Beginning with the original Fate/stay night, the Fate series has had multiple sequels, spinoffs, and adaptations. Based around the core concept of summoning famous figures from history and myth to battle each other, the series is ripe for various genres and media. Now the series is getting its first free-roaming action game in Fate/EXTELLA. After some hands-on time with the demo, as a fan, I can’t believe they didn’t make a game like this sooner.
Fate/EXTELLA serves as a sequel to the spinoff series, Fate/Extra. Taking place in a digital virtual world in the future, the new game has players control one of sixteen various characters–called servants–and has them battle their way through multitudes of digital enemies.
[Note: This article contains spoilers for Fate/stay night, Fate/Zero, and Fate/Extra–because in the world of Fate, even character names are spoilers.]
The demo that was made available at this year’s Tokyo Game Show 2016 let players choose one of three characters: Nero (the Roman emperor), Arthuria (better known as Arthur Pendragon, King of Briton and Ruler of the Knights of the Round Table), or Iskandar (better known as Alexander the Great, king of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and perhaps the greatest conqueror in history).
For the demo, most people seemed to be picking Nero or Arthuria, as those characters were main characters of the series in which they appeared in–Fate/Extra and Fate/stay night, respectively. The gentleman ahead of me was kind enough to let me record some of his gameplay footage playing Nero.
Ever the rebel, I decided to pick Iskandar as my character. The fact that I’m a huge fan of the actor who voices him, Akio Ōtsuka, the Japanese voice of Solid Snake in the Metal Gear Solid series, played no part in this decision… Okay, it played a little part in this decision… Maybe a big part.
The game’s system itself is very much similar to games of the Warriors series. In fact, despite not being developed by Omega Force, the game played almost exactly like a Warriors game. It literally felt like another of the tie-in games like One Piece Pirate Warriors or Dynasty Warriors Gundam, except for being Fate-based.
The basic controls were simple enough, square button for a weak attack and triangle for a strong attack. Stages were divided into multiple connected areas that you had to move to and battle to gain control of. While it was fairly easy to just run from area to area gaining control, the enemy forces would also do the same thing, taking back control of areas after you had left them. There was also a set stage objective which involved gaining control of specific areas to unlock further plot developments, so just running around trying to gain control of everything was rather inefficient, and in the case of the demo, actually detrimental considering the limited amount of time you had.
The demo objective was to defeat the servant, Medusa, in fifteen minutes. Unfortunately, this proved more difficult than I imagined. I managed to unlock a mid-boss battle with Lü Bu, but ran out of time right before I could finish him.
After playing the demo, I can honestly say Fate/EXTELLA is looking to be a very solid and enjoyable game. Fans of the Fate series and/or fans of the Warriors games will not be disappointed in how the game plays and feels. The roster of sixteen characters is modest, but robust enough not to be lacking. Also, the sheer number of characters in the Fate universe leaves ample room for plenty of potential sequel games and/or DLC. If anything, it felt wonderful getting to control one of my favorite Fate characters and plow through enemies like the badass he is.
Fate/EXTELLA is scheduled for release in Japan on the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita on November 10. There is currently no word on a Western release.