Folklore is an action adventure developed by Game Republic and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3 in 2007. The 2006 beta trailer shows only Keats, but the finished game has two playable characters, the other being Ellen, who could be called the “main character” of the story. Keats is also referred to as a detective, and not a reporter.
The story also focus on a “murder mystery”, rather than on “the girl in the black coat” mentioned in the beta. On the whole, it seems like a lot of the story has changed, keeping pretty much just the setting and the village of the dead theme. Another difference in the beta trailer are the cutscenes. The trailer has plenty of “the normal stuff”, that is, what seems to be CGI and realtime animation. The finished game instead tells the story through a rather unique kind of 3D comic book cutscenes, or however to describe them.
The gameplay also looks very different. Though you absorb enemy souls to use in the final game, the trailer makes it seem more like a regular, turn-based RPG with summon attacks rather than the quite fast-paced action RPG that was the final result. Summon attacks happen extremely quickly in the final game, in a way that they are really different “weapons” that the main character uses.
Also, not sure if Keats is being chased at the end of the trailer or if it’s just a companion creature. Judging from the way it’s following him (keeping the same pace, etc) the latter seems more likely. Either way, nothing like that happens in the final game.
Folklore was originally supposed to take place in the same universe as Monster Kingdom: Jewel Summoner for the PSP (Folklore being Monster Kingdom: Unknown Realms.) From the beta trailer it seems like the gameplay of Folklore would have been similar to Jewel Summoner, before they decided to split it off from the Monster Kingdom series. It also seems to share some story aspects with Coded Soul (the sequel to Jewel Summoner) which was never released in the west. And for that matter the name; Folklore is known as FolksSoul in Japan.
Thanks a lot to Saga for the contribution!