In the first game, each playable character had a Path Action which gave them unique ways to interact with the world, like Olberic being able to challenge random characters to a duel. What’s an interesting Path Action that you’d like to highlight?Acquire:

First of all, we’d like to highlight all the new nighttime Path Actions that were added in this game while also pointing out that several daytime Path Actions have changed, too. For example, the Warrior can use the “Challenge” Path Action to learn skills from defeated opponents, and the dancer can initiate a Dance Session in combat with NPCs after successfully using the “Allure” Path Action on them.

Why is Unreal Engine a good fit for the game?

Acquire: Unreal Engine gives artists the freedom to experiment on their own. In Octopath Traveler II, we implemented the day/night cycle using Unreal Engine’s Sequencer. In the original Octopath Traveler, we sometimes had to play tricks with the lighting to make the characters and the background look well together; this required us to consider a variety of approaches using both 2D and 3D graphics. We think that Unreal Engine empowered our artists to initiate this rigorous process of trial-and-error themselves.

Unreal Engine also lets game developers iterate quickly using the Blueprint Visual Scripting System along with console commands, profilers, and a plethora of other standard debugging tools. Changing specifications often require code to be refactored while a game is under development, but with Unreal Engine, it’s possible to quickly and easily refactor code by reorganizing Blueprints. We also think that Unreal Engine is suited to game development because it has a simple and flexible system for extending its debugging features.

Did the team have any particular UE tools or features they found helpful?

Acquire: We used Sequencer a lot while making Octopath Traveler II. This was not just limited to the day/night cycle: we also used Sequencer during encounters, when showing abilities in battle, and when moving the camera during events. Because Sequencer makes it easy to change parameters and preview them in real time, we could quickly check in-game animations while also having more programmatic control over them; this allowed us to add more depth to our visual effects.

Unlike the first game’s Switch-only launch, Octopath Traveler II is launching on Switch, PC, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5. Were there ways in which Unreal Engine helped you develop the game’s various ports?

Acquire: The ability to change per-platform settings in real time was extremely helpful. Using the console commands, we could adjust and apply quality settings in real time without the need to rebuild the project after each change. As a result, we could fine-tune the game’s performance and quality while looking at the results on-screen, which made multi-platform development more efficient.

Thank you for your time. Where can people go to learn more about Octopath Traveler II?

Our official websites are here:

If you’re still on the fence about whether the game is for you, we invite you to try the free Octopath Traveler II–Prologue Demo Version! You can always migrate your save data to the retail version later. Source: Unreal Engine Blog