Square Enix moves into MOBAs with Lord of Vermillion Arena


Square Enix is getting ready to leap into the MOBA milieu with Lord of Vermillion Arena, a two-player PvP throwdown based on a collectible card game that is, as the saying goes, big in Japan.

Lord of Vermillion is "pretty much unknown in the West," according to Siliconera, but it's a "strong series" for Square Enix elsewhere. Players battle one another with cards played on an arcade machine—this photo on Wikipedia makes the concept clearer—as they seek to eliminate their opponents' servants and destroy their Arcane Stones. The cards represent various sorts of fantasy monsters, as well as some characters from more familiar Square Enix franchises, including Persona, BlazBlue and Final Fantasy.

The MOBA twist on the game will offer seven-on-seven fights between monsters summoned from five unique groups including beasts, demons and undead. Decks and avatars will be customizable, and maps will feature "fodder monsters" as well as summoned creatures as a source of experience.

Lord of Vermillion Arena is expected to launch in 2015, but a brief alpha test is slated to run from October 17 to 19 for those who want an early peek at what's in store. Square Enix is apparently looking for 2000 testers and has a sign-up page at lova.jp, which also contains more information about the test and the game's minimum system requirements; unfortunately, one of those requirements, for now at least, is the ability to read Japanese. There's no word on when, or even if, an English version of the game will be released.

We recommend