I’m a huge fan of NamcoBandai’s Tales-series. Unfortunately Europe has not seen many of their releases, so thank god for being able to import games. Tales of the World caught my eye because it re-introduces many of the famous characters from previous games, but in a whole new world.

Plattform: PSP
Utvecklare: Alfa System
Utgivare: Namco Bandai
Släppdatum: 17 juli 2007 (US)
Köp här: VideoGamesPlus

And, actually, “world” is exaggerating. The land of Terresia, where your very own customized character that you create in the beginning starts off as a Descender of the world’s mana tree, is extremely tiny. There are not a lot of dungeons and there are definitely not many towns. You travel the world by accepting missions from the towns’ citizens and through completing these missions you receive Fame Points. These matter for two things.

One; if you wanna be able to bring along Luke, Kratos, Chester, Tear, Lloyd, Genis or any other Tales-character, you need a fair amount of Fame Points.
The characters themselves make up the group Ad Libitum, working initially to free the city Ailily, without its authorities knowing. As you become a member of Ad Libitum, you can take on different assignments, but only one at a time.

Two; you’ll need to meet a certain Fame Point criteria to get the story moving. If you don’t have enough points, you’re stuck doing mundane tasks until you hit the mark and the story can continue. By the way, “story” is an overstatement. This game does not come with a lot of substance. The true meaning of this game is to bring joy to the Tales-fans who get to see some beloved characters again. Some of my favorites were unfortunately not included, and frankly, it’s important to have at least played some of the original games beforehand, otherwise, some jokes and dialogs will go straight over your head.

Visually, ToW is astounding. It amazes me, as the new PSP-player that I am; how such wonderful graphics can be squeezed out of this little machine. But, even with fantastic graphics and a cheeky soundtrack and I can still feel a bit bored at times. This is explained by the lack of places to go. You visit the same dungeons, over and over again. Sure, the tasks are normally finished within five minutes, and the fast pace of the game is not a bad thing, but the repetitiveness is.  And yet, I find it in my heart to forgive this game’s flaws. The lack of story would normally be the death blow for any RPG, but this is different. It’s amazing how cameo appearances can make even the most hardcore RPGamer go soft.

In a nutshell; don’t expect too much when it comes to variety and story, but while you’re playing, enjoy the funny dialogues and beat the monsters up in Tales’ famed battle system.

Skriven: 2007-08-26