Project Phoenix: a Japanese indie game made by AAA talent
posted on 08.08.13 at 01:20 PM EDT by (@salromano)
Nobuo Uematsu, Hiroaki Yura, Kiyoshi Arai, and more.

Creative Intelligence Arts today announced plans to develop Project Phoenix, an indie Japanese role-playing and real-time strategy game hybrid utilizing a team of “top developers” from the east and west.

The game is the “brainchild” of Creative Intelligence Arts founder Hiroaki Yura, will feature art direction from Final Fantasy XII and Final Fantasy XIV‘s Kiyoshi Arai, and have music led by Final Fantasy series composer Nobuo Uematsu.

Several members of the team have yet to be announced, but one is a secret designer from “a leading anime mecha title that changed the course of Japanese pop culture’s influence in the world.”

Other members of the team boast credits from works like Final Fantasy, Halo 4, Crysis 3, L.A. Noire, World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Soulcalibur V, Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, Steins;Gate: Fuka Ryoiki no Deja vu, and more.

A Kickstarter seeking $100,000 to fund the game’s development will launch early next week. Backers will have the opportunity to secure digital and limited edition physical copies of the game, and the chance to be featured in the game as a non-player character (bar owner, etc.).

Stretch goals will include “the creation of additional areas, graphics and cinematics,” as well as “the talents of Grammy Award-winning sound engineer John Kurlander and the Eminence Symphony Orchestra bringing the music of Uematsu and his composers to life.”

The game follows the story of Ruffles, an amnesiac angel, who encounters a Templar named Marcus Stern after landing in the world of Azuregard. Together with Princess Sylrianah, a reserved woman curious to see the world beyond the forest, and Zarum the Lost, a battlemage with his own internal conflicts, the group must discover their place in a world brought to war by misunderstanding and ignorance, and “perhaps ultimately even save it from itself.”

The game is being targeted for a mid-2015 release on PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android. Visit the game’s teaser site here. View some concept art at the gallery.

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  • Syltique

    Certainly sounds interesting. Wish they’d bring it to consoles though, or at least Vita.

    • DesmaX

      They probably don’t have the devkits by now. Give it some time, and the console manufacturers will probably contact them

  • Locksus

    An impressive team, no doubt and the concept of this game sounds good to say the least.

    I’d like to back this up for sure.

  • Panda

    Any guesses on the secret designer?

    • farios

      My guess would be Evangelion designer (dont know his/her name) considering the setting

    • BushyEyebrows

      I’m thinking either Hideaki Anno (Evangelion) or Yoshiyuki Tomino (Gundam).

      • HeatPhoenix

        sure kid, sure

        downvote huh, okay so who really believes the 90 year old anime director that thinks video games are a waste of time would help on some indie game that has nothing to do with mecha.


        • MosquitoLemon


          read the article -_-

          • HeatPhoenix

            I did, but neither Eva nor Gundam had significant impact in the world. Maybe it’s Go Nagai

            BELIEVE IT

            • MosquitoLemon

              Sure, just read it next time, no need to be a jerk.

              • HeatPhoenix

                all I said was “Sure kid, sure”. Come on, man. We can’t be THIS thin-skinned to call me a “jerk” for that.

                Swear to god, this down/up vote system is rubbish.

                • MosquitoLemon

                  That would have been fine, except that you decided to include the line that showed that you didn’t even bother to read the article. And then you tried to pretend like you had read it by saying that Tomino and whatshisname weren’t influential. Like you’d choose ignorance over looking like a fool. All because of a downvote. Now exactly who has thin skin?

                  • HeatPhoenix

                    Uhh, what do you mean? I edited my message because of the downvotes? I did not anywhere give any indication that I had not read the article, I just didn’t think Tomino was plausible. Can you get off my case now?

      • Panda

        If it’s him then I have a good feeling on how this game will end.

        • BushyEyebrows

          Considering I found the End to be completely hilarious, I wouldn’t mind much.

      • KnifeAndFork

        Tomino? Doesn’t he hate video games?

        • MosquitoLemon

          Yeah, and so does Miyazaki, but it didn’t keep him from cashing in.

        • BushyEyebrows

          Damn I completely forgot about that. My bad.

    • Gyro Zeppeli

      Ken Ishikawa’s ghost

  • DesmaX

    That’s pretty ambitious for a kickstarter project.

    But I want to see more of it before giving money to it.

  • Calvin Chikelue

    An angel named Ruffles?

  • Ace

    A main character in an RPG with amnesia?! Brilliant and unique!

    • DesmaX

      And a princess who wants to explore the world!? Whoa, just take all my money!!!

  • Solomon_Kano

    Holy shit. This sounds impressive.

    • Rudy Soto

      Goddamnit, one Kickstarter project ends and I think it’s the end of it. Then another ridiculously impressive sounding one comes by.

      • Solomon_Kano

        Goodness, it’s like a never-ending cycle!

        • Rudy Soto

          A never-ending cycle of wasting money on awesome sounding products.

  • ghostbooster

    well this disappointing pc really wtf japan i taught you hated pc gaming

    consoles are defiantly the future cheap and powerful
    i already pre-ordered Xbox1 thank you

    i will enjoy my Japanese games their

    • Grunwald


    • Locksus

      Yeah, uh, what?

    • Warboss Aohd

      did you miss the part were there are also western developers, including some from Blizzard?

      so ya, that’s why.

    • AnimusVox

      What what in the butt?

  • bloodiOS

    Very tempting! This might just be the most interesting project that I’ll back yet!

  • Dede Ogbe

    btw guys a ps4 and vita version is planned

    • Solomon_Kano


    • Grunwald

      Oho? Interest rose even more, mind a link to the source?

      • Dede Ogbe

        i just got the tweet from the guys. It’s in the comment

    • Zackasaur

      Woah, thanks! That would change everything.

    • Guest


  • KnifeAndFork

    Sounds very promising but….why an RTS?? And why only 100K? Seems like if this is to be an AAA game, wouldn’t the budget be in the millions?

    • bloodiOS

      It’s an indie game with AAA talents, the game itself is not (an AAA title.)

      • KnifeAndFork


        • MosquitoLemon

          Right, a more apt title would be, “People who were once paid a lot of money to make big games are looking for a little money to make a small game.”

    • Warboss Aohd

      a fusion of JRPG an’ RTS, dis will be quite different me thinks.

  • Zackasaur

    I am tempted to back this.

    I’d prefer a PS4 or Vita version, though…

  • Elvick

    I’m going to wait and see what happens with PS4 and PS Vita, before I make a decision. I really don’t have an interest in playing whatever this is on PC/Mac and certainly not mobile.

  • Charlie

    Very intriguing…

  • Warboss Aohd

    Role Playing……Real time Strategy Hybrid……….WITH WESTERN AND JAPANESE DEVELOPERS!?


    just take my whole damn wallet!

    • Mar Mar

      Man no one knows what to expect. Why is it called indie when it’s being made by top secret developers is what I want to know.


      • bloodiOS

        But “indie” just mean that they’ll self-publish the game and not rely on publisher, no?

  • Zero

    This sounds amazing. I’ll be one of the first to back it.

    • Kurisu Makise

      So many good independent projects have been popping up lately. Hopefully I can toss in some funds to support.

  • PrinceHeir

    “Several members of the team have yet to be announced, but one is a secret designer from “a leading anime mecha title that changed the course of Japanese pop culture’s influence in the world.”

    if it were JPOP music i would have guessed Macross Frontier!!

    interesting stuff!!

    though the japanese have already started on the indie scene way way back though it was only called Doujin since it uses work from official parties.

    this could be the first time they have a full fledge game that anyone in the world can donate and participate.

    color me interested ^^

  • Daniel blue

    How is a hundred thousand dollars supposed to pay such top-tier development talent for two years? There’s something really strange about this whole thing.

    • Warboss Aohd

      they may already have a decent amount of the funding needed.

  • Raiu

    Well… well…. This is really interesting… A indie game with talents of both Western and Eastern AAA people?

    I’ll wait till I see more concepts or a working prototype when I do back something…. Also can it really be called a JRPG?

    • Warboss Aohd

      it said JRPG/RTS Hybrid

      maybe Each of the party members have soldiers or something.

      • Raiu

        It feels more Western than Japanese to me… Probably it’s just me…

        • Warboss Aohd

          well, i guess we must wait to find out.

          honestly the idea of a game that takes influences from both sides of the pacific in multiple ways, from devlopers, genre, and influence quite appealing, this could be something incredibly special.

  • Games Inquirer
  • $3582264

    … lol at this AAA idiocy, as if a game has to sell to be good. Often the opposite is the case.