Since 2009, fans of the Star Ocean Series have been left without any knowledge of where the franchise was going to proceed into the current generation of gaming. Fans who loved the space oriented RPG series (like myself) clamored for more information and a mixture of magic, swords, and alien planets. E3 2015 was a gold mine of wish fulfillment for fans of RPG series; Final Fantasy VII’s remake was announced, and an entirely new Star Ocean adventure was announced as well. Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness (also known as Star Ocean 5) is going to release in North America on June 28 and July 1 in Europe on Playstation 4 and Playstation 3. While it was originally meant to be released on Playstation 3 for everyone, the Playstation 3 version is set to be an exclusive to Japan, while the next generation release will hit North America and Europe without a Playstation 3 version accompanying it.
Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness’s story is set between Star Ocean: The Second Story and Star Ocean: Till the end of Time (Star Ocean 2 and 3) and will put you in the role of Fidel Camuze; a young man who finds himself protecting a young girl who is hunted by mysterious forces. The majority of Star Ocean 5’s gameplay will be on the planet Faykreed, 6000 light years from Earth, where a cast of characters will join Fidel on his quest to protect the young girl.
In addition to Fidel, two other members of the cast have been introduced; Miki Sauvester, Fidel’s childhood friend who can cast magic as well as heal (which is a rare ability). Additionally, a girl named Relia will eventually join you and has been quoted as being “an emotionless, amnesiac young girl.”
Star Ocean 5 is the first game in the Star Ocean series to allow more than six combatants on the battlefield at one time fighting alongside Fidel against the enemy party. Both battle scenes and story scenes are seamless, not transitioning onto a separate battlefield. The player will seamlessly enter into combat while exploring dungeons and environments, and Cutscenes will also be seamless as well. This will provide a greater form of immersion and allow you to have greater control over combat. With AI Strategies being provided as a game mechanic, you will also be able to focus on controlling a single character, while the party acts independently and fulfills various roles.
With Star Ocean 5 having been the first game in the franchise to release on the Playstation 4, it is likely that it will have a variety of graphics and performance enhancements that will set it apart from other entries in the franchise. One thing is certain however, it will still maintain strong characters, a deep and engrossing story, and entertaining real-time combat mechanics that fans of the Star Ocean series are sure to love. As far as I’m concerned, June 28 can’t come soon enough!