Live A Live receives Square Enix trademark in Australia & Europe, an RPG never released in the West

Live A Live trademark Australia English localization worldwide release Takashi Tokita Square Enix Squaresoft Super Famicom Super Nintendo SNES Nintendo Switch Online

To speak like the kids speak: I am shook. Per Gematsu, publisher Square Enix has filed a trademark for Live A Live in Australia. This is somewhat extraordinary for several reasons. Firstly, Live A Live was a Super Famicom RPG from 1994 directed by Final Fantasy IV designer Takashi Tokita, but it was one of the rare few Square classics that never received an official English localization and never left Japan. Secondly, outside of Virtual Console re-releases in Japan, little has been done with the game since its release.

[Update July 7: The game now has a trademark in Europe as well. Very promising!]

Could Live A Live receive an official English localization?

Of course, we mustn’t jump to conclusions. But in the best-case scenario, it’s possible this trademark filing means the game will finally receive an official English localization, or it could be Square Enix is remaking Live A Live with an international release in mind this time. In the unrealistically extreme best-case scenario, it could also be that both a localization and a full-scale remake are in the works, since that’s exactly what happened with Trials of Mana, receiving a localization in Collection of Mana and also a total remake. But again — this is all deeply optimistic thinking. There’s no telling what Square Enix actually has in mind, and expectations must be kept in check.

At present, the game is only playable in English via a fan patch. Incidentally, I’ve played that patch to completion, (I also physically own the game.) and Live A Live is one of the most strikingly unique and varied RPGs I’ve ever played. It presents a multitude of shorter, isolated RPG episodes in different timelines with different protagonists that each provide wildly different gameplay experiences. It bounces from prehistoric comedy to far future Alien-inspired horror, and in-between, there is an honest-to-God Street Fighter II segment. And it’s all portrayed in an RPG style!

Director Takashi Tokita has gone on record about his desire to localize Live A Live in the West before. In fact, Tokita expressed that desire specifically to me on Twitter, as we’ve previously noted.

So to summarize, Square Enix could be doing absolutely anything with this Live A Live trademark in Australia, and to jump to the conclusion that the game is receiving a full English translation of any kind is tragically unfounded. But I’ve spent a whole lot of this article explaining why it would be spectacular for JRPG lovers if it were to occur. So, yeah, I’m crossing my fingers that this isn’t just some anomaly in Square Enix’s business plans in Australia.

What do you make of this curious news? Are you hoping it might be part of Square Enix’s new game announcements for July and August?


John Friscia
Head Copy Editor for Enthusiast Gaming, Managing Editor at The Escapist. I'm a writer who loves Super Nintendo and Japanese role-playing games to an impractical degree. I really miss living in South Korea. And I'm developing the game Boss Saga!