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I've caught "Tales of Fever" again! I admit that I didn't really have much interest in Tales of Zestiria after seeing the trailer when it was first announced long ago, but I couldn't help BUT to be interested after listening to the first couple hours of story, listening to some of the AWESOME music tracks composed by Go Shiina, and after discovering that the battle programmer was Tatsuro Udo, a man who is credited in the development of Tales games that have had shining strides of innovation in its systems! =D
A very good friend gifted us a copy of Tales of Zestiria a few weeks ago! Bear and I've been playing it almost every morning after waking up and we're enjoying it immensely. XD Being a big Tales fan, I've always been very hopeful in finding one that Bear would really enjoy too.
The game is really scratching the narrative itch Bear and I've been having for awhile. =D I've always loved how fleshed out the characters in Tales games are and how much we get to learn of them from their constant dialogued interactions and skits that are littered throughout the journey. =) I admit that the characters in Zestiria might not be as colorful as those in other Tales games, but I still like them and there are some really good skits that I couldn't help but want to watch multiple times. XD
We're both really enjoying the action based combat system too; it has basic concepts that are easy to grasp, yet hard to master. There are a lot of factors that you need to keep in mind when engaging an enemy such as their element type and race. You are rewarded by how well you use your tools and their weaknesses against them; battles can go rather bad if you don't. It feels like it's been so long since we've played a game in which we've had to be mindful of enemy weaknesses; it's one of the things that made a lot of older console RPG's so much fun, the idea having to adapt to situations and the joy of making strategic decisions that swing the battle in your favor.~ I really wish that enemy type weaknesses was something that was used more in MMO's. >.<
There are also a number of difficulty levels to choose from in Tales of Zestiria; the higher the difficulty setting, the higher the monsters' levels will be, the more frequently they'll attack, and the less experience you gain, but monsters are also more vulnerable to their weaknesses and you get more money and better gear drops from defeating them. =) I was so excited to hear that there are actual benefits to increasing the difficulty setting (other than simply making enemies more annoying to fight) and that as long as you are able to keep your footing and play smart, a decent victory for the most part is possible. =) You open up higher difficulties by doing battles at harder difficulties. Bear and I've been playing at "intense"; we've had a few tough battles, but they're usually cases where we can say that it's our own fault and not that of the system, which is really good because it gives the sense of wanting to try again and to strive to improve!~
I'm looking forward to playing a lot more of Zestiria. =) We've clocked in around forty-five hours of the game according to Steam, but I'm kinda betting that we are faaaaar slower at progressing through it than most people. XD I have a feeling that we won't be finishing Sorey's adventure any time soon.