The Vita's fast becoming the place to be for interesting, enjoyable and often unconventional Japanese games, and Sony has confirmed three more titles from its Japan Studio will be heading West in the next few months.
First up is Soul Sacrifice Delta, which is set to release on May 13. This is the "ultimate edition" of Soul Sacrifice, featuring a bunch of new content including new bosses inspired by fairy tales, new quests, new sorcerers and new abilities.
The graphics engine has also been improved, weather effects and structural changes will occur in battle and there's now a third faction to join, with each of the three offering their own strengths, weaknesses and play styles. There's supposedly a much stronger focus on the concept of "faction" in the new game than there was in the previous incarnation, so it should be interesting to explore different ways to play. Those who played the original will be able to transfer their data across, so you won't have to start again. Transferred data includes story progression, costumes, offerings, sigils, black rites, life/soul essence and lacrima.
Soul Sacrifice was one of the first games we reviewed here on USgamer, and reviewer Brendan rather liked it.
Next up is Freedom Wars, a collaboration between Sony's Japan Studio, Shift (God Eater) and Dimps (Sonic Unleashed, Saint Seiya: Brave Soldiers). This is a game in which you play the role of a prisoner hoping to reduce a million-year sentence by completing rescue missions and battling giant monsters known as Abductors.
There are a number of different ways to play -- a standard story mode, four-player co-op play over an ad-hoc connection or eight-player co-op online, and a "City-State War" mode in which players compete to build up one of 47 Panopticons (roughly corresponding to Japan's 47 prefectures) in an attempt to conquer the others.
Finally is Oreshika: Tainted Bloodlines, also known at various other points as Over My Dead Body or Ore no Shikabane wo Koete Yuke, and a title memorably highlighted by Shuhei Yoshida as one he particularly wanted to bring to the West. It's also the sequel to a PS1-era RPG from 1999, but there are no direct story connections between the two games save for being set in the same world a century apart.
Oreshika is a JRPG with a beautiful traditional Japanese art style and an intriguing premise: you play as the head of an ancient Japanese clan that is cursed with a lifespan of just two years. By enlisting the help of gods inspired by Japanese mythology, it's up to you to try and break the curse and ensure the clan's survival over several generations, having children with the deities in question in order to keep your bloodline going.
There's no release date for Freedom Wars or Oreshika as yet. Soul Sacrifice Delta, meanwhile, will be out on May 13.