Tales of Symphonia GameCube

User Score
8.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 179 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 21 out of 179
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  1. Steven
    Jul 25, 2009
    10
    Closest thing to a perfect game, amazing characters, amazing story, extremely fun battles, everything, the only problem is whan playing with multiple people the first player has to be a long range spellcaster othewise the camera will follow first player and leave everyone confused, but if playing with alot of people it isnt really an issue since someone has to be a magic user.
  2. BrianK.
    Aug 5, 2004
    10
    Best RPG for gamecube! awesome fighting system and even sweeter you can play as any character unlike previous Tales games. The characters are great the story keeps me guessing and the game is beautiful, just as nice as Final Fantasy 10 but the characters are more vibrant and the depth and feel is better! Must buy it! RPG fans and fighting game fans must get this!!
  3. StevenF.
    May 6, 2004
    10
    Best game of all time.
  4. MikeG.
    Sep 22, 2004
    10
    The best part about this game is its incredible replay value! Buy it, you definitely won't be disappointed.
  5. Jun 11, 2013
    10
    This is my all time favorite game. The story is fantastic, the plot twists are intense. I think the best part of the game is the characters, you end up caring for them and you want them to explore their world and experience everything. If you love RPGs you'll love this game!
  6. Nov 8, 2013
    10
    Well this game is different yes, the story is great, the game play too. I was about to give it a 9, but I had to give it a 10 because this is one of many few games I have played more than 2 times. I can;t say the same for it's Wii sequel, which I actually wanted to end so i could play something else.
  7. Feb 26, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. You must buy this game!

    Tales of Symphonia was one of the first RPG's I ever played and got me hooked on the genre. The characters are well developed and interesting. The cel shaded graphics are brilliant and the gameplay is some of the best for an action RPG. I have played several other Tales games and I always find myself comparing them to this one, and they never quite get there.

    The story is classic JRPG but it is very interesting as it has heavy religion based dialect (at the beginning anyway) which doesn't bore you thanks to the way the story is told. They get the mix of serious main arc and plot twists with funny conversations and running gags such as Colette always falling over and Raine slapping Llyod and Genis upside the head!

    My only issues with the game are the camera only follows player 1 in battle. I am doing a co op run with a friend and he keeps getting lost off screen. The other thing is no free roam ability in battle like Vesperia and Abyss. Small details that shouldn't stop anyone playing this game.
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  8. Apr 3, 2016
    10
    Tales of Symphonia is among the greats when it comes to JRPGs. This well written masterpiece was my favourite game for the Nintendo GameCube and is my second favourite RPG next to Chrono Trigger. This game features a diverse cast each with their own heartfelt and hard-felt back stories and an overall plot that will make you think and make you feel for you party members. With a wide varietyTales of Symphonia is among the greats when it comes to JRPGs. This well written masterpiece was my favourite game for the Nintendo GameCube and is my second favourite RPG next to Chrono Trigger. This game features a diverse cast each with their own heartfelt and hard-felt back stories and an overall plot that will make you think and make you feel for you party members. With a wide variety of side questing you can easily clock well over 100 hours of game time. The gameplay is fluid along with the battle system. Tales of Symphonia has a fantastic score to accompany you in the journey. Tales of Symphonia kick started my love for the Tales Series. Expand
  9. PabloR
    Jun 13, 2008
    10
    Probably best if not it. It's story isn't cliche.. and the characters with the exception of 1.. are so perfect. It's setting is just so original.. and the music makes you feel the mood.. The battle is the best of any RPG in the world for the simple fact that it's simple and 4 players! How unbelievable is that.
  10. Dec 9, 2013
    0
    einfach nur Scheiße,
    einfallsloser japan Quatsch
    den kein Mensch braucht solche Spiele gehören auf den Index,
    da sowas unsere Kinder wirklich versaut!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  11. DrewA.
    Sep 14, 2007
    4
    Decent battle system coupled with a beyond cliche story and a generally awful cast of charcters.
  12. AlecW.
    Aug 18, 2004
    3
    Doesn't see like much effort was put into it. I've played better games on the super nintendo. SuckAss Story, way to japanesey. I'm even a fan of cell shaded graphics, but this product really hates me.
  13. Dec 7, 2013
    9
    Game: Tales of Symphonia
    Genre: RPG-Action
    Developer: Namco System: Nintendo Gamecube (GCN) Total Score: 88/100 Value Score: 8.8/10 • Story: 9/10 • Characters: 8/10 • GamePlay: 7/10 • Graphics: 8/10 • Sound: 9/10 • Music: 10/10 • Length: 9/10 • Replay Value: 9/10 • Player Value: 9/10 Pros +Only Tales game on Gamecube +Decent story and characters +Well made
    Game: Tales of Symphonia
    Genre: RPG-Action
    Developer: Namco
    System: Nintendo Gamecube (GCN)
    Total Score: 88/100
    Value Score: 8.8/10

    • Story: 9/10
    • Characters: 8/10
    • GamePlay: 7/10
    • Graphics: 8/10
    • Sound: 9/10
    • Music: 10/10
    • Length: 9/10
    • Replay Value: 9/10
    • Player Value: 9/10

    Pros
    +Only Tales game on Gamecube
    +Decent story and characters
    +Well made visual design
    +Voice acting well made
    +Musical score is amazing
    +Lengthy story and great replay value

    Cons
    -Gameplay a bit rough and generic
    -Mechanics seem a bit slower than other Tales games
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  14. May 3, 2015
    6
    It'd be great if it weren't for its target audience being young kids.

    Everyone can somewhat agree that JRPGs tend to be 99% teenager oriented with lots of cheesy drama, poorly made simple character relationships, and since the late 90s, silly emo villains who want to destroy the world because it's just such a bad world to live in. I've lost count of the JRPGs that did this, some of
    It'd be great if it weren't for its target audience being young kids.

    Everyone can somewhat agree that JRPGs tend to be 99% teenager oriented with lots of cheesy drama, poorly made simple character relationships, and since the late 90s, silly emo villains who want to destroy the world because it's just such a bad world to live in.

    I've lost count of the JRPGs that did this, some of them with incredible talent and success(Persona 3 FES), some which end up as a giant pool of silliness(Final Fantasy X).

    ToS doesn't aim for the teenage crowd, for once. Or if it does, it's very slightly.

    It aims for a younger crowd. Little kids.

    Let me be blunt and say that this is a terrible design choice. First off, the entire game is exposing a story that is for all intents and purposes your typical JRPG story but with characters that are even more childish than usual. A simple example: like all JRPGs, you need your hero to have some sort of flirt or love interest in the party. Here, the closest thing we get to a romantic relationship is a shy talk about mundane things on a hotel's balcony.

    It's painfully childish at all times. It's a refreshing change to have something else than teenage, but this is even worse; Not in a sense of annoyance or stupidity, but in a sense of constant disinterest. I don't care for the childish relationships of the characters, I don't care for any of the plot devices or emotions expressed. The entirety of the story is fine but it can't pique my interest in any way. With JRPGs I tend to get interested, then get annoyed at the stupid(unless I never got interested in the first place). Here, I just let it roll without ever batting an eye. It's a constant smooth stream of cutesy childish talks, drama that is very lightly touched(whatever truly sad moments happen are grazed over and then ignored because it has to stay upbeat and kid-friendly), and humour that would probably make an 8 year old chuckle, but would make a teenager cringe, and just bore an adult like me.

    It's an interesting idea to have a JRPG just for kids. But the sad thing is, it simply doesn't work. I don't know of a single kid under 12 that would go through with the 50 to 70 hours of play time ToS offers. Kids I know just don't have that patience or commitment. And kids over 12 will probably find this cringeworthy or at the very least quite boring.

    The shame is that besides the story and characters and very childish tone, and despite a few minor issues with the visuals and plot, the entire game is a masterpiece. Its combat is brillant and extremely fun, it's one of the few RPGs where just grinding is a constant enjoyment, the music ranges from meh to very nice and never devolves into plain boring, the art style is great and cell shading technology makes this game absolutely booming for GameCube standards. It still looks great today, like the original Wind Waker.

    It's fun and memorable with lots of interesting elements in the gameplay, upgrade, weapon, healing, and every step opens a new little adventure or sidequest that you just can't say no to, and if the level design and music seldom soar near the heavens, they certainly do a decent job.

    It's just the story that is a drag and can't keep any sort of interest with me. Ironically, this might be an excellent game to speedrun, but as RPGs go, this is one of the most boring ones I can think of in terms of story. I played through it many times, and constantly stopped at yet another fortress/dungeon with their meh music, or just because I was so unequivocally disinterested with the story. A shame since it manages to do what almost no RPGs do, be fun to just play and yet have enough depth and complexity to keep you going for dozens of hours.
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  15. Jun 2, 2015
    10
    If I had to sum this up quickly, I would say that while Tale of Symphonia is one of the most endearing and interesting games of pretty much all RPG's, Dawn of the new World, while being a good game in itself, is one of the worst sequels you will probably ever see. Let me elaborate:

    Let's start with the original, Tales of Symphonia. Tales of Symphonia has a decent beginning, but it does
    If I had to sum this up quickly, I would say that while Tale of Symphonia is one of the most endearing and interesting games of pretty much all RPG's, Dawn of the new World, while being a good game in itself, is one of the worst sequels you will probably ever see. Let me elaborate:

    Let's start with the original, Tales of Symphonia. Tales of Symphonia has a decent beginning, but it does not seem like something special. However, the story quickly evolves into something of an epic fantasy novel, with a rather unique plot and great characters you want to follow and root for. Out of all the tales games, I believe this one is the best when it comes to character-player relationships, and your choices, even, no, especially the small ones, matter to your experience and the connections between you and the characters. Playing through this adventure is a blast, and most people love it for that. Though i recommend searching for 'ToS affection system' before you begin, just saying.

    Now, before we talk about the game's own story and setting, let's look at why the game is a bad sequel: If you are reading, watching or playing a sequel of something, its most of the time because you enjoyed the original. Now, sone start with the sequel for various reasons, but if we look at it from wanting more of the world and story you loved so much, this game does not even satisfy, but pretty much, excuse my language, takes a **** on the original. The characters you loved interacting with? Pushed to the side for two new ones, and you can't even effect the old characters relationships, one of the cooler functions in the old game. Well, you can make ONE choice in an end-game sidequest, but that's just that, a side-quest. It's not even required. That, and the fact that it's just one choice compared to the original's many, makes it almost insulting. It was shoved in, with no build up. And don't even make me start on the setting! Just trust me, no spoilers, but's it pretty much a punch to the stomach what happened to the world after Takes of Symphonia.
    Now, for the game itself, without any spoilers: It's actually not bad. It's terrible in the beginning, so terrible you might even drop the entire game in the first hour, but at the end, it's not just good, it's great. However, when you reach that point of greatness, you are almost done with the game.
    The gameplay is a large step down from Symphonia. Sure, a few aspects are better, but it's basically.,, how do I put this.... Imagine Mario Galaxy without the spin, minus the parts where it's required: every platform segment, every normal enemy and all the tight moments where you save yourself just in time, all of that is gone. You still have a good platformer, but everything is a notch down from what it could be. And that's how Dawn if the new World feels: like something is just missing from the entire game. Combos? Branching attack choices? Special combo attacks between two characters? All gone. Have fun using the same to 'super attacks' through the entire game. Both which you unlock before midway through the game. The game itself is also filled with bad design choices, and I just don't mean stuff they could not finish in time, I mean directly bad choices that make no sense. Like how restricted the party is: you HAVE to have one of the two new characters in the party at all times no matter what. That, and one or them HAS to be in the lead. You can switch between characters inside battle whenever you want, but fir some reason you do 't just have to have a new character in the party, but you also have go start the battle with them. It takes one seco d to switch when battle begins by the way. Why would you design it like that.
    I could go on, but this is getting long, so I will finish my thoughts now:

    If you loved the original for it's characters, then this game will make them worse than they were in the first place. It's better to just play the first one again in that case. If you loved the game for it's world, then it's also better to just play the first game, trust me. If you loved it for it's plot... well, you might find something enjoyable at the end of the game, but it's a drag to get there. What I am trying to say is: if you liked Symphonia 1, then it will be a bad experience for you, or at least a frustrating one.

    Final verdict: Takes if Symphonia is one of the best RPG's, no, one of the most endearing and enjoyable games of all time. Tales of Symphonia 2 is better of not being experienced, as while it is a fine enough game, it actually takes away from the original game, rather than add anything of real substance to it.
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  16. ChetS.
    Sep 5, 2004
    10
    This game totally rocks! The battle system kicked and so did the fact that battles weren't random and you could avoid them. This game is a must have for all rpg fans. My friend doesn't even like rpgs and he loved the fight system. He loves this game. I love this game. The script, the story, the carachters, the battle system and the visuals are all fantastic. But the game speaks This game totally rocks! The battle system kicked and so did the fact that battles weren't random and you could avoid them. This game is a must have for all rpg fans. My friend doesn't even like rpgs and he loved the fight system. He loves this game. I love this game. The script, the story, the carachters, the battle system and the visuals are all fantastic. But the game speaks for itself so well. I you have a ngc, BUY THIS GAME!!!!! Expand
  17. SharonG.
    Jul 30, 2005
    10
    The BEST game ever created! A wonderful cast of characters, thrilling plot, excellent battle system, terrific voice acting, awsome replay value, and beautiful graphics! I love it!
  18. TomW.
    Feb 4, 2007
    10
    The best storyline in a game you will ever come across, full stop.
  19. JoseM.
    Dec 3, 2004
    10
    Rival's PlayStation's Final Fantasy.
  20. ShizWhizzly
    Jul 14, 2004
    10
    This is quite possibly one of the best RPGs i have played in a very long time. the battle system is superb, the graphics are great, and the music brings a tear to this jaded old school gamer's eye. a must buy.
  21. JoshA.
    Sep 10, 2004
    10
    This Game Is The Best Game I Have EVER Played. BUY IT!!!! IT ROCKS
  22. DragonKnightofFinalFantasy
    Sep 5, 2004
    10
    I love this game it has beautiful attractive cel-shaded graphics, wonderful characters (or the ones I've seen anyway I haven't beaten it yet), wonderful battle system, I like anime so those anime clips are SWEET, I like the story, skits annoy me though, and what is up with the black jello monsters and leveling up all the times pisses me off after a while. I reccomend this game I love this game it has beautiful attractive cel-shaded graphics, wonderful characters (or the ones I've seen anyway I haven't beaten it yet), wonderful battle system, I like anime so those anime clips are SWEET, I like the story, skits annoy me though, and what is up with the black jello monsters and leveling up all the times pisses me off after a while. I reccomend this game 100% go out and buy it now! Expand
  23. Mithos_Yeah!
    Oct 18, 2005
    10
    That's the best Game(except Zelda) I played^^
  24. RvieT.
    Jun 30, 2005
    10
    OMG!! I love this game, and it really kicks ass! So much fun! I especially love the voice acting; Scott Menville was great in voicing Lloyd Irving, and the same goes with Heather Hogan, who voiced Colette Brunel. Too bad that the characters swear a lot. I also love the battle system. You don't have to select commands and have the characters attack one at a time and stuff like that. I OMG!! I love this game, and it really kicks ass! So much fun! I especially love the voice acting; Scott Menville was great in voicing Lloyd Irving, and the same goes with Heather Hogan, who voiced Colette Brunel. Too bad that the characters swear a lot. I also love the battle system. You don't have to select commands and have the characters attack one at a time and stuff like that. I even loved the skits, a lot of them made me laugh, and also helped me in the quest. The synopsis included also helped me too. I TOTALLY love the anime stuff in it; yes, I love anime so much. Arigatou gozaimasu, Kosuke Fujishima, you have made such a great RPG that would rule over all RPG's!! Expand
  25. GarratC.
    Aug 7, 2005
    9
    Do not pass this game up!
  26. LloydI.
    Feb 3, 2006
    10
    Congratulations NAMCO! Incredible constant details, amazing graphics, breathless story, addictive battle system. Too much better than the Final Fantasy i always wanted on the gamecube. Your game rules! I'll wait you on the REV console.
  27. KatieH.
    May 6, 2006
    10
    Best. Game. Ever. Anyone looking for an awesome game, check this game out. I'm on my second play through now, and I'm still finding new things to do. This game is absolutely beautiful!
  28. BravoA.
    Jul 14, 2006
    10
    This GAME IS AWESOME! It is the best game i ever played!!!but where are the sword dancers?
  29. ChisameS.
    Jan 28, 2008
    9
    This game is one of my favorites~ I guess it can use some improvement, but the I thought that the characters and the overall story was okay.
  30. Mike
    Jan 6, 2008
    7
    This game starts with a generic story, and that was one of my main fears going into this game. But after playing half way through I found the story started to evolve into a vast epic tale, very book worthy. Now onto the technical game play parts; the battle system is fantastic, one of the best I have seen. Field encounter battles are not so much a drone and this battles are really in This game starts with a generic story, and that was one of my main fears going into this game. But after playing half way through I found the story started to evolve into a vast epic tale, very book worthy. Now onto the technical game play parts; the battle system is fantastic, one of the best I have seen. Field encounter battles are not so much a drone and this battles are really in close quarters with the enemy which makes it feel like you are actually in a tussle with the enemy, something turn based fighting cant seem to achieve. The praise I gave to the battle system unfortunately cannot be carried over to the game field. The game field is awful and cheesy, the enemies are represented as black blobs and it can really destroy the immersion that you are on an epic quest with friends when you stride around as a giant avoiding black blobs, the music in the field is also very cheesy and repeats itself over and over. Overall the game field breaks whatever emotional scene that came before it. The game can be difficult to navigate sometimes as it never really gives you any clues as to what random faceless NPC you are supposed to talk to next or what area of a town you are supposed to be in. Cut scenes are filled with emotion and great voice acting can be ruined with limited character movements and no physics. Its a good game and I recommend it, just don't expect to play it over and over, as its only the story that will keep you going. (and possibly fights) Expand

Awards & Rankings

#4 Most Discussed GameCube Game of 2004
#3 Most Shared GameCube Game of 2004
Metascore
86

Generally favorable reviews - based on 60 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 60
  2. Negative: 0 out of 60
  1. Arguably the finest example ever made of the truly traditional Japanese RPG. It may be clichéd, and altogether a little too bright and happy for its own good, but Tales of Symphonia is nonetheless epic, enjoyable, and superbly constructed.
  2. games(TM)
    90
    It's through the amount of details, distractions and other additions to the more obvious elements that Symphonia builds itself up from what starts as an above-average RPG into one that'll stand as a benchmark in future. [Oct 2004, p.102]
  3. AceGamez
    90
    It's another masterpiece by Namco and a more than welcome addition to Namco's ever growing 'Tales of' series.