Review by Ashios

"An exceptional RPG"

I will say it now, Tales of Vesperia is a very, very enjoyable game. Those who love (J)RPGS will be addicted to this game. Everyone else should also find this game very entertaining.

PLOT/CHARACTERS:
Basically you start off as some guy who lives in the lower quarter (poor) area in the capital city and someone steals the Blastia core from the water fountain (Blastia can serve as pretty much anything from weapons to supplying water, basically). You, Yuri Lowell, chase this thief and it ends up being a massive adventure to save the world (with a fair amount of plot twists). Other characters also join you in your endeavour but I won't spoil anything. I've completed the game and I can say that it was a decent story, nothing too special but nonetheless enjoyable. However it was the characters that stand out especially as each has their own story to tell, and they also interact with each other very well and we see some good development between them in their 'skits' which are optional pieces of dialogue that you can view at certain times (quite often at that).
- 8.5 / 10

GRAPHICS:
The graphics are very clean in this game, cel shaded and pleasing to the eye. Anime fans should adore this and to others, it shouldn't be a bad thing. The environments look nice and are diverse, however if you ever get the chance to look closely, the graphics aren't really that impressive but you could say it's very well covered up by the cel shading. The world map, which you spend traversing across from city to city to dungeon etc, isn't very detailed at all but that is usually expected for a place like that, it is bearable though. The characters though, once again look very good and animations are smooth, monsters also look very nice.
- 8.5 / 10

MUSIC/SOUND/DUB:
The soundtrack of this game is a very good one overall, the battle themes sound awesome and the music that acompanies you in each place matches it very well. Sound effects are typical, nothing crazy but it does the job. I wasn't expecting much from the voice overs but I was wrong, the dubbing is very well done and none of them sounded particularly bad. Every single skit is voiced but not all of the story dialogue in the game is voiced, it's a bit dodgy as sometimes you may hear a random section voiced and then a vital part of the storyline isn't. Otherwise voice overs as a whole are quite good.
- 9 / 10

GAMEPLAY:
The meat and soul of any game is in here. This game plays very well, the battle system is extremely well done and very enjoyable. In games like this I usually find myself escaping battles because they become too tedious but in this game? Nope, I fought every single encounter. On that note, monster encounters in this game is not random, instead you run into them on the overworld map - a good thing. Battles start off fairly slow paced as there's nothing much you can combo. Later on though it literally becomes a fighting game and becomes even more fun. The difficulty can be changed, but most would start playing on 'normal' and on this difficulty it is fairly easy except for this one boss early on, the programmers must've been on crack during this or something but unless you're overleveled, this boss should give you some trouble. Overall the gameplay is very well done
- 9 / 10

OVERALL
This game is a must for those who love RPGs, everyone else should try it out and get addicted just the same. This game doesn't fail in any particular area and is a very well rounded and refined game.
- 8.75 / 10 ROUNDED TO 9/10


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 10/14/09

Game Release: Tales of Vesperia (AU, 07/02/09)


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