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Square Enix Announces ‘NEO: The World Ends With You’

Credit: Unsplash

Same Shibuya, new style.

2007’s The World Ends With You for the Nintendo DS was one of Square Enix’s more esoteric JRPGs, and that’s saying something. The game was set in modern-day Shibuya, the trendiness capital of Japan, and followed moody youth Neku Sakuraba as he attempted to conquer the Reaper’s Game, a slightly sadistic contest held for the recently departed that would determine whether they return to life or are erased from existence. While the game never exactly blew up, its stylish blend of action-RPG mechanics and Shibuya youth culture made it unforgettable for those who played it. Fans have been wanting a sequel for years, but all they ever seemed to get was the occasional reference or cameo. Until today, that is.

About a week ago, Square Enix opened a distinctly The World Ends With You-themed website with a seven-day countdown. Hopes for a sequel immediately bloomed, but everyone was so used to disappointment, that skepticism ran rampant. For those who held out hope, you did well, because as the countdown ended today, we got the first announcement trailer for NEO: The World Ends With You, a proper sequel to the first game.

Since it’s just an announcement trailer, details are limited, but a few concrete details can be gleaned. First, this game features a brand new cast of characters, with the lead being a boy named Rindo, wrapped up in a new Reaper’s Game on the streets of Shibuya. Similarly to the first game, character conversations are presented in a stylish comic book format, but the game’s overworld and combat sections have evolved to full 3D in a surprisingly faithful recreation of the real city. It is not currently known how the combat system will change, as the first game required use of the DS touch screen to draw symbols. As this new game is coming to the Switch and PS4, a similar function could be accomplished with the Switch’s touch screen and Joy-Cons and the PS4 controller’s touch pad, but this is just speculation on our part.

However it changes, it’s already pretty awesome to just finally be getting a sequel. Look forward to NEO: The World Ends With You in Summer of 2021.