Blue Omen Operation may be a self-described “action-command RPG” about two superpowered eccentrics chasing a place sarcophagus. It’s currently on Kickstarter, and with six days left rolling around in its campaign already has a lot more than tripled developer BananaSoft’s $15,000 goal. This also has a free demo on Itch.io.
You play as Jiro, a supernaturally strong gearhead harboring an otherworldly parasite, and explore with all your partner Yagiko, a distinctly bestial wizard-to-be. Their designs speak to Blue Omen’s unique aesthetic, owed to artist and creator “Inker,” who cites the works of manga and anime artist Akira Toriyama as a major influence. You will see his other operate on Tumblr (warning: some images NSFW).
Blue Omen’s twitch-based combat is more familiar, although less and much more PC. That it was primarily inspired by Mario RPGs like Paper Mario and Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, the Kickstarter page says, as well as Warioware. You will see this DNA in its almost rhythmic turn-based combat, which includes you use follow-up, quick-time-esque commands to boost your attacks, or parry enemy attacks.
The default controls and resolution can be a little wonky, but the demo is perfectly playable. Combat is fast and responsive, and also the inventory and skill systems are intriguing. The minimalist art is expanding on me too, particularly in motion.
Judging looking at the Kickstarter delivery dates, Blue Omen Operation will officially release in mid-2019.