Live A Live was one of the most unexpected and interesting reissues of 2022 when it appeared on Nintendo Switch — and now the remaster of this cult 1990s Square Enix role-playing game is coming to PC and PlayStation. Live A Live will be released on Steam, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5 on April 27.
Live A Live has a time-hopping storyline that follows characters from prehistory, imperial China, medieval Europe, Edo Japan, the wild west, the present day, the near future, and the distant future. Each chapter has a distinct storytelling style and game mechanics: It’s sort of like a playable Cloud Atlas.
It’s not an entirely successful experiment, but it’s a true original, and a fascinating recovery from the vaults that’s well worth checking out if you’re a student of Japanese RPGs. Live A Live was released in Japan in 1994 but never made it to the West. It was directed by Final Fantasy 6 designer and Chrono Trigger director Takashi Tokita, a star of the mid-’90s Square Enix team.
The new remake uses Square Enix’s beautifully embellished HD-2D style, which places retro sprites within 3D environments rich with atmospheric effects, as seen in the Octopath Traveler games and Triangle Strategy. An HD-2D remake of Dragon Quest 3 is also in development.