Namco Bandai's Tales series of anime-inspired role-playing games has been going strong since the early 1990s. Now, the enduring franchise is set to debut on two of the 21st century's newest consoles. Today, Namco announced it will release Tales of Vesperia exclusively on the Xbox 360 and Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World on the Nintendo Wii in North America by year's end.
Developed by Namco's Tales Studio, Tales of Vesperia marks the first outing in the series to make its way to Microsoft's platform. Characterized as a "standard-setting RPG," Vesperia follows the travails of errant knight Yuri, who seeks to uncover the mystery surrounding a mystical and mystifying ancient technology that powers his civilization.
Namco Bandai promises Vesperia will deliver a new interpretation on the antiquated series, with a new graphics engine that features high-definition character models and environs that recall traditional cel-shaded anime. Vesperia will also include an update to the game's distinctive real-time combat system, with larger battlefields, new special attacks, and unique weapons all slated to appear.
Also in development at the Namco Tales Studio, Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World is a continuation of the well-received GameCube game that takes place two years later. Though it primarily follows two new protagonists--Emil Castagnier and Marta Lualdi--it will also feature cameos from the GC game's cast, including Lloyd, Colette, and Ratatosk.
Dawn of the New World will include a number of updates for its Wii appearance, including a new monster recruitment tool that will allow players to collect, train, and evolve more than 200 enemies. The series' battle system will also be revisited in the Wii game, with Namco Bandai promising free-roaming on battlefields as well as new special attacks and weapons.