"Why this wasn't made sooner is a real question"

As everyone knows, Tales of Symphonia is the newest and probably the best RPG on Gamecube since Skies of Arcadia: Legends. This game has cel shaded graphics and a few well done anime cut scenes for you to watch, it is also consisted of 2 discs and there is so much for you to do in this game. With over 80 hours of play with all of the side quests and little "skits" completed, this game will keep you busy for a very long time

Sound... ?
I don't really know why anyone cares about sound but I guess that it is alright by me, I have never really payed attention to it, but the opening cutscene in the game features an orchestra. I guess it's somewhere around and 8-10

Controls 9-10
The controls in this game a very easy and also have many variations to customize them to your liking, so you can use them to your own desire. You can customize your skills that are learned throughout the game to either a combination of a direction and B or up or down on the C joystick. The characters respond instantly to a command so there will be no delays on the games part, just hope that you can keep up with them.

Gameplay 10-10
This is where the game kills all other competition, aside from the fact that you can control when and what you fight, that's right, the monsters are shown on the map so you can decide if you will fight or not, by simply moving around them or choosing to engage. The battle system is very fast paced so you will not tire on it easily, you can very easily take out a bunch of enemies in a matter of seconds. No, don't worry, this is not bad, because the battles move so quickly since they are not turn based, it's the linear motion battle system which in lamest terms is kind of like a mini street fighter with 3 other people on you side and a different number of enemies. This game has an "A.I" that you set for the computer (there are over 30 different settings for each A.I controlled character, and if you want to play multiplayer, well then, go ahead. Just hook up some controllers, not Gameboys, but Gamecube controllers so you can fight alongside with friends, although the camera tends to wonder off of your friends and mainly focus on teh main character, which is you. You have the ability to gaurd enemy attacks b the push of a button, this is very use and required in most fights. This game has cutscenes, and most of the time they always have voices, you can also decide the outcome of some situations by making choices of what to say and do.

Graphics 9-10
Personally, I don't have a problem with cel shading, it doesn't bother me at all, the style is very anime-ish and fits extremely well with this kind of game. The game especially shows you what it can do with the few exiting anime cutscenes that it offers for you. But... every now and then you will see the screen blur in some places and it may hurt you eyes, but only very few glitches reside inside this masterpiece of an RPG.

Replay value 8-10
I personally play RPG's more than once, and in this one, when you beat it, you get to keep something called "grade points" and carry them over to a new game after you beat the first one, they allow you to buy a different number of things. So every time that you play this game, it will ahve different things available for you.

Rent or Buy?
Well I actually just bought it as soon as it came out, and I love it, it has the best graphics for the Gamecube so far, even thought you may think cel shading is lame, it isn't anymore close to it, I'd say buy this game if you have 50 bucks, but if not, try and rent it while the copies are still in the store.

Overall Rating
Like a 8.5-9.5, definitely worth playing and will keep you extremely busy

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 07/15/04

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