Battle Chasers has officially made the transformation from steampunk fantasy comic series to complete, fully crowdfunded JRPG called Battle Chasers: Nightwar. The Battle Chasers comic was first released as a popular but short-lived series in 1998; in 2015, the Kickstarter campaign to turn it into a roleplaying game was launched by a team that included the original comic creator, Joe Madureira. The game is a revival of the comics, featuring classic turn-based combat and characters from the original series.
Gameplay consists of “old-school combat with a unique two-tiered mana system and turn-based initiative, featuring random buffs and debuffs on initiative slots,” and “action-oriented, randomly-generated dungeons,” as described by Airship Syndicate (the development team) in their Kickstarter pitch. The game also combines these elements with a “non-linear story driven by the discovery of lore on items, landmarks and secret elements in the world.” In terms of story, Airship Syndicate also includes a quick narrative blurb:
The Grey Line. An impenetrable wall of mist hovering over the West Waters, stretching endless from north to south, and towering from ocean crest to dark sky above.
Nothing has ever come from, or survived entering, the historic monolith. The great hero Aramus felt a calling from the Grey Line and crossed, despite the dangers. And like countless warriors, vagabonds, fugitives and fortune seekers before him, never returned. Now, his daughter Gully and her unlikely band of adventurers venture into the mist to uncover her father’s mission.
Along the way they’ll meet friend and foe alike while piecing together the silent history of the Grey Line, and the dark secrets within.
In a post on the PlayStation blog, Madureira wrote that the Battle Chasers universe lent itself well to a JRPG format, as the team first decided that their game was going to be a roleplaying game based on the style of classic JRPGs. In particular, the existing character made for “a diverse cast of memorable heroes who were themselves influenced by the same RPG’s [they] were now making.” After the success of their Kickstarter, Airship Syndicate partnered with THQ Nordic to serve as the game’s publisher in order to “take the game even further.”