I had a chance to play Project X Zone on Friday, and I'm faced with a dilemma. It's hard to write an impression when the only thing you want to say is "PXZ ROCKS!"
Perhaps we can discuss why it rocks, though. Is it the story? Not particularly, since this game has so many characters that any attempt at a serious plot is doomed to holey heck.
Is it the characters? That's a better place to start, as the game inherits a wide variety of protagonists who have developed personalities in their own series over the years, or even decades, of their existence.
Well, let's look at the mis-en-scène. In the demo, I had characters from Street Fighter, Darkstalkers, Mega Man, Resident Evil, Devil May Cry, and Tales of Vesperia (and that was just the short list) facing off against a force of ghosts and goblins. Appropriately, the battle was set in the game world of Makai-Mura, better known in the west as Ghosts'n Goblins. For flavor, a single Mett from a Mega Man title had somehow wandered in.
The field was littered with skeletal trees, tilted tombstones, and free-moving guillotines, all of which were visible (and in motion) in the background of all battles. The 3D effect actually looked pretty good here.
In the ten short minutes that I was allowed, I chopped, hacked, blasted, and exploded everything I could. The battles handled similarly to single character turns in Endless Frontier, with the two characters on each team acting in tandem for regular attacks and in concert for the special attacks. These I used as often as possible. I only had ten minutes, after all. That's excuse enough for overkill.
Anyway, I'm definitely getting this in three weeks. I already have the pre-order slip in my wallet. This sample's just got me impatient for more.