Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World (2008 Video Game)
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As for the characters, well it's a different story. Emil, the lead male is a sad, soppy and soggy boy that could easily be mistaken for a girl. He even has a high pitched voice! He goes through the game having his angst moments and converting personalities into the Demon Lord every now and then but when he's normal Emil he's afraid to speak up for himself. There is next to no character development because it's always Emil the scared one and Ratatosk (alter ego) the strong one. Marta, the lead female is the most annoying tales girl to date. Tales of has many annoying loli girls but this one just takes the biscuit! Apart from having the most annoying voice actor in the world she has the most pointless character. She yearns for Emil to love and protect her but then turns around on him and starts trying to stand up for him. She's the most contradicting tales character to date!
The original Tales cast of the game has been completely ruined by shoddy voice acting and personality changes to the max. Lloyd is now an evil man who travels alone, Colette is no longer stupid, Genis thinks he's about 80, Raine is too soft on people, Zelos doesn't flirt, Sheena is to friendly, Presea talks so, so much and Regal has become the type of guy who would skip around a field throwing out cookies. A great cast ruined!
As far as the story goes, you will be disappointed. The "Centurions" are beasts that have shrines in the same temple of the Summon Spirits. They have their own "Centurion Cores" which play part in awakening Ratatosk, the Demon Lord who once guarded the Giant Kharlan Tree but abandoned it because everyone "Killed it" as he put it. The Centurion's are basically Summon Spirits. No originality there. Not only are there no summon spirits in the game but there Temples have been taken over and are now known as Centurion Temples. Quite ridiculous. The journey of the story is that Emil, Marta and the Centurion Tenebrae will meet up with members of the existing Symphonia cast to try and collect the Centurion Cores before Lloyd (now evil) and the Vanguard, which is basically the same as Cruxis except they are not thought of as Holy and non of the villains have giant wings. The story, in my opinion had loads of potential but it seemed rush and there wasn't much to it. The spoilers were typical and the lack of character development in it just made it grow tiring.
Would I recommend this game? If you like spin-off, non mother ship titles, then yes. If you like games like Abyss, then no.
Pros- The game's story moves at a much faster pace then the first one. This is not necessarily a good thing though, but I will get to that later.
Mystic arts are actually required game-play mechanics complete with portrait. Well for the main characters anyway.In the first game you had to do some special mind-numbing crap just to see it.
You get to see the rest of the Symphonia cast and they even join your party, but you don't have to buy anything for them at all. They come pre-equipped and pre-leveled with each coming and leaving of your party,and they level cap at 50. This might seem like a problem for some, but I didn't care. It just meant that I wouldn't have to worry about leveling them up, and also their mystic artes alone are more powerful then the two main characters even with the level cap.
World Map- LOVE IT. No more having to walk for 30 minutes or more around terrain to get to the next town complete with monsters trying to attack you. The map in this game is point and click. The world map pops up. You point the wii remote or scroll down to where you want to go and you're there.
Gameplay- real time like the first game.
All skits are voiced thank god unlike the first one. Does wonders for character development.
Tenebrae-The summon..er Centurion of Darkness that travels with the two main characters Emil and Marta. He provides most of the witty and funny dialog. He's a snarky gem.
Cons- Plot-Its faster but still boring.You are practically playing the same confusing and convoluted story of the first game. Mostly just names of things are different.The main bad guys in the story are called the Vanguard,but you could just call them Cruxis without the angel element. You have to find centurion cores which are basically summon spirits to stop their dastardly plan which isn't that much different from the first games plan. There is a twist at the end. However,....
There's a reason you hadn't heard of centurion cores or even a hint of them from the first game because they were Retconned in.Guess where the centurion cores you have to collect are? Hint:your first thought is probably right. Also off the top of my head you go to three new places, but that's really so the makers could pretend like you aren't playing the first game all over again. Did you think you would never have to see the darkness and lightening temples again? Nor their throw the controllers against the wall puzzles? Think again.
Characters-Marta. She is damn annoying. Emil I like. He's sweet and quite.Its Ratatosk a bad-a** that's to much of an a** that I don't. The original cast voices, with the exception of Colette and Presea, have been changed for the worst. Looking at you Lloyd and Zelos.
So and So has left the party.Formation has changed. Get used to seeing those words a lot.
Player Berserk button- "Courage is the magic that turns dreams into reality." You'll be seeing this line A LOT as well. Sometimes complete with redundant flashback.
Graphics-Kinda bad. They really look like game-cube graphics.Which is sad and surprising this being on the Wii a next gen system.
Monster hunting- Think Pokemon. You have to spellbound monsters in battle. It's unfortunately mandatory especially for a certain fight at the end of the game. The problem is that they suck. Their point is to make your team four. You can switch them with other human characters when the symphonia cast joins you,but since they often leave a lot you are stuck with two monsters of your choosing. They have higher HP and MP and level up much, much quicker then Emil and Marta. However, they don't do sh*t in battle so what good are they? Plus they can have full HP,but if your two human characters die its game-over, no exceptions, regardless.
Anime Cutscenes- There's ONE,and its the INTRO. You know the scenes that flash with the theme song when you first pop the CD in? That intro.Even the first game had more than that even if it was sadly mostly of buildings.