Review by ScrawlKnight
"One of the best RPGs ever released!"
I only bought Tales of Symphonia recently. I had thought about getting for a long time, but my money needed to go elsewhere. Man, I wish I bought it when it first came out. This is probably the best RPGs I have ever played and one of my favourite games. Ever.
Beautiful gameplay. Follows the classic RPG Battle style, but its new and innovative for those who are sick of walking around a world map and randomly running into invisible enemies. On the world map you have the usual set out; enemies, towns, scenery. However Tales has enemies as physical objects you can run into or avoid at your leisure. Very nice for a change. In battle there are no turn based here! All Real Time action, for those of you who have played Super Smash Bros. it will remind you a bit of that (on a smaller scale) and you'll, at the start, be trying to use SSB Controls! The actual style, depending on what character you play as, has you doing everything from summoning spirits and using sword techniques to healing and casting magic. In towns everything's back to normal and theres plenty of interesting stuff to explore and figure out. There's also a heap of side quests to keep you busy!
Amazing. The graphics have been beautifully done, they're nice, sweet and very appropriate. They really bring you into the world. The characters look beautiful, they have all been done very well and you find yourself drawn to them in no time. Same with the scenery. Well done, engaging and brings you into the world and makes you feel as if your there. Enemies are all pretty good too, and some of the bosses look awesome! There is not as much to look at in terms of objects on the world map as you may be used to, but thats simply because, well two things. One, its not needed and two the maps so huge it could be too much!
Not much to say here except the sound it great. Battle music is nice and the world map music will have you humming it for ages. Theres also some good dramatic music in some of the cut-scenes as well as soothing background music while in the field.
The game starts of rather easy, but does get more challenging as you go. Especially if you choose to take on some of the optional side quests. Most of the puzzles aren't too hard to figure out, however some will take a while. Mainly its the battles that will keep you trying to win as some are extremely difficult. It's just at the right difficulty level really.
Tales has a fantastic storyline. I won't reveal too much so you can enjoy it yourself, but here it goes. The Goddess Martel has gone into a deep sleep and because of that, the Tree of Mana, which gives magic and life to the world is fading. The chosen, who is the daughter of Angels, must regenerate the world by breaking the seals. Its a lot deeper and engaging than that, but I don't want to reveal too much! By the end you will really be attached to all the characters though!
Replay Value 10/10:
Well, the manual states you'll get 80+ hours of gameplay. I got about 40 hours, but thats without doing any sidequests. And trust me, there is plenty. Also, once you beat the game you can play on Mania difficulty or just make the battles harder. But its so good you'll wanna play it again!
Or you could play again and control a different character for variety.... There's also this massive optional dungeon that takes a very, very long time to complete.
If you're not convinced by my review to buy this game... then go buy it anyway! You're missing out if you love RPGs and haven't played this one yet! If you're not as committed to the genre this is a pretty heavy one to start with, but chances are you'll love it anyway!
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 06/09/08
Game Release: Tales of Symphonia (EU, 11/19/04)
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