Spike Chunsoft revealed several new Somnium gameplay elements from the upcoming AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative game. Three new characters were also revealed, alongside their cast.
The sequel to the 2019 hit adventure game will arrive on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows 10, and Steam on June 24, in North America, and July 8 in Europe and Oceania. Digital pre-orders are also available on Nintendo eShop, Xbox Store, and PlayStation Store.
▍A Closer Look at Somnium
The game system of AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative consists of “Investigation” and “Somnium”. The “Investigation” part takes place in the real world. Here players will examine crime scenes and listen to testimonies. In the “Somnium” part, players enter the dream worlds of suspects and key witnesses.
During a Somnium, players have exactly six minutes to search for the truth deep in the subject’s memories. Aiba and Tama appear in human form and assist their agents by exploring the dream world and uncovering new clues.
A Somnium is uniquely based on the memories of the Psync subject, so each dream landscape is completely different. Somnia is comprised of multiple levels and “mental locks” that must be unlocked in order to advance to the next level. Each lock has multiple ways to be unlocked, so the story can diverge depending on what method was used.
With only six minutes to complete a Somnium, players must take into account the remaining time and choose each action carefully. While taking action time flows at a normal speed, time will flow more slowly when standing still.
▍New Mechanics: “Keys” and “Conscious Antibodies”
Two new features will make an appearance in AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative, Keys, and Conscious Antibodies.
A rule based on the Psync subject’s consciousness and memories. Once Keys are revealed, it becomes easier to narrow down the actions and choices to be taken in that Somnium. Initially, most of the Keys are hidden, but as you explore and begin to understand the Somnium, Keys will be revealed, making it easier for you to figure out what to do, something the previous game really lacked.
■ Conscious Antibodies
A being that represents the alertness of the Psync subject embodied in the Somnium. They are capable of blocking access to important information and, when touched, greatly reduce the amount of time you can stay in the Somnium. If a Conscious Antibody is blocking the way, you must find a way to eliminate it to proceed.
▍AI: THE SOMNIUM FILES – nirvanA Initiative New Characters
Three new characters were introduced:
■ Gen, the Masked Restaurant Owner
EN CV: SungWon Cho / JP CV: Yasumichi Kushida
The owner of a restaurant called Brahman in Golden Yokocho. Always wears a mask for some reason. His cooking is excellent. The restaurant is frequented by members of ABIS.
■ Amame, the Maid Café Maid
EN CV: Faye Mata / JP CV: Risa Kubota
A young girl from Sekiba High Senior and “Mermaid” at Sunfish Pocket. She has a sharp tongue, but is never really malicious. She’s in the school dance club with Iris and Kizuna. A regular at Brahman and close with Gen.
■ Shoma, the Genius 6th Grader
EN CV: Greg Vinciguerra / JP CV: Hiromi Igarashi
Komeji’s son. His parents are divorced, and lives with his poor comedian dad, despite him despising his father. He is in the same grade as Mizuki, but doesn’t seem to have much contact with her.
▍About AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative
AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative is the sequel to the AI: The Somnium Files games originally written by Kotaro Uchikoshi, featuring character designs from Fire Emblem artist Yusuke Kozaki.
In nirvanA Initiative, players are shown an event where the right half of a corpse was discovered, but the left half was never found until six years later. However, the body has shown no signs of decay, as though it’s only a day old. New, special agent Mizuki and her AI partner Aiba are tasked to solve the Half Body serial killings.
AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative is coming to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam. on June 24, 2022, in North America, and now, following the mentioned delay, July 8, 2022, in Europe and Oceania.