Ok im being a little bit hyperbolic in the title but in all seriousness this game is absolutely massive, packed to the ever-loving rafters with side quests bonuses etc it’s like it’s never ending.
This is Tales Of Vesperia.
Now right off the bat im going to come out an admit that this is the only “Tales” game that I have ever played (there have been so many released down the years that its strange I had never played one before, but hey, first time for everything).
The game came out in 2008 which I had pre ordered for release day and it blew me away (literally!….. Ok not literally), as I had absolutely no expectation for the game I went in to it completely blind, and not only did it raise the bar, it shot it into orbit. The visuals for one are extremely pretty, and not in the dull grey gears of war, fallout 3, pretty, but this is colourful, vibrant and oh so pleasing to the eye, while it has its styling kind of rooted in anime, although I wouldn’t say the graphical style isn’t completely like that as it throws in a helping of cell shading in the process.
I’d better mention what genre the game is before I really launch into this! It’s a JRPG series, and as I said its been around for donkeys years.
Anyway, to explain why I put it never ends at the end of the title (In an affectionate way I assure you) was because this game is absolutely massive, the amount of play time you can get out of this is absolutely monstrous with added new game+ mode and extras thrown in that’ll remove the level cap or give you other bonuses during your next playing through. Going back to my old save game files I have clocked in 300+ hours over the original save (which was for the story) and the new game + (ex) which was very everything else, and also trying to squeeze out those particularly tricky achievements like a difficult shit. As we all know RPG’s seem to have the hardest achievements to get in terms of the planning, detail and utterly finickity precision that you need to even be able to think of 100% one of them, and Tales Of Vesperia is no different.
(Yep, that is in fact a dog with a pipe…)
Rather than the achievements being insanely difficult, they are time-consuming. Currently I have 40/50 achievements for it, and if i manage to get them all. ill definitely rank it up as one of my favourites that ill have completed. What complicates matters are that there are an absolute ton of side activities to do, and with plenty of secret achievements to get, you’re going to have to do everything to be on the safe side…
For example you gain Titles throughout the game for each character. They don’t really do much but for you completionists and OCD sufferers out there it’s another load of stuff to do! And some of them you can only really get going through the game multiple times. To break this all up though are genuinely funny, quirky moments. For instance once you get to a certain point in the game you can visit a bathhouse (after paying a butt ton of gold… er sorry “Gald” in the process of course.) and while you soak in the baths one of your compatriots tries to sneak a peek at the ladies section (which of course have been screened off, so no perving!), it’s those little quirky moments that offer a nice breather from the regular stuff.
The rest of the characters are all varied and quite interesting to get to know and to learn their strengths and weaknesses during battle. Even though there is the pre-requisite little kid who pops up in literally EVERY JRPG known to man, but ill let this one slide as this one is actually vaguely likeable. As for the main character “Yuri” I think he is one of my favourite JRPG main characters ive ever played, The voice acting isnt stupidly over the top, and he’s likeable to the point where you care what happens to him, although this does happen with several of the party aswell as the characterisation is so well done.
The story is suitably epic, spanning across the entire world with many different settings and monsters, bosses to fight etc. The soundtrack is awesome, voice acting pretty damn good and just well… It’s such a great game that it is well worth a look and your money! If you can’t find it in the shops, and I wouldn’t blame me if you couldn’t find it because it’s stupidly hard to find, you can download it from the Xbox live service “Games On Demand” so there’s no excuse now is there 😉
Thanks for reading