Tactics Ogre: Reborn leak shows some big changes to one of the best strategy RPGs ever

Tactics Ogre Reborn
(Image credit: Square Enix)

To go all 'sickos' on you for a moment: Yes… ha ha ha, YES! Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, a 2010 strategy RPG, is making a well-deserved comeback, as leaked on the site PSDeals. This is actually the third time this Tactics Ogre remaster has leaked—it first appeared in the Nvidia GeForce Now game list last year—but this is the first time we've gotten real details on what the re-release will include.

"Based on the 2010 release, the game features improved graphics and sound, as well as updated game design, bringing to life a new Tactics Ogre that remains true to its roots," says the store description. Here's some of what that "updated game design" includes: 

  • "Completely revamped AI"
  • "Numerous playability improvements, such as a quicker pace of battle, auto save, and a complete overhaul to the controls and UI"
  • "The class-wide level management system used in Tactics Ogre (2010) has changed to a unit-by-unit level system"
  • Fully voiced cutscenes in Japanese and English
  • New orchestral music
  • Reworked stat scaling

Tactics Ogre has a long history: the 2010 game is actually a remake of a 1995 Super Famicom RPG, which was also released on the original PlayStation and Sega Saturn in the late '90s. Designer Yasumi Matsuno went on to make Final Fantasy Tactics afterward, bringing Tactics Ogre's politics-focused storytelling with him; ironically a 2007 remake of Final Fantasy Tactics then paved the way for Tactics Ogre's return.

The 2010 PSP version clearly serves as the base for this remaster, which makes sense—it's widely beloved for its art and the rich localization by Alexander O. Smith and Joseph Reeder, who also worked with Matsuno on Final Fantasy 12 and the FFT remake. But it seems like Square Enix is making some significant changes to that PSP version, and actually reverting some of its design back to resemble the original Super Famicom design. Removing the "class-wide level management system" in favor of individual unit levels mentioned above is one example. Another is the seeming removal of the "TP," or "Tactical Points," used to cast certain skills in the PSP game. Those also didn't exist in the original.

Since the leak fans have also pointed out that the crafting system in the 2010 version could also use some reworking, so we'll see if the changes make for what feels like the definitive version of a classic tactics game, or a slightly strange mishmash of new and old design. Personally I'm crossing my fingers that the smoothing filter Square Enix has applied to all of the pixel art here can be disabled in favor of raw, sharp pixel art. It doesn't look too bad from a distance, but zoom in and it's painfully blurred for the sake of hitting HD resolutions.

Tactics Ogre supposedly coming to PlayStation on November 11, but we don't know for sure that a PC release is planned. Because this is Square Enix, though, I'm confident we'll see Tactics Ogre: Reborn on our PCs—the only question is whether it'll be a simultaneous release, or land sometime next year.

Now then: When are you announcing that leaked Final Fantasy 9 remake, Square Enix? 

Thanks, Wario64

Wes Fenlon
Senior Editor

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter and Tested before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games.

When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old Final Fantasy or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).