive and can cause damage should it explode or spill. Some of the features from Parasite Eve have made it through, such as the weapon customization and Aya's HP and MP. Computer controlled allies can also aid you on your quest, but you have no control over them. The game takes place across America now rather than just in New York, which might please the sightseers among us. This game is scheduled to arrive around September in North America and, strangely enough, will hit Europe in August.

Pokemon Gold/Silver
This is first real sequel to the Red and Blue versions of the game and features a huge 250 monsters for you collect and battle. This will be huge, and Nintendo will start an extensive hype campaign at E3 this year. Some of the new Pokemon can be seen on the cartoon series or in last year's movie. Other changes bar sheer number include full color support graphically, an internal game clock that will advance the game even when you are not playing, a new pokedex, a phone system, a new battle system, and the ability to mate and carry eggs of pokemon. The western world will be seized by the lovable Pokemon cast once more. You have been warned.

Reiselied: Ephemeral Fantasia
Reiselied (German for "Song of Travel") is a new title from Konami, the company that gifted us with Suikoden and Vandal Hearts. There is not much to report on this title as of yet, but its presence at the E3 should change that. Thus far, the game features three known characters: a female minstrel, a dark haired male archer, and a blonde female magician. The game takes place entirely in 3D and the camera constantly pans and swivels to get the best view of the action. Battles will be turn based.

Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure
Atlus' third title at the show if you include the as of yet announced mystery title. The game was found out to be a conversion of Marl Ookoku Ningyo Hime: The Adventure of Puppet Princess by Nippon Ichi. The game features a 16 year old girl, Cornet, who can talk to puppets, and Kururu, a fairy puppet. They are attacked by an evil witch but the Prince, Ferdinand, saves them. She falls in love, but sadly the same Evil witch turns her beloved to stone. Cornet journeys to look for the five heart stones with which she must save the prince, and along the way she can befriend and talk to many puppets, up to 16 in the party at once. The game is heavy in song and text, and Atlus is taking time to translate these to English, which bodes well.

RPG Maker
Agetec will be handling the translation of this nifty piece of software which will you to make your own RPGs, hence the title. If you have played through RPGs and ever thought, "I could do that better" or "it would be cool if....", this game will be your chance to realize these ambitions. RPG Maker has been heralded in Japan and will be a success here too in all likelyhood. The title will be featured at E3 and then receive a release later in the summer.

Silver: DreamCast
Silver was recieved well on the PC last year, and is being converted to the Dreamcast to further bolster the system's strong RPG lineup. The game is very similar in nearly every way to its PC counterpart but features a vastly different control system. Silver is essentially an action RPG at heart but borrows heavily in graphic style and game execution from Final Fantasy VII. The Dreamcast version will also include some small gameplay changes from the original version.

Soul Reaver 2
Eidos will be showing a sequel to the impressive Soul Reaver at this year's E3. As of yet, there is little information to give out on this Dreamcast title, but the game's showing at E3 will certainly change that.

Summoner is to be released on Sony's Playstation 2 sometime around launch and looks very impressive. The PC and Mac will also receive the game after the Playstation 2 version has arrived. Summoner is a fully functional traditional styled RPG and features some jaw dropping graphical effects.

Threads of Fate
Known as Dew Prism in Japan, this is a action oriented 3D adventure title. This game is similar in style to Brave Fencer Musashi and features the same super deformed dwarf like characters, twin life and magic bars, and the platform-esque gameplay trends. The game features the dual hero fad that is going about currently, and as for the credentials: the team is made up of members from the Secret of Mana and Chrono Trigger development teams, which speaks highly for the game.

Torneko: The Last Hope
Utilizing the Dragon Quest franchise and the exploitation of randomly generated dungeons, Torneko features the merchant from Dragon Quest IV. The game is by Chunsoft, makers of the previous Torneko game, Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon, and the original Mysterious Dungeon titles. Featuring some 130 monsters and 150 items which an be melded and made into new items. The game got a highly commendable 37 marks from 40 in Weekly Famitsu in Japan, and should appeal more to the older generation of gamers.

Vagrant Story
Vagrant Story recently achieved a stunning 40/40 in Japan's highly respected Weekly Famitsu magazine, and is an effort by Square to steer RPG's in a different direction. Featuring a unique battle system and playing style, Vagrant Story already amazed Japanese gamers when it was released earlier this year. Expect to see a full showing of this title, just before its projected May 16 release.

Valkyrie Profile
Valkyrie Profile takes on the monster raising genre in an entirely different manner, in that you raise humans. You control a valkyrie in the game, and instead of talking with the Gods, you battle against them. Raising warriors and fighters from ghost towns and wandering souls, the player must send his creations to Valhalla to do battle with the Gods. Developed by tri-Ace, their typical action battle system is incorporated. Upon pressing one of the four buttons on the controller, one of four chosen creatures will perform a command. There are also combo based commands, directed by key presses. The game features a strange concept in that it only scrolls sideways, making it almost platform-like.

Click here to be taken to a list of unconfirmed and speculative titles

by John "Loch" Hynd    
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