Square Enix Says HD-2D Style Is Actually Pretty Expensive

Over the last few years, Square Enix's HD-2D games have gotten a lot of positive attention from gamers. Titles like Octopath Traveler and Triangle Strategy have really captured the attention of retro enthusiasts, partly due to their distinctive art style. In a new interview with 4Gamer (translated by Nintendo Everything), Triangle Strategy producer Tomoya Asano discussed the graphic style, and the way it's being implemented in future games for the company. When the interviewer expressed surprise that more indie games haven't started to copy that style, Asano revealed the reason: it's actually pretty expensive!

"It's probably worth noting that it costs more than you'd think. In that respect, it's a good match for the titles want out of Square Enix. There might not be much to gain from other companies copying it," Asano told 4gamer.


Fortunately, that cost isn't stopping Square Enix from releasing more games in this style. A remake of Live a Live is set to release exclusively on Nintendo Switch in July, while a remake of Dragon Quest III is currently in development. There are a number of other games that could benefit from the style, and it will be interesting to see what Square Enix does with HD-2D next. While the company has clearly invested in this graphic style, Asano went on to reveal that there is no current "definitive bible," and it will continue to evolve from game to game.

"We haven't put together anything like that. The way it's expressed differs per title, so the HD-2D flavor will be slightly different every time. With Live A Live for example, the atmosphere in the prehistoric section is going to be different to the sci-fi scenario. Our range of expression has increased thanks to the new ideas we've devised."

While the cost might be prohibitive for some developers, HD-2D has clearly worked as a selling point for many gamers. Hopefully, we'll continue to see Square Enix find new ways to expand on the style, for a lot more games to come!

Are you a fan of Square Enix's HD-2D games? What game do you want to see remade in this style next? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!