A new game in the classic Mana series, called Trials of Mana, was announced for the Switch at today’s Nintendo Direct. Technically, it’s an HD remake of the third game in the series, Seiken Densetsu 3, which was never released outside of Japan. Seiken Densetsu 3 is quite an old game, premiering on the Super Famicon in 1995, but it has been completely rebuilt from the ground up for Trials of Mana.
First launched in the early 1990’s, the first canonical game in the series was actually marketed as a Final Fantasy title before becoming part of the Mana series. Later games, particularly Secret of Mana and Legend of Mana, went on to become worldwide hits. Secret of Mana in particular is frequently cited as one of the best games on the SNES, if not one of the best games of all time. Likewise, Seiken Densetsu 3 was considered by some Japanese critics to be a classic of the Super Famicon, though it was criticized for its underwhelming characters.
While we didn’t get too much information about the new game, we did see a short gameplay trailer. From the looks of it, Trials of Mana will retain the classic real-time battle system that made the series popular in the first place, with some updates, of course. Rather than being a top-down perspective game, as the original Seiken Densetsu 3 was, Trials of Mana is a more modern-looking third-person action RPG.
The Mana series has a few characters who turn up again and again, but it’s not clear exactly how many of them will show up in the new Trials of Mana. Fans of the Mana series will also recognize some iconic enemies from the series, such as the Rabite.
Trials of Mana didn’t get a specific release date, but it’s expected to be released in early 2020.
At the same conference, a collection of classic Mana games, called Collection of Mana, was also announced. It will be available on the eShop starting today.