Packaging artwork, featuring the game's characters
|Engine||Unreal Engine 4|
|Release||July 13, 2018|
Octopath Traveler[a] is a turn-based role-playing video game developed by Square Enix, in collaboration with Acquire, and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch. The game was released worldwide on July 13, 2018. In under a month, the game had sold over a million copies, making it one of the best-selling games on the platform.
Octopath Traveler is a role-playing game that sports a graphical aesthetic known as "HD-2D", which is defined by the developers as combining 16-bit Super NES-style character sprites and textures with polygonal environments and high-definition effects. The game puts players in the role of one of eight adventurers, each of whom begins their journey in different ways. Each character comes from different parts of the world, each of which determines their job or attribute. Each character has a unique Path Ability command that can be used when interacting with NPCs that are divided into two categories: Noble, the ability's effectiveness dependent by the character's level or amount of in-game currency, and Rogue, which has a risk of its user losing credibility upon other NPCs. For example, Olberic and H'aanit can challenge characters, Cyrus and Alfyn can inquire about certain bits of information, Tressa and Therion can acquire items, and Ophilia and Primrose can guide NPCs and use them as guest summons.
The game features turn-based battles, in which the player can attack using different kinds of weapons or elemental attacks, as well as use abilities and items. Playable characters receive a Boost Point at the end of every turn, of which they can store up to five at a time. During their turn, a player can use up to three Boost Points to boost a command, allowing their character to attack multiple times, raise their defense, or increase the potency of an ability. Enemies have a shield counter that lowers whenever they are attacked with a weapon or element they are weak against. When the counter is depleted, they enter a stunned state where they can receive more damage and lose a turn.
The plot features eight different protagonists that the player can choose from at the start of the game and then progress to the subsequent characters afterwards in whatever order they prefer. The characters are the cleric Ophilia, the scholar Cyrus, the merchant Tressa, the knight Olberic, the noble dancer Primrose, the apothecary Alfyn, the thief Therion, and the hunter H'aanit.
After progressing though all the characters various stories, it's discovered that each of their goals or problems is in someway connected to the God of Life and Death, Galdera and a secret plot to unseal and release him upon the world. After tracking down the location where he would be unsealed at the fallen Kingdom of Hornburg and the lost Gate of Finnis, the eight characters fight a vicious battle against the newly released god to bring him down for good and in turn save the world from an untimely fate.
Octopath Traveler features 8 playable characters.
Ophilia Clement is a cleric from Flamesgrace in the Frostlands. When her adoptive father falls deathly ill, she decides to perform a religious rite in her sister Lianna's stead.
Cyrus Albright is a scholar from Atlasdam in the Flatlands. Upon his discovery that a dark grimoire from the royal academy's archives has been long missing, he travels to search for it.
Tressa Colzione is a young merchant from Rippletide in the Coastlands. After meeting pirate-turned-merchant Leon Bastralle and being gifted an anonymous diary, she sets out with the goal of filling the diary.
Olberic Eisenberg is a warrior from Cobbleston in the Highlands. Working now as a hedge knight, he was once a proud knight of the fallen kingdom of Hornburg. When a band of thieves raids the town and kidnaps a child, he goes after them only to find that they may know the whereabouts to the man responsible for Hornburg's fall.
Primrose Azelhart is a dancer from Noblecourt in the Flatlands, living in Sunshade in the Sunlands at the beginning of her story. As a young child, she witnessed her father's murder at the hands of three men bearing crow tattoos. Now a young adult she works for Helgenish, a horrible man who believes he owns his dancers. She witnesses one of the men who murdered her father pass by in the tavern and, after killing Helgenish in self defense, gives chase with the long-held hope of avenging her father.
Alfyn Greengrass is an apothecary from Clearbrook in the Riverlands. As a young child, he was saved from a deathly illness by a traveling apothecary. Inspired, he sets out to help others in any way he can.
Therion is a renowned wandering thief who starts his journey in Bolderfall in the Cliftlands. When he hears about unmatched riches waiting in the Ravus Manor he can't resist. Upon arriving at the treasure, Heathcote, the house's lead butler, manages to slip a Fool's Bangle onto his arm, putting Therion at the mercy of house Ravus. The lady of the house, Cordelia, then reveals herself and explains that she needed a thief to return her priceless family treasures. Therion then sets out, having been promised the removal of his bangle upon the treasure's return.
H'aanit is a hunter from S'warkii in the Woodlands. A year after her master's departure to hunt a beast called Redeye, his wolf companion returns, indicating that something has gone wrong. H'aanit then sets out to find her master and to slay Redeye.
Development and release
Octopath Traveler was announced on January 13, 2017, under the working title of Project Octopath Traveler. A playable demo was released on the Nintendo eShop on September 13, 2017, with a second demo being released on June 14, 2018. The second demo included improved mechanics and all eight playable characters, as well as save data transfer to the full game. The game was released worldwide on July 13, 2018. A special edition that includes the game's soundtrack, a replica of the game's in-game currency, a pop-up book, and a map was also released the same day.
The project was started by producers Masashi Takahashi and Tomoya Asano, who previously headed the Bravely series. Acquire was chosen as development partner for the game based on their previous work on the What Did I Do to Deserve This, My Lord? series. During the development process, various graphics options such as the depth, resolution, saturation, as well as other features such as whether water should be pixel or photorealistic are taken into consideration to perfect the "HD-2D" look. The eight main characters, four male and four female, are chosen to provide different party variations. All characters have different classes, and the character design, as well as the field commands, are based on different occupations in Medieval Europe. For the demo, Olberic and Primrose were chosen to be the protagonists as their stories started in a similar place, and the developers wanted people to be able to recruit the other character after beating the story. According to Takahashi, no downloadable content or other large post-release content updates are planned for the game. The creators of the game stated that Octopath Traveler is a 'spiritual successor' to Final Fantasy VI (another Square Enix game).
Octopath Traveler received "generally favorable" reception, according to review aggregator Metacritic. Polygon's Jeremy Parish hailed the game as "the magical RPG the Nintendo Switch needed". GameSpot’s Peter Brown praised the game for its "innovative battle system", character progression and presentation but found that the main drawbacks were the stories of the eight playable characters, which he described as "lackluster" and "repetitive".
Square Enix issued two apologies after many in Japan were unable to purchase a physical copy due to stock shortages the week, and the following week, of its release. The game sold 188,238 physical copies within its first two months on sale in Japan, and placed at number one on the all-format sales chart. By August 2018, the game had sold over a million copies worldwide.
The game was nominated for "Best RPG" at the 2018 Game Critics Awards, and won the award for "Nintendo Game of the Year" at the 2018 Golden Joystick Awards, whereas its other nomination was for "Best Storytelling". It was also nominated for "Best Art Direction", "Best Score/Music", and "Best Role-Playing Game" at The Game Awards 2018.
- オクトパス トラベラー (Okutopasu Toraberā)
- Jenni (2018-08-06). "Square Enix Teasing A New Bravely Game On Twitter". Siliconera. Retrieved 2018-08-31.
- "Martin Montplaisir LinkedIn Profile". Martin Montplaisir. 2018-09-11. Retrieved 2018-09-11.
- Schreier, Jason (September 13, 2017). "Yes, Please Inject Nintendo Switch RPG Octopath Traveler Directly Into My Veins". Kotaku. Archived from the original on September 13, 2017. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
- Schwartz, Terri (January 12, 2017). "Square Enix's Project Octopath Traveler Announced for Nintendo Switch". IGN. Archived from the original on February 15, 2018. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
- Pereira, Chris (September 15, 2017). "Switch-Exclusive RPG From Square Enix, Project Octopath Traveler, Now Has A Free Demo". GameSpot. Archived from the original on November 1, 2017. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
- "New Octopath Traveler demo coming to Switch June 14". Polygon. June 12, 2018. Archived from the original on June 27, 2018. Retrieved June 27, 2018.
- Makuch, Eddie. "Nintendo Switch's Octopath Traveler Release Date And Special Edition Announced". GameSpot. Archived from the original on March 9, 2018. Retrieved March 8, 2018.
- "Project Octopath Traveler Developers Answer How The Project Started, And The Troubles In Developing HD-2D - Siliconera". Siliconera. February 4, 2018. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
- "A note from the developers of Octopath Traveler - Nintendo Official Site". Nintendo.com. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
- "Project Octopath Traveler Developers Answer How The Project Started, And The Troubles In Developing HD-2D - Siliconera". Siliconera. February 4, 2018. Archived from the original on February 5, 2018. Retrieved February 5, 2018.
- "Octopath Traveler Won't Receive DLC According To The Game's Producer". Nintendo Life. June 17, 2018. Archived from the original on June 17, 2018. Retrieved June 17, 2018.
- "190° Square Enix: Octopath Traveler Is A Spiritual Successor To Final Fantasy VI". N4g. N4g. Retrieved 4 August 2018.
- "Octopath Traveler dev says the game was made as a spiritual". Nintendo Everything. Nintendo Everything. Retrieved 4 August 2018.
- "Octopath Traveler for Switch Reviews". Metacritic. Archived from the original on July 14, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Carter, Chris (July 12, 2018). "Review: Octopath Traveler". Destructoid. Archived from the original on July 14, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- "Famitsu review scores (7/3/18) - Octopath Traveler". Nintendo Everything. July 3, 2018.
- Brown, Peter (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler Review: Divide And Conquer". GameSpot. Archived from the original on July 13, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Macy, Seth (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler Review". IGN. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Vogel, Mitch (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler Review (Switch)". NintendoLife. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Ronaghan, Neal (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler Review". Nintendo World Report. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Cook, Adam (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler review". VideoGamer.com. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Jenkins, David (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler review – the past and future of JRPGs". Metro. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
- Parish, Jeremy (July 12, 2018). "Octopath Traveler is the magical RPG the Nintendo Switch needed". Polygon. Archived from the original on July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- Craddock, Ryan (July 16, 2018). "Square Enix Issues Apology After Underestimating Huge Octopath Traveler Demand". Nintendo Life. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
- Romano, Sal (August 29, 2018). "Media Create Sales: 8/20/18 – 8/26/18". Gematsu. Retrieved August 29, 2018.
- Kent, Emma (August 3, 2018). "Octopath Traveler sells 1m copies worldwide". Eurogamer. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
- Watts, Steve (July 5, 2018). "Resident Evil 2 Top Honor In E3 Game Critics Awards". GameSpot. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
- Hoggins, Tom (September 24, 2018). "Golden Joysticks 2018 nominees announced, voting open now". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved October 6, 2018.
- Sheridan, Connor (November 16, 2018). "Golden Joystick Awards 2018 winners: God of War wins big but Fortnite gets Victory Royale". GamesRadar+. Retrieved November 17, 2018.
- "Awards - The Game Awards 2018". The Game Awards. November 13, 2018. Retrieved November 13, 2018.