Day 2 of E3 2021 continued with the second installment of Square Enix Presents, bringing the debuts of new Marvel and Final Fantasy titles, as well as updates on Life is Strange.
The showcase opened with an extended world premiere for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, the new title from Eidos–Montréal. This original single-player game puts its own spin on familiar Marvel characters in a similar fashion to Crystal Dynamics’ Avengers title, but without the live-action multiplayer angle. From this first look and extended gameplay demonstration, it looks to present the essence of the characters without imitating the popular MCU films’ interpretations.
Players step into the jet-boots of Peter “Star Lord” Quill, leading his ragtag group of galactic bounty hunters. During conversations he’ll be able to make decisions that shape the team’s course, or affect his relationships with his teammates. Gamora, Drax, Rocket Raccoon, and Groot will respond to your commands but also make decisions independently, while Telltale-style prompts will tell you how they feel about certain calls.
Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy will hit PlayStation, Xbox, and PC on October 26, 2021. Standard and deluxe editions will be available, with “early unlock” skin DLCs and soundtracks included in the latter.
In a similar vein, Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics revealed the first expansion for Marvel’s Avengers, “Black Panther: War for Wakanda.” The long-awaited T’Challa is finally arriving sometime this fall, and the new storyline will also feature Shuri, the Dora Milaje, and an epic showdown with Ulysses Klaue.
Square Enix briefly teased the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster, a collection for Steam and mobile containing the first six games in the storied franchise. Footage and details are scant, but this appears to contain newly remastered 2D versions of all six games, also marking the first time the 2D version of Final Fantasy III will be officially available in English.
The team from PlatinumGames showed off Babylon’s Fall, their upcoming hack-and-slash for PlayStation and Steam. Either solo or with three teammates, players will explore the beautiful but dangerous Tower of Babylon, using unique equipment called Gideon Coffins to combine up to four different weapons at once. Developers mentioned that the game is designed as a live-service with post-launch updates. No release date was offered, but applications are open for a closed beta.
From Deck Nine Studios, Square Enix brought another close look at Life Is Strange: Remastered Collection and Life Is Strange: True Colors. The former has received a heavy visual update, featuring improved animations and lip-synching. Protagonist Alex Chen’s empathic powers were once again the highlight for this True Colors preview, demonstrating how the information she gleans from people’s emotional auras will affect her choices and the game’s overall story. Both games hit PlayStation, Xbox, Steam, and Stadia on September 10, 2021, with the remaster included in the sequel’s Ultimate Edition.
Last, Square Enix Japan and Koei Tecmo debuted Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin, a Dark Souls-like spin-off coming next year. The story draws heavily from the scenario of the original Final Fantasy, featuring a party of heroes determined to slaying Chaos and facing off with a fallen knight named Garland. Series veterans Tetsuya Nomura and Kazushige Nojima are handling the concept and scenario respectively, with Daisuke Inoue directing, so connections to the larger franchise are sure to be present.
Gameplay-wise, however, this is a heavy departure for the series, leaning heavily into its FromSoftware inspiration. The trio of heroes viciously slash and rip their way through familiar enemies, rendering them into blood-red crystals or tearing them apart with their bare hands. Later, the protagonist, Jack, gets into a slugfest with Garland. Whatever fans make of this stylistic departure, PlayStation 5 owners can play a demo as early as today.
Stay tuned to CGM this week for ongoing coverage of E3 2021, and for these titles over the coming months!