PSX 2016 offers RPG fans a glimpse at gameplay combat in 'Ni no Kuni II'

Bandai Namco Entertainment offered fans a first look at Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom‘s gameplay in a new trailer at PlayStation Experience 2016, revealing the upcoming sequel will feature a real-time battle system that improves on the original game’s combat mechanics.

Developed by Professor Layton series creator Level-5, Ni no Kuni II is scheduled for a worldwide launch for the PlayStation 4 in 2017.

Ni no Kuni II continues the fantasy-themed storyline introduced in 2013’s Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch for the PlayStation 3. Taking control of the displaced boy king Evan Pettiwhisker Tildrum, players seek out a new kingdom to rule after fleeing their home in the wake of a military coup.

The upcoming sequel will feature a hybrid combat system similar to the original Ni no Kuni‘s while offering players more strategic options in battle. The action takes place in real time, with cooldown meters determining your party’s turn order. Players also have access to a range of deadly magic attacks, along with character-specific combat skills.

Given that the game’s storyline focuses on the founding of a new empire, Ni no Kuni II will likely feature a town-building element similar to the Dark Cloud games. Though this week’s new trailer offers a preview of Ni no Kuni II‘s combat system, Level-5 has not announced details regarding the game’s exploration or town-building mechanics.

Developer Level-5 continues to be one of Japan’s most prolific game creators, and Ni no Kuni II will follow up on recent studio projects like Yo-kai Watch 2 and LBX: Little Battlers Experience. Level-5 boasts expertise within the realm of console-styled RPGs in particular, having previously produced well-received games like Dark Could 2, Rogue Galaxy, and Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King.

Though Level-5 is best known for its Professor Layton series, which spawned multiple sequels across the Nintendo DS and 3DS, RPGs remained a focal point for the company throughout its 18-year history. The company is also a frequent collaborator with Nintendo, which previously stepped up to publish localized versions of Inazuma Eleven and Fantasy Life in North America.

Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom will launch exclusively for the PlayStation 4 in 2017.