Metaphor: ReFantazio Trailer Teases a Wild Real-World Connection

What does it all mean?

The Xbox Games Showcase 2023 was a great event for Atlus fans. The publisher announced two new titles and re-revealed Project Re Fantasy, now titled Metaphor: ReFantazio. This RPG bears a strong resemblance to other Atlus RPGs, but stands out as a new IP beyond the Persona and Shin Megami Tensei franchises. The extended trailer was full of information to comb through, so let’s break down everything we learned about Metaphor: ReFantazio.

The first few shots of the new trailer are striking in that they are of the real world. Live shots of Japan flash by with text that reads “What if the world we live in today... is their utopia?” It’s a fascinating way to pique the audience's interest and lay down what the general vibes of this new title might be. It is a question that leads to more questions. But the rest of the trailer gives us some answers.

The first shots of the game itself are in Atlus’s signature gorgeous art style. But the fairytale motif looms large with a storybook featured prominently. This tracks with what little we know about Metaphor from the original Project Re Fantasy trailer. As the original title hints, this game will delve into a more fantastical world than what SMT or Persona have.

The instigating action of the game is the death of this land’s monarch, who was “killed in his own bed.” His successor will be chosen by some contest, with a regal figure stating that “Whosever hath truly earned the greatest faith of the citizenry shall ascend to the throne. That could be the goal of the protagonist. We also get a quick shot of some gross-looking cloud in the sky full of faces that then triggers some kind of pain in a large crowd. There may be a mysterious plot afoot to take down the monarchy of this world.

Our first shot of gameplay immediately reveals some things we expect out of an Atlus RPG. There will be a calendar system, though with days with names like “Flamesday.” The protagonist has a small pixie that follows him around, which could be a companion or navigator character of sorts. In a fascinating clip, we see the protagonist float/skate across the ground in an open area, which will make traversal faster.

Animated cutscenes will be a part of Metaphor: ReFantazio.


Throughout the trailer, we see several cuts to beautiful 2D animated cutscenes, like those in the Persona series. Even if this game is different in themes than Persona and SMT, the visual style of Atlus remains incredibly distinct and strong.

We get a shot of the protagonist alongside a red-haired elf-like woman and a human man standing at either side of him. Later footage confirms that these characters (and more) will make up your party.

One of the most stunning shots from the trailer is of the game’s menu screen. It is a wonder to look at but also highlights a mysterious option called “Follower” which may be linked to a social aspect of the game.

The game’s equipment screen reveals that each party member has a class, such as Warrior, Knight, or Thief, and that they can rank up to 20 with some having a Master rank. This could relate to experience, social aspects, or both.

Familiar and new elements of combat appear in the Metaphor: ReFantazio battle screen.


The game’s battle screen reveals a refreshing variety of enemies outside of those traditionally seen in Persona and SMT. Metaphor will be turn-based and a UI element at the top of the screen during battle indicates this may use the press turn system, though most likely it will have its own unique twist on the system in some way. The Synthesis option suggests you will be able to do joint attacks with party members and the Archytpe ability seems to be how you use magic.

A social aspect is shown off, with the protagonist forming new bonds with characters. The rank screen in the corner shows that bonds will be able to go up to Rank 8. A mysterious location called the Akademia, run by an even more mysterious man appears to replace the Velvet Room. The protagonist interacts with the man and a screen with lots of options for “Learning Archetypes” and “Inheriting Skills” pops up.

After, several more shots show off more of the combat, characters, and beautiful world of Metaphor: ReFantazio including what appears to be space, more fantasy-themed realms, and possibly shots of the real world. The overall style blends many aspects of traditional fantasy, Atlus’s style, and real-world touchstones.

A new world based in the realm of fantasy stories awaits players in Metaphor: ReFantazio.


The trailer ends with a series of shots of pages from a storybook, except this time they are heavily redacted, a massive amount of these redacted pages and then blank polaroids come together to form the game’s title. “It all began with the novel in thy possession,” says a woman’s voice.

The game is coming sometime in 2024, though the trailer didn’t give details. The biggest takeaway from the trailer is that Metaphor: ReFantazio looks to be a mechanically familiar but thematically different take on the Atlus RPG.

The core theme revolves around the idea of traditional fantasy stories, including their archetypes and how these stories relate to the real world. I wouldn't be surprised if our protagonist got isekai’d into the heavily featured storybook and wound up in the world of Metaphor: ReFantazio. We will only learn more when Atlus shares more.

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