War of Velana is a new 16-bit RPG in development. From the homepage:
In many ways, War of Velana is a spiritual successor to the Shining Force series on the Sega Genesis. Elements of those games are the core, and combine with some design ideas from Fire Emblem and Final Fantasy Tactics to create a new tactical experience. In War of Velana, your characters have static classes and gain a variety of skills and equipment upgrades as you progress through the game. In between combat, you’ll be able to explore and interact with the world around you.
The game has been in development for four years and has a great look to it:
There are more screenshots in the latest devblog, including some really impressive atmospheric animations. Check it out!
Shining Pod is a new monthly podcast that covers the entire Shining series! There are 5 episodes to listen to so far, and they cover the early Shining Force games as well as fan games like Ballad of Thuriana and War of Velana.
Jeremy Doolin got in touch with me about his new project, “Ballad of Thuriana”. It’s a Shining-style project that has been under development for about a year now, and if all goes to plan it will be released either fall 2020 or fall 2021 (depending on content creation times).
The game features all new graphics from the artist behind the Time Fantasy collection, and an original soundtrack composed by Ferret Entertainment.
Even more exciting, it is planned for release on Windows, macOS, GNU/Linux and possibly Nintendo Switch.
More info about the project:
The graphics will be very different (see screenshots). Menus will not be the four-way style, but more traditional. There will be some gameplay changes, but nothing drastic. For example, I use the same stats, 100 XP per level system, same turn-based battles. But I have more damage types, a secondary weapon/equipment, a slot just for a ring and one for an accessory, more item slots and other differences
The game will also feature Shining Force 2 style exploration:
And I will have Exploration! In fact, that’s all I’ve been working on for months. It will be much more like Shining Force 2, with a world map, some random encounter battles, exploration, secrets, some side quests and more. I’ve nearing completion of the Exploration mode and will build the Battle system over Summer.
As you can see it’s an ambitious and exciting project!
You can follow the project’s status on Instagram (@doolindigital) and Twitter (@DoolinDigital). A website for the project will also be released in a few weeks.
Shining Force Unity is a new project built using Unity. From the topic on Reddit:
Hi everyone, I’m currently working on a project called Shining Force Unity, a remake of shining force (1 and 2) in the unity engine. The project is still in the early stages of development but the goal is to create a full game editor for people to create their own levels, dialog and sprites, all of which can be saved outside of the game and shared with friends. I’m also adding a few quality of life fixes but all changes can be turned off if you want the classic experience.
It’s still in the early stages, but the map maker looks promising.
The Legacies of Veridocia team have released a new demo of their stellar Shining-style RPG.
Below is a list of changes from the official release notes:
Adjusted Battle 2
Changed the UI to make magic selection clearer
Changed the Move area to be nicer to look at
New scene and location after Battle 2
Access to the World Map
New location and Battle 3
The demo contains towns to explore and battles to fight, all tied together with some very Shining-style cutscenes.
I highly recommend giving it a go if you haven’t had already. There’s an incredible amount polish, especially for a demo, and everything has a nice feel to it. The music and artwork are fantastic, and the battle animations in particular are really well done.