As the magazine is not technically available yet at the time of this post, this preliminary information comes straight from Twitter user mariko_zero.
Naturally, there's an article about the game inside the magazine billed as an introduction to the game system. Most of the information repeats what we were shown in last week's Famitsu but there are additional details in the form of an interview with series director Yamamoto Makoto (YamamotoD) and producer Kobayashi Hiroyuki (KobaP).
Again, please note that this is my preliminary interpretation of a summary written by someone else. Until the actual magazine arrives this summary should be viewed as incomplete.
- Sakon has a youthful design which evokes frivolity (the word they use is charai which has various additional connotations). Since he has this frivolous image, his clothing exposes his skin. Please look out for the dice he carries too.
- Katsuie's themes are his stiff, inflexible image and 'rotation'. The shape of his kabuto helmet resembles ears. He evokes a strong image of geometry, incorporating squares and Buddhist mandala designs. You'll be able to get a good look at his bobbed haircut in the story.
- Sakon and Katsuie have a different relationship to Masamune and Yukimura, or Ieyasu and Mitsunari. While they're linked by being from a younger generation, there's a contrast between the cheerful guy and the dispirited one.
- Playing Sengoku Basara 4 and making decisions will greatly affect the lives of the characters. For example, even Masamune has more than one (potential) future. There'll also be relationships like, say, both Masamune and Mitsunari respectively guiding the young pair. There are some futures you can lead them to and some you cannot.
- They'll be taking a different approach to Sengoku Basara 3's Sengoku Emaki story mode. However, the story will unfold in various ways (this is implying that there will be multiple routes).
- Since so much of Sengoku Basara 3 was 'lonely and harsh', in Sengoku Basara 4 they've included a lot of fun content.
- There will be quite a few characters. These won't just be playable warriors; there'll be enemy NPCs as well. Of course, there'll even be characters who previously appeared in the series - but not all of them. Please keep watching to see who will join the crowd of people with new traits.
- 'Assessing the situation' will be one of the themes of the action in Sengoku Basara 4. Players will want to make it their priority to assess the situation and make decisions. Those who have played the previous games will recognise some of the elements which have been incorporated.
- YamamotoD mentioned that people can expect some content set in the past. The example he gave was a scene set back when Masamune was called Bontenmaru - he teased that it would include the voice of a younger Masamune(!).
- YamamotoD wants to make another anime adaptation for the series.
- KobaP would like to make a live action movie.
My copy of the magazine will be arriving a little late so expect gradual updates to this post as I confirm more details.
The next details about the new game should start appearing over the weekend when the Butai Sengoku Basara Busho Matsuri 2013 stage event takes place. I'm also expecting preorders to open for the second issue of Basara Magazine very soon, along with a formal announcement of the next wave of new manga and goods (the new Takedagun Chronicle manga anthology is still technically unannounced even though it will ship in less than three weeks!).
Update 17/07/2013: My copy of Dengeki Playstation arrived! Here's a summary of some additional snippets of information I gleaned from the full article.
- KobaP unambiguously stated that for Sengoku Basara 4, Masamune and Mitsunari are the main characters.
- However, the way they're both portrayed will be different to what we've seen of them up until now - though not to the extent that they'll seem like completely different characters.
- The 'Sengoku Creation' theme means the game will be going right to the beginning of the Sengoku period and creating it all over again from start to finish. The scale will be much greater than it was in Sengoku Basara 3.
- There'll be a lot of variety in the stories; some will be comical, some will be serious.
- Outside of the main game series they've tried a lot of different things in the eight years since Sengoku Basara began, with manga adaptations, anime, stage plays, a television drama, a Takarazuka musical, tours, popularity votes etc. KobaP never thought that the series would reach the fourth game back at the start. To give some context for the earlier reports that they wanted to make another anime adaptation or live action movie, KobaP and YamamotoP were simply responding to a hypothetical question about what kind of project they'd personally like to try next.
- The magazine speculated about the new enemy formations we've seen on the official website. It said that part of the charm of the Sengoku Basara series is the exhilaration of being one person versus countless others, or ikkitousen ('one who can beat a thousand'). This time, even the regular soldiers seem to be tougher, using all their power to block the player from reaching the centre of the castle. It looks as though strategy might be more important in Sengoku Basara 4.
- Ashikaga Yoshiteru's theme is 'the emperor of the Muromachi'; KobaP said that was the atmosphere back in those days.
- YamamotoD added that they wanted Yoshiteru to look visibly 'emperor-like'. He needed to have a hint of the Roman Empire about him, yet they also wanted it to be obvious at a glance that this was someone from the Muromachi era so they dressed him in ooyoroi armour. The idea was to make him seem different from the other warriors, like an emperor from an earlier age.
- The interviewer asked if Yoshiteru will become playable if you meet certain requirements in the game. KobaP simply said no, he's an enemy warlord.
- YamamotoD noted that Sakon is the only character to use kick techniques as a major part of his move set.
- As a few people have noticed, Sakon's knee guards are based on the design of the historical Shima Sakon's kabuto. YamamotoD is particular about incorporating that kind of detail, so please take a good look.
- KobaP thinks the Sengoku Basara version of Katsuie is pretty unique: normally when you hear Shibata Katsuie's name, you imagine a great swordsman with a beard. YamamotoD had the idea of making him a somewhat hopeless, despairing character after looking into his history.
- Katsuie's skirt-like armour design is meant to be part of his 'rotation' theme.
- The phonetic reading of Katsuie's technique which I've been translating as 'shear plane' has been confirmed as 'sessou', described as his unique 'battle system'. I'm going to call it sessou from now on as it's easier.
- With the two new playable characters, KobaP wanted there to be a sense of young people experiencing the way the battlefield feels during their very first war.
- KobaP thinks that the Masamune in Sengoku Basara 4 has become quite different from the one in the previous game, emerging from the past to cleave his way towards being named the Dragon King.
- YamamotoD confirmed there would be a scene from back when Masamune was known as Bontenmaru, as per the rumours above. He said that Sengoku Basara 4 would have a focus on the parts of the story which had never been told in the series so far (i.e. it's possible we could see stories from the pasts of other returning characters for the first time).
- They wanted to portray Mitsunari back when he was playing an active part in the Toyotomi forces. Toyotomi Hideyoshi is still alive during Sengoku Basara 4, so KobaP begged fans to think of it as a completely different world to that of Sengoku Basara 3, where he was dead.
- They've been able to include many additional elements as a result of the parallel world setting and Sakon not having been part of the Toyotomi forces back in Sengoku Basara 3. The staff think that this new Mitsunari is quite different to before.
- KobaP laughed and mused that with the flirty Sakon joining the serious Toyotomi group in Sengoku Basara 4, there might be a chance that Mitsunari will just kill that 'frivolous guy'!