Tales Of Arise, Review. A Bridge Between The Past And The Future
The latest installment in the Tales of franchise breaks many models while maintaining a connection to the past, presenting us with an inadvertent game.
Alphen, a masked man who is unable to feel pain or remember his past. Shionne, a woman who transmits pain to those who touch her. These are the main characters of the most ambitious latest titles of the Tales of Sagaby Bandai Namco. And they come with a few surprises under their arm. This is Tales of Arise, the newest and most pioneering game in a series with 25 years of history.
The plot takes place on a world called Dahna, which was invaded by neighbors of its twin planet, Rena, 300 years ago. Since then, the Dahns have been saved and treated as free labor in a regime that endangered torture, death and injustice. From those who are forced to perform forced labor to death in Calaglia, to those who suffer the scourge of the Cyslodia intelligence service, to those who have been brainwashed in Ganath Haros, the victims of the profession are innumerable, and few dare to rebel. Our main character, Alphen, finds prey for this system, and never questioned the condition in which he had to live. But one day, when he meets the Shannon Rhenish, who is persecuted by his countrymen for alleged treason, our hero decides to break his chains to come to her aid … even though it’s not exactly a dam that needs to be rescued.
Lots of steps forward
From this point on, we are given a taut task: the lords of Rhine chase the five kingdoms of Dahna to end their tyranny and free the slaves. On the way we will meet allies who will make our task easier, such as the wizard Rinwell, the Law of Warriors, the Kisara soldier, and even the lord of Rhenish himself, Dohalim, who refuses to be part of the cycle of ruins and atrocities. . Together with them, we will embark on an adventure that will take us far beyond what we imagined, and teach us that there is far more than two sides in any conflict.
At the plot level, this game is Tales of Outright. We can find elements that classics from the franchise already remind us of: a few worlds, as in Tales of Eternia and Tales of Symphonia; the consequences of racism and discrimination, as in Tales of Phantasia and Tales of Vesperia; civilizations with very uneven levels of technological development, as in Tales of Graces and Tales of Hearts … in short, it presents us with an easily recognizable panorama for all those who have played previous installments, though he makes sure, as usual, that he would add endless surprises and novels so that he does not become repetitive.
The biggest feature that has caught the attention of fans since we first saw the Tales of Arise trailers is the graphics: the visual aspect of this game leaves the minimalism and shading of the previous installments to present us with truly amazing scenarios and frenzied action that looks great. It is enough to walk through the burning moors of Calaglia, or to observe the beauty of the landscape of Elde Menancia, to realize that Bandai Namco attached as much importance to graphics as they did in Tales of Phantasia., The icon that broke all the boundaries of the Super NES. And not only do they look great, but they also follow a strong naughty artistic direction, although it gives a realistic touch to the environments, which distinguishes them very well from other games of the same genre and gives them their own personality. .
How could he do otherwise, the soundtrack is again by legendary composer Motoi Sakuraba, and it would not be an exaggeration to say that this is one of his best recent inventions. From the frigid and devious notes of the snow fields of Cyslodia, to the disturbing touches but with a touch of a fairy tale from Mahag Saar, the music creates a wonderful atmosphere that envelops us and invites us to immerse ourselves in the colorful settings around us.
The best fight of the saga?
The gaming experience itself has evolved significantly from previous installments. The development team led a presentation more dynamic, even cinematic progression that makes the story unfold in a less talented and fluid way. This also applies to the design of the levels which is greatly improved, for the most part, compared to other games in the series; now they are more interactive, more interesting, and have a bigger personality. When they force you to immerse yourself in a fort that performs palace functions, you actually believe that there are people who normally live there and perform their functions in that place. This is the case, for example, of an implied V palace, where it has the usual rooms (library, guard room, employee rooms, etc.) but which becomes intact, through a few mechanisms of inhibition of progress, later- new dungeon. That’s almost everything: the most important thing is to make them believable, and not to make them a maze of corridors full of enemies. You also need to investigate, immerse yourself in the lore of the game, solve the framework as if it were a puzzle, making them much more interesting and fun to play.
This fluidity also applies skits as characteristic of the franchise. Whereas previously they were just avatars of the characters talking while looking directly at the camera, these interactions now follow a greater aesthetic sleeve, dividing into panels where the characters justify, move or do the things they have to do. That leaves them with little appreciation, as has already been done, and creates more interest for the player.
We can’t go on without talking about these sidequests. And the big problem that suffers from many JRPGs is the sheer number of these, how insignificant and repetitive they are, or how unfortunate the rewards they give us are compared to the effort we put in. Yes, in Tales of Arise there are also missions to kill X number of monsters, but there is much more than that. The clear way in which it is marked which characters need help and how to give it, the facilities that fast travel offers us, and the way in which they are integrated, they make everything much less heavy for us. In addition, the forged weapon and accessory forging system, as well as the animal care system in the stable, will give us a perfect excuse to thoroughly explore the cases, knowing that the reward is worth it.
Fighting is another area where we are seeing great improvement. Rather than being faster now, there are many new functions, such as the exclusive characteristics of each character that takes advantage of the weakness of this or that type of enemy, or the combinations between two different characters, add touch and interaction to battles that its predecessors did not. The transitions between the beginning and the end of these are also faster, giving us less sense of wasting time. Nonetheless, every JRPG sin involves more fights than necessary, and these are often just a tedious and sometimes tedious procedure. In Tales of Arise, this happens especially in the last close, where they seem to have forgotten how the others were progressing and the player has only thrown a handful of terrible enemies for the hours that were fighting to kill them. Fortunately, this is more of an exception than a rule.
Another problem with the fight is that, although the number and variety of enemies is very interesting at first, there comes a point where these do not stop repeating themselves, even in the case of final district bosses. What promised ends up being a very interesting and interesting and incongruous one, since we have the same species of zeugles (that’s what the monsters are called) wherever we go: dogs, armadillos, golems, gentlemen… in the end, there are only a handful of these, and all we have to do is get used to seeing their faces over and over again.
One aspect that may be exciting for some players, especially those unfamiliar with Tales of, is playing the huge amount of text we can sometimes get. We leave a scene and not one scene, not two, but three visible skits different. We find out from these, and the characters talk to each other as we explore the map. We take two steps, and we are already in another scene. This story is getting worse especially at some point near the end of the story; On the other hand, this happens because we have to give us some very necessary explanations to understand what is to come and, fortunately, it is an interesting moment that will not be too heavy for us. However, anyone who does not know that this franchise was not born around the concept that it is a video game, but a novel, could think of “a lot of text.”
However, Tales of Arise ‘s worst problem is a Spanish translation that makes it desperately needed. The errors are persistent, sometimes multiple in one scene, and can be mainly categorized into three types: normal and common misconceptions, as in the case of “Me hacho muy feliz”; literary translations of idioms performed, which indicate that they are completely lost; and cases where we hear the opposite in English, such as “I’m feeling fine” instead of “I’m not feeling very well.” Considering the scale of this project and the importance of the texts component for the franchise, it is surprising that so many errors could occur so often. It’s a big shame, because it has nothing to do with the game itself or a decision made by the developer team, but with an external dimension. I wish the quality of the translation was in line with everything else.
Finally, Tales of Arise is, at the same time, the most characteristic and pioneering game of its franchise. On the one hand, we can find all the elements that allow us to fall in love with the saga: very significant anesthetic, political and philosophical issues handled with a higher complexity than most JRPGs, characters credible and charismatic they develop deeply across a relentless number of scenarios of all kinds … but, at the same time, it broke with the formula in many aspects, from its exceptional graphics to a level of ambition that we didn’t have recently Zestiria Stories o Berseria Stories.
Given the fluid mechanics, the cinematic portrayal of the plot, the fast and intense combat, the dynamics with which everything is presented, this is a game that only fans of Tales of, or JRPGs can enjoy. ; This may be the most mainstream game of its franchise, and it could be one of the best-selling games in the franchise, without the three not-so-famous Tales of Symphonia, Tales of Vesperia, and Tales of Destiny a unseating.
There is no doubt that Tales of Arise is a game that is enjoyed from start to finish, and we strongly recommend you if you have ever been interested.