The long-running RPG Maker series has appeared on PC, Super Famicom, PlayStation, and other home systems, but now Japanese game designers will be able to make portable RPGs. Using the RPG Maker DS software, players can create characters, environments, monsters, set sound effects and music, and even create special "event" items like chests and save points.
All the screens show premade monster and character graphics being used -- from some 800 character pieces, 150 sounds, and 1500 map features, but you'll be able to make your own if you're patient enough (the stylus helps in that regard). There's also some kind of wireless support, though we don't know if it means you'll get to share your elaborate, strategic Twilight fanfic scenario online or not.
RPG Maker DS will be out January 28. We're really hoping Agetec, who has published RPG Makers in North America, picks this one up for us. It's hard enough to play RPGs in Japanese, much less make them.