Home » News » New Fantasy RPG Project Prelude Rune Announced by Square Enix!

New Fantasy RPG Project Prelude Rune Announced by Square Enix!

Project Prelude Rune logo

Square Enix has announced both a new RPG and an entirely new studio! The new game is tentatively called ‘Project Prelude Rune‘. It is currently developed by their new Tokyo-based studio, Studio Istolia. Moreover, the long-time Tales of series producer, Hideo Baba, who joined Studio Istolia will direct the game!

Project Prelude Rune is a completely new RPG IP. According to the press, the working title is meant to illicit a “premonition of mystery.” The game’s genre is stated as “Animetic RPG”. Here’s the description of the game, quoted from Square Enix:

The project aims to build a new RPG with a new fantasy: unfolding across a vast land teeming with life. Nurtured by the earth, the many peoples of this land dare to dream, fighting for what is just—and this is their tale.

Below is the interview with Baba about the new studio and the project, from Famitsu Magazine’s issue courtesy of Hachima:

  • In his former work, Baba was entrusted with a major IP, but while looking at business development aside from games he felt that it was time to pass the torch to the younger generation, and decided to time his resignation during a turning point.

  • After thinking about how many more games he’ll be able to make, Baba felt the need to take on another challenge with a powerhouse that has plenty of RPGs. He then knocked on Square Enix’s door in October of last year.

  • Square Enix president Yosuke Matsuda said “I want him to work on a new IP while excavating new talent at the same time.”

  • “Studio Istolia” is a company with a group of craftsmen who make stories. That’s the meaning of the name.

  • Istolia’s mascot character is designed by Toshiyuki Itahana who worked on the Chocobo series. It still doesn’t have a name.

  • Personally speaking, Baba would like to see this mascot character appear in a future title.

  • In the game he’s currently working on right now, Baba wants to express the world with “kindness” and “warmth.” Rather than having a bloodthirsty atmosphere of some sort, he wants to make it into a game that will make you say “I want to hurry up and jump into that warm world.”

  • He wants its representation to come from familiar anime and comics that he had as a child.

  • He wants to make a straight-forward fantasy RPG, by going back to the roots of fantasy and it is something he’s currently designing. A world that features the likes from Norse mythology, dwarves, elves, and all kinds of different races.

  • The “Baba-esque” sense you see in the growth of characters and strong messages, which we’ve all seen in the Tales of series, is something he doesn’t want to change.

  • A release period couldn’t be shared today

  • The platform has yet to be decided, but Baba has a strong desire for it to be for console. However, if there’s a chance for business, then he’d like to check out various platforms, including smartphone

  • And of course, he’d like to take on the challenge of bringing the game overseas.

You can see the mentioned mascot, along with the game’s concept arts, below.

Currently, Project Prelude Rune‘s release date and platform are yet to be announced.


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A little chit chat won't hurt. Enthusiast of Persona, Suikoden, Danganronpa, and BL games-- oops.

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