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SolVanderlyn
Thanos acquires the fully powered Infinity Gauntlet in The Avengers: Infinity War, but loses when all the superheroes team up together to stop him.
(08-13-2017, 07:12 AM)
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Ah, Tales of. A series that's been around since the Super Famicom days in Japan, Tales is well known for being the epitome of the JRPG genre. While it's generally considered to have B-tier writing and rely overtly on genre cliches and tropes, it eventually grew into its own with its distinctive focus on character interactions, which were fleshed out with the series' skit mechanic - conversations between the main characters that happen while exploring the various maps of the world. For a long time, it was considered the perfect fusion of an action game and an RPG, although that sort of genre blend has certainly become more common in modern times.

The series has been around for a long time, and has evolved about as much as any other long standing series. As such, there have been different eras of Tales:

The Classic Era

Games: Phantasia, Destiny, Eternia

The three that started it all. These games were a bit more vanilla than their successors, and the series' trademark skits hadn't really bloomed into anything substantial yet. Phantasia, in particular, feels quite different from any Tales game to come after it - while others are known for being relatively lighthearted or very "anime," Phantasia is much more grounded in its RPGness, more similar to Dragon Quest or the earlier Final Fantasies. Part of this has to do with the fact that Wolf Team hadn't split yet, and many members who would later go on to work on the Star Ocean series at Enix also worked on Phantasia.

The Golden Era

Games: Destiny 2, Symphonia, Rebirth, Legendia, Abyss, Innocence, Vesperia, Destiny Remake

This is usually the era people think of when they say they once loved the series. This is when Tales found its identity, I think. All of these games have a colorful and distinctive cast of characters and rely heavily on series mechanics such as stories with multiple acts, villains that fit neatly into a villainous organization, similar music, cooking, skits, and unique variations on the series' trademark action-based battle system. Unfortunately, Destiny 2, Rebirth, and Destiny's remake were never released in the west. There are translated playthroughs on Youtube and translation guides available, but we're still waiting on patches for them.

A unique aspect of this era is the split between Team Destiny and Team Symphonia. Team Destiny would make the 2D games, while Team Symphonia would make the 3D games. Each team's games had a distinct feel to them, with Symphonia's games going for a stronger main plot and more freedom of movement on the battlefield, and Destiny's going for gorgeous spritework and a more character-focused approach. Team Destiny's games were quarantined in the east, and a nasty rumor says that it's because Sony didn't want 2D games in this era... it's really too bad, although, if I'm going to be honest, Team Symphonia's games had better stories by a long shot anyway.



Vesperia is still the best looking game, and I think it's partially because it was the last game made for a powerful console to still use fixed camera angles.

The Modern Era

Games: Graces/F, Hearts, Xillia, Xillia 2, Zestiria, Berseria

Team Destiny would pump out one last game for the Wii (which was later ported to PS3), and would then merge with Team Symphonia to make Xillia. This era is generally considered to be an era of decline for the series, although I think the only game that's outright disliked by the majority of players is Zestiria. It's not that these games are bad, but there's several reasons they don't feel as compelling as the golden era of Tales - the franchise was beginning to feel stale after running on the same formula for so long, and the shift to HD development definitely harmed the games from Xillia and onward, with barren, open fields and a relatively lifeless world plaguing each game until Berseria. The battle systems became increasingly complex and convoluted, as well. Graces is hailed for having amazing gameplay, but its story was derided for delving too far into anime tropes. Needless to say, this set of games is divisive at best, although Berseria is considered a return to form for many.

My personal favorites are divided into gameplay and story. For gameplay, it's Destiny's remake, hands down. I made a RttP thread a while ago, but I'll copy paste it for the purpose of this thread.



After FFVII introduced me to the wonderful world of JRPGs, this was probably one of the first I picked up afterward. It was back when I would still rent games at the local rental place based on the box art/back of the box alone... a practice from another era. This must be what old people feel like when they look back at their time and see how different it was.

Anyway...

I'm playing the PS2 remake, the Director's Cut.

I played the PS2 remake back in 2006, but back then there was A) No translation for the game and B) I could speak literally no Japanese. Now that I've returned to it eleven years later, I can speak decent Japanese and there's a translation guide to help me along. I'm even learning some kanji along the way! So that's cool.

The story is exactly as I remember it, both from the 90's and from a decade ago. It's nothing extraordinary, but it's a charming and enjoyable story nonetheless. The basic gist of it is that you play as a team of warriors that can use talking swords with the souls of ancient warriors embedded in them. Each "Swordian" has an element assigned to them, making your team feel sort of like a bunch of sword-wielding Power Rangers. You've got the fire guy, the ice girl, the wind guy, the earth guy... you know, the works. I've always been a sucker for this kind of fast food style of entertainment, so I'm enjoying it as much my third time through as I did before.

The PS2 remake got rid of my major complaint from the PSX release. In the original game, you could equip other weapons along with the Swordians, but there was a catch. The weapons often had higher stats, but you needed the Swordian to use spells. This resulted in situations where you'd end up sacrificing higher attack for the ability to cast a fire ball - the Swordian was almost always the better choice, making alternate weapons sort of worthless. The remake has a "Rerise" system for the Swordians in place of a standard weapon slot, where you can allocate points to different stats. No more secondary weapons - there's customizable Swordians instead. This is a huge quality of life improvement. Characters like Leon and Garr (Woodrow in Japanese) have been reworked to use new fighting styles that are vastly superior to their original incarnations, so that's another plus. Of course, it also looks much nicer than the original PSX release.

This game is still the pinnacle of the franchise's battle system. While the PSX version had now-dated and clunky battles, complete with screen-stopping spells, the remake is fast and responsive. It uses the CC system that most western fans would recognize from Graces, and focuses heavily on air combat. Every character is fun to use, and I find myself having a lot of fun trying to get combos in this game, which is something I never found myself caring for or trying to do in any other Tales game. The spell effects, battle music, and character sprites are all beautiful, as well.

It looks like they added a "Lion Side" where you play through the story from Lion/Leon's point of view, so I'm playing that. I love, no, I love when games have multiple PoVs, so this is a really exciting addition for me. Seeing Leon's added scenes and inner thoughts makes him a much more human character than the standoff-ish, coldhearted guy he was for most of the original game.

So, third time through, and I can still say this is one of my favorite RPGs, and definitely my favorite Tales game. It's simple, fun, charming, and has a great cast of characters. I hope the fan translation comes along sooner rather than later so that more people can experience the remake in all its glory.

For story, it's Abyss. I loved the theme of the story - the meaning of birth - and I feel as if it had the strongest main plot in the series. I LOVED the twist of the world being kept up on pillars from a poisonous mist. I loved how you don't play as the "real" Luke. I loved how Luke didn't start out as your typical gung-ho hero with a heart of gold. Abyss has its issues, but overall, I really enjoyed its story.

I like most of the games in the series, and even enjoy the more cliche plotlines. Tales is the perfect fast food JRPG fix. But I think some games go above and beyond that fast food feel, and Destiny and Abyss are two of them. Phantasia, too, feels a lot more "respectable" than its successors - if that makes any sense - and is right up there as one of my favorites.

What's your favorite?
Last edited by SolVanderlyn; 08-13-2017 at 07:16 AM.
Zedark
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(08-13-2017, 07:16 AM)
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Tales of Symphonia was my first Tales game, I played it when I was about 10 years old. Still one of the game's I'm the most fond of, and I have replay it 10 or more times. It's not quite my favourite game in the series, though: I pick up Vesperia in 2010 (didn't know it was out) and fell head over heels in love with it. It's still my third favourite ever, only slightly behind Oblivion and Skyrim. The story of those two games were revelatory for games at that time in my limited experience.

Besides those two legendary games, I also love Tales of Graces, Zestiria and Berseria. Xillia was a disappointment to me, as was Symphonia Chronicles.
Hero of Legend
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(08-13-2017, 07:19 AM)
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Dawn of the New World for Wii was my first one and I LOVED it! The monster-catching system was tons of fun. Honestly a Symphonia 3 on Switch taking after it with that system intact (and with higher production values) would be HUGE for me.
jb1234
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(08-13-2017, 07:22 AM)
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Most of them are at the very least entertaining. Vesperia was probably the best all-rounder but I really liked Abyss for taking bigger risks with its story and characters.

Alas, I haven't played any past Graces F, which I despised. I'm curious about Berseria but the demo didn't really blow me away.
Strangelove77
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(08-13-2017, 07:27 AM)
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I've only played Xillia. It was ok I guess. There was nothing special about it.
i think I dropped after 10 hours or so.
KZXcellent
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(08-13-2017, 07:27 AM)
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Most of the Tales games I've played are from Graces onward and I've enjoyed (and not enjoyed) various aspects of them.

Graces and Xillia 1 are solid games. A little hammy and cliche at points but nothing too bad. Their stories and gameplay were enjoyable.

I was almost out of the series entirely after playing Xillia 2 and Zestiria though. Both had major issues for me.

With Xillia 2 you have a plot that sets up interesting things and does nothing with them. You have alternate dimensions that you have to destroy which results in you killing millions upon millions of people. Instead of exploring that further the most you get is an expendable party member in Milla #2 and some skits where she pouts at you for committing genocide. I basically checked out once that started happening though some encounters and major story reveals were enjoyable to a degree.

Zestiria I maintain is just not good. The game's combat gets boring fast with it's Armtization system, you have a convoluted equipment system that I never understood, some insufferable characters Lailah being the worst by a country mile and antagonists that don't really seem to do anything at all.

Of course Berseria came out early in the year and that turned me around completely.

The story was a fun ride with a cast that I adored from start to finish. Plenty of emotional moments that feel earned and a punch to them and a combat system that's probably my favorite. I'm really looking forward to whatever game they do next and hope they can keep the momentum from Berseria.

When it comes to a cast of characters I found myself loving Zestiria's but quickly realized I enjoyed them in the vacuum of their skits. When it came to their actions in the overarching plot I didn't care very much. However I loved Berseria's cast in basically everything.
mieumieu
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(08-13-2017, 07:29 AM)
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Tales of the Abyss is my favorite (hence the avatar. Mieu is a cute male animal with screeching high pitched voice!)

The plot is well thought out if a bit too drawn out at the end. Battle is fascinating with more free movement.
Chaos2Frozen
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(08-13-2017, 07:30 AM)
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Started with Vesperia, never missed a single main entries since, almost done with Berseria.

I Guess what I liked most is that no matter how it starts, I've always finish the game feeling like I've bonded with everyone in the party. Without fail. Even Hearts which I thought was the weakest in terms of party composition, I got attached to all those weirdos by the end.

I've also love that they don't take themselves too seriously with all the skits lol! Like if the heart of Persona games are the social links, then the heart of Tales are all the skits XD
Last edited by Chaos2Frozen; 08-13-2017 at 07:35 AM.
selo
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(08-13-2017, 07:31 AM)
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I started on the gamecube days with symphonia, absolutely loved it. After this, I tried to play as many tales games as I could. I got Vesperia for the 360 and loved it even more than symphonia. Afterwards I played abyss on the 3ds and hated it, awful experience. then I played Berseria on PC and it became my favorite tales game!
foxuzamaki
Doesn't read OPs, especially not his own
(08-13-2017, 07:37 AM)
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Hello, I just came in here to say that tales of symphonia 2 was my 1st tales of game, which I bought because I heard the 1st was so good, and ended up really enjoying it alot.

only to find out years later that people disliked it.

That is all.
Chaos2Frozen
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(08-13-2017, 07:39 AM)
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Originally Posted by foxuzamaki

Hello, I just came in here to say that tales of symphonia 2 was my 1st tales of game, which I bought because I heard the 1st was so good, and ended up really enjoying it alot.

only to find out years later that people disliked it.

That is all.

I dislike Emil, but I love Ratatosk lol. Would have paired him with Marta instead.
Nicolada
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(08-13-2017, 07:43 AM)
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I used to fanboy this series so hard. I started in 2005 with Symphonia and then promptly played everything else as soon as I could, and got all the new games as soon as they were released, even in Japanese if I had to lol. Skipped Vesperia cuz no 360 (REALLY wish the PS3 version came over, the game looks like the best in the series), last game I played out upon release was Hearts. Modern era of Tales kinda killed my interest, it just got a bit too anime I guess. I have Zesteria on steam though, which I'm sure I'll eventually play.

Fav Tales would be Abyss, but my most fond memories are with Legendia. The latter's soundtrack really resonated with me, and I grew super attached to the characters. Combat wise I thought Destiny remake was the best, it was pure chaotic fun zipping across the screen like that.
KibblesBits
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(08-13-2017, 07:47 AM)
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Eternia was, is and always will be the ONLY Tales game that is worth my time, attention and fervor. Everything else pales in comparison and is waste in my opinion. Well, everything AFTER that game to be fair.
redcrayon
Member
(08-13-2017, 07:49 AM)
I quite liked Hearts as I found the skits genuinely funny in places, wasn't so keen on most of the rest of the ones I've played.
CielTynave
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(08-13-2017, 07:50 AM)
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Personally, I actually consider the Tales series to be my favorite series. I'd say it's actually because of the sheer number of games there are more than anything though, while there are certainly series that have games that I don't think any Tales games come close to being as enjoyable as (i.e. Kingdom Hearts, Persona), they also have both fewer titles and a few titles in each series that I just don't really like at all. As far as Tales is concerned though, I don't think there's more than one or two games that I'd say I disliked as a whole, let alone regretted playing. Of course, I haven't played most of the side games, and only tried out a few of the JP only mainline titles, so that could change if I ever get the chance to play through them.

I actually find it kind of difficult to decide which of the games is my favorite, and that's mainly because of the biggest flaw the series has as a whole: consistency. For everything one of the game gets right, it does just as many things poorly or unremarkably. Trying to think of what game has my favorite story, characters, music, battle system, etc., my answer for pretty much every one of those would be different. Part of the reason why I think that Symphonia and Vesperia (and to a lesser extent Abyss, though it is my favorite of the three) is that they're the most consistent quality-wise. Everything about those games is generally considered to be decent to good at worst, and have a few aspects that get pretty high praise whereas most other games usually flub up something to a noticeable extent.

I started with Symphonia back on the GC and loved it, then went on to Legendia, Abyss, etc. I basically played all of the games as they come out in English, sans the mobile titles. I don't quite have the nostalgia for Symphonia that most people do though, since I only considered it my favorite game when it was the only one I played lol. If I had to narrow it down to just a my top few games, it'd have to be Xillia 2/Berseria/Graces f/Legendia (solely for it's music lol,and maybe how it handled character development). Despite mostly thinking of the gameplay systems when ranking favorites, story and characters usually end up just barely putting some titles over the rest for me.
Ivellios
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(08-13-2017, 07:51 AM)
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Tales of Symphonia was my first Tales game and i loved it, its my favorite so far, though i did not have the opportunity to play Vesperia and Berseria yet, which people say are really good.

Also, is there any way to play Vesperia on PC? i never had a Xbox 360 before and i dont want to spend so much money just for one game.
Rymuth
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(08-13-2017, 07:55 AM)
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Destiny - my first tales

Phantasia - memorable boss fight because I forgot to enter the necessary commands to counter her one-hit kill move

Symphonia- Mario party for JRPGS enthusiasts. 4 us sat down to play through this one

Abyss - holy shit, this is dark and depressing o_o
Mediking
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(08-13-2017, 07:56 AM)
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Tales of the Abyss on 3DS was sooo good. Love that game.
CielTynave
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(08-13-2017, 07:58 AM)
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Originally Posted by Rymuth

Destiny - my first tales

Phantasia - memorable boss fight because I forgot to enter the necessary commands to counter her one-hit kill move

Symphonia- Mario party for JRPGS enthusiasts. 4 us sat down to play through this one


Abyss - holy shit, this is dark and depressing o_o


LOL, well that's certainly the most unique description for that game I've ever seen.
Ascenion
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(08-13-2017, 08:06 AM)
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Started with Symphonia on GameCube in 2004 ( came out the day before my birthday), loved it. Then I went to Legendia and then Abyss. Was super hyped for Vesperia in 2008 and tried to get the CE but failed. Sadly my love for Abyss makes me see Vesperia as an inferior clone with better graphics but still a good game.

As it stands Graces is probably my favorite. The combat is sublime and makes up for the Uber dark/ridiculous/pointless plot.
Punished_Snake
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(08-13-2017, 08:08 AM)
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After Vesperia I lost faith in the series, but my friend gave me his copy of Berseria and I hope it makes me fan of the series once again.
alf717
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(08-13-2017, 08:08 AM)
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I got into the Tales on the SNES. From there I wanted to collection them all when the series was pretty new. I grabbed Destiny and Destiny II (Eternia) on PS. I later got my hands on Phantasia for the PS. I also own Legendia and Abyss on PS2. My most fond title is Tales of Symphonia. It was great to see a good RPG on the Game Cube back in the early 2000's and I had a lot of fun with this title. I was excited for Dawn of the New World and I enjoyed that game as well. Destiny II ,Symphonia and Dawn of the New World are the only titles I completed. I also own Abyss on the 3DS and Vesperia on the 360 but since then I just couldn't get into the series much after that. I own Phantasia, Eternia (EU) and Eternia (JP) on PSP.
TriAceJP
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(08-13-2017, 08:12 AM)
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I've played all of them, beat most of them.

Vesperia is easily the best, followed by the Abyss. Eternia and Rebirth are also very good.

The stories are often cliche anime (or reworked Final Fantasy plots) and are pretty thow away, but the battle systems and side stuff are easily some of the best in the genre.
Aters
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(08-13-2017, 08:14 AM)
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I absolutely adore Tales of Heart DS. The 2D combat is so satisfying. It's very spammy, but in a fun way. The story is epic and full of twists. Such a cool game. I don't know why it never came to the west. Tales of the Abyss did well in the west on 3DS. Namco definitely made a mistake there.
Tarextherex
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(08-13-2017, 08:22 AM)
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Symphonia was my first jrpg and still my favorite. We bought it only to get free shipping for Soul Calibur 2, what a surprise it was tbh. It kind of spoiled me to other jrpgs as I especially loved the great level/puzzle design in that game, the dungeons basically felt Zelda-lite. Really great world overall. Coupled with the cool action combat system it took me a while to warm up to more traditional turn based rpgs. Also the very long story was quite captivating as well

I was very hyped for it's sequel on the Wii, it was disappointing but it's still an okay game. Unlike certain outspoken people on the internet I don't mind playing as a character that has issues. The original is obviously light years beyond it, they just aren't on the same scope and the sequel just doesn't offer enough to truly define itself but it's still a decent game, not bad

I got to play Innocence randomly, it's a pretty nice curiosity considering it's on the DS. It's a 3D game and has a decent story/setting and pretty nice characters but the game itself really ain't shit, like tos2 is definitely better. It is plagued with very clumsy design flaws such as horrible difficulty spikes and atrocious level design in which you get lost all the time like it's an early 3D game from a random developer

Then I played Abyss on 3DS, I was hyped for it and it delivered. Not as good as Symphonia but still a very great story and characters, cool additions to the battle system. Sure I played it before I played FFVII which is kind of similar to it but it's still a game with a pretty nice setting and very atypical pacing(as great symphonia is the first few hours are cliche af).


After I finally had a system that could play even more games in the series(PS3), I just lost interest, Vesperia PS3 never came here and that was the main one I was interested in(the 2D games too I guess but those are unavailable outside of original hardware). The new games just seem uninteresting, they are way down in my priorities of games to play on that system. I feel like earlier games had those very distinct characters and settings to them. You know how even if you haven't played every FF game you could still have an idea of what's the game is about or what the characters are like because the designs are so strong. The modern Tales games just don't inspire me anything, they could pass for random light novel anime adaptations or something. They look so one-note, apparently in the latest one you play as bad-ish guys... why should I care? All I see is a horrible design for the protagonist and a setting that looks pretty uninspired, past Tales worlds always had some compelling set of rules to them that you wanted to know more/experience them before even getting to play them. Looking at gameplay for modern Tales doesn't motivate me much either. They managed to do very memorable worlds with set camera angles in the past but now in 3D they just look like a poor man's Xenoblade. The most disappointing looking one is Zestiria, I knew it had awesome dungeon songs but the levels themselves look like some Quest 64 type of shit, is this really from the same guys that did Symphonia dungeons? I might try some of the PS3 ones when they go real cheap on sale but there are so much more interesting games for me to play instead of them. Hoping that Vesperia's enhanced version finally leaves Japan/that the 2D games do as well, otherwise I have not much interest in this series anymore now that Baba basically turned it into the fast food of jrpgs
Last edited by Tarextherex; 08-13-2017 at 08:24 AM.
Strings
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(08-13-2017, 08:32 AM)
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Originally Posted by Tarextherex

I have not much interest in this series anymore now that Baba basically turned it into the fast food of jrpgs

You might have missed it, but Baba is gone now, and Berseria is great!

As for Zestiria, yeah, it's as bad as it looks. Have played almost every single one of the games, and it's easily my least favourite.
Earthpainting
Knows which side
the bread is buttered on.
(08-13-2017, 08:44 AM)
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Originally Posted by SolVanderlyn

It's not that these games are bad, but there's several reasons they don't feel as compelling as the golden era of Tales - the franchise was beginning to feel stale after running on the same formula for so long

Funny enough, I would have applied this Modern Era description to the Golden Era one. It's not that the games became bad, but the golden era was to me the beginning of the series becoming stale, and losing any ambition. Understandable in some ways, as the PS2 gen increased the production schedule to one or more mainline entries every year, as well as ramp up the spin-offs.



2010 looks the break in the cycle, but that was actually the year where they tried to relaunch Graces for the PS3 audience.

People pull up their noses for Zesteria, but I think it was a necessary entry to the series. It was the first time in a decade I felt like I was playing a Tales game that I didn't roll off an assembly line. Some say Xilia was that game for them, but I wouldn't know since I skipped those. The series might be a little rougher around the edges at the moment when it stopped being iterative fast food, but at least I get the impression they are willing to do something with the franchise again. Excited to see where the future takes these games.
beyond_death
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(08-13-2017, 08:52 AM)
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Symphonia on the Gamecube was one of my fondest gaming memories. Played it during a period where I kind of got out of gaming abit and it was one of the few games that completely hooked me. Loved it so much I played though it multiple times and own the PS3 and Steam version aswell.
ckaneo
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(08-13-2017, 08:57 AM)
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I feel like the series has peaked.

I honestly want a high budget revitalization after a few years off

The classic era is my favorite. Although I cant remember Eternia's storyline for some reason.
Anoxida
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(08-13-2017, 08:58 AM)
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Symphonia, abyss and vesperia are close to my heart. Have only had one great moment with the series this decade and it was when I replayed vesperia. Havent enjoyed the direction of this series at all. Berseria was a small step forward, though the item/equipment system ultimately killed the game for me, I hope they can keep improving I'll keep buying their games hoping for a return to form. Until then I keep my fingers crossed that ToD directors cut fan translation will be completed sometime next year.
CEJames
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(08-13-2017, 09:00 AM)
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The climax of Xillia 1 during that war when the plot twist happened gave me the same exhilaration that Symphonia 1 gave me when its plot twist (of a surprisingly similar nature) happened during their first visit to the Tower of Salvation.

Beseria was a godsend after the disappointment of Zesteria, even though they shared the same universe, Beseria just brought it all together much better.

Tales of the Abyss comes in at #1 for me overall. All I can say is the emotional intensity of some of the scenes and just the overall character development throughout the game made me play it more than 3 times.....lol

And the fighting....man I love the combat of the Tales series. :-)

P.S. I'm hoping the Tales game that Bamco is bringing to the Switch is a port of Vesperia because sadly, it's the only one I never finished due to my brother moving away and I never thought to even get a used Xbox 360 to play it. Every Tales has been on either Nintendo or Sony's console. Feels strange to just keep that one hanging out there with Microsoft.
Last edited by CEJames; 08-13-2017 at 09:08 AM.
Professor Beef
holds a doctorate in beef
(08-13-2017, 09:00 AM)
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I have to say that Graces F and Berseria have certainly opened my eyes to how multiplayer unfriendly Symphonia is. It truly was tacked on with no thought put into it. The only other one I played was Abyss and I was not a fan whatsoever.
Last edited by Professor Beef; 08-13-2017 at 09:03 AM.
Aalvi
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(08-13-2017, 09:00 AM)
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I keep hearing how Berseria is the best since Vesperia, how true is this statement?

How is the story in Berseria?
Perona
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(08-13-2017, 09:02 AM)
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I played Phantasia first but I wasn't aware of the series in general when I did. Then I played Vesperia years later and it became one of my favorite games ever. Since then I've gone back and have played/beaten most of the series (working my way through Berseria now after finishing Zestiria.) I pretty much always enjoy the skits and characters in the games.
Professor Beef
holds a doctorate in beef
(08-13-2017, 09:02 AM)
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Originally Posted by Aalvi

I keep hearing how Berseria is the best since Vesperia, how true is this statement?

How is the story in Berseria?

The story is one constant downer ending (YMMV on how much you like it, but I enjoyed it), and the combat is the best in the series right next to Graces F.
Turin
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(08-13-2017, 09:03 AM)
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Tales of the Abyss is the only one I've played at length. Liked it quite a lot.

Would love to play Vesperia if it ever gets ported to PS4.
MagicWithEarvin
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(08-13-2017, 09:05 AM)
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I cherish Tales of Symphonia because I played it with my little brother and sister like 3-4 times together from start to finish. I always played Lloyd, my little brother played Genis and my little sister played Presea.
Sinh_Magnus
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(08-13-2017, 09:18 AM)
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I beat Berseria back in february and loved it. Now I'm watching a guy ending his playtrough and I'm constantly making a smile at the skits and the dialogue between the party members.

Definitely some of the best party members ever. Incredible chemistry between them. Felt like they were true characters instead of your tipical checklist of jrpg tropes.

This thread serves to remember me that I really need to play Verseria ps3.
RalchAC
Member
(08-13-2017, 09:45 AM)
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I've played all Tales games since Vesperia but Zestiria, and then Eternia and Abyss I think. My favorites are undoubtedly Vesperia and Berseria. I feel that both are the culmination of all the work done in their respective eras.

Vesperia is quite similar to previous Team Symphonia 6th gen entries, in a new console, follows similar design sensibilities and is packed with content.

Berseria borrows quite a bit from 7th gen Tales games, is on a new console, packed with content and keeps some of the design decisions that have been part of the series since Graces. Both good (battle system, skits where you see the upper half of the character...) and bad (fields, equipment system from Zestiria...)

I hope the series returns to form in its first 8th gen only entry. Their big empty fields got old 3 entries ago.

Originally Posted by CEJames

The climax of Xillia 1 during that war when the plot twist happened gave me the same exhilaration that Symphonia 1 gave me when its plot twist (of a surprisingly similar nature) happened during their first visit to the Tower of Salvation.

Beseria was a godsend after the disappointment of Zesteria, even though they shared the same universe, Beseria just brought it all together much better.

Tales of the Abyss comes in at #1 for me overall. All I can say is the emotional intensity of some of the scenes and just the overall character development throughout the game made me play it more than 3 times.....lol

And the fighting....man I love the combat of the Tales series. :-)

P.S. I'm hoping the Tales game that Bamco is bringing to the Switch is a port of Vesperia because sadly, it's the only one I never finished due to my brother moving away and I never thought to even get a used Xbox 360 to play it. Every Tales has been on either Nintendo or Sony's console. Feels strange to just keep that one hanging out there with Microsoft.

Of all the Tales games I've played, I think Xillia is the only one I couldn't finish. After the war, the game becomes uninteresting and then you get to the second continent and see it's made of 3 areas. It's the game with more encounters where you face 3-4 bosses at the same time and the AI isn't good enough to be helpful in those (in harder difficulties). And it felt really rushed.

Originally Posted by Professor Beef

The story is one constant downer ending (YMMV on how much you like it, but I enjoyed it), and the combat is the best in the series right next to Graces F.

As someone that hadn't played Berseria, I thought the game had a really interesting setting. I knew nothing about the universe, and the pace at which the different mysteries are revealed was really good.

The story itself is good, the last act isn't as weak as most entries imo. But what carries the game is the characters. Best written cast since Vesperia. Seeing Laphicet trying to act tough like Eizen and Rokurou never gets old (and makes sense, they're his role models after all).

The battle system felt like an evolved Graces. It has a customizable A Arte tree and the Soul Break reminded me to the skill you get in the future arc.
Sadist
Member
(08-13-2017, 10:25 AM)
Sadist's Avatar
I played several; I kind of view the Tales series as the Japanese version of Lego games; they're never bad, always enjoyable, but if you played one you played them all.

Symphonia remains my favourite. Its the most cookiecutter RPG, but that's kind of part of the charm really. Lloyd is the idealist we all know and love, Colette is a ditz etc. Even by Gamecube's standards the game wasn't much of a looker, but it was just fun to play.

I also played Dawn of the New World, Abyss, Xillia, Xillia 2 and Zesteria; Zesteria really dragged on at a certain point in the game and I was kind of happy when it concluded. Dawn of the New World... "Courage is the magic that turns dreams into reality!". Ugh. Tenebrae made the thing fun though. I didn't care that much for Abyss. Well, after Luke's change he was pretty neat I guess.

Xillia (2) are pretty neat though. The original does have a weird ending, in the sense it was kind of rushed, but I really enjoyed Mila as the main character. More so than Jude (ugh) and Alvin, who was horribly written. Hey guys I'm on your side! Nope, guess I'm not. Or am I? No, pretty sure I'm not. Or wait, no, flip flop! Plus it has Rowen. One thing I do like about the Tales games, they have likable older/wiser characters and he's likeable. Xillia 2 btw is pretty dark and I actually prefer it over the original.
DxD
Banned
(08-13-2017, 10:30 AM)
ToP was so good.
I replayed it like 5-6 times.
It never got old to me due to the combat system.
Cless and Mint, very nice couple.
Dhaos was a great villain with a very good reason, even in the end, the heroes respected him.
Iriscomeback
Member
(08-13-2017, 10:39 AM)
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I remember not liking the first Tales game I played: Symphonia. Found it to be tedious.

However, later when I got a 360 I played Vesperia and LOVED it. Have been hooked to the series since then.

There aren't any entries I outright hate, but I found Abyss to be very mediocre. It's story was incomprehensible and it had a boring cast.

My best memories are from Xillia 2 and Berseria. Xillia 2 did a number of new things I really liked. For instance, it had a much darker tone then it's predecessor. Berseria is a return to form for the series. It has a great story and my favourite cast so far. Eleanor is an awesome character with an interesting story arc. The English voicework is excellent, one of the best I've heard in a JRPG.

The only thing they should really put some more work in are the graphics. We are a full generation behind now. Some would say it is a style that belongs to the series but I disagree. Environments look really flat and towns generic. Maybe next game. But I'm not sure what is possible with the engine they currently use.
Arjayes
Banned
(08-13-2017, 10:39 AM)
Abyss man... it gets hated on but itís by far my favorite Tales.
RalchAC
Member
(08-13-2017, 10:39 AM)
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Originally Posted by Sadist

Xillia (2) are pretty neat though. The original does have a weird ending, in the sense it was kind of rushed, but I really enjoyed Mila as the main character. More so than Jude (ugh) and Alvin, who was horribly written. Hey guys I'm on your side! Nope, guess I'm not. Or am I? No, pretty sure I'm not. Or wait, no, flip flop! Plus it has Rowen. One thing I do like about the Tales games, they have likable older/wiser characters and he's likeable. Xillia 2 btw is pretty dark and I actually prefer it over the original.

Eleanor from Berseria is Alvin done well in that sense, I think. She is a character that's thrown to the party due to the circumstances despite originally being your enemy. She joins forces, she has a mission from her higher ups which involves betraying the party. You know it, the party knows it and Velvet is always keeping an eye on her. Like in Alvin's case, the idea is that the character is going to become a full fledged member of the party eventually but, in Eleanor's case, it's quite well done and it's never as annoying.
Kresnik258
Member
(08-13-2017, 10:42 AM)
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I'm definitely a modern-era gamer. I started with Graces F and have played every 'new' game that has released since then. My thoughts:

- Graces F - enjoyable combat and plot that wasn't was bad as I expected. Drags on a bit towards the end.

- Xillia - even better combat system (yep, I said it) and I loved the more grown-up plot. Final 1/3rd of the game feels rushed which is a massive shame.

- Xillia 2 - my favourite of the modern-era games. Love the story beats they touched upon; loved the changes to the combat system; loved the massive cast of characters; loved all the extra content. Brilliant.

- Zestiria - my least favourite of the modern-era games. Story is all but non-existent, which is incredibly disappointing after the brilliant start. Combat is just dull. Very disappointing.

- Berseria - brilliant story (best of all the games I've played) but my god that combat system. Really didn't enjoy it, especially how endgame just devolved into chaining mystic artes.

I've also gone back to play Symphonia (which I couldn't get into) and Hearts R (which I absolutely loved thanks to the aerial-focused combat system).

I'd rank them:

Xillia 2 > Xillia 1 > Hearts R > Graces F > Berseria > Zestiria
Nanashrew
Member
(08-13-2017, 11:07 AM)
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Symphonia was my first Tales. Currently playing through Vesperia and loving it.

Originally Posted by Hero of Legend

Dawn of the New World for Wii was my first one and I LOVED it! The monster-catching system was tons of fun. Honestly a Symphonia 3 on Switch taking after it with that system intact (and with higher production values) would be HUGE for me.

I honestly wonder where they would even go with that though. Dawn of the new World was in between Symphonia and Phantasia. Would it be another in between? Or would it be another prequel or an actual sequel to Phantasia? I feel like another in between would just mess with the timeline as Phantasia already plays with time travel to show the events of the Ragnarok war that killed the Yggdrasil tree and you altering the timeline to save it. They sort of establish a beginning middle and end, with some uhh continuity errors here and there too along the way.

I think a sequel to Phantasia would be neat, because the way Aselia timeline operates is birth, life, death, rebirth. So something in the distant future after everyone has forgotten the events of Phantasia and another great war as the backdrop.
=GabrielKnight=
Member
(08-13-2017, 11:23 AM)
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My first Tales of was Symphonia, and it's still my favourite.

It was simply perfect: classic jrpg setting, awesome graphics at the time, awesome dungeons (small, but each one of them had puzzles), good story and characters.

What I don't like in modern tales is the missing world map: that field-town-dungeon-field... scheme does not give the same sense of exploration that a classic world map gave until Vesperia. Also, I don't like how they managed the equipment and skill systems in Zestiria and Berseria: complex and useless.

How I'd rank the Tales of I've played:

Symphonia > Vesperia > Abyss > Berseria > Zestiria > Graces F > Xillia > Xillia 2 > Legendia
SolVanderlyn
Thanos acquires the fully powered Infinity Gauntlet in The Avengers: Infinity War, but loses when all the superheroes team up together to stop him.
(08-13-2017, 11:24 AM)
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Originally Posted by Nanashrew

Symphonia was my first Tales. Currently playing through Vesperia and loving it.



I honestly wonder where they would even go with that though. Dawn of the new World was in between Symphonia and Phantasia. Would it be another in between? Or would it be another prequel or an actual sequel to Phantasia? I feel like another in between would just mess with the timeline as Phantasia already plays with time travel to show the events of the Ragnarok war that killed the Yggdrasil tree and you altering the timeline to save it. They sort of establish a beginning middle and end, with some uhh continuity errors here and there too along the way.

I think a sequel to Phantasia would be neat, because the way Aselia timeline operates is birth, life, death, rebirth. So something in the distant future after everyone has forgotten the events of Phantasia and another great war as the backdrop.

Honestly, there is a lot to go off of based on Phantasia's backstory. We've seen VERY little of Derris Kharlan, have no idea what the city of Thor is all about and why it's sunken, etc. There's a huuuuge gap of time in between DotNW and Phantasia. I'm not saying we need to see this explored, but it most definitely is ripe for doing so.
ponpo
( ≖‿≖)
(08-13-2017, 11:35 AM)
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Phantasia, Destiny, Destiny 2 and Remake are the only games in the series I enjoy. ToD is one of my favourite games and I can't stand any of ones I didn't mention, older ones like Symphonia included I guess the battle system has improved a lot but the games themselves are boring and ugly to me.

Destiny is so amazing though, damn. One of the best JRPG soundtracks, great sprite backgrounds,

And philia

Swass
Member
(08-13-2017, 11:37 AM)
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I went into Graces F blind on a random gamefly rental and absolutely fell in love with it and the series. I have since played Symphonia Chronicles, Abyss, Xillia 1 and 2, Vesperia and Legendia. I still have Zestiria and Hearts R in my backlog and will pick up Berseria when I can snag it on the cheap.

Graces F still stands as my favorite because I loved the fighting and the complexities of the shard system and the dualizer. I also loved the story and characters even though I know this is where the game gets slammed by fans..

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