Ever since The World Ends with You was initially released on the Nintendo DS in 2007, fans have been waiting for Square Enix to release a sequel. Since its original release, the game was able to gather a huge following of fans who have been patiently waiting for more than a decade for part 2.
In 2018, the game was given a Nintendo Switch remaster entitled The World Ends with You: Final Remix, while an anime adaptation is expected to release next year. Now, Square Enix has officially announced that the DS game will finally be getting a sequel entitled NEO: The World Ends With You.
The announcement came after a seven-day countdown found on the game’s official website. NEO: The World Ends with You is a direct sequel to the original DS title from 2007, which features a brand-new set of characters.
This time around, these new characters will be the ones to participate in the “Reapers’ Game,” which is a battle for survival that takes up to one week. You will be following Rindo, the new protagonist of the series, who wakes up to find himself in Shibuya inside the death game. The other participants include Nagi, Fret, as well as Minamimoto who was in the first game.
One thing that makes NEO different from the original game is its visual style. We can definitely see that Kingdom Hearts creator Tetsuya Nomura still plays a huge part in this game’s character design. However, The World Ends with You used to be a 2D side-scroller, whereas NEO has switched over to fully-rendered 3D characters.
We can imagine that there will be dedicated fans of the original game who will be irked by this change. However, based on what we can see from the gameplay clips, the changes made to NEO: The World Ends with You’s art direction and perspective will definitely spice up the series’ take on action-RPG combat.
In addition to that, the way Shibuya is rendered in this upcoming game will look familiar to Persona 5 fans, as it seems that both RPGs have a similar way of representing the popular hotspot.
Ever since The World Ends with You was released, Producer Tetsuya Nomura has always been so vocal about wanting to return to the franchise. This possibility became even more likely after the Nintendo Switch remaster was released in 2018.
However, discussions surrounding the game died down after the Nintendo Switch remake didn’t sell as well as the company had hoped. The fans were pretty much caught by surprise when it was announced that the game would be getting an anime adaptation.
At the same time, this was a good thing because it meant that Square Enix hadn’t given up on the series yet. Now that NEO: The World Ends with You is set to release some time in Summer 2021, we assume that the anime adaptation is the company’s last attempt to introduce new players to the original game.
The trailer was released in English, which indicates that NEO: The World Ends with You will be getting a global launch. More specifically, the game will have English subtitles with Japanese audio, which could mean that an English dub is still in the works or the game will stick with Japanese audio upon launch.
NEO: The World Ends with You will be released on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch this 2021.