Some of the most vocal critics of the modern PlayStation are its lack of interest in Japanese games, particularly JRPGs. Although it is willing to pay enormous sums to secure the latest Final Fantasy as an exclusive timed, it has been quite a while since it published or funded a JRPG.
In an interview with Gematsu Wild Arms designer Akifumi Kanneko revealed that he had presented the spiritual successor Armed Fantasia, To the End of the Wilderness many times to the platform holder. Since then, the game has been the subject of a successful Kickstarter double header that has raised $1.5 Million in crowd-funding.
Kaneko said that Japanese publishers are not willing to take the risk when it comes time to make a new JRPG. In my case, I tried to reach out to Sony multiple times, but it didn't work. "It's not that JRPGs don't have popularity, it's because publishers won't allow us to make them," he said. He also stated that established series like Persona or Final Fantasy are no problem getting funded, but that it's the new IP that is a problem.
Armed Fantasia - To the End of the Wilderness may be run by Wild Arms veterans, but Kaneko insists that the game is not related to the PS1 or PS2 JRPG series. He admitted that Armed Fantasia was a totally different game from Wild Arms. "There will still be a compelling story, but the story and characters will be different from Wild Arms. Anyone who hasn’t played Wild Arms can enjoy this game. It will also be open-world, so you can explore the entire place.
After being added to the PS Plus game list, Wild Arms has seen a slight revival. We gave the game an 8.10 in a recent review of the PS1 original. We described it as a "memorable trip across a uniquely desolate Fantasy world". It looks like the franchise's future is bleak under the current Sony leadership, especially with spiritual successors such as Armed Fantasia, To the End of the Wilderness, turning to Kickstarter for funding.
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