TOKYO--The biggest announcement during today's Xbox 360 conference in Tokyo was the unveiling of a new exclusive title by Square Enix. Although that was a big enough surprise for the attending press, what caught them even more off guard was that the game wouldn't be a role-playing game. The publisher of Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior is instead working on a shooter with Game Arts, developer of the Grandia RPG series.
Square Enix executive producer Yousuke Saito appeared onstage with Game Arts board director Satoshi Uesaka to confirm that the two companies are working together on a new shooting game. Under the working name of "Project Sylph," the shooter was hinted at as the next installment in Game Arts' Silpheed series, which has appeared on the PC, Sega CD, and PlayStation 2.
"Using the High Definition capabilities of the Xbox 360, we hope to realize stunning visuals in our shooting game that features as much details as possible," Saito said. "As one characteristic, this won't be just an ordinary shooter. As Square Enix, we will be adding a level of drama to our shooting game."
According to a trailer that followed Saito's comments, Project Sylph takes place in the 27th century where mankind has traveled outside of the solar system to explore a new frontier. While time has passed by, civilization has not forgotten war, and they continue to fight one another. The trailer showed that the game will be a sci-fi shooter, and it included glimpses of a couple of cutscenes. In one clip, ships blew each other apart with laser beams, while another scene showed a city being blasted away.
A shooting game by Square Enix may seem highly irregular, but this isn't the first time the company has worked in the genre. Back on the NES in 1986, one of the very first titles released by Square was a shooting game titled King's Knight. The company also released the 3D shooter Einhander for the PlayStation in 1997.