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White Knight Chronicles II concludes the epic journey

Posted by: Sean Colleli at 5/30/2011 10:10 AM
I remember back in 2007, the original White Knight Chronicles was one of the few early games we had to look forward to on the PS3. Now the sequel, White Knight Chronicles II, is apparently closing out the series for now, in the PS3's twilight years. There is a brief trailer below and also an interview with the game's director, Yoshiaki Kusuda, after the break. The PS2 and PSP were known for their extensive libraries of classic JRPGs, but what about the PS3? Did it have a robust RPG lineup, White Knight included? Let us know in the comments.



WHITE KNIGHT CHRONICLES II



Yoshiaki Kusuda, Operating Officer and Director of White Knight Chronicles™ and White Knight Chronicles™ II, LEVEL-5 Inc.



Tell us about the story of White Knight Chronicles II.



The game takes place one year after the events of the original White Knight Chronicles. A year after the return of the Yshrenian Empire, Leonard and his companions come back together to protect the Kingdom of Balandor, the Archduchy of Faria, and the Free City of Greede from the Yshrenian Empire, and end up having to save the entire world.



Two new characters will also play key parts in the story: Miu, the Granddaughter of Archduke Dalam, and the mysterious Scardigne. There is civil unrest in the Archduchy of Faria, with one faction trying to protect Miu and another militant faction trying to spark a revolution. Scardigne belongs to the former, but you’ll need to play the actual game to fully understand the role he takes in the story.



White Knight Chronicles II will bring a satisfying conclusion to the conflict between Yshrenia and the other powers, and to the stories of Grazel, Leonard, and Princess Cisna.



What kind of things influenced the creation of the White Knight Chronicles story?



We wanted it to be a sort of majestic fantasy, with heroic elements that would appeal to RPG fans. In the original White Knight Chronicles you saved a princess, and in the sequel you have to save the whole world.



Along the way, players will transform into a Knight to do battle with gigantic enemies, and there may even be a little love story in amongst all of the fighting. During their adventures, the players will gradually solve mysteries such as the origin of the Knights and the effects they have on the world. I think the game will help both children and adults remember some things that we tend to forget in our modern lives.


We’ve heard that the gameplay in White Knight Chronicles II has been improved. What specifically has changed?



We made a number of changes to improve the game’s pace, such as improving response time in battles and having gauges begin to fill up while a special move is being performed, which allows you to transition to the next move more quickly. But just doing that will turn the game into a mindless button masher, so we also added elements where the player has to attack his opponent just at the right time. This added element of strategy has probably increased the level of difficulty a bit for battles in the sequel compared to the first game.



For example, since you can now guard whenever you want, you can avoid getting stunned when an enemy makes a powerful attack by guarding at just the right time. Or you might use an area-of-effect attack the instant an enemy summons a group of smaller enemies. Strategy is definitely more important in this game.



We’ve heard that White Knight Chronicles II will include the original White Knight Chronicles on the same Blu-Ray. Why did you decide to include the previous game with the sequel?



When we were creating White Knight Chronicles II, the first thing we thought about was what form the product would take. A sequel would usually be sold as a separate package that you could buy on its own and play without the original game if you wanted. However, in the case of a game like White Knight Chronicles you also have the online gaming side which means it’s difficult to keep the sequel completely separate from the original. We considered a number of possibilities, like making the sequel more of an expansion that would require the original game.



But that would limit our audience to people who had purchased the first game and wanted to play more. The number of PS3 owners has increased since the first White Knight Chronicles was released, which gives us more of a chance to get new players, so we decided that including the original game on the disc was the best solution.


Can we look forward to more WKC games on the PS3 in the future?



White Knight Chronicles II concludes the story started in the first game, so for the moment we don’t have any plans for more games in the series. And you never know. If there’s strong support for another sequel...


- What is your favourite RPG?

Tactics Ogre. It’s a fairly old game now but the story and game world were fantastic. It’s one of those games that I could just sit back and enjoy.