E3 2008: Infinite Undiscovery Hands-On Impressions

We take a step into the infinite with Square Enix's new 360 role-playing game.

87 Comments

While the Final Fantasy XIII announcement ate up a lot of attention at this year's E3, Square Enix brought along plenty more role-playing game goodness to the show. One such delectable morsel was Infinite Undiscovery, the upcoming Xbox 360 role-playing game from the creators of the Star Ocean series. We took some time to explore the game and learn more about the combat and what makes everything tick.

The world of Infinite Undiscovery is stressed by turmoil because a group known as the Order of the Chains has physically anchored the moon in place, which is causing all sorts of natural disasters and other big problems. It's apparently a bid by Leonid, Dreadknight and leader of the Order, to become a god. One mighty hero rises up against the evil, and that's Sigmund, a strong young man who has earned the adoration of the people. But this isn't the main character of the story--that role falls to Capell, a minstrel who happens to have the unfortunate gift of being identical in appearance to the hero of the resistance. When the Order happens upon poor Capell, he gets promptly shipped off to prison. We saw a portion of a cutscene where Capell begs with a guard for a little food, since he'd been locked up for about three days at that point and was getting a little peckish. The scene was acted out in-engine and had a nice flow to it.

When we took control for our play session, Capell was out of incarceration and running around the countryside with the adorable scamps Rico and Rucha in tow. These two youngsters have the appearance of munchkins but can certainly hold their own in a fight, which we quickly sought out. We entered a rocky crevasse and started to troll for monsters.

The area at first appeared barren as we ran around, until we spotted a dark cavern off to the side with something gleaming in the distance. As we entered, the dark was all-encompassing and we had just enough time to reach the gleaming object (a lever of some sort) before we triggered a short cutscene showing a whole lot of glowing red eyes in the ceiling above. Bats. Very mean, very angry bats, with teeth that were larger than strictly necessary.

As it turned out, the lever we discovered somehow controlled the lighting in the cavern, and when we flipped the switch we could see a lot better. Unfortunately, what we saw was a whole cave full of rabid bats bearing down on us, so we drew our weapons and leapt into the fray. We controlled Capell directly, while Rico and Rucha stuck to their AI settings and held their own. With a weapon out, we had a few different options. The A button served as a quick attack, letting us get in basic melee swings at the target. The B button was bound to a power attack called Spinning Waltz, and Capell would become a whirling dervish for a short time, hitting all enemies in his immediate vicinity. Even without directly controlling the other two characters, you can still instruct them to perform special attacks. Hitting the right bumper activates the "connect" option, letting you choose between one of your two teammates. Hit the button of your selection and then you're connected to that character. Your X and Y buttons are then remapped to two connect attacks that you can direct your teammate to perform at any time. This lets you hook up some devastating combo attacks where you whack away at a foe while your ally fires up an ability.

Continuing into the dungeon, we found a large group of cobra-like snakes surrounding a giant skeletal shrine of an even larger serpent. When we went to engage the group, we approached it from behind and were able to start attacking before we were seen; a question mark ("?") symbol appeared over their heads when we did so. The transition from running around to fighting is seamless, much like it was in the game Final Fantasy XII, though the targeting system in this game features a large red reticle that makes it easy to determine which monster you're focusing on at any given time.

Visually, the game looks great, with large character models and lots of armor and weapon detail and with a satisfying light show when you engage in special attacks. Animations are smooth, and guiding your characters around to fight monsters seems so far to be a good combination of quick button combinations and simple moves that you don't have to go digging through a menu to access. While we saw only a very small portion of the world itself, even the simple cave that we explored was rich in light and shadow, culminating in the serpent skeleton with a skull lightly wreathed in flickering flame.

We definitely haven't seen enough of Infinite Undiscovery, which is currently due to arrive at the very beginning of September on North American shores. Capell and friends will be waiting until then, and we'll be sure to shackle all news to this gamespace for easy discovery.

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Avatar image for rpgNerd321
rpgNerd321

Well,all of the RPG's that I have played in my lifetime have turned out pretty good. So with the Square Enix title,and my natural liking of most games,I'm pretty sure this is a good game.

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platinumkat

well not one of you muppets mentioned Lost Odyssey as a good JRPG.

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krunkmastax

Can't wait. I love my JRPGs.

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green_mantis

I'd like to see this one makes a platform jump to be available onthe PS3 as well, since, of the two, I prefer my PS3. The concept isn't unheard of (points at FFXIII).

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lowkey254

@ ParisSun I think Serentus meant JRPGs, as he obviously stated.

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ParisSun

Serentus: The Xbox has Mass Effect and Oblivion. It also has Blue Dragon, Two Worlds and some other RPGs. I'm assuming you must mean good RPGS, so I will agree with you on Eternal Sonata, but you also have to add in Mass Effect and Oblivion as great RPGs on the 360.

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JaiDingo

Hopefully its better than Enchanted Arms (CRAP) Looks ok. Should tie my over till the new Final Fantasy and Fallout3.

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serentus

I love square! They are making a huge comeback (since crisis core wasn't all that sell-out-ish (in comparison to FFX/FF VII)). Also good that Jpgs are coming to XBOX 360 since the only RPG the xbox has is Eternal Sonata:p

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punkdsk8erdude

cool. finally a J-RPG that looks great, has a cool story, on the 360. and better yet, the action is apparently real-time, not turn based, which is important to me

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constant23

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

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constant23

Well, it has to do with people actually OWNING 360s to buy these games. Some people have to actually start buying the PS3 if Sony wants third parties to make games for it. homestarmy6 said: "So what's with square enix and making all these games for the 360 and not ps3...i dont mind cause i have a 360 but it's weird how they're changing systems i mean star ocean is an exclusive as well as lost remnant and now ff13 is on 360 kinda funny..."

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stevo_360

I'm pretty sceptical of this game, but, you never know.

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shujikun07

This, Tales, Star Ocean, Last Remnant...

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Coldpain

It looks very similar to the .hack// games

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thenephariouson

Is this 'Turn Based'? (I really hope it is'nt).

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kratos_karmakar

i just noticed that this game has a lot of potential. ill be getting it based on the reviews it gets. well i might get it anyways.

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NND1

I usually dont do RPG's but this looks hot... Might Pick It up!!

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jeremycunnings

I just want September to get here...

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fishguts108

homestarmy6, I agree in wondering whats changing their minds. But a possible reason is the drive for increased revenue - which the X360 is proving to have the upper hand with. Still, more for us X360 owners :)

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FadingPhilly

i wounder how many disks this game will have

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homestarmy6

So what's with square enix and making all these games for the 360 and not ps3...i dont mind cause i have a 360 but it's weird how they're changing systems i mean star ocean is an exclusive as well as lost remnant and now ff13 is on 360 kinda funny...

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TrapInNewYork

More importantly, are there any Ninjas?

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ele975

Long time ago i decided not to buy this game because the combat wasn't quite for me. However i've changed my mind and decided to camp for it

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sssb

360owner lucky with this RPG, wish to come on ps3 too.

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Ravirr

Chaos Maker this game is MS IP. SO it will not go to the ps3 ever.

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robotdeer

I think this game looks a little wonky compared to the other stuff SE is releasing for the 360. Compared to Blue Dragon this game looks a bit wonky (not that blue dragon looks bad it is just the oldest J-RPG on the system.)

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tyzwain

Objective aim of Square-Enix: "Final Fantasy on every console". Done.

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n3ck

Woe this looks good, i love the 360 its brilliant.

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ChAoS_Maker

The only game on the X360 i want, but i have a feeling this game will pull a final fantasy 13 later. We already know for sure Star ocean 4 is gonna do that, thats why there being so "Hush Hush" about it when they said "a PS3 version may or may not come" thats an automatic from tri-ace "We want MOAR MONEY!" only time will tell and atm it seems tri-ace is leaning towards it.

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leofiregod

This looks cool. SE has set the bar for years with RPGs. The last few years though they had some stiff competition. This looks like they raised the bar again.

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kuda001

thank you SE for this and all the other RPGs, god knows the 360 needs'em.

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king_bobo

Now this sounds cool. I like a good RPG without the turn-based combat: that's not to say that turn-based combat is bad, it's just nice to have other RPG games to turn to.

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Brewhawk

Can't wait!!

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BadMonk

i love RPG's and i like turn based combat, but i cant stand that 'enemies appear from nowhere' crap that is in so many JRPG's

Avatar image for deactivated-5925dfb1d1fe6

Last Remnant and Star Ocean 4, yes, but this game, not so much.

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z3dd1cu5

This looks great

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zombieman666

cool

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Mehfuz

looking promising

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Flipyap28

looking at the graphics more closely, the game does have good graphics the pictures were just a bit dark

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deadstarr

@FallenAngelXBL: I agree. (: This year will be great, hopefully the RPG's coming out will make up for the likes of Blue Dragon and Lost Od, which IMO weren't amazing. Strange thing is, in the gameplay trailer I saw for this the graphics didn't look very nice at all. But apparently they've improved since then. (:

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iboo01

must have for me

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jakeboudville

hmm.interesting enough for me to check it out in the future

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FallenAngelXBL

this will be a great year for RPG fans, last year was more of a FPS year, but this year we get a nice line up such as Tales of Symphonia 2(wii) Tales of Vesperia, Infinite Discovery, all the oher RPG's square enix mentioned, Fable 2....dam, this will be a good year

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gmax

Hmm... For those into the genre, sounds ok. Forthcoming updates may draw more interest...

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johngebreadman

If VSXIII gos to xbox 360 I am so going to buy an xbox 360

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LastRenshai

just breathe in the fresh smell of RPG's coming to the 360 ^_^

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gulamh

'Unfortunately, what WAS saw was a whole cave full of rabid bats bearing down on us, so we drew our weapons and leapt into the fray' Is that a typo? Anyway, if the story is good I'm in.

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Beesond

Thank god, give me more games with random battles, that is where the awesome is!

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SunaBouzu

Great!!! This is gonna be in my collection ^^

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