Ladies and gents, the cat is out of the bag. A slew of new screenshots over at The MagicBox
have revealed the look of Atelier Rorona, the newest entry into Gust's long running alchemy based RPG series.
As you can see above, the series' leap onto the Playstation 3 will feature 3D Cel-shaded graphics in lieu of Gust's usual 2D hand-drawn sprites.
I did not hear about this when the game was announced, and I dare say, I'm a bit depressed over the whole business. The people at Gust have been at the forefront of oldschool anime style JRPGs for a while now. Their endeavors on the PS2 (the Atelier and Ar Tonelico franchises) have been providing nostalgic fun to hardcore fans with relatively little dissapointment. As most of Gust's games, with the exception of the radically different Ar Tonelico 2, almost always feel like little more than slightly improved rehashes of their last title, I find the desire to enjoy new, quirky sprites to be one of the few reasons to fork out that cash to buy each new iteration.
I was hoping that the transition to the PS3 would mean gorgeous high definition 2D visuals. I guess I was wrong. These Cel-shaded graphics certainly are attractive. They conjure up fond memories of Tri-Ace's Eternal Sonata; however, I can't help but feel like Gust is taking the easy way out, and filing in with the rest of the pack. I'm not necessarily giving up on Atelier Rorona in its entirety just yet, but the burden now lies with Gust to prove to me that the title will truly be worth my time. Am I the only one slightly saddened by this turn of events?