Koei announced today that Kessen III, the latest in the publisher's real-time strategy series set in historical Japan, will be released in North America sometime in the first quarter of 2005. Produced by Kou Shibusawa, whose previous work includes most of Koei's seminal military strategy series from Romance of the Three Kingdoms to Nobunaga's Ambition, Kessen III continues the series tradition of adding action-oriented gameplay and massive battles to the strategy formula.
As previously reported by GameSpot News, Kessen III will feature major changes to the franchise. Players will step into the clogs of legendary warlord Oda Nobunaga as he attempts to unify the Japanese mainland. More action-oriented gameplay will accompany a new nonlinear stage selection, an officer and troop deployment system, and the ability to equip officers with a selection of more than 450 different types of weapons and armor. Additionally, two hours of cinematic sequences will tell the game's story.