Sega has revealed that its beloved Shining series - which began during the Mega Drive era - is making a return to the west after a decade away.
Shining Resonance Refrain will launch this Summer on Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One and PC, and tells the tale of "sword-wielding Yuma and his friends as they fight the Empire."
"Yes!" You may be screaming internally right now. "Finally, Sega's bringing us the good stuff, just like Shining Force and Shining the Holy Ark!" Unfortunately, the classic entries in the Shining series are a distant memory and judging from the trailer - which features fancy, guitar-playing warriors - we're not seeing a return to the classic roots of the series here.
Instead, the story revolves around characters known as "Dragoneers" who wield "Armonics", ancient weapon-instruments on which they can play Rune Songs. This feeds directly into the game's battle mechanics:
Once you build enough BPM (Battle Performance Mana), your party will be able to perform a session through the B.A.N.D. system. Depending on which song you play and which character you set at the center, your party will be able to indulge in various beneficial effects. Certain characters may even perform the song in a special costume!
Naturally we can't comment on the quality of the game until we play it, but there's a part of us which dies a little inside when we realise that Camelot Software Planning - the developers of the "classic" Shining titles - probably won't ever helm an entry in this series again. They had a falling out with Sega after the release of Shining Force III and have worked almost exclusively with Nintendo ever since, pumping out titles like Golden Sun and Mario Golf.
Still, if you're into RPGs then you'll no doubt want to check this out - all versions are available to pre-order in a special "Draconic Launch Edition", which comes with a collectible metal slipcase featuring character artwork of Excella, Sonia, and Kirika.