Very often some great games get released in Japan that cease to see the light of day in West, or if they do, they more often than not only see a limited run. This was the case with Nihon Falcom’s Xanadu Next when it came out on the Nokia N-Gage and for Windows PC back in 2005 in Japan. However, the game was restricted to Japan release only and it never made an appearance in the West. Xanadu Next is an action role-playing game made as a spin-off of the 1985 action RPG Dragon Slayer II: Xanadu. However, according to PCgamer, gaming publisher XSEED, worked on re-releasing a Microsoft Windows PC version for western release and launched it this week.
The JRPG is translated into English, has been given a light bugging and is now available on Steam, on GOG and on the Humble Store. Xanadu is a series created by developer Nihon Falcom and it’s been described as an exploration-centric action RPG on the Steam page. It’s a late entry in the popular Dragon Slayer series and a spiritual follow-up to the late ’80s cult classic. Xanadu Next puts players in the shoes of a gravely injured knight given a new lease on life through ancient magic who must now seek a legendary sword called “Dragon Slayer” to ensure his survival.
Here’s a full description of the game:
Set on the medieval Europe-inspired Harlech Island, players will explore an interconnected world where icy peaks connect with fiery caverns, mystical forests and other exotic locales to create one enormous map. Countless new obstacles, techniques, items and deadly monsters are just some of the hidden secrets players can uncover in the world: stone tablets and letters are dispersed throughout the lands, each providing valuable insight into the important events and mythological intricacies that occurred 500 years prior, in the age of Xanadu.
Players battle vicious enemies in real-time with a wide variety of weapons, each of which is imbued with a unique skill that can be learned and leveled-up through repeated use – a system that would later be seen again in the Falcom classic Ys SEVEN. Mystical spirits known as “Guardians” can also be attached to the player character’s soul, granting a variety of passive effects to aid him in his quest. Add to this stat customization with the ability to level-down for point redistribution, unique items that are used to access new areas in creative ways, and more. The multitude of mysteries surrounding the ancient land of Xanadu promises a solid challenge to anyone who dares set foot on the forgotten shores of Harlech Island.
Although the game might feel a bit dated (since it is from 2005), there’s plenty of great gameplay; some have described it as a combination of Zelda, Ys, Diablo, and Dark Souls. Ys was a game that Nihon Falcom also developed and largely overshadowed Xanadu’s success.
Xanadu Next sells for $19.99 and is currently on a 10 percent sale on Steam for $17.99. If you’re big fan of Japanese role-playing games and have a few extra cash, then pick up a copy of this game. Below is a trailer to the game: