Next game in Laura Shigihara’s To the Moon-inspired fantasy series unveiled for PC and Switch
It’s been more than five years since Laura Shigihara charmed us with her debut narrative adventure, Rakuen. Fortunately the wait for the next installment in her lovely pixel art universe isn’t much longer, as the indie developer has unveiled her latest creation, Mr. Saitou.
The game’s namesake is an “an average white-collar worker who struggles to find meaning in a life full of constant overtime and social isolation.” Then things go from bad to worse when he winds up in the hospital after an accident. But what follows is something he never expected, as Mr. Saitou is “spirited away to a strange fantasy world where an unexpected friend takes him on a life-changing adventure.”
As with its predecessor, and the retro 16-bit Japanese RPGs that inspired them both, Mr. Saitou is a pixel art adventure presented via a bird’s-eye view. Prioritizing exploration and narrative over puzzles, the game promises a “heartwarming story with an emphasis on humor and building friendships” throughout its “short and sweet” play time that is designed to be finished in a single sitting. In your journey through this fantastical world, you’ll encounter a “cast of strange creatures,” including both new and familiar faces to those who have played Rakuen. Accompanying the action will be an original soundtrack by Shigihara, an acclaimed composer whose credits prior to her own debut title included work on the likes of To the Moon and Plants vs. Zombies. As an added bonus, the Mr. Saitou OST will be included with each purchase of the game.
The arrival of Mr. Saitou isn’t far off, as the game is due to be released on the Nintendo eShop on March 23rd, bundled with the Switch debut of Rakuen. It will also be launched on Steam the same day as a standalone product for Windows, Mac and Linux, while the PC version of Rakuen will be getting a simultaneous “major update,” including new art and animations to go with a custom-built game engine.