As a fan of JRPG’s, Secret of Mana has long been the genre’s white whale that eluded me. I missed out on it back in the day, and spent decades hearing legends of its supposed greatness. A copy of the game never crossed paths with me. It also hasn’t seen many re-releases. Outside of hitting the Wii Virtual Console (which I kept forgetting about at the time), it’s only been ported to iOS and Android, platforms I have no interest in playing a big JRPG on. When Nintendo announced the Super NES Classic, playing Secret of Mana stood as the second major reason I wanted the dumb thing, behind Star Fox 2.
Since I’ve missed the boat on a Super NES Classic for the time being, I’m excited (and relieved) to hear Square Enix has a Secret of Mana remake coming to PlayStation 4, Vita, and PC. In addition to overhauling the graphics, the game features new voice overs, “upgraded” gameplay, and a rearranged soundtrack.
If the awesome Final Fantasy IV DS remake is anything to go by, this could be something special. The new hardware should make Secret of Mana’s much-touted co-op an easier feature to execute, especially if Square implements online play. The polygonal graphics look sharp. However, I can’t help but think that Square could have easily gotten away with keeping the original look intact. The 16-bit aesthetic has been en vogue for years now, and I would have been just as pumped for an upscaled version of the old style ala Sonic Mania. If nothing else, the ability to toggle between aesthetics like the Halo remakes would be cool. But I digress. I would very much welcome a Switch version as well.
Thankfully, the wait for this won’t be too long. Secret of Mana launches February 18. Here’s the brief teaser trailer if you haven’t seen it.