In our recent Kotaku list of the 15 Obscure RPGs that we wish had sequels, a lot of people wrote in to talk about Secret of Evermore. Coincidentally, I had interviewed Alan Weiss, the designer and producer of Evermore, earlier in the year about Deadly Towers. So I was thrilled when he agreed to talk with me about Secret of Evermore in what turned out to be a really fascinating interview and one of my favorite stories to write this year. Big thanks to Editor Tina Amini for her wonderful editorial suggestions and of course to Kotaku.
Secret of Evermore is one of the most underrated RPGs in gaming. Released in 1995 on the SNES, it’s a love letter to what is best about JRPGs, with influences from Secret of Mana and even cameos by Final Fantasy characters like Cecil from FFIV. But it also weaves its own identity with a quirky narrative encompassing fictional B-movie references and a boy and his dog tale that is as classic as it gets. In fact, Secret of Evermore has the distinction of being the only Square RPG developed entirely in North America and is in many ways the quintessential American tale with tons of customization, multiple worlds, and a humorous plot. There are darker elements as characters have to face their twisted halves years before Persona made it a central theme. Alan Weiss, who was both producer and designer on the game, explained in an email interview that the creativity and diverse elements were part of the company philosophy.