According to the latest issue of Famitsu magazine, Bandai is making a new .hack game for the PlayStation 2. The new game, .hack //G.U., is slated for release in 2006, and it is being developed by series creator Cyber Connect 2. According to the article, the game is currently 60 percent complete.
.hack is a role-playing series that takes place in a faux online universe where the main character is a player of the virtual-reality game "The World." G.U. will take place seven years after the previous installments and will feature new gameplay elements and jobs.
The year is 2017, and "The World" has been updated with a new storyline, new characters, new monsters, new areas, and new jobs. The gameworld is far from peaceful, however, as Player Killers (PK'ers) are constantly hunting and guilds are always battling. When an inexplicable phenomenon beyond the game's specifications occurs, "The World" becomes a lawless virtual reality that even the system administrators can no longer control.
You play as Haseo, a gray-haired character that's known as "The Terror of Death," a nickname derived from his practice of hunting down Player Killers. Another character revealed thus far is someone that strongly resembles Kite from the previous .hack titles, except that he wears a ragged costume and has a face devoid of emotion. He's called Tri-Edge, a name that seems to be derived from the shape of his weapon.
A five-minute-long trailer of G.U. is available at Cyber Connect 2's official Web site, and it shows Tri-Edge overpowering Haseo, stopping all his attacks with just one hand and countering with a vicious blast. The trailer also shows seven other characters that seem to be party members: Atoli, "The Mirage of Deceit"; Kuhn, "The Propogation"; Yata, "The Prophet"; Sakubo, "The Machinator"; Endrance, "The Temptress"; Pai, "The Avenger"; and Ovan "The Rebirth."
According to .hack //G.U. producer Daisuke Uchiyama and director Hiroshi Matsuyama (who is also the president of Cyber Connect 2), "G.U." stands for "Grow Up," which has 12 meanings hidden in the game. The developers have revealed that .hack //G.U.'s project will expand outside of games, much like its previous releases. In addition, Matsuyama disclosed that another .hack game is also currently in development, and it will be released before G.U. Matsuyama added that .hack fans might want to check Cyber Connect 2's official site on a regular basis, since new information could be leaked at any time.