In celebration of the fifth anniversary of the North American debut of The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, publisher XSEED Games have announced that The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II will launch in the West this year, followed by The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky the 3rd in 2017.
The Legend of Heroes series dates back to 1989, but its track record for Western releases has been spotty as a result of the scope of each game and the amount of resources needed for each localisation. This has been particularly frustrating for fans, given the franchise's tendency towards multi-game arcs, where a single story will span two or three games, with the latter titles often left in translation limbo.
Case in point: The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, the first in a trilogy, didn't see a Western release until 2011, seven years after its Japanese release, and the second game, Trails in the Sky SC, only just came out last year, despite a Japanese release in 2006. Until this weekend, there had been no announced plans for a localisation of the trilogy's conclusion, Trails in the Sky the 3rd, which launched in Japan in 2007.
The first two Trails in the Sky games were released in the West for both PSP (with Vita compatibility) and PC, but for Trails in the Sky the 3rd, only a PC version has been announced at this stage. planned for a 2017 release.
Meanwhile, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II is slated for a spring 2016 release on PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita. Having launched in Japan in 2014, this marks a much quicker localisation turnaround than other Legend of Heroes games, and bodes well for Trails of Cold Steel III, which is currently in development.
XSEED also announced that the English releases of Trails in the Sky, Trails in the Sky SC, and Trails of Cold Steel have collectively sold more than 350,000 units to date, making the Trails saga the best-selling franchise in Nihon Falcom's history.
“These last five years have been quite an adventure for us,” said Ken Berry, Executive Vice President of XSEED Games. “While we’ve had our share of struggles with the series in regards to its often lengthy and arduous localization, I can say with confidence that what we’ve achieved far outweighs any hardships. We are without question committed to our fans, and are absolutely humbled by their overwhelming support. And in return, we promise to do our best to ensure that these two entries in Nihon Falcom’s beloved Trails series receive the same amount of dedication that previous releases have seen.”
We recently published our 9/10 review of Trails of Cold Steel, describing it as "the finest JRPG in years", and in celebration of this news, Trails in the Sky and Trails in the Sky SC are currently discounted by 50% and 30% respectively, on both Steam and PSN.