Square Enix announced November 23, 2020 that a sequel to The World Ends with You is in development more than a decade after the first game's release. This beloved urban fantasy series drawn in the same style as Kingdom Hearts will finally return to the spotlight with a sequel called NEO: The World Ends with You.
But when will it be released? And how might it relate to the anime series currently in development? Here’s everything we know about NEO: The World Ends with You.
When is the NEO: The World Ends with You release date?
NEO: The World Ends with You will launch for PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch during summer 2021, but a more specific release date has yet to be announced.
Is there a trailer for NEO: The World Ends with You?
Yes! There is a trailer for NEO: The World Ends with You. It's available for your eyeballs below.
From the trailer, we can see a few things. One stand out is the gameplay. The presentation has changed from 2D to 3D. Players seem to have the ability to freely roam Shibuya in a manner similar to Persona 5. Classic locations like the 104 building and Tower Records are present. Vocab-wise, the game firmly has its feet planted in 2008 by referring to the audience as "sheeple."
Despite this timely gap, there are a few technological advances seen in the trailer. For example, characters are seen using smartphones and an equivalent to the Japanese messaging service, Line. We can also see characters from the first game like Sho Minamimoto, Koki Kariya, and the enigmatic girl with blonde hair who was featured in both the game's Switch port. Her name is revealed as Tsugumi Matsunae.
In addition to old reliables, there are new characters like Rindo, Fret, and Nagi. This trio seems to be the new group of players in the Reaper's Game that they're playing to survive. Minamimoto also appears to be a player this time around, unlike the first game, where he was part of the antagonist faction, the Reapers.
Minamimoto continuously refers to something called "the remainder," which could be a new group that's directly going against the Reapers.
Is NEO: The World Ends with You a sequel?
Yes and no! NEO: The World Ends with You isn't a sequel to the World Ends With You video game, but one to the anime, which airs in April 2021. This was confirmed by Tetsuya Nomura via The World Ends with You anime Twitter account.
"The game that will be the sequel to the anime that will be aired in April next year will be next summer," Nomura says in the tweet.
This makes sense as the anime also features smartphones and other technological advances that have occurred in the time since the original game. Due to it being a sequel to the anime, this brings into question what exactly the game will carry over? How much of the secret ending featured in The World Ends with You: Final Remix, A New Day, be present? Will other things be changed for the adaptation? Or is it a simple modernization?
What's the story in NEO: The World Ends with You?
"NEO: The World Ends with You transports players to the streets of the Shibuya, where they will take part in the Reapers’ Game, a life-or-death battle for survival," Square Enix's official press release reads. "Players will take on the role of Rindo as they explore the heart of Tokyo to uncover the mysteries behind the sinister Game in which they have been forced to take part."
We don't know anything past this just yet. If it links to the secret ending from Final Remix, NEO could setup the revival of Neku, the original protagonist, and act as a testing ground for his new partner.
Will there be an English dub for NEO: The World Ends with You?
Possibly! Although the trailer was just in Japanese, previous World Ends with You titles have featured dual audio. The anime is to be distributed in the US by Funimation, a company known for its English dubs. If the anime receives a dub, it would only make sense that the sequel would as well.
Will the upcoming The World Ends with You anime adapt this game?
No, this will not be adapted in the anime. Nomura has said this is a sequel to the anime, meaning it exists separately from the show.
NEO: The World Ends with You will be released in summer 2021.