Producer Hiroaki Kato says Square Enix wanted to retain the game's pixel art aesthetic, though he is personally a fan of the HD-2D look.
Square Enix has clearly landed on something special with the HD-2D visual aesthetic, and since its introduction with Octopath Traveler in 2018, the Japanese publisher has successfully used it in acclaimed releases on a couple other occasions as well. Of course, more HD-2D titles are most certainly in the pipeline- but while you’d expect that something like the upcoming Tactics Ogre: Reborn might suit that look (especially given Square Enix’s love of pairing classic remakes with that aesthetic), the remaster is instead going for a look that hues more closely to the original.
In an interview with IGN, producer Hiroaki Kato – who, of course, has a long history with the Tactics Orge franchise (among others) – explained that the development team never considered an HD-2D look for Tactics Ogre: Reborn, primarily because they wanted to retain the pixel art style of the original release for a more visually faithful experience.
“We didn’t think about making it HD-2D,” Kato said. “We kind of played with the idea of making it 3D, but what we were really thinking about was, ‘What are the major parts about this game that are really appealing to everybody?’ And in the 2D original, it was really well done pixel art, so we realized that we couldn’t have a Tactics Ogre game without this really high-quality, awesome looking 2D pixel art. So to bring that sort of resolution and that sort of fidelity to new hardware and new technology was a lot of effort. But yeah, I think we did it.”
Interestingly, Kato also says that, personally, he’s a fan of the HD-2D look. “I really do like it,” he said. “I think it’s a really interesting and kind of new graphical interface to display things with. So yes, I think it’s really cool.”
Of course, those who do want more of the HD-2D style in the wake of recent releases like Triangle Strategy and LIVE A LIVE still have plenty to look forward to, including the upcoming Octopath Traveler 2, as well as Dragon Quest 3 HD-2D Remake.
Meanwhile, Tactics Ogre: Reborn is set to launch for PS5, PS4, Nintendo Switch, and PC on November 11.