RPG Maker Fes will be hitting the Nintendo 3DS in two new continents and five new languages.
On one end of the scale, you’ve got full-on game development tools like Unity and Unreal Engine. You need to know lots of things to use them and while free and easy access to them has entirely democratised indie game development, making a proper, finished game is quite challenging. You can do pretty much anything with them, though.
On the other end, you’ve got things like Super Mario Maker or Little Big Planet. These are the maker games that allow you to build levels and portions of a game, but only within the fairly-established framework of what they can handle.
And somewhere in the Venn diagram intersection of enthusiast and developer falls the RPG Maker series.
RPG Maker has been around for a long time, allowing fans of Japanese role-playing games to build 16-bit style adventures, using snap-together sprites and tilesets within a pre-configured – yet still heavily customisable – game engine. It might not be the most sophisticated tool, or birth the same level of professional-quality titles as the mainstream game engines, but it’s a great place for budding developers to start, or for hobbyists to have fun bringing their stories to life.
Where the previous iterations have mostly been for PC, with a few exceptions on console, the latest incarnation, RPG Maker Fes, is specifically for the Nintendo 3DS system. Nintendo’s ever-popular (yet looking a little at-risk in the wake of the Nintendo Switch Consheld) handheld system, with it’s dual-screen mechanic and touchscreen stylus interface, is a great home for the venerable RPG-builder.
Along with its impending Western release – coming to North America and Europe in summer 2017 – RPG Maker Fes will also be translated into five new languages: English, French, German, Spanish and Italian.
The more the merrier.