Tales of Symphonia Sequel Detailed
01.07.08 - 10:11 AM

A lot of information on Tales of Symphonia: Ratatosk no Kishi (Knight of Ratatosk) for Wii has been released today, courtesy of Bandai Namco Games. The sequel to 2003's GameCube RPG Tales of Symphonia will employ an enhanced version of the Flex Range Linear Motion Battle system (FR-LMBS) featured in Tales of the Abyss. The battle engine will support up to four players. The development team is also adding eight elements (earth, water, fire, wind, ice, lightning, light and darkness) to the system. In Knight of Ratatosk each location has a certain elemental affinity. Depending on the usage of elemental attacks by both party members and enemies, this local elemental affinity can change over the course of a battle, though. Such an elemental change apparently will have various effects on a battle's progress.

The development team has gone with a traditional control scheme. The Wiimote's motion sensor is used to execute special techniques. Like previous games, Knight of Ratatosk also allows players to pull off those powerful moves directly via shortcuts (instead of having to enter a menu). Using the Wiimote, players can perform a certain movement which will then trigger off the technique. This motion control can be switched off as well, though.

At the end of the battle, players can invite defeated monsters to join their party. However, only monsters with a certain character can be turned into party members. To make things even more complicated, a monster's character will change during battle, depending on the party's equipment or the actions taken by the party. Furthermore, monsters might decline to join the party.

A new character set to appear in the game has also been introduced. 20-year Richter Abend is searching for the Ratatosk Core to achieve a certain objective. After a childhood that saw him being oppressed by others, the young man has become extremely cynical. During his search for the Core, he meets protagonist Emil. While Emil's cowardice and passiveness annoy Richter, he still helps Emil. There seems to be a certain reason for this Richter's kindness, though.

Following the events of Tales of Symphonia, the two worlds had become one. However, as a result of this fusion, the environment has begun to change dramatically. Snow is falling in desert towns and lakes are drying up. The fusion of the worlds however is not the only cause of these problems. Another one is the condition of the powerful spirit Ratatosk. For unknown reasons, he has fallen asleep, resulting in a collapse of the natural balance. Meanwhile, the only thing that unites the people of the two worlds is their animosity toward each other. To protect the oppressed people of Silverland, a resistance group known as Vanguard was formed. As it opposes the Church of Martel, a confrontation between the two camps became inevitable. The Church eventually moved against Vanguard members holding a meeting in Palmacosta. The city was burned to the ground, with many innocent people becoming victims of the purge. The ringleader of this bloody crackdown is said to be Tales of Symphonia's protagonist Lloyd.

Tales of Symphonia: Ratatosk no Kishi will be available in Japan sometime this spring.

Chris Winkler