The Paintress in Clair Obscur Expedition 33
Image via Sandfall Interactive

Clair Obscur Expedition 33 proves there’s huge demand for turn-based RPGs

Turn-based games need their turn!

Among all of the upcoming games shown at the 2024 Xbox Showcase, one of the biggest standouts was inarguably Sandfall Interactive's Clair Obscur Expedition 33. While stunning in its Belle Époque France aesthetic, fans have specifically highlighted its turn-based gameplay, something that's evidently been sorely missed within the community.

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The trailer for Clair Obscur Expedition 33 introduces us to a tragically beautiful and fascinating world that's perpetually trapped in a cycle of death by a mysterious entity known as the Paintress. As the world counts down further to Year 33, a squad known as Expedition 33, led by Gustav, is tasked with destroying the Paintress so that she never reawakens to erase another year of humanity from existence.

main character in combat in Clair Obscur Expedition 33
Image via Sandfall Interactive

While the story is riveting and compelling on its own, what caught the eye of most prospective players during the trailer was the many examples of turn-based combat, from ominous creatures encountered along the squad's path to fearsome boss battles. Each fight incorporates real-time mechanics with the ability to form unique, turn-based strategies with your designated party members.

This type of gameplay echoes that of other turn-based RPGs of the past, and it's a spectacularly intelligent move by developer Sandfall Interactive, who is making its official debut with the game. There's heavy inspiration from classic JRPGs such as Persona, Yakuza, and the Final Fantasy series that's injected into this notably western-style RPG, and FF16's Ben Starr (the man behind Clive Rosfield) is honoring the feat by lending his voice to expedition leader Gustav.

Fans have since taken to Reddit to lavish praise on Clair Obscur Expedition 33's first impression, with one person remarking that "the trailer stole the show" while another expressed their "shock" at seeing turn-based gameplay. Others said they "cheered" upon seeing it and that it was "instant hype" for them.

The grand reveal has since cumulatively clocked well over 500K views between both console trailers and Sandfall's official YouTube channel, where comments are almost unanimously positive and excited. YouTubers such as Runebee, PlayerEssence, and GameCross have also added to the universal applause for what could end up being one of the most hotly anticipated turn-based RPGs in recent years. A recent Steam discussion about wishlisting the game blew up as well.

Few games make as good an impression as Expedition 33 has so far with one single trailer, which is a good omen, to say the least.

Clair Obscur Expedition 33 is set for release sometime in 2025 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC. It can now be wishlisted on Steam.

Be sure to check out all of our latest gaming news at Pro Game Guides, such as Street Fighter 6 M. Bison trailer breaks one million views in two days.

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Stephanie Watel
Stephanie Watel is a freelance writer for Pro Game Guides. Stephanie has been with the site for a few months, and in the games media industry for about a year. Stephanie typically covers the latest news and a variety of gaming guides for the site, and loves gardening and being the bird lady of the neighborhood. She has a BA in Writing from Pace University in NY.

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Clair Obscur Expedition 33 proves there’s huge demand for turn-based RPGs

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