Tales of Arise, interview with the producer

Tales of Arise, interview with the producer

Tales of Arise

Gone from the radar for far too long, Tales of Arise finally has a release date: it will arrive on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on September 10, but in the meantime Bandai Namco has been working, as expected, also on the PlayStation 5 versions and Xbox Series X | S: as is happening now more and more often, these platforms will guarantee some technical benefits. Tales of Arise is the latest exponent of a franchise that has been raging in the JRPG scene for twenty-five years: beloved in Japan, for some time it has also made its way into the Italian market after having lived in fits and starts for too long. We had the opportunity to interview the producer of the game, Yusuke Tomizawa, who revealed some rumors about the development of the game: for any other information, we refer you to our in-depth preview that analyzes the brand new trailer and seven minutes of gameplay. br>

Interview with producer Yusuke Tomizawa

We haven't heard from Tales of Arise for a very long time: can you tell us what has slowed down your work and what progress you have made in the meantime?

Yusuke Tomizawa: First of all, I would like to apologize for making you wait so long. While taking steps to limit the hitches caused by COVID-19, we focused above all on the performance of the code. We also made sure it was compatible with next-generation platforms. Our team has focused on quality, using time as efficiently as possible. And then this is the first time in the history of the franchise that we will publish the game simultaneously worldwide: for this reason, we have had a long and intense discussion with the various managers who have dealt with the release all over the world. Despite the circumstances, we are really excited about how we approached this project.

Having been a long time since the announcement, fans began to fear that the game could belong to a generation too old compared to the new platforms: can we expect an update that improves the graphics on the next generation consoles?

Yusuke Tomizawa: Absolutely yes. On the new consoles, Tales of Arise will sport 4K resolution and players will be able to activate our very own "atmospheric shader" (which I'll be back to in a bit). It will also be possible to set a mode that always maintains 60 frames per second: in this way the fights will be even more fluid.

Tales of Arise: the protagonists Alphen and Shionne. What are the main differences between Tales of Arise and previous Tales?

Yusuke Tomizawa: "Legacy" and "progress" are the main themes of Tales of Arise, which differs from previous titles in the franchise in several respects: we were inspired by the Tales that came before this, but we have also moved into a new era. One of the new features that we want to reveal to you on this occasion is the so-called "atmospheric shader". The Tales series has always sported a fantastic and sober style at the same time, but this time we have set ourselves to overcome our limits: we have adopted a style that recalls the paintings to draw a harmonious fantasy world using the latest discoveries of visual technology. br>
The first trailers showed only the protagonist in action: is it true that this Tales has abandoned the traditional concept of "team" for fights?

Yusuke Tomizawa: Absolutely not! Also in this Tales, as in the previous ones, you fight as a team. We have also implemented the "Boost Strike" and "Boost Attack" systems to integrate a cooperative combat mechanism into the encounters. In this sense, the traditional combat system of Tales will be even more innovative, not only strategically, but also from the point of view of spectacularity and choreography.

Tales of Arise: a scenario of the game. When will we be able to see the introductory cinematic of Tales of Arise? Who will be singing the opening song?

Yusuke Tomizawa: Unfortunately we can't tell you anything about the introductory cinematic yet, except that Ufotable will make it and that the song will be truly beautiful.

Tales of Berseria marked a major change of direction for what it concerns the narrative of the story, addressing a much more mature audience: will Tales of Arise continue in the same direction or will it return to more goliardic atmospheres?

Yusuke Tomizawa: The protagonists of Tales of Arise are adults and they behave accordingly. The opening moments, moreover, are very serious. In Tales of Berseria we have chosen a more mature atmosphere, addressing complicated issues such as discrimination and oppression. The story of Tales of Arise is also very serious, but it was important that the players also feel the joy of taking on an adventure together with so many well-characterized characters, which has always been a very important element in the Tales series, along with the comic moments that fans love it so much.

How much has the combat system changed from previous Tales?

Yusuke Tomizawa: While incorporating some famous features such as the Mystical Arts and Arts, we made sure the new combat system was more intuitive and responsive. Take the guard, for example: in the previous Tales it was essential to parry at the right moment. In Tales of Arise we have replaced it with dodging and counterattack: this means that the fights will be much more frenetic and engaging.

Tales of Arise: a fight. In recent years, more and more JRPGs have embraced the open world structure - is the same for Tales of Arise?

Yusuke Tomizawa: The characters of the Tales are heavily involved in the stories of these games, even more than in many JRPGs, and one of the fundamental characteristics of this series is the bond that is established between the player and the protagonists. We have concentrated our efforts on creating an experience that really makes you appreciate the depth of the relationships between the characters, which is then reflected in the twists and turns of the story. It is for this reason that Tales of Arise does not take place in an "open world". This does not mean, however, that there is no freedom. The game allows you to explore the scenery as far and wide as in the past, and is packed with side missions and collectibles to find. We also worked further on the impromptu dialogue between the characters that many fans have enjoyed in previous Tales. We've dubbed tons of dialogue: there's not only the main story to follow, but also a series of subplots centered around various characters. This approach should make the journey even more interesting. Players will still be free to choose if and when to enjoy these conversations, just like in the past, but in Tales of Arise these skits are even more complex and can occur in different circumstances, for example during fights.

Tales of Arise: A scene from the trailer. What was the biggest challenge you faced while developing Tales of Arise?

Yusuke Tomizawa: Considering that we have decided to release the game simultaneously worldwide, I can say with absolute certainty that it was very hard to understand what players expect from this series. We would like players who approach Tales of Arise for the first time to become fans of Tales in general; also, it was hard to write a story that all the players in the world could relate to. The progress we have made in the combat system and from a graphic point of view has been our way of overcoming this very difficult challenge. When I think back to when we decided to take this path, I feel that we really managed to achieve the results we set out for ourselves.

One last question: fans of the series have always loved the optional battles in the arenas with the protagonists. of the previous Tales. Will there be something similar in Tales of Arise too?

Yusuke Tomizawa: I am sorry, but for now I have to keep my mouth shut!

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