Tales Of Berseria is the 16th ‘Tales of‘ game since the Super Famicon original, Tales of Phantasia, was released during 1995 in Japan only. The series, in general, is loved by many to this day. The quirky characters and awesome stories have created a series that can truly say it has stood the test of time alongside the Final Fantasy and Ys series.
The game is set in the same world as the prior game Tales of Zestiria, only the events that play out happen in the distant past. The story and main character are a fair bit darker than Sorey and his quest to become a Shepherd in Zestiria, since this is a story about revenge. No matter how it comes about, this is the main character’s goal.
So without spoiling the plot, the events within the first hour or so set the scene. From here, you gain Daemon powers (pronounced just plain Demon) and end up on an island prison for 3 years. One of the characters that stood alongside the main bad guy (a female Malak) decides to go rogue and help you break her out. Next, you discover that Velvet’s attitude towards life has changed; she wants revenge and doesn’t care how she gets it or who gets in the way. As an example of her determination, she sets all the prisoners free to attack the front of the prison docks where all the exorcists are guarding. When she’s told they stand no chance of surviving, her response is that at least the docks at the back will be clear for us.
Over the next few hours, you’ll pick up other characters on your travels, the first being Rokurou who is part daemon. You find his sword and advise him where it is, so he joins you as he is indebted to you. Afterwards, you’ll come across Magilou (this character is so annoying!!), a witch of sorts, but keeps going off doing her own thing. There’s also a child, Malak – equally as powerful as the other characters, given what he is, and finally Eizen (‘Tales of‘ veterans will recognise that name), a pirate captain who also used to be a Malak, but who has been cursed. These characters are all thrust together; it’s not a case of them wishing to join in an adventure – they all have their reasons for joining and it just works out for Velvet.
Tales Of Berseria Gameplay Walkthrough Part 1 (PS4 Pro) – Suzy Lu
Now the thing with revenge is that the exorcists are trying to actually do some good. They’re trying to rid the land of the Daemonblight that’s been sweeping across the world, making people become possessed and turn into werewolves and other horrors. So you will get the story from both sides: when talking to townsfolk, they love the exorcists and what they are trying to do. You, on the other hand, want revenge for the early events on the leader and some of his high end generals. This all makes for a much darker sinister ‘Tales of‘ game and presents the characters in a different way than what you have had in prior games in the series.
The gameplay sees you going from area to area, talking to various other people and taking out roaming monsters along the way. There are a few side quests you can do once arriving at the capital, such as hunting certain stronger monsters. There’s mini games such as bursting balloons for the Katz and one where the child Malak has to serve food to people in a restaurant in proper waiter clothing with bow-tie. This makes for a fun diversion and a quick way to make a bit of money. You can also send your pirate crew out on expeditions round to various parts of the world, finding new items for recipes and other treasures.
Combat is similar again to Tales of Zestiria. In the open world is a large circular area in which you fight. You select your target and go to town on them with various combos that you set on each fascia button. Extra moves can be unlocked as you level-up, so each combo can be vastly different. Early on, you unlock the use of your demonic-clawed hand that does massive amounts of damage, usually to multiple foes. You also get an additional special attack that can be used once the gauge reaches 3. This attack usually one-shots an enemy you’re facing (bar bosses of course). Weapons can be upgraded in towns to do more damage etc as can armour for better protection.
Tales Of Berseria – Fighting a Boss Demon Gameplay – GameSpot
Visually, the game is very similar to Tales of Zestiria. The characters kind of have a cell-shaded look to them so when you get an Anime cutscene, this makes them look the same as the models you see when playing. Environments, again, have large open areas where the view distance stretches out. Ground and wall textures are pretty good, if a little flat and lacklustre at times, and can look a bit low-res if you decide to look closely at them. The effects during battles are nice-looking with some great magic effects from spell-casters to blade arcs from the sword-wielding members of the group. Even the martial arts combos see arcs coming from your feet etc. I have noticed the same NPC townsfolk models in a single area. The only difference is that they may have different coloured clothing, so a bit more variety would be welcome, here. All in all, though, the game does look nice and is very fitting for the series. If you liked the look of the prior game, then you will with this one, too.
Again, the sound is excellent and really stands out; the intro has a Japanese progressive rock soundtrack to set the scene. Battles have their own music, as does adventuring out and exploring. When opening the gates for the ships to get through, the music has a pace and sense of urgency to it that spurs you along. Cutscenes are all voiced and the English-speaking actors have done a sterling job capturing the emotion. You also have skits occasionally where the team will be talking about something that is going on. This builds the characters well, with some of them absolutely hilarious. The one with your Malak’s stomach rumbling and wanting curry is really funny – it has charm and charisma. The voice actors are generally known for their work in Anime and other games – no big names, but they certainly deserve credit for their work, here.
All in all, Tales of Berseria is another fantastic game in the series. It’s fun to play and the characters are genuinely interesting. The open-world parts of the maps are large enough to explore and fight monsters. The story carries you from one area to another at a decent pace, so you never get to bored of your surroundings. My only real gripe is there is a lot of going back and forth, so the fast travel system could have done with an improvement. In fact, at times it gets a little tedious when you’ve travelled through the same area a few times and killed the same monsters.
This game is also available on PS3, but note that it is in Japanese only, if you are a collector wanting every version!
If you love JRPGs then Tales of Berseria is well worth getting.
Tales Of Berseria English Walkthrough – Shirrako
- Publisher: Bandai Namco
- Players: single player
Retro at heart and lover of all things ’80s, especially the computers, the music and the awesome movies and TV shows! Crazy huge retro gaming collection spanning the ’80s and ’90s with hundreds of tapes, discs and carts for various machines on top of a 600+ strong Steam library that is ever-growing. No I am not a serial hoarder, just a dedicated retro gamer!