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Penny Arcade Episode 4 dev shows off combat allies, old-school world map

Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 4 developer Zeboyd Games is including elements inspired by 16-bit RPGs, such as combat allies and an old-school world map, according to screenshots the studio revealed yesterday.

In unveiling new images from battles, Zeboyd highlighted Episode 4's "monster ally" system, which is new to the series. You'll recruit monsters to your team as you make your way through the game; some of them will join your squad and others will be hidden. Instead of Episode 3's class system, you can pair a human trainer with a monster to help it grow and gain new abilities.

Zeboyd also decided to go back to a traditional world map, the kind you'd see in a 16-bit RPG.

"We're taking inspiration from great world maps like you see in games like Lunar: Eternal Blue and Chrono Trigger and avoiding the strict tile-based map style that you see in most older 8-bit and 16-bit RPGs in favor of a more organic visual style," said Zeboyd.

Episode 4 will be available this spring on Windows PC and Xbox Live Indie Games.

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