Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice of Arland Preview

Sugar takes on many forms, like saccharine.

And this is about as sweet as games get. Any game that has a player take on the role of an adorable animé girl with shiny, pink hair, then has that girl fight bunnies with carrots in hand (appropriately named "carrot bunnies")that has to up the blood pressure, right?

And that's what the Atelier family has always done: cute characters, pretty environments, and a whole lot of alchemy. This time, players take on the role of a princess escaping the castle she lives in to study alchemy.

In order to study, she'll have to find all the appropriate materials and start mixing herself, andone would assumesave the world from bad guys in the process. And with similarly adorable friends met along the way, players should be ready to take on all comers… fuzzy or otherwise.

For fans of super-cute RPGs, Atelier Meruru should be a fun fit. The battle system is classically menu-based, but still has an action element; enemies might attack out of turn, so the option to defend and even bring in another character to take the damage is available. The demo was short, with characters fighting very weak monsters, but for a classic RPG it looks like a pretty throwback to the past.

Look for the insatiable cuteness to hit the US sometime in May 2012. That should help to curb that sweet tooth for the classically-minded!