What makes the combat of Forspoken so magical?

Takayuki Kanbayashi, Battle Director on Forspoken, explains his vision for the visually spectacular combat system - and the challenges of bringing it to life.
By Takayuki Kanbayashi

Hello everyone! My name is Takayuki Kanbayashi, and I’m the Battle Director for Forspoken.

As Frey Holland, you have access to many magical abilities, which you can use to defend yourself against the dangerous denizens of Athia. The game’s combat system is something truly unique in the RPG genre - fast-paced and visually stunning, it puts loads of spectacular spells at your fingertips, and gives you the freedom to play how you like.

Of course, getting it to that point was no easy task! Here’s the story of how we created it:

The inspirations behind Forspoken’s combat

When making games, everything starts with an idea. In the case of Forspoken’s combat system, that was the concept of “Zero to Hero”.

To get that idea across, we had to think about how we could show her growth - both as a character and as a fighter. Frey is not from the land of Athia - she’s a normal person from New York. We felt that if she simply got stronger throughout the game, she’d feel less and less like she was from our world.

We wanted to ensure that Frey still feels like a fish out of water through the whole journey, so we chose to show her growth by expanding the things she can do with magic. That meant that we had to give her an expansive toolset, and design lots of different abilities.

However, as Forspoken is a long game, it would get rather boring to repeat the same spells or tactics over and over. We wanted to give players more options as Frey grows over the course of the story, to encourage different play styles and give people the freedom over how they play.

Planning out the spells

We also wanted to make sure that every spell in the game - and there are a lot - was useful and had a clear function. We didn’t want anything to feel redundant.

Early in development, I created a matrix of all the spells, broken down by magic type and purpose, such as offensive, traps, and support. After I created this magic list, I then took it to the wider team.

We discussed things like which spells would be too tricky to implement, or how well a spell’s purpose and visuals would match. We also made changes to the list to incorporate better ideas and to eliminate spells that felt too similar.

We were particularly mindful of creating a lot of spells that work well in mid-range. Long range magic essentially turns the game into a shooter, and close-range becomes too much of an action game, so finding that balance was important. Frey can move around with ease using magic parkour, and the combat system was designed to encourage good positioning.

Everything at your fingertips

One of the key elements we thought a lot about was how to make the combat system easy for people to use. We wanted to offer a lot of different types of magic, and have players use it, so what’s the best way to make that happen?

One common system in games is to pre-set spells in the menu and take them into battle, but we realized this wouldn’t work for Forspoken. We figured that there might be players who would find that tedious and end up not trying out new spells - we wanted to make every spell accessible at all times.

In the early phases of development, we experimented by assigning spells to different button combinations. However, as the game was a new IP, we didn’t want to force players to have to master complex controls.

The solution was to go with a ring menu, that lets players easily switch between different spells on the fly. It meant that players had full access to all their spells in an intuitive and easy to understand way.

Balancing form and function

Perhaps the most challenging thing of all when designing the spells of Forspoken was ensuring we treated their spells and visual effects equally. We wanted the magic in the game to both look and feel spectacular, and we had a team of visual artists, game designers and programmers working together to make sure we were always looking in the same direction.

This approach meant that if someone had a concern during the early part of development, we took the time to explain, refine our approach if necessary and make sure everyone was on the same page.

We also formed a LookDev team - the function of this is to clearly define the look and feel of the magic in the game, and ensure it stays consistent. This opened the door for a lot of active discussions, and it was ultimately this team who created the final, distinctive look for Forspoken’s spells.

Final thoughts

Overall, I’m proud of the work we’ve done on the combat system in Forspoken. I think it’s pretty rare for a game to offer this much magic that is instantly accessible, without having to rely on presets or button combinations.

Also, magic parkour grants so much maneuverability that naturally lends itself to evading, but we’ve also incorporated it in a way that lets you fight in style.

There’s also a battle grading system that rewards you for using lots of different spells and techniques, so player who are into that can use it as a guide to fighting effectively - and looking like a badass while they do so!

Thanks for reading - I hope you enjoyed our tales of making the combat of Forspoken!

You can experience it for yourself right now on PS5, Steam and the Epic Games Store. You can also save up to 33% on the game for a limited time!

I hope you’ll enjoy experimenting with the spells and finding a style of play that you enjoy!

New Forspoken update available now: here’s what’s included

Improved optimization, refined visuals, reworked targeting and more are coming to the game in the new update. Get all the details here.
By Takeshi Aramaki

Hi everyone, this is Takeshi Aramaki, the Director of Forspoken.

We’ve been hard at work improving the gameplay experience in Forspoken, and I’m happy to announce that version 1.10 is available now! It’s a major update, so I’d like to give you a look at some of the changes that are included.

There are a lot of small but meaningful Quality of Life updates, which we’ve added to the Accessibility section of the Settings menu.

First up is “Remember Last-Viewed Menu Section”.

When this setting is set to ON, the game will behave the way it currently does, where the main menu will open to whatever you last had opened. If you turn this option OFF, the main menu will always default to the Map, which should come in handy for all you explorers out there

Next up is “Focus on Target”.

When this setting is set to ON, the game will behave the way it currently does, where pressing R3 while charging a spell (when you are not locked-on to an enemy) will point the camera at the enemy being targeted. If you turn this option OFF, pressing R3 while charging a spell will lock on to an enemy, allowing you more precise control over who or what will be at the receiving end of Frey’s devastating attacks.

Another new setting that can aid you in combat is “Lock On to Nearby Enemies”.

Currently, if you defeat the enemy you’re locked-on to, the lock-on will disengage, allowing you to plan your next move. If you turn this setting ON, the lock-on target will automatically switch to a nearby enemy, so you can fire away without a moment’s loss.

This pairs really well with another new setting, “Off-Screen Enemy Lock-On,” as it won’t matter where the enemies are.

The next one is a setting that many have been calling for. It’s called “Immunity to Own Magic,” and as the name suggests, it prevents Frey from getting staggered by the effects of her spells.

We’ve all been there - in battle against a horde of enemies, getting into a nice rhythm parkouring around, unleashing spells left and right, only to lose that momentum by an ill-timed Burst Shot at point-blank range. That will no longer be the case.

Of course, if you prefer the current, realistic approach, you can leave this OFF.

Version 1.10 also includes various graphical improvements. First, upon starting the game you will be prompted to adjust Brightness and Contrast (and HDR UI elements if HDR is enabled). Everyone’s hardware and setup is different, so this allows you to tailor the image to what looks best for you.

We’ve also made some changes to lighting and ambient occlusion, which you can see in these screenshots.

Above: Forspoken v1.04

Above: Forspoken v1.10

Above: Forspoken v1.04

Above: Forspoken v1.10

Above: Forspoken v1.04

Above: Forspoken v1.10

Optimization is another key area of focus for this update. While actual performance will vary depending on your PC hardware, if you’re running the Recommended specs or higher, you should be able to see as much as a 30% boost in performance. PS5 users fear not, as these under-the-hood tweaks provide the same performance increases for you as well.

First, here's the previous v1.02:

...and here's the new update, v1.10:

There are a lot of other minor adjustments, which are listed in the patch notes:

There are more updates in the pipeline, so we hope to share more information with you soon. In the meantime, we thank you for your continued support and hope you enjoy Forspoken!

Forspoken is available now for PS5 and PC:

To stay up to date with news and information about the game, follow us on social media:

Creating the music of Forspoken

We speak to composer Garry Schyman about finding the right sound for Athia, collaborating with Bear McCreary, and the challenges of producing the soundtrack in the midst of a pandemic.
By Duncan Heaney

Forspoken’s land of Athia is beautiful, and we’re not just talking about its sweeping vistas. The game is blessed with a superb soundtrack (which is available for purchase today) - a collaboration between composers Garry Schyman (Bioshock) and Bear McCreary (God of War).

We recently had an opportunity to sit down with Schyman to discuss his amazing work on Forspoken, the inspirations for the distinctive soundtrack, and much more. We also have two tracks from the game to showcase, along with Garry’s insight, so be sure to listen!

Hi Garry. How did you get involved with Forspoken?

Luminous Productions reached out to my agent, and said they were interested in both me and Bear McCreary.

Serendipitously, Bear and I’d had a conversation within the previous year about possibly working together. We’ve been friends a long time and the idea of doing a doing a project together - particularly a game - was very interesting to both of us.

So when Forspoken came to our attention, we felt it was an ideal one to do together. Luminous and Square Enix were very receptive to the idea - and that’s how it all got started!

So, what was it about Forspoken that made you want to be involved?

Before we signed on, they sent us the story outline. It was great - very intriguing. Particularly the transition from the city of New York to this fantasy world provided an option to almost bifurcate the score.

Although most of the time players’ time is spent in Athia, we thought that idea was musically quite interesting and fun.

Plus we knew we’d have resources like recording with an orchestra, so it was all the things a composer wants to hear - a great story from a talented developer and an amazing publisher. It didn’t take much to persuade us to join - all the pieces were on the table, and it made sense.

As a brand-new title, Forspoken must have been a blank canvas musically. Does that make it more challenging to find the sound than working on an established IP?

I mean, it’s always a challenge. Finding the musical vocabulary is always the hardest part of any particular project.

I don’t know if it was any more difficult, or any less difficult having a blank page. Bear and I had discussions and found a style. Composers have wonderful technologies these days that permit us to mock things up so it sounds like an orchestra right out of our computers, so we were able to provide demos and go back and forth until we found our style for the game.

How did you find the right ‘sound’ for the game?

There’s a joke that a composer can write anything they want as long as the people they’re working for like it. That’s the deal (laughs).

But the process whatever the project is usually the same. You’re sending them musical ideas recorded on your computer and going, “What do you think of this?”

Obviously, you're also reacting to what the game is about, to the script and an information from meetings. You put all that information into your… let’s call it a creative quiver, and then you start shooting.

Bear and I were constantly bouncing ideas back and forth and having discussions. We would play things for each other, and go, “Yeah, that’s really cool, but what if you added a little of this too?” With that, and all the information provided, we found the sound of the game pretty quickly!

So, how would you describe that sound to someone new to Forspoken?

For the sound itself, our toolkit was synth and samples, but also a fantastic orchestra and choir. And, of course, we had a soloist, India Carney, who’s musically sort of the voice of Frey for our solos.

I would call it a fantasy score, or in that neighborhood - but I’ve tried to add really interesting complexity to it. So, it’s a tonal score - for the musicians out there (laughs) - but at time it can get quite dissonant when she’s having these epic battles. It is within the tradition of orchestral fantasy music, but with its own unique twist.

Ugh, ‘unique fantasy music with a twist’ is like someone in PR would say (laughs). I’ll let listeners judge it for themselves!

So the team was on board with the musical direction pretty much from the start?

Yes, and most of the time throughout the process my intuition was right, and pieces would be approved on the first pass. Of course, there were times it wasn’t, and I’d get feedback from the team to that effect on certain pieces.

That’s really valuable - I trust the development team very much because they’ve been living with this game for years before I was even brought on. They know instinctively what’s right and what’s not working, so I took their feedback very seriously.

Some of the best tracks I’ve written for Forspoken were cues like that - the first approach wasn’t quite right, and by getting the deeper insight from the team, I was able to make music that really fit the situation.

What inspirations did you look at when composing this soundtrack?

I think the main inspirations came from the game itself. That said, obviously, we’re informed by all our writing and composing experiences - all the music we’ve heard, from the pop music world to the most wonderful classic music. That all comes out in your style or composer brand.

I have been listening to music my whole life. So, among others, there's probably the Planets from Gustav Holst - that’s one of the greatest fantasy scores of all time. And, of course, there’s even hip-hop influences when we’re in New York and most of the beginning of the game.

But I’m a very intuitive composer. When I was composing this score, there wasn’t really any logical reason for what I came up with - it was more a gut feeling or intuition. Of course, we bounced everything off the team, and they loved it, so that felt cool.

And then when you record the orchestra, and the choir and soloist, that’s just the icing on the cake!

How would you describe your experience working on the game?

I had a ball writing the music! It was really fun! The cool thing is that there’s loads of combat, and I wrote a ton of music for it - more for this game than I’ve ever scored before. But there were also these opportunities - when Frey is exploring the world - to write some beautiful music.

That was also intriguing, inviting and exciting for me, because often in videogames - especially ‘triple A’ video games - there’s a lot of tense, driving action music. So, when you have a chance to do something that’s emotional and beautiful, it’s a real treat for me.

What was the most challenging thing about this project?

There's a lot of action and combat in the game - you’re fighting the Tantas, and all these different monsters, and I had to write a lot of combat music. Even though each situation is different, you’re still writing all this action music, and I desperately don’t want to repeat myself.

It felt a bit like the Greek myth of Sisyphus, who pushed a rock up a hill only to have it roll down again. Every morning, I had to write another combat theme and make it fresh (laughs).

That was a challenge, especially towards the end - but I didn’t hear any feedback from the team that the music sounded like stuff I’d submitted earlier, so I think I achieved it! Hopefully the players and people who listen to the score agree!

This score was written and produced during the height of the Coronavirus pandemic. How did that affect things?

When we recorded the score, COVID was still an issue for sure. We recorded some of it in Nashville, which had less strict restrictions than California. There were some - everyone had to wear masks and the musicians had to be separated by six feet, but at least the players were able to perform together.

People may or may not know that Nashville has become quite the place to record. They have worked very hard to make it one of the best places to record videogame scores. If you’re performing music for a videogame, TV or movies, you need to be a really good reader.

You may be fantastic at playing Beethoven and Brahms, but it’s another thing to walk into a studio, sit down with your instrument, read some often very complex parts and perform it so that it sounds polished and beautiful.

There’re many orchestras that can’t do that, and a number that can. Nashville has developed that skill, so I was pleased we could record there - we were careful, and nobody got sick.

The choir was recorded in Los Angeles at a stage in Warner Bros Studios. That was tricky because the singers had to be separated. That’s not ideal - you do want a choir together so they can hear each other, rather than separated by what looked like see-through shower curtains. My engineer looked at that and just went, “oh crap” (laughs).

Fortunately, they actually had headphones so they could hear other, and sounded great. It would have been more ideal to have them clustered together, but I felt that the singers in LA were just so good that this was the place to record, despite the restrictions.

Garry was also kind enough to allow us to present two of the incredible pieces from Forspoken and share his thoughts on them. Take a listen:

Cipal, the Last Bastion

This is a great example of one of those times when the first track I turned in was the wrong direction - I think it was much darker and more foreboding than the team was expecting. I got useful feedback, which inspired to write the track you hear now.

Cipal is a city in… well, deep doo doo (laughs). It’s in great danger of being overwhelmed by these dark forces that surround it. But it’s also a city that has this rich history to it, and there’s a nobleness.

So, I tried to write something these aspects of the city. I wanted to give players the sense that this was something to care about.


There’s a number of music cues that play while you’re exploring Athia and seeing these very inspiring vistas. In “Vagabond,” you also hear the beautiful vocals of India Carney, which I think really represents the feel of the area in which it plays.

Like “Cipal, the Last Bastion,” it’s a very tonal track. Game composers don’t always get as many opportunities to write beautiful music as we’d like - at least for me, I’m speaking for myself.

I like the variety of music that games provide - everything from dark, scary, dissonant music to tracks that are beautiful and quite inspiring. That’s one of the things that I think players will like about Forspoken.

Many thanks to Garry for sharing his thoughts. You can hear his amazing soundtrack in Forspoken - out now for PS5 and PC:

The full Forspoken Official Soundtrack is also available to purchase now via the Square Enix Store.

To learn more about Garry Schyman, and listen to more tracks from his many works beyond Forspoken, visit his website:

Finally, to stay up to date with news and information about Forspoken, be sure to follow the team on social media:

11 tips and tricks for playing FORSPOKEN

The world of Athia is a dangerous place. Don’t worry though - we have some tips and tricks to help you flow, flip and fight your way through the world with ease!
By Duncan Heaney
Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Take it from Frey Holland - being pulled into an entirely new world of magic and monsters can be disorienting experience.

That’s the challenge she - and you - face in FORSPOKEN, out now for PS5 and PC. Armed with a massive arsenal of magic powers and some pretty nifty parkour moves, you’ll explore a new world that positively overflows with mystery, secrets and, unfortunately, danger.

Don’t worry though - we’re here to help you get acclimatized. We’ve put together some simple tips and tricks for combat and the early game - read this and you’ll have all the knowledge you need to dominate Athia’s many challenges!

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Stay on the move and switch things up!

Your parkour and combat magic work together, and the key to victory in battle is to use both.

Don’t just stand around like a statue in combat - use your innate agility to dance around the battlefield, get behind and to the side of enemies and avoid taking hits. Some spells also change up depending on your movement. For example, attacking while dodging with purple magic will launch a powerful shot that’s almost always a critical hit.

While leaping around, try to switch up your spells! The more you chain attack and support magic together, the better your ranking will be at the end of a fight. A better ranking means more EXP and improved loot drops.

So, remember: your foes will often be stronger than you… but you’re faster. Take advantage of this fact to run circles around them… literally!

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Lock onto enemies to keep track of them while dodging…

In combat, it can be helpful to focus your attacks on a single target so use the lock on (R3 on PS5) to center the camera on a particular foe. This means that you can constantly keep track of them, and keep attacks directed at them, even while flipping around the battlefield like a caffeine-fueled gymnast.

It’s particularly useful if there’s a tough enemy in the mix. Certain enemies hit hard, especially early on, so it’s wise to know what they’re up to at all times.

Bear in mind that you can’t activate lock-on while charging a spell, so be sure to do so before you launch an attack.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

…but know when not to use it.

While lock-on is useful, it won’t fit every scenario. Sometimes it’s better to leave it off, so you can keep track of the environment rather than a foe.

For example, the intimidating dragon that welcomes Frey to Athia can launch an unblockable fire attack that’s best avoided by cowering behind a wall. In this fight, it’s helpful to keep the camera free so you can find a place to hide when you see the fire in its belly begin to build.

In general, if you’re battling on challenging terrain - such as small platforms in an underground lake in a locked labyrinth, or the edge of a cliff, locking onto an enemy makes it all too easy to accidently wander into a disadvantageous position.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Plan your approach to maximize your damage

When it comes to FORSPOKEN’s tougher combat encounters, only fools rush in. If you see a mob of powerful enemies ahead, it’s not wise to just charge in wildly flinging spells around. Frey’s agility means she can often get the drop on her foes and deliver massive damage before they’ve even noticed she’s there.

Use the environment and parkour to plan your approach so you can deliver some hits early in the fight. Where possible, try to approach enemies from behind our above - your attacks will typically be more effective than going in straight-on.

For example, if you need to clear a Fort, getting up onto the ramparts lets you survey the enemy, identify the biggest threats and hit them with some charged up attacks for lots of early damage.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

If you’re struggling to take down an enemy, back off!

The enemies in FORSPOKEN don’t just stand around and take it - they give as good as they get. The corrupted beasts you’ll face are powerful and aggressive and sometimes you may find yourself in over your head.

If you find yourself pumping spell after spell into a foe to little effect or find yourself swigging down healing draught after healing draught just to stay alive, it’s probably time to run away.

Perhaps your current strategy just isn’t working, or you need to level up a few times to buff up. Either way, it’s good to find some space to regroup - there’s no dishonor in retreat!

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Founts give you some of the coolest abilities

The world of Athia is full of things to do and find, from stat-boosting monuments to timed challenges, underground dungeons and more. The game gives you the freedom to do what you like when you like, but we’d urge you to prioritize taking a dip in a Fount ofBlessing when you find one.

These glowing pools imbue Frey with new powers - and many parkour upgrades are obtained this way. For example, a dip in an early Fount can unlock Shimmy, which lets Frey chain jumps to leap around the world at superfast speeds - all without burning stamina. Super useful, and super-fun!

Some of the coolest and useful upgrades can be found in Founts, so check the map, scan with Belfries, or look for glowing spots in the scenery. It’s always worth it.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Remember to collect your loot when you’ve finished a battle

Many enemies drop valuable resources when defeated, so make sure you remember to collect it when the battle is done.

Because Frey’s so mobile, and combat’s so intense, it can be all-too easy to forget to claim your hard-won prize once the battle is won. So, when you take down that last enemy, use Cuff’s Scan ability (tap up on the d-pad on PS5) to highlight all that lovely loot and pick it up.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Explore the town near Junoon Castle before resting in Chapter 2

When Frey is unceremoniously deposited in Athia, she finds herself in the Junoon region. It’s not long before she has unlocked some awesome powers and is parkouring her way towards the nearest landmark: the town around Junoon Castle.

The main quest marker will send you into the refuge, but before you head in, take some time to explore the town. There are quite a few chests and useful resources to be pocketed. Check on top of buildings and in the many nooks and crannies - Cuff’s scan ability is very useful for locating goodies.

Once you enter the refuge, you’ll set off an intense story sequence that will drive you away from the town, so unless you want to come back later, pick up what you need first.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Explore every path in a Locked Labyrinth

One of my personal favorite activities in FORSPOKEN are the Locked Labyrinths - underground dungeons full of secrets to find and monsters to battle.

As you explore these dank and dangerous ruins, you’ll often have a choice of which path to take. The best rewards are often off the beaten path, so if you find yourself reaching the boss before exploring all available routes, go back and check them out before you leave.

You’ll typically find some awesome stuff - think massive clusters of mana, healing items, rare resources for crafting and upgrades and more.

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Spellcraft challenges can be turned in immediately

Early on in the adventure, you’ll unlock Spellcraft challenges. You can assign up to three at a time, and they task you with completing specific tasks with spells. For example, one may ask you to hit enemies from behind a certain number of times, while another may require you to take down a number of specific foes.

Completing these challenges lets you upgrade your spells, making them more effective and raising your power.

To activate these challenges, you must interact with a book at a refuge, in Cipal or in certain locations around the world. However, what you may not realize is that you can turn them in at any time. There’s no need to wait for a refuge to level up a power - the moment you complete a challenge, go to your Spells menu and upgrade the related ability. The sooner you do, the sooner you’ll see the benefits!

Forspoken screenshot showing Frey facing a dragon

Upgrade Zip ASAP

You gain the Zip ability some way into FORSPOKEN, and it’s a game-changer… literally!

This awesome ability lets Frey create a magical tether to pull herself towards ledges or enemies, fling herself into the air, swing on poles and more. It really opens up your traversal options - and more importantly, it’s really fun!

While you’re free to take on whatever Spellcraft challenges you like - the game’s all about giving you options after all - I urge you to take on the Zip Spellcraft challenge as soon as you can. When complete, it removes the stamina cost of using the ability completely, allowing you to fling yourself around the world with wild abandon.

FORSPOKEN is out now for PS5 and PC via Steam, Epic Games Store and the Microsoft Store:

We hope those tips are helpful as you get started. Really though, the best way to overcome Athia’s many dangers is through play and experimentation! It’s a game that encourages you to toy around with the many spells, explore the world at your own pace and develop your own strategies for success.

To share your own tips, or stay up to date with news about the game, be sure to follow FORSPOKEN on social media:

Forspoken: Everything you need to know

What’s the story of Forspoken? How does the parkour work? What do you do in the game? Get the full lowdown here!
By Duncan Heaney
Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

We’re just a week away from the launch of Forspoken!

This exciting new action RPG from Luminous Productions releases for PS5 and PC on January 24, 2023 - just a few days to go!

We know that some of you are excited about the game, but also still a little curious about what to expect. That’s understandable - it’s an entirely new franchise from Square Enix after all.

We’ve shared a lot about the game, revealing information about the super-satisfying parkour, the intense combat and the world of Athia itself, but we thought you may find it useful if you could see it in one place.

So, in this article, we’ll cover every aspect of the game, including the story, parkour system, combat and more. Let’s get to it!

The Story of Forspoken

Meet Frey Holland.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Named for the New York tunnel where she was found as a baby, Frey has grown into a clever and capable young woman. She’s also lonely and lost, drifting through life in the big city without many prospects and even less purpose.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

A mysterious portal appears. Stepping through, Frey finds herself in Athia - a vast land of magic and beauty… and she’s not alone. On her wrist is a mysterious talking cuff that gives her access to incredible magical abilities.

Naturally, Frey’s scared, confused and even a little angry about being so unceremoniously deposited in a new world - especially since she quickly discovers that it’s full of things that want to kill her.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Yes, for all its beauty, Athia is a savage and dangerous place. A phenomenon known as ‘The Break’ has swept the land, transforming the people and beasts of the world into savage monsters, and forcing the surviving humans into the walled city of Cipal.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

With guidance from Cuff and some helpful residents of Cipal, Frey learns more about Athia. She discovers the world is ruled by the Tanta - four obscenely powerful matriarchs who have also been corrupted by The Break… and they’re not thrilled about Frey’s presence in their lands.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Initially all Frey wants is to get home, but things change when one of the Tanta - named Sila - attacks Cipal. In the fire and chaos, a young girl is killed… and Frey’s mission changes from escape to revenge.

That explains the basic setup of Forspoken. As you’d expect from Square Enix, this is an epic story-focused adventure that’s full of appealing characters and unexpected moments… but to reveal more would ruin the surprises.

…and oh boy, are there surprises!

Forspoken’s magic-powered parkour

Some games make the very act of movement insanely fun. Forspoken is one of those games.

Thanks to Cuff, Frey is able to flow through the world with magic enhanced parkour, bounding over buildings, scaling cliffs and gliding across water with skill and grace.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Unlike some other games, Frey doesn’t do all this awesome stuff automatically. You’ll learn to chain moves together - the more skilfully you play, the more skilfully Frey moves. This makes for an intensely satisfying traversal system that’s easy to get to grips with but has real depth.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

There are loads of different parkour moves available, and you’ll build your skillset as you explore Athia. New moves make it easier to get around - and keep your stamina up.

Yes - stamina. For some of you, the presence of a stamina bar may give you pause. You may find yourself pondering: wouldn’t that interrupt the free-flowing parkour?

By chaining different parkour moves together, you can slow or even replenish that stamina bar. The more skilfully you play, the longer you can go, which ensures you’re always engaged in the parkour, and makes playing well feel extremely rewarding.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Some of the moves you’ll be able to use include:

  • Flow - this is the foundations of the parkour system. Hold a button and Frey will dash through the world, automatically jumping over rocks and other small obstacles, and generally doing whatever she can to keep moving. It uses a lot of stamina though, so your runs will be short if you don’t chain it with other moves, such as…

  • Rush - as you run around with Flow, you’ll sometimes see flames emanating from Frey. A well-timed button press will make her dash forward, maintaining her top speed. Plus it’ll restore some stamina too!

  • Shimmy: Frey accelerates by kicking off the ground and making a short jump forward. Using it again when you land will perform another Shimmy, making it possible to leap around the world at startling speeds.

  • Scale - This skill lets Frey create phantom footholds to launch herself in the air. It’s an essential skill for scaling walls, especially when combined with another skill, Soar, which adds an extra jump for even more verticality.

  • Zip: This one’s a personal favorite. Frey launches a magical tether, which she can use to pull herself forwards or swing on certain objects. Combining it with her other moves makes it possible to clear massive gaps - and look incredibly cool at the same time.

  • Float: Frey calls on her magic to slow her falls, allowing her to clear wide distances or avoid painful landings.

  • Glide: By holding a button, Frey can surf across the surface of water. It’s super-fast, super-stylish and makes every lake and river a joy to discover.

Not only do these moves help with traversing the world, they also help Frey run rings around her enemies in combat. Speaking of which…

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

The combat of Forspoken

Frey doesn’t rely on conventional weapons like knives, spears or giant swords - her power comes from her magic.

Frey has access to a massive arsenal of spells that do everything from pelt opponents with stone to surrounding them in a wall of searing flames.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

As the adventure progresses, Frey’s abilities will increase, and she’ll learn new magic. Each spell has its own effect and purpose - despite the vast number in the game, every single one feels useful and distinct.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

What’s great is that there’s no need to set loadouts, or replace one attack with another. Thanks to a very well-thought out interface, Frey can use any spell she’s unlocked at any time… and with dozens of spells available, the options that affords you in battle are mind-boggling.

They key to success in battle is using all this magic intelligently, taking advantage of enemy weaknesses, and using parkour and the environment to stay out of trouble or get an angle on your foes. It all makes for an incredibly dynamic - and visually stunning - battle system that’s always throwing out new challenges.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Some of the spells you’ll be able to use in the game include:

  • Scatter Shot: Fires a stream of projectiles at an enemy. When charged, it launches a much more powerful shot

  • Tendril: Whips the enemy with a flexible plant, doing damage and healing Frey

  • Blast Slice: Launches a sear of fire at enemies that then explodes causing area damage.

  • Cataract: Creates a vortex of water that sucks in enemies and causes damage. If charged, it sends out destructive pillars of water or even ice!

  • Genesis: Barbed branches emerge from the ground, skewering foes over a wide area. If charged, it also poisons enemies.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

What do you do in Forspoken?

The main quest of Forspoken sends Frey leaping through many thrilling scenarios, but when you’re not progressing the story, what do you do?

The short answer is… anything you want. Forspoken is all about giving players the freedom to play their own way, and that extends to the world itself.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Despite the desolation of The Break, Athia is packed full of things to do, from structured quests that give you set objectives to complete, to more free-form activities that reward exploration and skilled traversal.

It’s also packed full of treasures and secrets to find - you’ll find that while you’re on your way to a destination, it’s all too easy to get lured away by a new adventure or an interesting part of the scenery with the promise of loot.

Frey Holland using magic powers in Forspoken

Some of the activities in the world include:

  • Monuments: cleansing these corrupted monuments around the world will give Frey permanent stat boosts. Of course, getting to them isn’t always easy and will test your parkour skills.

  • Founts of Blessing: If you hear a resonance, then look around because you’re probably near one of these special fountains. They give you entirely new spells, though they’re not always so simple to find…

  • Flashbacks: These send Frey back in time to when The Break first affected the world. Each one presents a different challenge - for example, defending citizens for a set time, defeating hordes of enemies or reaching a destination quickly. You can replay them from the map to get better results, and better rewards.

  • Locked Labyrinths: These hidden underground dungeons are full of monsters and loot. They’ll force you to use magic and parkour creatively to overcome their many dangers… and earn their rewards.

  • Photo Spots: Take photographs of Athia’s most stunning sights for the people trapped in the city - and earn new photo mode features for your own snaps in the process!

  • Combat Challenges: Take on uber-powerful beasts that roam Athia. These monsters are arguably the most dangerous things in Athia - you’ll need to be at the top of your game to even stand a chance against them. Don’t feel bad if you have to run away a few times.

  • Tanta’s Familiars: You can befriend cats. ‘nuff said.

That’s just scratching the surface of what you can do in Athia - from Spellcraft Challenges to Trading Posts and the dice game Partha, there’s so much to find in this detailed world. If you want to know more, you should check out this recent PlayStation Blog:

Forspoken releases simultaneously on PS5 and PC (via STEAM®, Epic Games Store or Microsoft Store) on January 24, 2023, and is available to pre-order now:

We can't wait for you to try the game for yourselves - so make sure you follow Forspoken on social media to see news and updates!

FORSPOKEN PS5 demo is available to play NOW!

Play as Frey and experience her magical moves in a brand new free demo! Here’s everything you need to know about it - including some tips to get you started!
By Duncan Heaney
FORSPOKEN screenshot

Over the last few weeks, we’ve revealed a lot about FORSPOKEN. We dove deep into the free-flowing magical parkour, explained how Frey’s spectacular spells make combat a fast-paced, tactical treat and even dug into the world of Athia itself.

But the time has come for us to stop the show and tell and let you experience it all for yourselves. A new PS5 demo is available to download TODAY (possibly even right now depending on when you read this)!

FORSPOKEN screenshot

This specially-crafted crafted demo gives you the opportunity to really dig into the game’s fluid traversal and take on some truly monstrous enemies in combat. Don’t worry about spoilers - there’s no story in this taster. It’s more about giving you a chance to engage with the super-satisfying gameplay!

It drops you in Avoalet’s Water Garden - a beautiful area of Athia with plenty of space to run around and practice your parkour abilities… and a lot of snarling, corrupted beasts to engage in battle. You’ll be given five main objectives to complete, but there’s plenty of scope to just explore and dig into the entertainingly deep mechanics too.

The demo is free and you can download it from the PlayStation Store today.

Now here come the inevitable disclaimers:

  • This is specially crafted demo, and some aspects may differ from the final game
  • Your progress will not carry over into the main game
  • An internet connection is required to download the demo and a PSN account is required to play it
FORSPOKEN screenshot

Tips and tricks for the FORSPOKEN demo

We’re sure many of you are eager to get going with the demo, so to help you get started, here are five basic tips to bear in mind:

Match the Settings to your Playstyle

The demo has several difficulty and performance settings that adjust aspects like display, controls and gameplay, so that you can tailor your journey to your playstyle.

For example, switch to Performance Mode for smoother gameplay, and adjust the difficulty from Easy to give yourself more of a challenge.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Chain parkour moves together

Holding the circle button activates ‘Flow’ - the foundation of your parkour. This lets you automatically hop over small obstacles and move around the world quickly. However, it also uses stamina and if you rely on this ability alone, Frey will get winded quite quickly.

Be sure to work in other parkour moves, such as Rush (press a button when Flames emanate from Frey), as they’ll refill her stamina. Remember - the better you chain together moves, the longer you’ll be able to go.

Also, it’s really fun.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Grapple to Reach New Heights

Frey’s Zip ability allows her to use magic to grab areas and pull herself toward them. The terrain of Athia also has many rocks that Frey can use to propel herself to new heights, so try using Zip on them to see what happens. They’re a great way to reach some of Athia’s hidden areas.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Use parkour in combat

Your parkour magic and combat magic work hand-in-hand so don’t just stand around like a statue in combat. Use your agility to dance around the battlefield, find better angles on your opponent and avoid their attacks.

What’s more, some spells change based on Frey’s movement - for example, jumping while using ‘Blast Slice’ will cause Frey to slam down with an awesome area of effect attack.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Swap magic quickly

Holding L1+R1 will let you switch between different magic sets, giving Frey access to a wide variety of spells. However, you can also cycle between them with left or right on the D-Pad or swiping on the touchpad - helpful if you want to switch quickly while in the heart of the action.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Swap magic to suit the scenario

Each of the combat spells in FORSPOKEN works differently and will help you out in different scenarios. Frey has all the tools she needs to control the battlefield - so if things start to feel chaotic, look at your tools, revise your strategy and put yourself back in charge.

For example, her purple magic is great at attacking enemies from a distance, but if a foe gets up in your face, it’s going to feel ineffective. In that case, switch to red magic, and use flaming swords and punches to teach them to respect your personal space!

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Auto switch Support Spells

Frey’s has a vast arsenal of Support Spells to aid her in combat, but these require a cooldown. You can split these to autoswitch in the Gameplay Balance menu, meaning you’ll always have a spell ready to go when taking down Breakbeasts.

If you prefer greater control of your spell selection, you can bring up the Support Spell wheel with L1 and select manually.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Use Cuff to scan enemies and the world!

Press up on the D-Pad to use Cuff’s scanning ability. This is massively useful because not only will he highlight nearly materials to collect, he’ll also alert you to nearby enemies and highlight their strengths and weaknesses.

FORSPOKEN screenshot

Reduce the Chatter

Prefer to adventure alone? You can reduce the in-game conversation between Frey and Cuff to Default, Minimal or Low - limiting it to only dialogue that’s required to advance the story.

As well as the demo, we also released a brand new trailer for the game at The Game Awards. Take a look:

FORSPOKEN screenshot

This new footage gives you a deeper look at the devastating effects of the Break - the mysterious phenomenon that corrupted the people and wildlife of Athia and forced the surviving humans to cower behind the walls of the city of Cipal.

It also features a closer look at the Tantas. These once benevolent matriarchs used to rule with dignity, justice and virtue, but The Break has turned them into maddened sorceresses. They’re a threat that Frey will have to take care of if she is to return home.

We hope you enjoy playing FORSPOKEN. It’s only a mere taster for what’s in store from the full version of the game. They’ll be even more to see on December 9, including an extended gameplay showcase on the PlayStation YouTube channel:

FORSPOKEN releases January 24, 2023, for PS5 and PC via Steam, and is available to preorder now:

To stay up to date with news and information about the game, be sure to follow us on social media:

So how does Forspoken actually play?

You’ve seen Frey Holland do some spectacular moves, but how do they work in the game itself? We take you through the basics of Forspoken!
By Duncan Heaney

We’ve previously shown you the world of Athia and introduced you to Frey Holland - the woman who’s out to save it. Even so, some of you may be wondering: how does the game actually play?

Our new extended gameplay trailer helps answer that question. It takes you through a mission in the game, shows you the magic-enhanced parkour system in action, and introduces you to the spectacular and flexible combat system.

Take a look:

Awesome stuff, right? Want to know more? Read on, and we’ll highlight some of the coolest parts of the video - and explain what exactly is going on.


The new gameplay trailer gives you a close look at somewhere pretty important: Cipal.

This settlement is the last remaining haven for the surviving Athians, who take refuge her from the all-corrupting Break. It’s a key location in the game, providing a safe space for Frey to take a breath and prepare herself for the rigors of the corrupted world outside.

This area contains many residents who’ll will share information with Frey or trade with her for valuable goods. Plus there are cats!

Some of the fascinating characters in Cipal will also give Frey quests to complete. The footage introduces you to Johedy - a former blacksmith, now turned archivist. Frey hits her up to ask about the special odvaha ore she’s found out on her travels - but Johedy needs tools to help her out- and they’re not in a safe place.

Frey needs to head into the corrupted area of Praenost to collect what she needs. It’s a dangerous journey that most wouldn’t survive… and a perfect opportunity to showcase a few of Frey’s skills.

Traversing the wilds

The trailer also gives you an extended look at traversal in Forspoken.

Athia may be a savage and inhospitable place, but for Frey it’s a playground. Her magic-enhanced parkour skills make even the most challenging terrain an opportunity for awesomeness, as she uses her ever-expanding moveset, and the environment itself to get around with style

The parkour system in Forspoken is easy to use, yet incredibly deep. It’s not just a simple case of holding down a button and watching Frey go - you have total control over how she traverses the world.

For example, Frey can jump up walls, latch onto parts of the environment to launch or swing herself into the air, pull herself forward mid-air, use her powers to glide and much more. By chaining different moves together, you can ‘flow’ through the world with astonishing grace - it’s supremely satisfying.

It’s worth experimenting with the parkour system, too, because Athia is full of secrets to find and rewards to uncover. You’ll find chests containing valuable resources, mana to learn new skills, lore about the world and its inhabitants, new equipment and much more.

If you need a bit of guidance, Belfries are great for giving Frey the lay of the land. These structures are found all throughout Athia and allow Frey and Cuff to see nearby points of interest.

It’s always worth checking out a Belfry in case there’s something fun nearby, Sure, you could straight to head to your objective and find those tools but… a little diversion couldn’t hurt.

I mean, it’s more time to play with the parkour, right?

Crafting and upgrading

Cipal isn’t the only place for Frey to take a break - Pilgrim’s Refuges are located in every part of Athia, and they’re well worth seeking out.

These structures provide a safe place where you can craft and upgrade your gear. For example, you can add powerful effects to cloaks and necklaces or craft new healing drafts.

Naturally, crafting and upgrading requires resources, which you can find by exploring the world, finding chests and completing missions. But it’s well worth doing, because the stronger you are, the more chance you have of surviving an encounter with some of the… less friendly inhabitants of Athia.

Speaking of which...


Frey may be resistant to the blight that’s swept the land, but she’s not immune to those it’s corrupted. As you explore this expansive world, you’ll encounter mutated creatures of all shapes and size, all with one thing in common: they’re out for blood.

Fortunately, Frey can learn a wide variety of powers to help her in combat - attack magic, support magic and more. You can create traps, manipulate enemies, charge area of effect attacks, heal yourself and loads more beyond - to call her abilities versatile would be an understatement!

For example, in the new gameplay trailer, you can see how Frey mixes and matches different attacks to cut a swathe through enemies. She uses Charge to get in close, hits enemies up close with Slice, before finishing with Blast Slice - an explosive area of effect attack!

Later, we see her pepper foes with Darts, which do damage and mark enemies, before switching to Pulse Darts to take down those marked foes with a spectacular finish.

Just as with the parkour, combat in Forspoken rewards player expression . You have an expansive and flexible toolset, and it’s up to you how you want to use it. Do you want to fight in a controlled frenzy and unleash a barrage of quick-fire spells, or take a more methodical approach, using traps, precision attacks and taking advantage of enemy weaknesses to eliminate targets?

And don’t forget your parkour powers in battle - by combining traversal and combat moves, Frey can run rings around opponents. You can evade enemy assaults, get better angles of attack, perfectly position yourself for powerful strikes and more.

The game gives you the freedom to be strategic or impulsive and build your own playstyle - and no two fights are ever alike!

We hope you enjoyed this brief glimpse into Forspoken. Of course, this is barely scraping the surface of what you’ll experience in the full game!

That releases simultaneously on PS5 and PC (via STEAM®, Epic Games Store or Microsoft Store) on January 24, 2023, and is available to pre-order now:

We’ll have much more to share about the game in the coming months, so make sure you follow Forspoken on social media to see news and updates!

The corrupted creatures and magnificent magic of Forspoken revealed

Showcasing some of the beautiful but deadly enemies you’ll face in Forspoken… and some of the ways you can take them on!
By Duncan Heaney

You have to feel for Frey Holland - the protagonist of Forspoken. This New Yorker finds herself transported to a beautiful but dangerous new world… and some of the inhabitants aren’t exactly friendly.

During the latest trailer, we get distressingly up close with some of the savage beasts that Frey must contend with in her quest to save the land of Athia… and some of the ways she can fight back.

If you missed the trailer, take a look:

Pretty exciting stuff, right? Let’s dig a little deeper into what was shown.

Frey’s foes

The world of Athia is vast, picturesque… and broken. It’s a land ravaged by ‘the Break’ - a creeping corruption that transforms whatever it touches into a twisted, distorted version of itself.

Unfortunately for Frey, many of the creatures of the world have fallen victim to this insidious phenomenon - these beasts may be stunning to look at, but they’re also dangerously violent too, so watch out.

Among the enemies we revealed in the new trailer were the earth-shaking Gigas (above), the flying Apsaravis and of course, we’re reunited with our wild-winged dragon. This fierce foe is one of the first things to welcome Frey to Athia.

Actually, ‘welcome’ may not be an appropriate choice of words…

Frey’s Powers

These monsters may be dangerous, but Frey’s pretty capable herself. The trailer also shows some of the amazing ways she can use impressive abilities for both combat and traversal.

Frey can learn many magical powers over the course of the game, some of which have been inspired by the elements and environments that surround her. For example, we see her using a move called ‘Storm Dart’, which lets her emit electrical energy during battle.

Insert your own ‘that’s shocking’ pun here.

Another move shown is ‘Eagre’, which lets Frey command barriers of water!

We also get another look at how pivotal her magical parkour is in combat encounters - Frey’s not a superhuman - she needs to be fast and mobile and avoid attacks where she can. Notice in the trailer how she can uses her speed and agility to stay on the move and avoid the Dragon’s brute force attacks!

She can even use her magical parkour ability to travel on top of water!

That was just a brief glimpse at some of the magical moments in Forspoken. The game launches on Oct 11, 2022, on PS5 and PC (via Steam, Epic Games Store and Microsoft Store).

We’ll have much more to show you as we parkour closer to that release date, so make sure to follow Forspoken on social media to see the big news first!

What’s coming from Square Enix in 2022?

Forspoken! Outriders! STRANGER OF PARADISE FINAL FANTASY ORIGIN! Here’s what you’ve got to look forward to in 2022!
By Duncan Heaney

2022 is here! A new year full of new experiences, new possibilities and - yes - new games.

It’s going to be a particularly exciting year if you’re Square Enix fan. In 2022, you’ll set off to battle the darkness in STRANGER OF PARADISE FINAL FANTASY ORIGIN, discover a whole new world in the stunning Forspoken and reunite with some old friends in the Life is Strange Remastered Collection. And that’s just scraping the surface of what we’re releasing this year!

So let’s take a look ahead at just some of the console and PC releases you can look forward to in 2022!

Life is Strange Remastered Collection

  • Release: Feb 1, 2022

Get ready to reunite with Max Caulfield, Chloe Price and Rachel Amber!

The Life is Strange Remastered Collection includes the original Life is Strange and Life is Strange: Before the Storm. Both games have been seen significant improvements, with remastered character and environment assets, improved lighting and full motion-captured facial animation in Life is Strange.

Fans will get a real thrill out of seeing these beloved games looking better than ever. And if you’ve never played one or both of these seminal narrative adventures before… well, here’s the definitive way to do it.


  • Release: March 3, 2022

This exciting new co-operative game has been developed in partnership with PlatinumGames - the action masters behind games like NieR:Automata.

You and your friends take the role of powerful warriors known as a Sentinel and enter the titanic Tower of Babel in search of the great legacy that sleeps inside.

As you ascend this deadly tower, you’ll face hordes of dangerous enemies - fortunately, the ability to equip as many as four weapons at a time means you’re more than equipped to survive. There’s an enormous number of builds to experiment with, and it’s intensely satisfying taking on the challenge of the tower.

And, of course, it’s all presented with a beautiful brushwork art style, which makes every frame look like a painting.

Long story short, there really aren’t many games that look and feel like BABYLON’S FALL - it’s definitely one to watch out for when it releases on March 3, 2022.

Chocobo GP

  • Release: March 10, 2022

What kind of vehicle does Chocobo drive? A Gysahl-guzzler!

Ok, so that joke isn’t great, but this new racing game is. Speeding onto Switch on 10 March 2022, it brings together lovable characters from across the Chocobo and FINAL FANTASY series and pits them against each other in a race for the ultimate prize - anything their heart desires!

With lots of modes, including Story Mode and online races for up to 64-players and more, it’s sure to be… a Kweh-zy time.

That one was better.


  • Release: March 18, 2022

Team NINJA from KOEI TECMO GAMES present a savage new take on the FINAL FANTASY series.

You take control of Jack Garland on a quest to defeat the darkness that threatens the land of Cornelia. You’ll explore sprawling locations full of monsters, traps, and secrets - and switch between a dizzying number of jobs in order to overcome them, from Swordsman to Mage.

Of course, it’s not just a compellingly challenging action RPG - it’s a love letter to the FINAL FANTASY series as a whole. You’ll visit locations featured in the original FINAL FANTASY I, including the Chaos Shrine and Pravoka as well as some others that might cause a few twinges of nostalgia for fans of the series. Plus the attentive among you may have already clocked Jack’s last name…

It’s shaping up to be an amazing game that offers all the brutal challenge and customization that fans of action RPGs adore.

That said, if you’ve previously been put off the genre due to their difficulty, STRANGER OF PARADISE FINAL FANTASY ORIGIN also includes a ‘STORY’ difficulty setting, which balances the strength of enemies and allies in such a way that anyone can get through the adventure. In short, it lets you become the punisher rather than the punished.

However you choose to play it, we can’t wait for you to experience Jack’s journey into darkness on March 18, 2022!


  • Release: May 24, 2022

This striking new action RPG from Luminous Productions has turned a lot of heads - and for good reason.

You play as Frey Holland - a seemingly normal New Yorker who is thrust into the dangerous and unfamiliar world of Athia. This world may be beautiful but it’s also cruel - its ruled by a group of destructive and ruthless matriarchs known as ‘Tantas’. As if that wasn’t problematic enough, a relentless miasma called ‘the Break’ has ravaged the land, corrupting all it touches.

Long story short, Frey’s got a big job ahead of her to save this world. Fortunately, she’s equipped with powerful magic that lets her take on dangerous enemies and flow through the world with incredibly smooth and satisfying parkour.

Forspoken releases for PS5 and PC on May 24, 2022. We’ll have much more to share about this next-gen exclusive game in the future, but for now, make sure you follow the team on social media so you get all the big news first:

FINAL FANTASY VI pixel remaster

  • Release: February 2022 (TBD)

One of the all-time great RPGs returns in 2022!

FINAL FANTASY VI has been updated with beautiful new 2D visuals, quality of life improvements and more.

If you’ve played the rest of the pixel remaster series (FINAL FANTASY I - V are already available), you’ll have a good idea of what to expect - a loving remaster, amazing art and a rearranged soundtrack that absolutely slaps.

It’s coming in February 2022 and will be available to buy separately, or as part of the full pixel remaster bundle.

Outriders Worldslayer Expansion

  • Release: 2022 (TBD)

Outriders won a lot of fans last year thanks to its crunchy combat, super-flexible skills system, and compelling loot. Late last year, the game got even better with the massive New Horizon update, which improved the endgame, loot drops and customization system.

But we know that fans want new content, and that’s exactly what’s coming in 2022. The Worldslayer expansion will take you to the furthest reaches of Enoch, where new stories, new challenges and new threats await.

We’ll have more to share on the upcoming expansion this year, so make sure you follow the team on social media to hear the big news first:


  • Release: 2022 (TBD)

STAR OCEAN THE DIVINE FORCE is a brand-new RPG that fuses science fiction and fantasy. With two protagonists, several allies, beautiful character designs by renowned artist Akiman, and an unprecedented level of freedom for the series, it’s shaping up to be something very special.

You play as either Raymond or Laeticia. Raymond hails from an advanced civilization, and the captain of the space trading ship Ydas, whereas Laeticia is a princess-knight from a kingdom on an underdeveloped planet.

Regardless of which you choose, you’ll have a genuinely impressive amount of flexibility over how you traverse the world - not only can characters run freely on the ground, they can also fly! Explore the mountains, valleys and towns of the world freely!

The combat system’s equally nimble, with fast-speed attacks, and enemies that force you to dodge and think about your position.

Unfortunately, we can’t give you a release date yet, but the game will release for PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One and Steam in 2022.

As you can see, it’s going to be a bumper year for games. We hope you’re as excited to play these as we are!

Of course, we may well have some surprises to share over the course of the next 12 months, so make sure you visit the blog regularly and follow Square Enix on social media to see all the announcements.

Luminous Productions’ Forspoken releases May 24, 2022

New story details, new characters, new screenshots and more! Plus, the release date revealed!
By Duncan Heaney

Okay, stop everything you’re doing and watch the new Forspoken trailer:


Unveiled during The Game Awards 2021, the new trailer shows new story elements as well as a fresh look at gameplay… and perhaps most importantly when you can play it! Let’s go deeper and break down all the new and awesome stuff showcased in the trailer.


New story details

We’ve shown you glimpses of the game’s setting before, but the new trailer gives you the closest look at the land of Athia yet. This land is beautiful, but also cruel and mysterious. It’s been devastated by the ‘Break’ - a relentless miasma that corrupts all it touches.

Well, perhaps not quite all - somehow our hero, Frey Holland, has escaped the effects of the Break, and in doing so, has become a beacon of hope for this ravaged world and its last remaining citizens.


Introducing Tanta Prav

Athia is ruled by a group of ultra-powerful matriarchs called Tantas. These twisted figures are formidable foes for Frey - powerful, destructive, and utterly ruthless. The Game Awards trailer introduces you to a new one: Tanta Prav.


This maddened sorceress is played by The Walking Dead’s (TV Series) Pollyanna McIntosh and is an insidious threat for the young Frey. As McIntosh herself says, “I’ve had such a fun time playing Tanta Prav and I’m excited for players to see how remorseless and unrelenting she is. I think she will prove to be a ruthless adversary for players as they follow Frey on her journey in the land of Athia.”


A new look at gameplay

If you’ve seen any footage of the game, you’ve no doubt noticed how fast and fluid Frey is as she traverses the world. The latest trailer shows how Frey can use her magic powers to overcome obstacles and move freely around the environment.

Magic-infused parkour is but one of the things that Frey can do - she can also utilise her abilities to battle the savage beasts that she’ll encounter across Athia.

The new trailer reveals some the monstrous creatures that Frey must contend - horrors like Breakzombies, Amphicyons, Miacis, Riven Carcasses and Jabberwocks. With names like those, you know they’re not going to be pleasant to deal with.


The release date is May 24, 2022

Perhaps the biggest question fans have about the game is a simple one: “when can we play it!?”

We’re excited to announce that the game is set for release on May 24, 2022, for PS5 and PC via STEAM, the Epic Games Store and Windows Store.

What’s more, it’s available to preorder now, and there are some cool bonuses for doing so:

  • Preorder on PS5 (PlayStation Store) to get the No Limits Cloak, Symbol Combo Necklace, Trigger Happy Nails and Crafting Starter Kit (digital only)

  • Pre-purchase on PC (STEAM, Epic Games Store, Microsoft Store) to get an Elite Cloak, Spectra Combo Necklace and Overclock Nails (digital only)


The Forspoken Digital Deluxe Edition

If you want even more, there’s also a Forspoken Digital Deluxe Edition. It contains:

  • Rare Resource Kit (only included for the PS5 version)

  • Mini Artbook (Digital Download)

  • Mini Soundtrack (Digital Download)

  • Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust prequel story DLC (coming Winter 2022, following the game’s launch. Players who pre-order the Digital Deluxe Edition will receive early access to this prequel story DLC when released)

Preorder the Digital Deluxe Edition now:


Only a few months to go until you can join Frey in Athia on May 24, 2022 - but you can be sure we’ll have more to tell you about the game before that.

To stay up to date with news and information about the game, make sure you’re following Forspoken on social media:

6 things we learned from the new Forspoken trailer

A new trailer landed for Forspoken today, with plenty of brand new information and insight to be discovered. We’ll take you through just six of the coolest new details. Body:
By Teague Emery

In case you missed it, Square Enix and Luminous Productions dropped a new trailer for Forspoken today; it’s a game we’ve all been itching to see more of since its last trailer drop back in March, and it didn’t disappoint.

This is the first story trailer for the game and it reveals a ton of new info and insight into the characters, world and gameplay of Forspoken. So, let’s look at the top 6 things we discovered when watching the new trailer.

Frey’s A City Girl

This was the first time we received concrete details about our lead character Frey’s story. In the trailer we see her living a troubled life in New York City: Frey is directionless, she’s lonely, lost and looking for a way out. She has little to hold on to, save for a very cute feline friend called Homer.

While dreaming of escape, Frey is transported through a portal and finds herself in the mysterious land of Athia. Be careful what you wish for?

Athia looks beautiful, and all kinds of dangerous

We already knew this, having seen a fair number of screenshots of stunning scenery and frightening foes, but this new trailer takes it to a whole new level, showcasing just how vast and diverse the land of Athia really is.

Glades, ruins, castles and cliffs are all realised with incredible detail, and watching Frey traverse between them looks ridiculously fun (but we’ll get to that later). Athia looks like a dream, if it wasn’t for the huge array of monsters seemingly stalking the lands…

We’re talking vicious feathered fiends, weird goblin like monsters, dragons, and more… Athia may be stunning, but it sure looks scary.

The traversal is insanely fun

We’ve seen Frey scale the scenery before, but this is the first time we’ve had a real look at the way Frey explores the land of Athia, and it looks phenomenal.

Forget summoning a mount, Forspoken introduces a truly unique form of travel: Magic Parkour! We see Frey seamlessly launch across rooftops, descend cliff faces, and swing to usually unreachable ledges, effortlessly navigating the impossible with the help of her magical powers. We can’t wait to have a go…let’s face it, it beats our usual commute.

Swords are so 2020

One thing that really stands out in the new footage is Frey’s distinct lack of any weapon. There’s no sword, shield, bow or axe to be found in her arsenal, and frankly, it’s pretty refreshing. Instead, Frey takes down her foes with her newly discovered magic abilities.

Frey throws water orbs, shoots charges from her bare hands, and conjures an incredible tidal wave to encase, then freeze her foes. We have it on good authority that there are tons of magic abilities to discover in Forspoken, so this is just a taste of the fun we’ll have battling through Athia.

There is something called a Tanta, and she looks formidable

This is the first time we’ve gotten a sense of Forspoken’s antagonist(s?), and from what we can tell, she’s not to be trifled with. We’re informed that the Tantas are twisted and destructive, all powerful matriarchs, who have dominion over Athia.

“Tanta Sila is the strongest and most formidable of the Tantas,” Frey is told in the trailer, before being asked to rid the land of her evil. What follows is a short clip of Tanta Sila looking as sinister and evil as a sinister, evil sorceress could.

Looks like Frey will go head-to-head with Tanta Sila, but if she is the most formidable Tanta, how dangerous will Frey’s journey to take her down become?

There’s a whole lot of talent Onboard

We’ve been excited to see Forspoken come to life since learning that Ella Balinska was playing our protagonist Frey, but the list of talent attached to this game is stellar.

We also got a glimpse of another recognisable face bringing their acting chops to the game: Keala Settle (The Greatest Showman) as Johedy, teaching Frey the perils of Athia.

And it doesn’t stop there, actor Jonathan Cake is quite literally on-hand to help Frey navigate Athia, as magical sentient bracelet ‘Cuff’; while Janina Gavankar appears as the formidable Tanta Sila and Monica Barbaro who plays Auden, a kind and open-minded young woman who accepts Frey.

Alongside the talent on-screen there’s a ton working behind the scenes, with the writing team including the award-winning Amy Hennig (Uncharted, Legacy of Kain) and Hollywood’s renowned writer, Gary Whitta (Rogue One) working with lead writers Allison Rymer and Todd Stashwick.

Finally, the soundtrack sounds incredibly promising based on the trailer track alone. We can’t wait to hear more of what Bear McCreary (God of War, The Walking Dead) and Garry Schyman (Bioshock) bring to the game.

Forspoken will release on PlayStation 5 and PC (Epic Games Store, Windows Store and STEAM) in Spring 2022.

For more information on Forspoken, make sure you follow the Forspoken and the newly created Luminous Productions channels on social media to stay up to date with the news:

SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS: Here’s everything we showed

From the world premiere of Life is Strange: True Colors to the reveal of Forspoken, here’s everything we revealed at SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS SPRING 2021!
By Duncan Heaney
Square Enix Presents logo

The inaugural SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS was packed with awe-inspiring games, from the drama of Life is Strange: True Colors to the forbidding beauty of Forspoken.

But as the stage clears, there’s still time for one last encore - here’s a recap of everything we showed:

Life is Strange: True Colors

SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS featured the World Premiere of Life is Strange: True Colors.

This latest entry in the award-winning series is developed by Deck Nine Games - the accomplished team behind Life is Strange: Before the Storm - and focuses on a brand new protagonist: Alex Chen.

Square Enix Presents logo

Alex has the psychic power of Empathy - a supernatural ability that allows her to experience, absorb and manipulate the powers of others, and see them as colored auras. She’s spent years suppressing this ‘curse’, but when her brother dies unexpectedly, Alex embraces her powers once and for all.

As Alex, you’ll explore the town of Haven Springs, and use your volatile abilities to uncover the dark secrets hidden within.

The game features full performance capture, and an incredible soundtrack with new tracks by mxmtoon and Novo Amor, licensed songs including Radiohead, Phoebe Bridgers, Gabrielle Aplin, and much more.

Life is Strange: True Colors releases in September, and is available to preorder now:

Life is Strange Remastered Collection

As if True Colors wasn’t exciting enough, there was even more Life is Strange news at SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS.

Square Enix Presents logo

The Life is Strange Remastered Collection will be available in September as part of the Life is Strange: True Colors Ultimate Edition. It will also be available standalone later on this year.

The collection features both Life is Strange and Life is Strange: Before the Storm, each enhanced with improved visuals and animation.


Square Enix Presents logo

SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS featured a spectacular surprise with Forspoken: a brand new game from the talented team at Luminous Productions.

Originally unveiled last year as PROJECT ATHIA, today’s show introduced the game’s setting, teased gameplay and put the spotlight on the main character: Frey.

An ordinary woman, Frey is thrust into the fantastical and dangerous land of Athia, where she is forced to harness new magical abilities to survive.

Forspoken is being developed for PS5 and PC, and is set for release in 2022. For more information, check out our full rundown:

Marvel’s Avengers

Square Enix Presents logo

It’s a big day for Marvel’s Avengers.

Firstly, Marvel’s Avengers – Operation: Hawkeye - Future Imperfect is now available in-game, and it introduces an all-new playable hero to the game’s roster: Clint Barton’s Hawkeye. The archer’s quiver is packed full of tools that make him a force to be reckoned with, from grapple arrows to his iconic boomerang arrows.

As players progress into the Wastelands, the new Operation will also introduce a deadly villain, Maestro - and he’s a threat unlike anything the Avengers have faced so far.

The update features a new biome to explore, and awesome new features, including the ability to customize HARM rooms, and replay campaign missions. As with all content updates, Future Imperfect is free to download and play for anyone who has purchased the game.

That’s not the only exciting Marvel’s Avengers news though - today is also the launch of the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S editions. Featuring all the content released for the game so far, the next-gen console versions feature improved visuals, with 4K and 60FPS support, faster load times and more.

Square Enix Presents logo

Anyone with a copy of the game can upgrade to the new version for free (within the same console family), and save files can be easily transferred over.

Please note that the free upgrade is available only from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5, or from Xbox One to Xbox Series X|S. Upgrade from PlayStation 4 disc version requires a PlayStation 5 console with a disc drive. Upgrade from Xbox One disc version requires Xbox Series X console.

Find out more on the official Marvel’s Avengers website.

Square Enix Presents logo

Finally, the Marvel’s Avengers segment of SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS concluded with a tantalizing look at the next big event, featuring a very familiar location to fans. The War for Wakanda is coming!


Square Enix Presents logo

By now many of you will have boots on the ground in the Outriders demo. You’ll have blasted beasties, pulverized platoons and taken your first steps to becoming an Altered demi-god of the battlefield… but trust us, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS gave you another look at the game, ahead of its release on April 1, with new footage that gives you the 101 on this exhilarating RPG-shooter.

Tomb Raider

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of Tomb Raider, and we’re celebrating the milestone all throughout 2021!

You may have already heard us announce a new Tomb Raider anime series in collaboration with Netflix and Legendary Television, and we’re working with talented teams on crossovers for Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Breakpoint and War of the Visions Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.

Square Enix Presents logo

Not only that, but we’re excited to announce that a Tomb Raider cookbook is coming from Insight Editions. This will allow fans to bring recipes from Lara Croft’s globe-trotting adventures into their own homes! But don’t worry - unlike Lara, we don’t expect you to forage and hunt for the ingredients yourself.

Yet to experience the three most recent Tomb Raider games - or just want a reason to revisit them? We (also announced a new digital bundle - the Tomb Raider: Definitive Survivor Trilogy.

This new collection contains three full games, including all their DLC: Tomb Raider Definitive Edition, Rise of the Tomb Raider 20 Year Celebration and Shadow of the Tomb Raider Definitive Edition. Over the course of these remarkable adventures, you’ll follow Lara as she grows from a young, inexperienced survivor to a capable, confident Tomb Raider.

Finally, some Fortnite news! You may have seen the inimitable Ms Croft arrive in the game, but that’s not the end of the collaboration! Croft Manor is coming to Fortnite Creative as a playable adventure on March 23!

Alliance Studios has been hard at work on the hub and we can’t wait for you to play it next week. Check out Fortnite Creative and on March 23 to learn more.


Square Enix Presents logo

We got one more look at the all-singing, all-dancing BALAN WONDERWORLD ahead of its launch on March 26 (that’s next week!).

The colorful platformer sends two young heroes, Leo and Emma, into whimsical and wacky world, on a quest to help the denizens overcome the negativity that plagues them.

The new trailer offered a tantalizing glimpse of the costumes and abilities that Leo and Emma will be able to utilise on their quest, and some of the dangerous bosses that stand in their way.

You’ll experience it all from next week, when BALAN WONDERWORLD releases on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Switch and Steam.

Just Cause: Mobile

Square Enix Presents logo

Surfing on missiles? Parachuting into an enemy base… while it explodes? Grapples, guns and motorized mayhem? Yep, it’s Just Cause alright.

Just Cause: Mobile puts the incendiary action of the Just Cause series in the palm of your hand. You’ll create your own agent and join the ranks of the Firebrand - a special division within the Agency. Your mission: stop a new mercenary group known as Darkwater.

To aid your investigation into this looming threat, you’ll have to track down new allies to assist you - including a certain Mr Rico Rodriguez. You may have heard of him.

Also you’ll blow lots of stuff up, but that probably goes without saying.

The game is playable in both single player and multiplayer, and features fast-paced top-down gameplay, with all the grappling, gliding and shooting you’d expect.

It’s due out in 2021, so follow Just Cause on social media to stay up to date with the latest news.

Hitman Sniper Assassins

Square Enix Presents logo

Here’s another exciting announcement for mobile: Square Enix Montréal has been working on a brand new Hitman Sniper mobile game: Hitman Sniper Assassins (working title).

Developed by the makers of the acclaimed Hitman Sniper®, and the studio behind Lara Croft GO®, Hitman GO® and Deus Ex GO®, the new game features a wholly original story, with new playable assassins and exciting new gameplay features.

The game’s set for release in 2021 for iOS and Android, and we’ll have more to share in the future.

Space Invaders

Square Enix Presents logo

Arguably the most iconic series in all of gaming is making a return! Square Enix Montréal and TAITO are collaborating on an exciting new vision for the series on mobile.

The new game takes Space Invaders in an innovative new direction, through its proprietary AR technology and modern art style.

We’ll have more to share in the future, so to stay up to date with news and information about the game, or sign up for the playtest, head over to the official website now:

TOUHOU Spell Bubble

Square Enix Presents logo

New content is coming for the spell-binding rhythm puzzler, TOUHOU Spell Bubble on Nintendo Switch!

Sanae is organizing the Spell Bubble Tournament, but the demands of the sponsors are driving everyone up the wall. Will they be able to pull the tournament together?

You’ll be able to find out on March 25, when Side Story Pack Sanae Arc launches on Switch!

Bubble Bobble 4 Friends

Square Enix Presents logo

Bub and Bob’s latest adventure is coming to Steam, along with the recent ‘The Baron is Back’ update!

Bubble Bobble 4 Friends EXTENDS the classic series gameplay with 200 stages, new power ups, up to 4 player local co-op and more. You can even play the original arcade version of Bubble Bobble!

The Steam page is open for wishlisting today:

Darius Cozmic Revelation

Square Enix Presents logo

This collection features two incredible shoot ‘em ups - G-Darius HD, and Dariusburst: Another Chronicle EX+.

G-Darius HD updates the classic game with high definition visuals, a new beginner’s mode and the addition of the rebalanced, previously arcade-exclusive G-Darius Ver.2. That means the collection contains four versions of the game: G-Darius and G-Darius HD, as well as standard and HD versions of Ver.2.

The game releases in late 2021 for PS4 and Switch.

Well, that was quite the show, huh? See ya next time!

Introducing Forspoken

Formerly known as PROJECT ATHIA, here’s everything you need to know about the new game from Luminous Productions, coming for PS5 and PC.
By Duncan Heaney
Forspoken screenshot

Meet Frey Holland.

This seemingly ordinary woman is the lead character in Forspoken - a brand new adventure from the talented team at Luminous Productions.

Forspoken screenshot

Thrust into the dangerous land of Athia, the young hero must learn to harness magical abilities to survive. She’ll face many fearsome foes and overcome treacherous trials on a journey unlike any other.

But what exactly is Forspoken, and what can you expect from this exciting project?

Forspoken screenshot
Forspoken screenshot

What is Forspoken?

We originally introduced the game last year, as working title PROJECT ATHIA. During SQUARE ENIX PRESENTS, we pulled back the curtain further, revealing the world, character and its actual name: Forspoken.

The game’s a narrative-driven adventure, and it’s developed by Luminous Productions. The studio’s philosophy is to create gameplay experiences that combine the latest technology with unbridled creativity - and that’s a pretty accurate way to describe their new game.

Forspoken has been designed specifically for the PlayStation 5, taking advantage of the new console’s power and features to create a game that feels like a true next-gen experience.

Forspoken screenshot

What is Forspoken about?

In Forspoken, you’ll play the role of Frey, as she enters Athia for the first time. This new land is stunningly beautiful, but also cruel and deadly. You can get a glimpse of the dangers she’ll face in the new trailer:

Forspoken screenshot

Frey is brilliantly brought to life by the actor, Ella Balinska and she had this to say.

“As the first video game I’ve worked on, it’s remarkable to see the incredible world and story of Forspoken come together, blurring the lines between reality and fantasy,” said Balinska.

“Frey as a character is real, she’s raw, she’s a girl who lost her way - both figuratively and literally - and is a character I immediately connected with, as I feel many people around the world will too when they set off on this adventure.”

Forspoken screenshot

When can you set off on this adventure?

Forspoken is set to release in 2022 for PS5 and PC. For more information, bookmark the official website:

We’ll have more to share about this breathtaking game in the future, so to stay up to date with news and information about the game, follow the team on social media: