After some teasing earlier in the year, Sabotage Studio (the developer behind The Messenger) has unveiled its next title: Sea of Stars. A retro RPG inspired by the likes of Secret of Mana, this new game will be set within the same universe as The Messenger and will serve as a prequel to the adventures of everyone’s favorite time-hopping ninja.
The biggest connection between the two titles is that Sea of Stars will feature the “Children of Solstice.” They were a key component in The Messenger’s overall plot, so we’ll likely get some background on where all of the legends started. The overall art style looks similar to Sabotage’s past effort, though obviously skewing more towards the 16-bit influence that the future segments had.
At the moment, Sea of Stars does not have a publisher. Sabotage is taking to Kickstarter to get funding for a more fully-featured release. The title is currently slated for a 2022 release on PC and consoles, so it will probably end up hitting PS5 and Xbox Series X -if not some kind of Nintendo Switch successor-.
The Messenger was an unexpected hit when it released in 2018. Combining elements of Ninja Gaiden with Metroid, its usage of both 8 and 16-bit visuals was crucial in establishing its nostalgic identity. It also had a wild sense of humor that kept the story moving at a brisk pace.
With Square Enix finally embracing the Seiken Densetsu series with the release of Collection of Mana and the upcoming Trials of Mana remake, Sea of Stars looks poised to capitalize on that nostalgia train. I’m certainly more for action-oriented RPGs over strictly traditional ones, so this game has my interest piqued.
The visuals and soundtrack already look on point, so it seems likely that Sea of Stars will be another hit for Sabotage. The 2022 date seems a little far off for how polished the current trailer is, but more time is never a bad thing. If the next few years can provide an even better game than what we’re currently seeing, then I’ll just have to be patient. It’s not like I can’t play Secret of Mana for the 15th time.
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