When gamers look back on April 2020, particularly those who are fans of JRPGs, it is likely the critically well-received, much hyped Final Fantasy 7 Remake is the first thing that comes to mind. However, the other Square Enix title released that month, Trials of Mana, certainly wasn’t slept on by fans. Despite the ambitiously huge undertaking that is the FF7 Remake, it seems plenty of fans were just as excited for Trials of Mana, as the game just passed a substantial sales milestone.
With a high-tempo battle system, a memorable soundtrack, and fun (if occasionally annoying) characters, Trials of Mana takes what made the original Super Famicom game a cult classic and updates it for modern tastes. One of the best systems in the game is the class system, where players get to decide between a “Light” and “Dark” path for their character. Picking the right class in Trials of Mana can build some unique and powerful parties. The return of systems like the class change brought fans back to the game, and likely made a few new fans out of those who had never played the game before.
In less than a year since its release, it seems that a number of fans found something to like about Trials of Mana, as the game just surpassed one million sales. Given that many games don’t come close to numbers like this, Trials of Mana has definitely been a hit for Square Enix.
The game has been supported since its release with updates to keep it feeling fresh. The game already has a fair amount of replayability given that there are three main narratives split between the six characters, but the updates to Trials of Mana added some increased difficulty options for those looking to really challenge themselves.
Seiken Densetsu 3 was an excellent example of the JRPGs made during what was a golden era for the genre. The Kickstarter indie RPG Sea of Stars looks to take a page from these classics, mimicking some of the systems that made a game like Trials of Mana stand out.
While the Final Fantasy franchise tends to get a lot of the accolades for Square Enix, the company’s stable of RPGs is a collection of hits that all have devoted fanbases. Trials of Mana, Octopath Traveler, and the upcoming Bravely Default 2 all bring something unique to the table. Trials of Mana apparently scratched an itch for players looking for a bit of dressed up JPRG nostalgia.
Trials of Mana is available now for PC, PS4, and Switch.