Back on the 3DS, there was a pair of rhythm games that got a wide launch called Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, and Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call. They launched in 2012 and 2014, respectively, and anyone you speak to that loves the series – and the 3DS as a platform - will have nothing but good things to say about both games.
After that, an arcade game, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: All-Star Carnival, was released in Japan (and this poor sap even made a point of hunting it down when they were out there for a holiday) but the series ground to a halt. From 2016 onwards, there was nothing. Until now.
Fast forward some six years, and we get a brand new game in the series – and it's coming to Nintendo Switch and PS4. Titled Theatrhythm Final Bar Line, the game was announced during today's Nintendo Direct as a Switch title, but marketing materials that arrived after also confirmed that the game will arrive on PS4 (and PS5 via backwards compatibility).
Per Square Enix, the base game will feature a massive 385 songs, and you will be able to play as a frankly stupendous 104 characters from the Final Fantasy series. You will be able to mix and match characters between games – so if you always wanted the girl power dream team of your wildest fantasies (Tifa, Garnet, Fran, Lightning), there's nothing stopping you.
You can also play as villains if a team of Jecht, Seifer, Sephiroth and Galbranth is more to your liking.
And it's not just Final Fantasy fans that should rejoice; Square Enix notes another 90 songs from other Square Enix titles are set to arrive in-game as DLC after launch. Expect tracks from Nier, The World Ends With You, Saga, Chrono Trigger, and more besides.
And that's not all: the Digital Deluxe edition adds another 27 exclusive songs and access to the first battle pass, and the Premium Digital Deluxe edition, adds access to the next two battle passes, too. Overall, that means there are 502 tracks already confirmed for the game. That is, frankly, staggering.
Perhaps the biggest update to the series since the past 3DS games is the local co-op mode (for two players on a single screen), and the multiplayer battle mode which you can take part in against up to 3 other players. Of course, there'll be a music player mode, too.
As a fan of these games that's wanted to see how the Switch hardware will cope with the frantic button presses and stylus-specific action of the 3DS version, you can certainly color me intrigued.
Theatrhythm Final Bar Line will release on Nintendo Switch and PS4 on February 16, 2023.