Retro Sci-fi RPG Cosmic Star Heroine Revealed at PAX

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Retro Sci-fi RPG Cosmic Star Heroine Revealed at PAX

We here at the two-man development studio known as Zeboyd Games are pleased to announce that our next RPG, Cosmic Star Heroine, will be coming out on PS4 and PS Vita next year! And to go along with that announcement, here’s our Sega-CD inspired opening video for our game! Enjoy!

Cosmic Star Heroine Reveal, 02

A very special thanks to Dean Dodrill (Dust: An Elysian Tail) who helped out with effects and animation, as well as Chris Geehan and Dan Byrne-McCullough over at Hyperduck (who did the music for our last RPG) for helping make that video go to 11! And of course, our own Bill Stiernberg, who handled the brunt of the work!

Cosmic Star Heroine is our latest attempt to recapture the feel of some of the classic RPGs of the 90s, while putting our own unique spin on the whole experience. Inspired by games like Chrono Trigger (visual style, on-map battles, combo techniques), the Phantasy Star series (overall feel of the worlds and characters), and the Suikoden series (political intrigue, expandable player headquarters), we can’t wait to share Cosmic Star Heroine with you!

So who is the titular Cosmic Star Heroine?

Alyssa L’Salle! She’s one of the galactic government’s top agents, and has saved the galaxy more than once! But when she accidentally uncovers a dark conspiracy, her own government outs her as a legendary spy and the people’s champion! Sure, now she has hordes of adoring fans, but every villainous organization she’s ever crossed in her career knows who she is and is out for her blood! Can she save the day once more while she faces her greatest challenge… everyone!?

Cosmic Star Heroine Reveal, 03

But she won’t have to go it alone! No, she’ll be leading a bizarre group of “heroes” into battle.

Cosmic Star Heroine Reveal, 04

We’ve made several RPGs in the past (Cthulhu Saves the World, Breath of Death VII, Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 3 & 4), but we’re really stepping up our ambition with Cosmic Star Heroine. A deeper story, meticulously balanced play, a brain-melting soundtrack from Hyperduck, glorious 16-bit-esque pixel art, and much more await you!

And that means we need your help! We’ll be running a Kickstarter to raise needed development funds to make Cosmic Star Heroine the best “Shoulda been released in the 90s” RPG ever! And thanks to the good people at Sony, we’ll be able to offer cross-buy (buy once, get both versions!) PS4/Vita PSN codes for Cosmic Star Heroine at the low reward tier of $10! And of course, there’ll be plenty of other cool rewards if you choose to donate more!

Look for more news, screenshots, and the Cosmic Star Heroine kickstarter in the coming weeks! In the meantime, feel free to ask us questions in the comments!

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50 Comments

39 Author Replies

  • I can’t wait to play on PS4 & Vita.

    Congrats on getting everything together, looking forward to backing the Kickstarter.

    • Thanks! The kickstarter should be going up in a couple weeks; we’ll be sure to post a new article when it does. :)

  • Turn based!?! Please :(

  • Yeah….I’ma buy this, real hard. Time to go fish out change from the couch for the kickstarter.

  • You got Mr.Dodrill on board? And it’s only $10 for cross buy? Sign me up!

    Which one of you 2 came up with the idea? Or was it a collaborative thing?

    • Cosmic Star Heroine was originally my idea. Dean hasn’t decided if he wants to work on the entire game yet (he has his own projects he’s working on) but he’s such a big fan of the Sega CD/Turbographx CD-era of cutscenes that when he found out we were doing some in that style, he just had to be on board.

  • Twitter link please! I can google but, it’s easier for everyone else.

  • Why isn’t Sony providing funding rather than requiring a Kickstarter?

    • We had been planning a kickstarter for a long time before Sony contacted us so when we started talking, we decided it would be easier all around if we stuck with our original plan. Sony is supporting us in many ways though (like getting us PSN codes to use as kickstarter rewards).

  • This one didn’t capture my attention as the others on the main page (I thought it was a side-scrolling action game), but now I want to see more and see how it goes on.
    Good luck guys! =).

  • Game really looks awesome. I’ll definitely chip in on the Kickstarter.

    I hope it sells well and you guys also get a chance to port some of your older games like BoD and Cthulhu on to the Vita and maybe PS4.

  • That trailer was so epic. I’m definitely interested and I’m really happy that you guys are bringing this to the vita. I’m not sure if I’ll have a ps4 by next year but I’ll totally play this on my vita.

    • Yeah, we’re really excited to finally be able to show off the trailer. I’d think “This is awesome!” while it was being created and then they’d add a new scene or music or sound effect and it would become that much better.

  • Question:
    This looks awesome, I would have liked to see some stuff on the combat so I know what the battles are like. Reason being, this looks great and the music sounds great too. But I’m picky with RPG battle systems, example I hate battle systems that are in a first person view and hate those first person RPG’s too. I’ll keep my eye out for this tho

    • We’ve been writing a lot about various aspects of the gameplay on our official site – http://zeboyd.com/
      As far as battle systems go, there’s no separate battle screen – you’ll be exploring a dungeon and if an enemy group catches you, you’ll fight right there. 3rd person view.

  • Also link to the kickstarter?

    • The kickstarter will go up mid-September. We’ll be sure to announce it on the Playstation Blog when it goes live.

  • @6
    Maybe they want to go more open than just Playstation, there’s a ton of stuff that goes into this that we will never know.

    • We may add additional platforms after launch, but for now, Cosmic Star Heroine is just coming to PS4, Vita, PC, and Mac.

  • Great Job Robert! Keep up the stellar work, and let me know when that Kickstarter goes live.

  • Zeboyd Games on PlayStation! Beginning of the end, I tells ya…

    • Contrary to any rumors you may have heard, we are not planning on using the sales from this game to fund the construction of a large death ray.

  • I’ve never supported a kickstarter before mostly cause I don’t game on my PC. This might be the first one I give some money to :). I like the concept, I like the influences from Chrono Trigger and Phantasy Star, and am given confidence by your team’s track record. Anxiously awaiting the kickstarter now.

  • Weird I am throwing money at my computer and it is not accepting it? Glad to get another RPG game on my Vita.

    • Throwing money at your screen requires a specific digital-compliant currency. I’m sure one of our techies can help walk you through the proper conversion process.

  • First Soul Saga, now Cosmic Star Heroine. The beginning of Kickstarter RPGs coming to PS4/Vita is already amazing, and I look forward to seeing just how far this goes.

    This looks like it’ll be fun, based off that trailer, and your listed influences give me a really good feeling about this. I look forward to hearing more about this, and to supporting you guys once the Kickstarter is live. Cheers and good luck!

    • Thanks! We’ll be sharing more info on the game in later PS Blog entries and on our official website, zeboyd.com

  • You had me at “Sega”. Then “Phantasy Star” delivered the deathblow.

    • I’ve been a fan of Phantasy Star I-IV for years and though the Action/RPG Phantasy Star games are fun in their own right, I wish Sega would bring the classic style back. And hey, if we can make a spiritual homage to the series (while adding our own touches), why not?

  • Looking forward to it. I like the character design.

  • Was excited when this game was first announced, but now I’m more excited that it’s coming to the PS4 and Vita! Hell yeah. Loved the music in the video too.

    • We’re huge fans of Hyperduck’s musical talent. If you liked the music in the trailer, be sure to check out some of their other soundtracks like Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 4 & Dust: An Elysian Tail.

  • Dean Dodrill is in on it? Make this a must buy. After Dust, I find it hard to believe something he makes won’t be good. This would be an opportunity to defy my expectations though.

    • Dust: An Elysian Tail is awesome. To clarify though – Dean just helped with the trailer (and may help in other ways depending on his time); he’s not working full-time on this game since he has his own games he’s making.

  • Well that teaser trailer didn’t help at all. But when more info is available then we will have a much clearer picture.

    • We’ll be sharing more info when the kickstarter launches but in the meantime, I’ve written several blog entries on our site (zeboyd.com) that explain various aspects of the game. Way too much info for one Playstation Blog entry! :)

  • Yessssss! Big fan of Breath of Death VII and Cthulhu Saves The World. Have both on both Steam and 360. Will this game be released through Steam?

  • Looks very cool. This will be a second Vita Kickstarter project I will back up after Starlight Inception I backed last year.

  • Now this is a kickstarter project I will support!

  • I still really want those remakes of your other games, you were considering doing on twitter awhile back.

    But, hey, I’m glad we’re getting your new game. Which I’m be more excited about anyway. But still, hopefully someday we can have your other games in some way on PlayStation too.

    • Yeah, we seriously considered doing the remakes but in the end, we all decided that it would be better to just go ahead with an all-new game. We may decide to revisit the remake idea in the future though.

  • With all those inspirations?

    AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS

    COME TO PAPA

  • Will Kickstarter allow us to choose PC or PSN? Or will there be a tier where we can get both?

    I’ve backed several games for PC…this may be my first PSN backing (for Vita)!

    Will have to read more details and maybe see a gameplay video (even of just alpha) though, since I haven’t played the games you listed as influences.

    • The $10 tier will let you pick between PC or PSN & there will be a higher tier with both (and some other things too).

  • I just had to login and let you know how thrilled I am to finally see an RPG being revealed for the PS4/Vita. I loved the 90’s RPGs and this looks and sounds like a day one purchase for me. I look forward to supporting you guys. The opening cinematic was fantastic! Can’t wait to see more.

  • Can you tell me what kind of tone this game is? Is it more “jokey” or serious? Thanks.

    • It’s more serious than our other games (which were all comedies) but there will still be some humor. Think Lunar: Eternal Blue or the Prydain Chronicles for the kind of tone we’re shooting for.

  • I have to say thank you for bringing this game to PS4/Vita! As a huge fan of Suikoden, I’ve been anticipating this game ever since you announced it on the Zeboyd blog.

    One thing I’ve been wondering since launch is this: Will the player headquarters expand in a similar, set-in-stone fashion like in Suikoden or will it be more customizable as it grows?

    Thanks!

  • Ohhh that 90’s music takes me back! Can’t wait to play this one the Vita!

  • I don’t play many indies but I have to say this one looks great! This one is definitely on my radar. Hope you guys release gameplay soon.

  • “Sony is supporting us in many ways though (like getting us PSN codes to use as kickstarter rewards).”

    *pants tighten* As for that death ray, we all know by now that portability is key in the twenty-first century. On that note, how’s the mobile market been treatin’ CSTW:SHECEADDPAFH – PEGYCE (WA!)?

    • Mobile sales haven’t been great for us which is one of the reasons why we’re focusing on PC & PSN now. We may decide to take another try at mobile in the future, but no plans right now.

  • Man… Now I want to play Snatcher once more, don’t know why, but the intro reminded me of that particular game

    • I’ve heard a few people mention Snatcher in conjunction with our teaser trailer and though that wasn’t our initial intention (though we were going for a general Sega CD vibe), I’ll certainly take it!

  • I’m definitely excited for this. You guys at Zeboyd are definitely capable of some quality games, and this is especially close to my heart because it’s evoking classic Phantasy Star titles. I just wish the attract mode-style trailer there was more authentic though – modern editing & smooth sprite manipulation over backgrounds just doesn’t look right. It’s not like how a TG-16 Ys game would do it, or, say, the Sega CD Lunar. You’re clearly striving for that kind of tone; might as well commit to the style 100%. And Sony, keep the indie games coming! Last week’s announcement for Assault Android Cactus made me very happy. So does this. You guys seem to announce some awesome indie titles every week for the PS4 now. Kamal Ahmad is very good at his job – he’s clearly becoming your Dan Adelman :)

  • Right now the classic Phantasy Star fan in me is feeling a little giddy. Look forward to the final product.

  • Huge old school RPG fan here. I’ll be picking this one up day one, as I loved Cthulhu Saves the World. I also read that Chrono Trigger was an inspiration for this. Now I have to play a game that took inspiration from my favorite game of all time. I really hope the Kickstarter works well for you!

    P.S. Please try to put in a Platinum trophy for this game.

  • Thanks for the reply Mr. Boyd!

  • I dunno guys, maybe I am in the minority here but I an actually quite sick of seeing “yet another” retro game. This genre has been far overused

    • Retro isn’t really a gaming genre; it’s just a visual style. And within the overarching “retro” style, there are tons of possibilities. Our first RPG, Breath of Death VII looks very different than our most recent RPG, Penny Arcade’s On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 4, which in turn will look very different than Cosmic Star Heroine.

  • I don’t think the trailer doesn’t have the visual style of Chrono Trigger at all, but those characters in the image below the trailer surely do.

    @willster98 Yep, you must be when looking a response like this :) http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mightyno9/mighty-no-9

  • no more PS3 love?

    • Game sales for systems tend to drop rapidly after their successor has been announced and even more rapidly after their successor has been released. If we already had experience working with the PS3, it would be one thing, but it doesn’t make financial sense for us to port to the PS3 when our first PSN game won’t be coming out until the latter half of 2014.

  • I had hoped the same – could then maybe even back – but PS3 support is slowly forgotten. Well, probably developing a game for PS3 and PS4 is very different(?). But then again is Vita more closer to PS3 or PS4 architecture?

  • Now that I actually understand how Kickstarters work, I’m ready to throw my money at this game :)

  • I thought this game was at PAX, but with what seems like hundreds of games from the indies (which is incredible), I’m on overload. This game looks great. My personal favorite game is Phantasy Star 2.

    Any chance some of your previous RPG games could make it to the PS4/PS3/Vita?

    • Right now, we’re 100% focused on Cosmic Star Heroine. After we’re done with that, you never know, but we’d be more likely to do remakes of our previous RPGs than straight ports.

  • You had me at RPG. Then again at $10. Oh, it’s crossbuy too? You must really love me.

  • Oh heck yes! A new retro RPG to look forward to on the PS4! I’ll keep my eye on this one…

  • a female character holding a staff? reminded me a particular JRPG series

    this looks like Disgaea series.. not really a fan of Strategy RPG..

    this is not a game for me..

  • Thank you so much for making a game with a female lead, and one that doesn’t have cliche anime body proportions. This is really getting off on the right foot, and hopefully the beginning of the story/character aspect of “next-gen”.

    Are there any non-white characters? GLBT?

    PS: I’d love to see your Penny Arcade games come to Vita, even if via PS Mobile :)

    • I have four daughters so I thought it was about time that we did a game with a female lead and a non-embarassing one at that.

      In the cast lineup image, the second character from the right is non-white. And it’s toned down in the final version, but the gunmancer in the teaser trailer is at least partially Asian (she originally had more of a shrine maiden look to her before we went with more of a Metal Slug look).

      No plans on bring over any of our older games to Vita right now, but you never know.

  • There is ONLY 2 words to describe this…………AWESOME SAUCE!

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