Project Sakura Wars—still the game's working title in the west—will introduce a slew of new characters and mechs to the series' steampunk alt-history setting. Sega released two trailers for the game at Tokyo Game Show (TGS) 2019 that provide new details on what the characters from the Imperial Combat Revue and from the newly introduced Berlin Combat Review will bring to the visual novel and tactical mech combat halves of the game.
Gematsu's reporting on the new trailers spotlights Elise and Margarete, two new characters introduced in the story trailer and guest designed by artist Fumikane Shimada. Elise is the leader of the Berlin Combat Revue; joining her on the visit to Japan, Margarete is described as Berlin's "child prodigy" of the revue. Their steam-powered mechs (or "spiricle armors" if you prefer) are both "Eisenjaegers," which look quite boxy and industrial when compared to the plate armor-inspired designs of the Japanese Imperial Combat Revue's mechs. Another new character, Yasha, sports a Godot-like eye mask and seems to have a mysterious past with the Imperial Combat Revue.
Just as each member of a combat revue has a unique mech, Project Sakura Wars' controllable characters each have their own special abilities in combat. For example, Anastasia Palma of the Imperial Combat Revue wields an umbrella-shaped rifle while piloting her mech. In the gameplay-focused trailer, Anastasia can be seen using it to float across gaps in the terrain.
The gameplay trailer also offers a new glimpse of the "Analog LIPS" system. When the Revues aren't hunting down demons in their mechs, Sakura Wars games transition to visual novel gameplay built around the series' "LIPS" system. As previously demoed ahead of TGS, these segments now unfold in 3D, allowing Project Sakura Wars' updated "Analog LIPS" system to open up new dialogue options based on what the player is looking at.
Project Sakura Wars is a PlayStation 4 exclusive. Announced earlier this year, it'll be the first new title in the Sakura Wars series in about 15 years. The game is scheduled for release on December 12 in Japan, and will reach the west in 2020.