As seen here, Square-Enix will be releasing a new, free-to-play MMO that's currently running only in Asia, called Concerto Gate. What makes this MMO different are two features. First, something called 'terra-generating', which means that the landscape itself will be deformable by player actions, such as mining and deforestation. It's unknown at this time exactly how that will affect gameplay, but it's interesting, if it's persistent and non-instanced.

Second, Concerto Gate will have random enemy battles, something new to MMOs, where typically you can see your opponents wandering around. This has the potential to radically alter the way you play, as you'll never know what's lurking about until you've already begun fighting. This is something most RPGs feature, where you also have the option to flee the battle. This could be a great way to track honor -- do you stand and fight an overmatched foe, knowing you'll probably die? Or do you run away, a move likely to be interpreted as cowardice?

Finally, an incidental feature: looks like we'll be in the land of the Superdeformed, where character heads are bigger, proportionally, than they ought to be, a Japanese manga staple. I'm looking forward to this, and of course it'll get the First Impressions treatment when it hits. Concerto Gate will release an open beta sometime early this year.

This article was originally published on Massively.
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