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February 2 2010
Star Ocean: The Last Hope - International
- PS3 Preview
Release Date Distributer Publisher Developer
11/2/2010UbisoftSquare-Enixtri-Ace
Offline Players Online players Price Anticipation
1None$109.95
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Star Ocean: The Last Hope International...
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... is a visually impressive game.

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Square-Enix cut-scenes are stunning as usual.
Huzzah! Finally the PS3 is going to get some love on the RPG front. In our 2009 Futuregamez.net Awards we awarded the Best RPG of 2009 to EA's Dragon Age: Origins, which was pretty much the only RPG of any worth released during the entire year. 2010 appears to be a totally different proposition and tri-Ace are first off the ranks with a PS3 port of their well-received XBox 360 title, but with several enhancements. So this is Star Ocean: The Last Hope - International...

The year is A.D. 2087. In the aftermath of World War III, Earth has been ravaged and the population decimated by a deteriorating environment. Edge Maverick and his childhood friend Reimi Saionji are chosen as pioneer members of the Space Reconnaissance Force, which was created to seek out new worlds beyond the stars. Their ship, the Calnus, takes its place on the lunar launch pad along with four other starships of the first reconnaissance fleet. These ships – humanity’s last hope – blast off one-by-one and sail into the awaiting wormhole that leads to the vast star ocean. And so, Edge and his crew begin their voyage in search of a new haven for humanity... and a second chance.

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Don't worry our version won't have Japanese text.
This fourth game in the Star Ocean series has again been developed for over five years by tri-Ace and, as a prequel, recounts the origins of the Star Ocean universe. Needless to say one need not have played previous games to understand this game, the storyline or characters. The game includes real-time battles for up to four characters while a new Blindside battle system fuses evasion and offense, enabling players to confuse and ambush enemies by quickly moving out of their line of sight when targeted – allowing stunning counterattacks and visual effects. It's also possible to pilot the Calnus spaceship for the first time in the series and journey to various planets in the universe at your choosing. Finally the Item Creation and Private Actions, also make their return in the franchise.

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Finally, an RPG on PS3 to love!
So what's new in this PS3 "International" version? Well the XBox 360 version was released on three DVD's but thanks to the large capacity of Blu-Ray the game now fits onto a single disc, so no more disc swapping. It's no possible to select between English or Japanese voice over options as well as subtitles in those languages, French, Italian, German and Spanish. The game also includes an option to turn on or off the target locking mechanic during combat sequences.

Visually this game looks quite impressive with CG movies created by Square-Enix's internal CG team known as Visual Works who worked on on Final Fantasy: Advent Children movie as well as many Square-Enix games. In-game the visuals are pretty good too and run at a constant 60fps (at least on the 360 version, let's hope the port retains this), but we'll have to wait for the final product before we see if the animation and overall scope stacks up.

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Using the spaceship in Star Ocean 4.
While 2009 was a pretty dire year for Playstation 3 fans looking for RPG's, this game looks set to be the first in a barrage of games due to hit in 2010. The XBox 360 version has sold almost 600,000 units and with several enhancements to this PS3 "International" version we expect this game to shift fairly big numbers, especially in Japan where PS3 dominates the market share over the XBox 360. Anyway, its due out very soon so get your pre-order in now (preferably via the links at the top of this page which helps Futuregamez.