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Steam Secret Santa 2015


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I'd be interested in what you think of that, Rikku, because I've been thinking about getting it but read a lot of conflicting opinions that don't really give any reasons as to why (either good or bad).

Not really sure where to start with this! I've played it for about 8 hours now, so barely scratched the surface, but first impressions are very enjoyable. It's very typical of a tales game so far in the story sense, young hero out to save the world with his group of buddies. So far, in my opinion, they are all good characters and nobody is stand out annoying (Ala Rikku or Vanille :P). The voice acting is not incredible, but it also doesn't make me want to skip scenes or claw my eyes out. The music is wonderful and it looks pretty enough, very typical of a tales game. Have spoilered some screen shots below for you.

Combat wise it's very confusing, even for a seasoned Tales player like myself. It throws a LOT at you very, very quickly and it's a bit mindblowing. Especially as there are quite a lot of combat differences to previous games. Just as you are getting to grips with practicing one thing, yet another pop up appears explaining yet another mechanic for you to take on board. It's rather frustrating, but something I'm able to forgive. It also feels like forever before you are actually thrown in to an area to be able to freely get to grips with the combat. And it also starts your character of in semi automatic mode, which I changed right away to manual. It tries to be helpful and encourages you to use the auto functions until you get to grips with everything, but I learn by doing, and if I wasn't doing what it was telling me to do then I would forget all about the feature. There is something new to the series called Armitization (sp?) which lets you essentially fuse with another member of your party and enables you to perform their artes in battle. Which again is bloody awesome, but when you take control you have no clue what their artes are unless you have spent a lot of time in the menus reading about each of the artes and how they go together with combos. I checked out my records and out of the 8ish hours I've spent playing 1hr 20 of that has been in menus. :lol: There is also the E and G fusions for your equipment skills, so each weapon / equipment has 4 slots for skills and by matching them in the skills table you unlock special boosters which are applied to your character. It's actually quite a deep system compared to the other games in the series I have played. You can also Fuse items of the same name to make +1 and +2, etc versions of the items which have so far resulted in sealed stats for me! Not sure how I go about unlocking them...I've probably weakened my characters by going overboard on the Fusing. :D I also just realised that the herbs I have been picking up give permanent stat boosts to my characters, I was saving them. I'm always loathe to use these items in the game because I'm scared that at some point a very weak character is going to join my party and I'll want to boost them, then I never end up using them.

I haven't found much in the way of side missions or anything yet, and the dungeons I have been in have been quite linear so far (despite the open world nature of the game). But like I say, I'm still very early in to the game. So yeah, first impressions are great despite everything I have said about the combat. I don't think that any of those things are going to make it a bad game, it's a lot of fun and seems to be a lot of mix and matching to get the skills / fusions right. I'm sure at some point I will check out a guide! :)

Spoilered Screenshots:







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