Studio Ghibli's 'Ni no Kuni' moving westward in January 2013
Ni no Kuni, the video game made by Studio Ghibli of Howl's Moving Castle and Spirited Away fame, will arrive in North America and Europe before the end of January 2013.
The game is being developed by Studio Ghibli in partnership with Level 5, which is well known for the Professor Layton series on Nintendo DS and 3DS.
It adopts the same distinctive style as Studio Ghibli's animated films and follows the young Oliver who, mourning his mother's sudden death, finds himself transported into a parallel world.
While he makes fast friends and is aided by his soft toy Drippy (who turns out to be an inhabitant of Ni no Kuni's secret kingdom), Oliver's quest to save his mother poses a threat to some of the realm's less savory inhabitants who are determined to undermine him.
Available in Japan since December 2010 on DS and November 2011 on PlayStation 3, it's the PS3 version -- Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch -- that's heading to North America for January 22 and Europe for January 25.
The trailer's timing also makes it likely that Ni no Kuni will feature during Sony's presentation at E3 as part of the PlayStation 3 software line-up.