As previously reported, some magazine scans from the latest issue of Famitsu held within them the potential for loads of untapped information concerning the new Tales title, Tales of Legendia. Now that the language barrier has been overcome concerning these propaganda, it's time to divulge the findings.
With the seventh title in the Tales series, Namco has decided to go down a new road in terms of aesthetics. Rather than go with the character designs of Kousuke Fujishima and Mutsumi Inomata that players have become so familiar with, Namco has employed the talents of Kazuto Nakasawa.
The setting of Legendia revolves around the remnants of an ancient vessel that measures over 100 kilometers in length. The people of the world have come to inhabit the Ship and have even built towns and cities upon it using artifacts and technology from the long-dead civilization, "Melnes." The Melnes were a civilization of priest-warriors who were known for being a little different from the rest of humankind. They were masters of a strange fighting style known as "tsume-jutsu", which roughly translates to "claw skills." However, the Melnes civilization ceased to exist long ago for unknown reasons, and no Melnes has since been seen. Somehow, the little sister of the game's main character becomes connected to the lost Melnes people and ends up on the wrong end of a massive man-hunt by an unnamed party. Thus begins Tales of Legendia.
It was also reported from the magazine scans that the sea and water will play an important role in the world of Legendia. A lighthouse town within the Ship, called Weltes, depends heavily on water. Waterwheels provide most of the town's power and a large waterfall among well-tended canals set the scenery about the town. The strange part is that these structures where in Weltes long before the people settled there, begging the question: who built them?
Though little is known concerning the battle system, the special skills that will be used in Legendia have been revealed as the aforementioned, tsume-jutsu, or claw skills. The characters will use claws to perform these special techniques. Each claw will belong to one of three categories, with each category having its own unique effects. Breath Claws allow the character to use magic effects, Art Claws are for physical attack effects, and Ghast Claws are for creating illusions.
In addition to describing the setting and some of the battle system, the magazine scans went on into vivid descriptions of the game's cast. Six characters were talked about.
The story of the game will revolve around Senel Coolidge, the 17-year-old hero of the game. Using knuckles as his weapon of choice, Senel specializes in hand-to-hand fighting and is a user of Art Claws. In the world of Legendia, Senel works as a Marine Trooper, which is a type of seaside policeman or monster hunter. Needless to say, he's had a lot of practice honing his fighting skills. As a person, Senel has a strong sense of justice, though he's very stubborn. Once he has decided on a course of action, for example, he will see it through to the end, no matter what. Because he's not very talkative, he also comes off as an impulsive and curt type of guy. His only known family is his little sister, Shirley.
Shirley Fennes is Senel's 15-year-old younger sister, despite the difference in surnames, and she has an odd problem. Should she ever get wet from the surrounding sea water or even feel a salty ocean breeze, she'll immediately become ill. Not a fighter, Shirley is a pretty and quiet girl, though she does share her brother's knack for stubbornness. She is also rumored to be a descendant of the ancient Melnes people, which is what drags her and her brother into conflict surrounding Legendia.
Will Raynard is the first person the young siblings meet after they are chased out of their home and get washed up on the edges of the Ship. A user of Breath Claws, Will is the unofficial sheriff of the lighthouse town, Weltes. A historian at heart, however, Will insists that he's taking on the duties of a sheriff only because no one else can. An excellent leader and decision-maker, he is the eldest of the cast at 28-years of age. Will's weapon of choice is a hammer.
Chloe Valens is a scarily-gifted swordsmaster, and master of Art Claws, at the age of 17. She is descended from the noble Valens family, known throughout several kingdoms for turning out elite knights. Being very aware of the reputation her name carries, Chloe takes great care to comport herself as a proper knight. Even so, she still slips up occasionally, momentarily acting like a normal, teenaged girl.
Norma Biatty is a cheerful, light-hearted girl who loves to tease and joke with her companions. She enjoys giving people cute nicknames that only she calls them by. Another master of Breath Claws, Norma is also known for making keen observations. As a treasure-hunter, she is on a personal quest to find the legendary artifact, Everlight.
A descendant of a beast-master clan, Moses Sandor has a pet monster of his own. He and said monster, along with his group of friends, are busy trying to make a name for themselves as notorious bandits. Despite being the leader of a group of hardened thieves, Moses has a soft side, as he is very attached to all of his friends and tends to cry easily. In battle, he uses javelins and Art Claws to deal his damage.
Tales of Legendia is still on schedule for a Spring 2005 Japanese release. No further details regarding localizations in any other part of the world have been reported.