Tales of Symphonia Apr 13, 2020 5:46:15 GMT -5
Post by Bytor on Apr 13, 2020 5:46:15 GMT -5
So the question here is do you like a typical looking "cartoonish" JRPG? Having said that if the answer is yes, then you are going to love the graphics. If the answer is no I imagine you're going to have a hard time playing this game regardless of whether I give it a great review. There are some cutscenes which favor a decent anime but they are few and far between. The backgrounds, enemies and dungeons/forest/mountains etc. vary in whether they are in battle (enemies look pretty good in battle) or whether you are traversing through a field, pretty generic then however. Still overall I had no issues with the graphics. No clipping, weird angles, etc. So...like the look, agree with me, don't and subtract .5 lol
Repetitious, monotonous, unassuming, unobtrusive, etc. Get the picture? Here's the deal though, the music is actually pretty good. However, it's one of those things where you hear the same thing over and over and over and eventually you simply tune it out, which is not always a bad thing at all.
OK. Let's start by saying if you have ever played a Tales game before you are going to feel right at home. Having said that this is going to be a good news bad news situation. Fist the bad news, this is by far the easiest battle system in any Tales game I have ever played. So if you are looking for a difficult system in this aspect I imagine you will be disappointed. Thus admitted, you can make it harder. Now don't get me wrong, it still has all of the customization of other versions, united attack, tech attacks, elemental add-ons, various strategies which can be utilized and many different weapons for each of your allies. But...none of that is necessary. get "lost" in a dungeon and grind for a few hours and even the boss battles become somewhat of a hack and slash/button masher. I only had trouble with one boss and that was bad luck. I immediately fought him again and destroyed him without ever even using a heal potion, although full disclosure Raine was in my party and she uses support magic. Now the good news, you like all of what I just said? Well then you're golden for this game, lol. You agree with the bad news you'll subtract 2 points from my score. You like the good news then add 2 lol. So, in a nutshell you have basic attacks, you also have tech attacks which consume TP (technical points) and you have united attacks where everyone attacks at once. Tech attacks are set up to the various control buttons and you also have items like any other RPG to renew health and TP. The various equipment also gives you added attacks and/or defense and you can set each of your allies strategies to attack freely, attack same, support, long range etc. Honestly, I had a good time with the system, it was fun to play around and while it wasn't really necessary to change a lot of things constantly it still entertained me without making me rage quit. Having said all of that I would be remiss if I didn't mention one slight (lol) issue which did strain my patience. The dungeon puzzles are at times freaking hard to figure out to say the least. There is a ton, and I mean a ton of flip this switch, leave this room, go up three flights of stairs, flip this switch, go down four flights of different stairs, go through eight more rooms and flip this switch, then head back to the first switch and flip it, then head back to the third and flip it etc. Now in and of itself that is simply a tad annoying, BUT, every time you leave one room the enemies regenerate. Yep, you WILL kill the same enemies over and over and over and over, and I admit, even I who loves grinding at times almost lost my mind. It's bad enough trying to decipher a puzzle (with very, very few hints by the way) but it does makes matter worse when it is constant, and I mean constant fighting.
Friendship, love, trust, personal growth and realizing the world is much more than what you thought it was once. These same tropes sum up pretty much every Tales again. What makes them different is the different personalities and growths the various characters exhibit. The main cast in this iteration is Lloyd (a simple boy living in a small village who was adopted a small child by a dwarf) Colette (one of his classmates and best friends who is The Chosen who is destined to reawaken a goddess to save the world) and Genis (their best friend and the class A student). The story evolves as they travel the world to help Colette regenerate the world. Along the way they meet many other allies and enemies and find out that there are actually two worlds in symbiosis. As mana depletes in one world it accumulates in another. Lloyd and company eventually find this out and become determined to save both worlds. Along the way there are many side quests for your party to complete (or not, lol). Like many Tales stories it not really that original although this one does have some twists and turns. What makes it shine though is, like all Tales games, the characters and their interactions. I can only wish FF games would place this much emphasis on their games. It's a shame that a lot of American gamers are not as familiar with Tales as FF cause they are missing out.
PS I know i didn't say much about the story...but trust me, anything I said would ruin it. It's seriously got a ton of surprises and it IS absolutely NOT as simple as you think in the beginning.
Overall while some cliches and tropes were very evident it was a fun and challenging game (without being over the top hard) which had enjoyable characters (Colette's somewhat constant "poor everyone" not withstanding) and a really good story. Like all Tales games the most important thing is the growth and development of the characters and this game was certainly no different. A solid game which will provide at least 50 odd hours (closer to 200 to platinum) of fun and it will keep you engrossed in the twists and turns of the story as well. Highly recommended!