Posts tagged ‘Tales of Graces F’


Miscellany redux

by wfgodbold

After turning in my paper for my legal writing class this morning, and my civil procedure midterm this afternoon, I’m exhausted. Who knew retraining your brain from a technical/engineering bent to a legal bent was such hard work?

Anyway, Tales of Graces f releases today in the US; my impressions from last January of the Japanese release are just as relevant now as when I wrote them. If you’re on the fence, but you liked Vesperia or Symphonia, give Graces f a chance; the story is a bit cheesy, but it’s worth dealing with because the battle system is so good.

XSEED Games announced the news that they’re bringing Ys: The Oath in Felghana and Ys Origin to Valve’s Steam PC gaming platform; the former will hit the store next week for $15, and the latter at some future date for some unannounced price. My post the other day about Ys Origin got me more interested in playing that game, and I had considered finding a store online that I could import a copy of the Japanese PC release from. Now I can just wait!

And finally, Joe Huffman found this great infographic detailing all the ways in which the TSA wastes our money, invades our privacy, and does both of those without even stopping terrorists.


No Tales of Graces for the US until 2012

by wfgodbold

Though we will be getting the 3DS port of Tales of the Abyss sometime this year.

Tales of Graces should be worth the wait; the graphics are crisp, the story is decent, and the dual styles each character has makes for a deep combat system.

Remember, if you want Tales of Xillia, you need to support Tales of games when they come out here!


Frenetic Dance (狂乱舞踏)

by wfgodbold

The most recent of the Tales of games, Tales of Graces F (the PS3 port and update of the Wii game), follows the adventures of Asbel and his friends as they explore their world and confront its origins.

While it has been announced that the game is currently being localized for American release, the only way (at this time) to play Tales of Graces is by importing the game from Japan.

Tales of Graces was the first game in the series to do away with the world map; as you move Asbel and his party from place to place, the field locations are all to scale with the rest of the world, and you never zoom out into a full world view (until you get the flying machine, and then when it’s zoomed out, you merely pick your destination on the map and then magically appear there).

Anyway, the game is much like Tales of Vesperia; I’m not going to rehash my thoughts on how well the game is done (suffice to say I like it even though I prefer Fujushima’s character designs to Inomata’s).

The following track plays during a boss fight towards the end of the game; I won’t say whose, as it would be spoileriffic.

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll have noticed that Motoi Sakuraba’s more recent compositions tend to be better than his earlier ones; Frenetic Dance is no exception.


Due to various circumstances beyond my control

by wfgodbold

I haven’t been able to post about Tales of Graces F‘s impending stateside release until now.

Hopefully it will do well enough to guarantee the release of Tales of Xillia; if it doesn’t sell enough, I imagine Bamco will just write off the North American (or for that matter, non-Japanese speaking) Tales of market, and just focus on hocking DLC over the PSN.

It’s a good game.  If you liked Vesperia, you will like Graces (assuming the character designs don’t put you off).  The developers did an excellent job with the battle system, and the plot is not as tropish as it could have been (which, depending on how much you like tropes, could be a plus or a minus).

Buy it!

Buy it if you love Tales and don’t want Bamco to forsake the non-Japanese market!


So I spent another weekend playing Tales of Graces F

by wfgodbold

And after putting ~50 hours into the game (not all this weekend), I can say that it’s pretty good; the plot is decent (though some of the dialog is a bit rote), the graphics aren’t terrible (they’re ok, but you can tell that they were limited by the source material having been developed for the Wii), and the combat system is great.

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Namco doesn’t need the US market

by wfgodbold

Not when Japanese fans will fork over ¥400 per Tales of Graces F downloadable character costume.

They probably have some underpaid flunky code those up in an afternoon, and then sell the full set for half the price of the actual game; when they finally finished making costumes (I think they’ve finished, anyway) for the PS3 port of Tales of Vesperia, I think the cost of the costumes was more than the cost of the game.

Namco has done this before; the DLC for the PSP iDOLM@STER releases totaled more than the cost of the actual game.  I think the cost discrepancy was even more glaring with the 360 edition.

It makes sense that they would focus their efforts on nickel and diming their Japanese fan base with DLC instead of localizing the Tales games for foreign release; I don’t think the series has ever done as well outside Japan.  Their focus on DLC gets them a good return on a minimal investment, whereas localizing the games for release abroad could prove chancy should they not be well-received.

Of course, that’s not what non-Japanese fans want to hear.  Unfortunately, the poor reception of Tales in the US (relative to Japan) has made it less likely for future games to be released here; those that do get released will probably continue to under preform versus the Japanese releases, making it even less likely that the next game will be localized, and so on.

There really isn’t any way I can see to improve the situation; I bought the US release of Tales of Vesperia when it was released, and the Japanese PS3 rerelease.  I had hoped that the PS3 edition would make the jump across the Pacific, but it was not in the cards (a shame, since many people only have one major console, and I imagine many JRPG fans gambled on the PS3 over the 360, given its track record in the previous two console generations).

Tales of Graces hasn’t even been mentioned for prospective release in the US (in either the PS3 update or the original buggy Wii edition); since Tales of Xillia is initially being released on the PS3 (instead of first on one of the other two consoles, with a “complete” edition on the PS3 to follow), it’s marginally more likely that it will be localized for sale in other regions than Japan.  If it does, I’ll probably pick up a copy (not that any foreign release will be any time soon; the Japanese release doesn’t have a date beyond 2011 at this point, so I’d imagine the soonest any English version could be released is 2012) if only pour encourager les autres (I did the same with the Japanese and English releases of Valkyria Chronicles).

In the mean time, though, I’ll try to maintain my Japanese skills; after all, it’s one thing to be optimistic regarding an English release, but we would do well to prepare for the worst.


That package from Japan?

by wfgodbold

If it’s over 16 ounces (454 grams), it’s high-risk and can’t be sent.

Thanks to the Department of Homeland Security’s new regulations, Japan Post has announced that they will no longer (starting on the 17th of this month and continuing for who knows how long) accept packages for shipment to the US and her territories that are more than 453g in weight.

This affects me in particular; Tales of Graces F comes out in the first week of December, and my friend in Japan is supposed to ship it to me (along with a couple books and magazines).  The total package weight is sure to be more than one pound, especially with whatever packing material he uses to make sure nothing gets destroyed en route.

Unfortunately, shipping via Japan Post is no longer an option; I guess he’ll have to ship via one of the far more expensive carriers, assuming they still will ship items to the US.

Thanks, Janet Napolitano.  I certainly feel safe now that I know I’m not in danger from all those exploding toner cartridges those Japanese Muslims have been shipping through the mail.


Tales of Graces F demo impressions

by wfgodbold

I liked it!  The battle system is similar enough to the traditional Tales of battle systems that it was easy to pick up and play, and different enough that I had problems doing big combos (a combination of not being familiar with the characters and their moves, and skipping through the instructions/tutorials as fast as possible to get back to gameplay).  When playing through the actual game it shouldn’t be an issue, since Tales games generally introduce you to new battle elements gradually throughout the game instead of throwing them all at you at once right at the start.

The character designs aren’t as annoying as I’d feared; the last Tales game I played with designs in this style was Tales of Eternia (the PSP port).  Sakuraba’s music is typical as always; it will take playing through the game to figure out if the soundtrack is any good, or just mediocre.

If you’re interested in trying out the demo yourself, follow the directions here (you don’t need a points card; the demo is free), and go into the PlayStation store once your account is set up.

I’ll go into the store later and replace this with directions for downloading the demo itself; I’m not near my PS3 and I don’t remember exactly what menu I went through to download it (it’s not up on the intro splash screen yet, you actually have to look for it).

Stay tuned!

Okay, once you’ve entered the PlayStation Store, choose the third option down (タイトル名でさがす).  Then choose the second from the right (た) and the second from the right again (て).  Once the list of games has loaded, the Tales of Graces F demo is (for now, until they add more games into this section of the list) in the third row and second from the left.  The Tales of Graces F cover art has the title in English on it, and is labeled テイルズオブグレイセス エフ(体験版).  Once you’ve selected that, choose the orange button marked ダウンロード (and again on the next screen).

Once that’s done, it will start downloading immediately.  You can either watch the progress bar or let it download in the background while you do other stuff; however, if you change users (to access the US PlayStation Store, for example), the download will be paused until you switch back and resume it.  Once the download is complete, the demo will install and will be listed under the Game tab in the Xross bar (what a stupid name for their interface).

After the demo is installed, you’re on your own!  Enjoy the trial version of the latest Tales of game, and pray that Namco Bandai or Sony think there’s money in releasing it in the US (you know, like they didn’t do with the Vesperia PS3 port).

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