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Tales of the Tempest (Nintendo DS) Preview

The Tales series of RPGs from Namco started out on the Super Nintendo, but has fast become a staple Sony set of role-playing games, with Nintendo fans only receiving Tales of Symphonia on the GameCube and a port of Tales of Phantasia on the GBA in recent years. Now, though, the Tales Studio is ready to release Tales of the Tempest on the Nintendo DS. But can it live up to the wonderful GameCube version?

In recent years there has been a slew of Tales RPGs on the PS2, with Destiny 2, Abyss, Legendia, as well as Rebirth and a port of the GC's Symphonia, and THEN there was even Tales of Eternia from the PSone ported to the PSP as well. Now, just to rub it in Nintendo fans' faces some more, Namco has announced a complete remake of Tales of Destiny on the PS2, plus another remake of Phantasia on the PSP and a fourth in the Tales of the World series that had previously been GBA-exclusive, but now appears to have moved onto the Sony handheld. Therefore, the fact that Nintendo DS owners are getting Tales of the Tempest is something to cling onto until a Wii version is announced. The question is, what can we looks forward to in this new version?

So far the game is down for a 6th August release in Japan, although the date has changed a few times since being unveiled, whilst it is currently unannounced for the US and Europe. However, presumably Nintendo will lend a helping hand with the publishing duties, even just if it is for the multi-language European market, just as it did with both Namco's Tales of Symphonia and Baten Kaitos on the GameCube.

Screenshot for Tales of the Tempest on Nintendo DS

Watching the trailers of the game in full flow shows that Namco's Tales Studio has definitely decided to push the DS far more than it did with Sony's PlayStation Portable for the port of Tales of Eternia (which was almost exactly the same as its original PS form). The characters all appear to be in a cel-shaded, three-dimensional polygon style that originally stunned us all. However, after seeing Square Enix's complete overhaul of Final Fantasy III on the DS, the same company's first scans of Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker and Nintendo's Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, some of the sparkle has disappeared.

But that is not to say we are taking too much away from how gorgeous this game still looks, with its speedy frame-rate looking to ensure battles are as fast-paced and open-ended as ever, rather than going back to the slower, more restrictive nature of Tales of Phantasia. Uses for the top screen that have been shown range from character details during battles and an overhead map. It has not been revealed whether conversations will take place there as well, although it seems the most natural option.

Screenshot for Tales of the Tempest on Nintendo DS

As for how the story unfolds, six of the game's characters have been revealed so far, with the protagonist being a 15 year old boy called Caius Qualls, who lives with his foster father in a sleepy deep within Areuura. Poor Caius knows nothing about his real dad, but is eventually thrown a small bone when he and his foster father become separated. The two had been fighting a monster called Spot that was attacking the village, but the inhabitants discovered that Caius's foster father was in fact a Lycanth (strange human-monster hybrid) and drove him, Caius, and good friend Rubia out forever. Priest Soldiers stalked their exit, so the foster father used himself as a decoy to let the youngsters flee to safety, directing Caius toward the capital city, in search of his real dad.

Other than the characters involved, Namco has not really released much information about the title so far, but you can piece together some ideas from the backgrounds of each person revealed so far. For instance there is Caius' young female friend, 15-year-old Rubia Natwick who has lived in the same frontier village for many years. She had been planning to head to the capital city for study purposes, but is now set to take revenge on the person who murdered her priest parents, Lukius Bridges. He is the right-hand man of the pope and leader of the group of Priest Soldiers that chased after Caius. He aims to wipe out any Lycanths (the half-human, half-creature beings, like Caius' foster father), hiding his horrific acts behind a mask that he never removes.

Then there are three others involved in the game: Tilkis Barone, Forrest Ledoyen and Arria Eckbergh. Tilkis is an 18-year-old man who actually hails from a place far away from Areuura and is on a completely separate mission

Worth waiting for?

The Tales series has barely taken a step in the wrong direction so far, bar the rather average Legendia on PS2, so there are really high hopes for Namco's latest DS effort. Hopefully with Final Fantasy III out in the same month it will not be completely overshadowed!

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07.07.2006

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Developer

Tales

Publisher

Namco

Genre

Real Time RPG

Players

4

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  n/a

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  10/10 (40 Votes)

European release date None   North America release date None   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date None   

Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Preview

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Just hope this gets announced for the West pretty damn quickly. Legendia FLOPPED in the US, but Abyss is likely to do better as it's apparently a far improved game and will get pushed more. TotT will hopefully follow Abyss's quality...

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Released in the same month as FF3 that isn't good strategy for high sales figures


Mike Gee of iZINE said, "...The Verve, as he promised, had become the greatest band in the world. Most of the critics agreed with him. Most paid due homage. The Verve were no longer the question mark or the clich. They were the statement and the definition."
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Three weeks before Final Fantasy III might just give it a chance...but I do totally agree that sales will be stunted quicker than if it WASN'T up against the mighty FFIII! :roll:

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Looking forward to this one, nice work Adam. :Smilie Shame it'll get a bit throttled by FF3...

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Thanks Mike. Namco seemed to waltz along with the mightily impressive TotT, then up came Square Enix to blow it out of the water.

The big bully! :lol:

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Pff... Screw Final Fantasy. I'd rather play a game than an interactive cut scene. Personally I think it's the best looking game on the DS yet. Awesome 3D-ness

Still a proud member of the 'omfg amazing water in games' society

from the two images that you have there i have to say that this game is looking fantastic. will look for some more around. if it is more symphonia than legendia i'll be happy.

i need more Tales games for my GC:(

Y WON'T THEY MAKE ANY NEW TALES GAMES OR AT LEAST A REMAKE!!!!!:p:Smilie


hey guys have been looking for some extra footage of this one as i'm really looking forward to it. it seems to play more like symphonia from the trailer that i've seen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irI6UCO4mFI
if this link works it will take you to a cool but short ad. i want this game now that i've seen it running.
enjoy

the cel shading rocks on this one and i'm more impressed by these visuals than ffiii at the mo but i need to see that one moving abit more. great looking ds games seem to be the in thing at the mo.

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

That's the trailer I saw as well - looks really good. I wonder if Namco will be able to squeeze in any cut-scenes similar to the gorgeous ones seen in FFIII so far?

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Hey, didn't the Tales of Symphonia port for the PS2 only get released in Japan?


twitter: @bensoutham
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Yes, Namco cheated Nintendo fans in Japan, but Symphonia remained exclusive to the GameCube in the West. Legendia died in the US, so I'm not sure if its Euro released has been shelved. Abyss looks great, but don't think Rebirth will make it to the US, unfortunately.

I was gutted when I read about Tales of the World 4 coming to PSP, after the first three were Game Boy exclusive :-(

amtrid, you sound like you only read Page 1 of the preview...?

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

Looks good and will probably get it I just hope it dosn't drag on and on and on like symphonia.

XBL Gamertag: James2t3
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

As much as I loved Symphonia, I know what you mean Blade, as I never got round to finishing it. Looking at guides I'd say I made it to the 3/4 mark...but just grew tired. Being a handheld adventure I reckon it might be scaled back a bit more, which could definitely work to its advantage.

Fingers crossed, eh? :Smilie

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

jesusraz i did only read one page cos i got too excited and went hunting for video.

is't lrgrndia the one on the psp. if it is then while it looks alright the game overall is not a patch on symphonia.

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Just read the first paragraph, after the intro, and it tells you which Tales is on which system. But, to break it down for everyone:

  • Phantasia (SNES)
  • Destiny (PSone)
  • Eternia (PSone)
  • Phantasia Port (PSone)
  • Destiny 2 (PS2)
  • Rebirth (PS2)
  • Symphonia (GC)
  • Abyss (PS2)
  • Symphonia Port (PS2)
  • Legendia (PS2)
  • Eternia Port (PSP)
  • Phantasia Port (GBA)
  • Future games:

  • Tales of Voice (XBOX 360)
  • Tales of Destiny Remake (PS2)
  • Tales of Phantasia Full Voice Edition (PSP)
  • Tales of the World 4 (PSP)
  • Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
    Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

    Thanks, jesusraz. I needed this list!

    I saw the pictures and got excited. 3D-handheld-games are looking wonderful. I am growing somewhat tired (blame me, shame!) of the classic GBA-RPG. FFIII and Phantasia are looking wonderful, though.
    And I saw on your teaser-photo:

    Image for


    that the hero may change into a fox. How cool is that? I want this game...!

    I find your lack of faith disturbing!

    sorry, I can't edit my previous post, so I have to add a new one:

    I find it very hard for us gamers to follow the Tales Of... series, because they are getting released on so many different platforms. I would play more of this series, but I do not want to buy every console to buy every part of the series.
    Shame, because it has a lot of promising ideas. I loved Symphonia, laughed about the heroes, wanted to get every single talk they do via the little avatar-pictures on screen.
    I hope this game here gets published soon... It looks just as good as FFIII...

    I find your lack of faith disturbing!

    This game will bo doubt reach the West. Nintendo will probably publish it.

    They won't give up the chance to show the graphics whore nation that is America that the DS can produce stunning 3D graphics.

    I'm just hoping that this is not the only entry in the Tales series to grace the DS.

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