Gust has revealed more information on the upcoming entry in the Atelier series, Atelier Sophie: Alchemist of the Mysterious Book, including the battle system, three new characters, and other details. This game is set for release in Japan on September 25, 2015 for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation Vita. There is no word yet on a western release.
During combat, every party member's action is decided at the start of each turn and cannot be changed until the turn is over. A gauge on the left of the screen indicate the turn order of the combatants from the top downward. The turn order is based on characters' speed and the actions chosen. Every character has different, specific types of items available to them during battle. In addition to items and skills are stance commands. These can be used to follow up on an ally's move or take a defensive stance to shield someone in the party.
More screenshots can be viewed here.
The first of the new characters, shown below on the left, is Corneria. She is an alchemist who runs a volume seller shop, is easy-going, and prefers to do things at her own pace. She can also replicate items, but it makes her shrink a little each time, so she avoids overdoing it. To the right of her is Harol Simens, a clocksmith who took over the shop from his retired father. Despite this, he prefers making and selling guns. He is very sarcastic, but does care for and worry about Sophie. To the right of Harol is Horst Basler, the owner of the Kirchen Bell cafe, which becomes a bar in the nighttime. He is honest and people tend to trust him. As such, he brokers various requests and shares rumors with Sophie. These rumors contain useful information such as new areas to collect materials, though they cost money to hear.
More art can be viewed here.
Not only does time pass in Atelier Sophie, but weather also affects things. Many events occur in certain places at specific times. More monsters, including certain powerful ones, will come out at night during thunderstorms. Different materials can also be gathered in the same spot depending on the time of day and weather. All of the battling and collecting will increase Sophie's LP gauge, which indicates her fatigue. Her stats will fall if she becomes too tired.