Hands On: ‘Live A Live’ Gives A Unique 16-Bit RPG A Gorgeous New Lease Of Life

We’re LIVE from the past, present, and future.

If you have any interest in Super Nintendo RPGs, then you’ve likely heard of Live A Live. Released in 1994 for the Super Famicom in Japan, it came out during what many claim is Square Enix’s — then known as Square, or Squaresoft in the West — ‘Golden Era’, launching just under a year after Secret of Mana, and barely six months after Final Fantasy VI, two of the developer’s most well-known games on the system. Oh, and just months later, something called Chrono Trigger came out, too. Not a bad time for the RPG developer, then?

Unlike the aforementioned trio, however, this game never saw an official release outside of Japan – until now. Live A Live has been revived for the modern age with a glorious HD-2D lick of paint, the same retro-modern visual style made famous by Octopath Traveler and used again in Triangle Strategy. We’ve had a chance to go hands-on with four of the game’s chapters – three of which are playable in the recently released demo — and we can confidently say that, even 28 years later, Live A Live still feels like one of the most unique RPG experiences we’ve ever sat down with.

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