Namco Bandai Tales of the World: Radiant Mythology
- Graphics are great, crossover characters, great cooking and forging systems
- Nothing revolutionary, and if you're not into questing RPGs, you'll definitely want to look elsewhere
Honestly, Radiant Mythology does absolutely nothing new--especially if you've played Tales games before--but we found ourselves having a lot of fun hacking and slashing away through beautiful dungeons. Also, the story is more than serviceable, thanks to the new characters and the fun of crossover characters. RPG fans who have been looking for something to take on the road should definitely try out Radiant Mythology.
Price$ 69.95 (AUD)
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It just goes to show that even game developers are fans of their own work. Evidence: Tales of the World: Radiant Mythology, better known as crossover fan fiction.
RPG fans surely know the Tales franchise, but few Australian fans know the Tales of the World spinoff franchise that pulls characters from numerous Tales games, mixes them together with new characters and a new save-the-world-plot.
Why don't we know it? Because Namco Bandai said gamers would not recognise many of the characters that appear in the Tales of the World franchise since only a handful of Tales games have been released in Australia. However, that doesn't seem to matter anymore as Radiant Mythology has landed in the land of Oz, and get this, it's actually a good RPG for the PSP.
After you create your character from a few preset options, you'll be thrown into the new world of Terresia that's inhabited by monsters and familiar Tales characters such as Lloyd and Genis from Tales of Symphony and Tales of the Abyss' Luke and Tear. Though the game tries only half-heartedly to explain why all of the characters have gathered in this world, just go with it and enjoy the fun and don't think too hard. The dialogue is presented with the staple "Tales head shots", which works, but it's a shame that the excellent in-game engine wasn't used for a few scenes.
The graphics and animation are great for a handheld game, and there's none of the lag I've experienced in a few other handheld RPGs. Each dungeon is uniquely detailed, and varied monsters found throughout make for excellent battles. Radiant Mythology borrows Tales of the Abyss' battle system, which translates surprisingly well to the PSP. Attacks and special attacks are executed with directional and face buttons, but how well the analogue nub works to control free-running is the real surprise.
To do list
The game is centred around a questing system that fits pick-up-and-playability perfectly. Though technically the game follows a typical flow of "choose quest, find poster, enter dungeon and fight", the missions still feel varied between the different requests for enemy elimination, item location, or material collection. Also, the robust forging and cooking system gives you another thing to think about during your battles and dungeon runs. Radiant Mythology has also eliminated the excessive and monotonous running-through-towns that plagues many questing-styled RPGs by letting you jump directly back to the main map and choose locations from a list in towns.
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For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
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