For fans of classic PlayStation platformers, one of the best announcements to come from the February 2022 Nintendo Direct presentation was Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series. For years, fans of Bandai Namco’s beloved platformer series have been eagerly awaiting its return, ever since the franchise’s final outing with the remake of Klonoa: Door to Phantomile for the Nintendo Wii in 2008. Now, 14 years later, this Nintendo Wii remake is receiving a major remaster alongside PlayStation 2 sequel with Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series, which has now revealed the remastered opening cutscene for the first game.
Klonoa debuted on the original PlayStation in 1997 with the release of Klonoa: Door to Phantomile, and was a surprise hit, receiving praise for its unique blend of 3D and 2D platforming. The game was followed in 1999 with Klonoa: Moonlight Museum for the WonderSwan and in 2001, a full sequel released for the PlayStation 2 titled Klonoa 2: Lunatea’s Veil. While Lunatea’s Veil featured full 3D visuals, it retained the 2.5D gameplay style established in the original game and introduced new elements such as surfing segments making full use of the PS2’s enhanced memory.
Klonoa‘s last outing (until now) would be the Nintendo Wii remake of Door to Phantomile for its 10th anniversary, which was a last ditch effort from Bandai Namco to return the character to relevancy and renew interest in the series. The poor sales of this title resulted in a 14-year break which is coming to an end with the release of Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series, which uses this Nintendo Wii remake and the PS2 original version of Lunatea’s Veil as base for some very impressive looking remasters.
Almost every element of the original games has been polished, with the environments’ textures enhanced to recreate the look of the original artwork for the games. This is especially evident in the recently released opening cutscene for the first game, which is based on the Nintendo Wii remake. Running both versions side by side, not only has Klonoa’s model been entirely reworked, but the colors are more vibrant and the image is far clearer.
It seems like Bandai Namco is putting a lot of effort into these remasters, which makes sense considering the Japanese title for the collection refers to the publisher’s ongoing Encore remaster series. These have previously included beloved titles like Katamari Damacy Reroll and Mr. Driller: DrillLand, which include the Encore branding in Japan.
Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series will release for Nintendo Switch, PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S on July 8th 2022.