Tales Of Berseria
The popular Tales Of series is ready to return for its 16th entry. With a revamped battle system and the franchises' first exclusive female protagonist, Tales of Berseria is looking like a refreshing entry in the long-running franchise. I recently met with Tales of Berseria producer Yasuhiro Fukaya to discuss the changes that have been made to differentiate Tales of Berseria from its predecessors.
The biggest change for Tales of Berseria is the new battle system, which gives characters free movement within the battle, as well as free rotation of the camera for players. Players can also assign up to four artes to each of the face-buttons, for a total of 16 artes assigned at a time. The new core element to the battle system is called "Break Soul." Using this system, you build up three gauges in order to release one Break Soul attack. For the main character Velvet, the result is a powerful combo that inflicts heavy damage.
Though the main character Velvet's Break Soul is a damaging combo attack, not every character's Break Soul is that way. "Velvet has a much more powerful Break Soul than the other characters," Fukaya says. "Other characters have supporting type of magic like healing or defensing type of magic, while other characters have counter types of attacks."
Though the system is changing things up, the team doesn't feel as though fans of the series will feel alienated by the new mechanics. "It's going to be accessible to anybody," Fukaya says. "Even new users who never played the Tales Of series can play this one easily, and Tales Of series fans can enjoy this system. Tales Of series fans might feel like it's a little bit too easy to do the battles, but this system also has the Soul Gauge system. You can take soul from the enemy, but the enemy can also take soul from the main characters, so you try to avoid the enemy taking the soul from you as well. It's going to be a deep type of battle. It's not just easy, but it's kind of deep."
The main protagonist, Velvet, shakes things up by not only being the series first exclusive female protagonist, but also possessing a darker history and personality than most of the other series' leads. "She's not just a strong female character – she's also a demon," Fukaya says. "That's a really interesting point. In previous Tales Of games, the lead characters tended to be a boy and really cheerful, like a really bright person. With Tales of Berseria, Velvet is a demon, so she's not a really cheerful type of girl. When a cheerful boy character meets a really tough situation, he always consults with his friends, but she always makes the decisions herself. She makes the decisions very differently than the other heroes and lead characters."
Tales of Berseria launches in early 2017 on PlayStation 4 and PC.