Everything you need to know about Sea of Stars

A star is born.

Written by Jess Reyes
Originally Published: 

Retro indie games have been a common occurrence in the past few years, a trend that nobody is mad at because it keeps providing players with incredible experiences. One of the most interesting games on its way from the genre is Sea of Stars, a Chrono Trigger-inspired RPG set in the same universe as the underrated Ninja Gaiden-like platformer The Messenger. The game has been in development for a couple of years at this point and we have lots of exciting information on it. Here’s everything you need to know about the next Hollow Knight-level indie darling.

When is the Sea of Stars release date?

According to the latest Nintendo Direct, Sea of Stars will be released on August 29, 2023.

The team is taking its time with the game in order to ensure the quality of the finished product.

Sabotage Studio

The game was originally slated for release during Holiday 2022. In a tweet from Sabotage studio, the developers announced the release date will be sometime in 2023. The team stated that the delay was made to maintain the quality of life for the team as well as the quality of the product.

Is there a Sea of Stars trailer?

Yes, there is! The latest trailer for Sea of Stars was part of the February 2023 Nintendo Direct. The trailer highlights the game’s combat, beautiful visuals, and soundtrack. Check it out for yourself below:

A similar version of it also appeared in the PlayStation blog event focusing on indie games and the Nintendo Indie World 2021 showcase.

The only difference in the latest trailer is the ending. The Sea of Stars trailer from the Nintendo Direct confirms the release date (rather than just “2023” from the original) and treats fans to a new cutscene.

What are the Sea of Stars platforms?

Sea of Stars was initially announced as coming to PC via Steam and Nintendo Switch. But it is also coming to PS4 and PS5 as announced during the PlayStation blog indie event on July 7, 2022.

The developers are working to bring the game to platforms where the player base is.

Sabotage Studio

Thankfully for Xbox players, the game’s website does tease that they are in touch with the “key players” in the industry to bring the game to players. There’s a pretty good chance we can expect Sea of Stars on Xbox Series X|S and Game Pass, even though those platforms aren’t technically confirmed just yet.

Is Sea of Stars in the same universe as The Messenger?

Sea of Stars is indeed set in the same universe as The Messenger, acting as a prequel that will help explain the state of the world in The Messenger. We likely won’t have the complete picture of how closely these titles are connected until we can play through Sea of Stars’ whole story for ourselves. Overall, the developers say to expect a game with a scope four times bigger than The Messenger.

While story details are mostly under wraps, we know that the game will follow two children, Valere and Zale, as they go on a journey to become Solstice Warriors and defeat a malicious alchemist called The Fleshmancer. As Children of the Solstice, Valera and Zale can combine their Sun and moon powers to perform mysterious Eclipse magic, which should give them an edge in battle.

Sea of Stars uses radiant lighting to make its pixel art visuals look better than they ever did on SNES.

Sabotage Studio

You can almost expect to play as six unique party members, meet dozens of original characters that are pivotal to the story, themes of adventure and friendship, and lots of shocking twists.

Is Sea of Stars inspired by Chrono Trigger?

From a gameplay standpoint, Sea of Stars is very reminiscent of Chrono Trigger, as battles take place from a similar perspective. Party members will play a key part in the gameplay, and while only three members can be used in a conflict, you will be able to switch out any character with another party member during battle and take advantage of the ability to boost each other or combine their attacks. While the gameplay hues closest to Chrono Trigger, Sea of Starswebsite FAQ lists Super Mario RPG and Illusion of Gaia as influences.

That Super Mario RPG influence becomes very apparent with Sea of Stars’ timed hit system, where players can press a button as they attack or block to increase their damage output and decrease damage taken, respectively. The developers also promise that Sea of Stars will not have any random encounters or grinding if those aspects of JRPGs annoy you.

If you’ve played Super Mario RPG and Chrono Trigger, this battle system will feel familiar to you.

Sabotage Studio

Outside of battle, players will have many traversal options as they explore the world including swimming climbing, and jumping across the terrain. There will also be lots of side activities to take part in, like fishing, cooking, and a card game called Wheels. If you are a fan of classic SNES-era RPGs, Sea of Stars looks like the proper successor you’ve been waiting for.

Who are the Sea of Stars developers and composer?

Sea of Stars is developed by a Canadian indie studio called Sabotage. This is their second full game, coming after The Messenger and its DLC Picnic Panic. For Sea of Stars, the team increased its size to 23 full-time developers and crowdfunded on Kickstarter. For the Japanese and Korean versions of the game, they are working with Kakehashi Games.

The most notable contributor to Sea of Stars’ development is Yasunori Mitsuda. He was the composer on games like Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 and is creating the soundtrack for Sea of Stars. Overall, this is a really promising project and one of the most intriguing indie games in the works for Nintendo Switch.

Sea of Stars will be released for PC, PS4, PS5, and Nintendo Switch in 2023.

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