|Dev: Namco Bandai Games|
|Pub: Namco Bandai Games|
|Release: February 25, 2014|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Fantasy Violence, Mild Language, Simulated Gambling, Suggestive Themes|
Combat moves at a brisk pace with a decent frame rate, and the HD upgrade gives the animations a nice smoothness. Character and enemy models within the combat arena have nice, clean cel-shading with more vibrant coloring than in the original titles. This polish, however, clearly contrasts some other visuals that did not fare well in the remake, namely the bland overworld. The enemy sprites that pop up during travel look exceptionally poor, and the monochromatic backgrounds feel completely outdated. The game still has a lot of nostalgic charm, but the juxtaposition between the characters and the environments clearly shows where the design team focused, and where they glossed over. A wonderful inclusion in Tales of Symphonia Chronicles are the cinematic cutscenes. And there are plenty to enjoy, possibly too many in Dawn of the New World.
It was nice to hear the pleasant melodies I remember fondly from the GameCube title given a modern update in the audio department. The tracks now carry each scene with added vigor, and combat has that little extra musical punch to go along with the fast paced action. However, the battle sequences and shouting of EX Skills from the characters did get redundant very quickly, so overall you may have your own preference on how you want to handle the audio options. I was never fond of the localized voice acting, so it was interesting to test out the Japanese voice tracks with English subtitles, and I honestly found those were more authentic during the emotional scenes.
Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World is an inconsequential extra, but one that nonetheless makes the Chronicles forty dollar price tag more acceptable. The original was one of the best RPGs of its generation, and the PS3 remake will easily be snatched up by old-school fans, and those who remember the quest of Lloyd Irving and long to start it anew. The high-definition visuals are hit and miss, but the engaging combat and tried and true character customization continues to satisfy, concluding that the Tales of Symphonia series can withstand the test of time.
Date: February 28, 2104