* AlternativeCharacterInterpretation:
** Yuan. For a minor character who doesn't get a lot of screentime, there's a lot of debate how much he's NecessarilyEvil and whether he's a WellIntentionedExtremist or not.
** Some people think Mithos and [[spoiler: Martel's relationship has incestuous undertones. The logic behind this is, how much can one person change the world, just to revive their sister if they aren't loving her ''[[BrotherSisterIncest that]]'' way?? Especially when her real lover is so much more sane and understanding of her real wishes.]]
** Did George ''really'' force Regal and [[spoiler: Alicia]] apart because it was for Regal's own good, or did he just [[HoYay want Regal to himself?]]
** Is Lloyd an idealistic young man who thinks everyone deserves to live, but has to fight others despite wanting to protect them? Or is he a filthy hypocrite who says everyone deserves to live while also killing half-elves left, right and center?
** In the minor character column, [[spoiler:Zelos' mother falls into this, especially those enigmatic last words of hers. Was she full of bitter resentment that Zelos was even born, thus leading to her murder? Was she instead overwhelmed by sadness due to what she knew he would continue to face after her death, and thus honestly wished he hadn't been born into a life destined for constant pain? Did she maybe not get the entire sentence out - maybe she meant "born ''as a Chosen''"? Zelos assumes the first interpretation, but he's not the most reliable judge. And throwing fire on all this, ''[[AllThereInTheManual secondary sources]]'' can't even seem to agree - some of the guidebooks and whatnot seem to agree with Zelos' assessment, but the manga version ''strongly'' suggests the second interpretation due to a noted-in-text lack of malice in the line's delivery.]]
* AntiClimaxBoss: The {{Final Boss}}'s OneWingedAngel form, which most players regard as an easier fight than the first form. It's much easier to hit, and its attacks are easier to avoid.
* SugarWiki/AwesomeArt: While the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODrX0Jf4oNw OVA series]] wasn't perfect, it cannot be denied that it had ''gorgeous'' animation, courtesy of Ufotable.
* BaseBreakingCharacter: Mithos tends to have this effect. On one hand, many players love him for being the EvilCounterpart to Lloyd, and how threatening he is when first introduced. Others hate him for the rather awkward incestual tones he has about his sister, and also hate how "whiny" and boring he is compared to later antagonists like [[VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss Van]].
* ClicheStorm:
** Deliberate in the early stages, and in true Tales Of fashion, is subverted the rest of the game.
** Hello, Dwarven Vows; "Goodness and love will always win!"
* CompleteMonster: ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' makes up for having a WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds BigBad through the sheer depravity of some of the game's minor villains.
** [[EvilGenius Kvar the Fury Tempest]] is a MadScientist infamous for being the cruelest of the Desian Grand Cardinals. Heartless and sadistic, Kvar runs a Human Ranch where his [[HumanResources prisoners are turned into Exospheres]] in a process that leaves the party horrified. Discovering that some of his prisoners escaped from the ranch to the village of Luin, Kvar attacks Luin, destroying the village, killing many and capturing the survivors for his experiments. When [[TheProtagonist Lloyd]] encounters Kvar, the Cardinal brags about how he removed the Exosphere from Lloyd's mother, causing [[TragicMonster her to turn into a monster]] and attack both her child and her lover, Kratos, which resulted in Kratos killing her to save their son. The depth of Kvar's depravity is such that even his own men are [[EvenEvilHasStandards appalled by him]].
** [[EvilGenius Iron Will Rodyle]] is another Desian Grand Cardinal who shares Kvar's penchant for [[MadScientist mad science]]. Taking over Kvar's experiments following his death, Rodyle manages his own Human Ranches and is working to create a superweapon, the Mana Cannon, in order to destroy the Tower of Salvation, [[TheStarscream overthrow his boss]], and become the ruler of two worlds. When the party frees the Ranch's prisoners, Rodyle manages to trap the prisoners again and floods the room they're in, [[ForcedToWatch forcing the party to watch]]. Following his defeat, Rodyle activates the self-destruct sequence of his Human Ranch to make sure [[TakingYouWithMe the heroes and everyone else in the Ranch dies with him]].
* CultClassic: It never sold as well as ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'', but it's very fondly remembered all the same.
* DamselScrappy: Colette, especially to western fans.
* DieForOurShip:
** Colette, by some Lloyd/Sheena fans; sometimes they don't even hate her, just "need" to bash her because she's "in the way". The reverse also goes for Lloyd/Colette ships bashing Sheena.
** Sheena and especially Colette fall prey to this for Lloyd/Zelos.
** Zelos does this for people who prefer Sheena to be with Lloyd, often [[spoiler: using the "Kratos Route" of the game where Zelos dies as the setting]] to make the pairing more possible, without any future interruptions.
%%* EvilIsSexy: Pronyma
* EnsembleDarkhorse:
** Zelos has ranked in the top 10 of every single official popularity poll NamcoBandai has done except for the seventh poll (in which he ranked in 11th place).
** Outside of Japan, at least, both Kratos and Sheena have formidable fanbases. Especially Kratos.
*** Kratos gets quite a bit of this in Japan, too. He ranked 3rd in the first official Tales Character Poll and won the following poll, an honor that only [[VideoGame/TalesOfDestiny Leon]], [[VideoGame/TalesofVesperia Yuri]], and [[VideoGame/TalesOfXillia2 Ludger]] have ever shared. Even though Kratos has not made the top three since the year he placed first, he continues to place consistently high on the list.
** Raine is popular in Norway where she's seen as a HotTeacher. Two users were banned from the official Nintendo forum for constantly creating flame wars of who of them should have the right to have her as their avatar. Two calmer fans who got along created a new forum together, although not focused only on her but Nintendo in general did both often discuss her in the 'Tales of' portion of the forum (which was created due to many fans of the series).
* FanPreferredCouple: Quite a few examples since Lloyd can be paired off with anyone, but notably Lloyd/Sheena and Zelos/Lloyd for the {{Ho Yay}} shippers.
* FashionVictimVillain: [[spoiler: Yggdrasil]] and his disco pajamas.
* FunnyAneurysmMoment
** It's cute when Colette is drawing on Lloyd's hand in the opening cinematic, until you get to the point in the game where she does this, and the player learns why: [[spoiler:she ''can't talk''.]]
** The skit "Lloyd's Thoughts on Angels" has Lloyd point out that angels' wings[[note]]This occurs after the only angel they've seen is Remiel, who has flesh-and-feather wings instead of the pure-light wings that Colette gets[[/note]] would get in the way when they're trying to sleep. [[spoiler:Upon breaching the second seal, Colette ''loses the ability to sleep''.]]
--->'''Lloyd:''' Being an angel is pretty inconvenient, huh?
** The skit "Pretty Boys Die Young," in which Lloyd and Sheena comment that Zelos seems like the type of guy who just won't die. You can see where this is going [[spoiler:In one of the endings, he dies]].
** The ending becomes a lot less hopeful for people who have played ''VideoGame/TalesOfPhantasia'' and realize that [[spoiler:once Yggdrassil's system of mana distribution fell, it eventually lead to exactly what he was trying to prevent -- another great Magitek war that destroyed all advanced human civilization on the planet]].
** During one of their training sessions, Lloyd compares Kratos to an older brother. Coming from Lloyd, its genuine acknowledgement over how he appreciates Kratos' lessons. [[spoiler: Kratos knows full well that Lloyd is actually his son. Imagine how awkward it must feel to have your son compare you to a brother, especially after you've already been trapped in the same youthful body for 4000 years.]]
* GameBreaker: Colette's Toss Hammer; Para Ball being another example.
** Any Mystic Arte with the prerequisite of "health in the red". No, you can't use the same Mystic Arte more than once in one battle (without healing to full and falling to the red again). Yes, you ''can'' deliberately avoid healing and just spam, say, Falcon's Crest at the start of every battle until someone cheap-shots you.
** The Compound EX Skill "Lucky Unison", a result of "Taunt" and "Personal" on anyone except Kratos and Zelos, allows [[LuckBasedMission a chance]] for the Unison Attack gauge to stay full after a Unison Attack. At worst, you'll get a few lucky breaks. At best, you can throw out ''five consecutive Unison Attacks'', which may potentially mean ''five consecutive rounds of '''Prism Stars'''.''
* GermansLoveDavidHasselhoff: As far as sales go, it's the TalesSeries equivalent to ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'': in Japan, it was a very good, important Tales game due to the 3D jump and the advances made in game mechanics, and is well-remembered and even stands out a bit, but it doesn't ''completely'' dominate the discussion, even though every Tales game that followed does owe a little to it. '''Outside''' of Japan (in America in particular), it ''defined'' the entire fandom and is ''the'' game people will think of when casually mentioning the series as a whole.
* GoodBadBugs:
** The Tech Glitch. Normally the TechTree is set up so that you can't learn skills from opposing branches simultaneously. However, with clever use of C-stick shortcuts and party member swapping, you can learn the final-tier skill from the branch you ''aren't'' taking, as well as the skills from the branch you ''are.''
** Just before the final boss fight with [[spoiler:Mithos]], during the cut-scene, if you advance ''any'' of the dialogue before the audio finishes playing, then when the boss [[spoiler:changes into his young form]] he'll glitch out for the rest of the cut-scene. He will just stand there, talking to you, mouth not moving, arms lifeless, body totally inert.
** As mentioned in the main article, the dragon that gives 10,000 Gald upon defeat only does so because of a typo that resulted in an extra zero -- the [[NoExportForYou Japan-only]] UsefulNotes/PlayStation2 UpdatedRerelease has it only give 1,000 Gald instead. ''Chronicles's'' version, being a [=PS3=] port of said UpdatedRerelease, is the same. This unfortunately makes completing the Luin Rebuilding sidquest a ''lot'' more cumbersome than it already was; the next best MoneySpider is the Gold Dragon, which gives ''almost'' as much Gald, but appears in a later, more troublesome dungeon.
** One funny bug that's manifested in at least the [=PS3=] and Steam versions is the "dirty Sheena" bug, wherein if the player takes the "hard path" first and meets Sheena in the newly destroyed Luin, her character model will still be in its "dirty" state even after moments when it would have been cleaned up in the original version. The bug sorts itself out if you change her title to an alternate costume title and back but is otherwise kept on generally so that serious moments are Narmed up a bit by Sheena looking like she hasn't had a bath in forever.
** The [=PS2=] version onward removed the skill tree glitch, [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Xm5HZuLh-Y but one REALLY useful glitch]] somehow slipped by them. By moving the cursor around the artes menu in a certain way, you can scroll PAST the menu and into an almost entirely complete collection of artes for everyone including some DummiedOut ones. But the best part of this glitch is being able to find Mystic Artes in this magic glitched menu, ''[[UpToEleven being able to map them to a single button]] and being able to perform them at any time regardless of requirements.'' And since you can spam spell-based Mystic Artes, this means great things for Genis, Raine and Zelos. Furthermore it still allows yout o map spells from the opposite skill tree, making a great replacement for the skill tree glitch.
* GrowingTheBeard: This is pretty much unquestionably where the series really began to find its stride. While ''VideoGame/TalesOfEternia'' had previously used some of these plot and gameplay elements, it was ''Symphonia'' that really fleshed out concepts like the skits and character customization and made it an RPG for the ages.
* HarsherInHindsight: The Clara sidequest manages to do this to already very harsh events in several of your party members' backstories. [[spoiler: It turns out that people who mutated into monsters because of the Exspheres can be turned back into humans after all. Kratos, Regal, and Genis may not have needed to kill their loved ones, and Lloyd and Presea could have possibly kept their family members.]]
** In a skit, Lloyd also says he avenged his mother after killing Kvar, even after Kratos points out his father actually killed her. [[spoiler: It turns out ''Kratos'' is said father.]] It's also one of the rare moments he actually has a "sad" expression on his portrait.
* HilariousInHindsight:
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5TRN052SZ0 This]] is a video showing a rare enemy called a Gentleman. {{Does this remind you of|Anything}} [[Franchise/TheSlenderManMythos anyone?]]
** Also, [[DaranNorris Rodyle's]]...[[MadScientist relation]][[CompleteMonster ship]] with [[TaraStrong Presea]] takes weird connotations given their respective voice actors' characters' relationship on WesternAnimation/FairlyOddParents.
** Another weird coincidence; in Sybak, [[Anime/TigerAndBunny you can purchase a sword called "Kotetsu" literally right next to the place where you find the recipe for Fried Rice.]] The vice-chief of Mizuho also bears a little resemblance to Kotetsu - and best of all, his name is ''Tiga.''
** Kratos' Level 100 Title is [[VideoGame/GodOfWar "War God"]].[[note]]There's really no chance this was on purpose, as ''God of War'' came out several years after ''Symphonia''.[[/note]]
** The comparisons between ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' and this game become a dozen times funnier now that [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyX2 the Gullwings]] (who already share a dynamic like the Sylph) are ''[[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII fairies for hire]]''.
** Exire's city title is [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess "The City in the Sky"]].
** Mixture of this and HarsherInHindsight when you view this [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ytMi_lk9QM Lets Play of an obscure Choose your own nightmare interactive movie called "How I became a Freak]]. The main character is voiced by young Mithos, and is blonde.
* HoYay:
** Zelos occasionally acts slashy towards Lloyd. In Japanese, he even refers to Lloyd with the exact same epithet he uses on all his lady loves - "[[http://pics.livejournal.com/madri/pic/003fq5xz hunny]]."
*** It certainly doesn't help that he's one of the ''only'' male characters Zelos shows any real affection for. Other guys might as well be pieces of furniture to him.
** Genis cooks for him, and he totally resents it if he's not chosen to be in Lloyd's group in the times you have to split the party in two. His friendship with Mithos also has elements of adorable ToyShip (especially when Mithos goes "Who do you like better, Lloyd or me?", which actually makes Lloyd react jealously), except... then [[ShooOutTheClowns the whole thing gets much more serious.]]
--->'''Friend''': [[LampshadeHanging It's awkward talking about it]], but it represents the bond between the two.
** Zelos prepares a meal [[spoiler:with sleeping drugs]]. Just before serving, he grabs Lloyd from behind and hugs him tight. "'Cause we're best friends, right? I worry about you. You must be tired." Or verrrry uncomfortable. Still, cue the {{Squee}}. Or just run with it altogether.
* {{Hypocrite}}: Sheena often gets mad at Zelos for making sexist remarks, but we get this statement from her at Palmacosta:
--> "Yeah. A woman's been kidnapped. If you're a real man, you have to rescue her!"
** Though considering said woman (Chocolat) has been taken to a Desian Human Ranch, which is a death sentence, in effect, has no combat experience and she says this if the player has Lloyd [[TheGreaterGood insisting that releasing the seals is more important]], it might be intended as Sheena pointing out the hypocrisy of ''Lloyd'' saying that, since the whole reason he's on the Journey of Regeneration is he wanted to help save the world and to protect his childhood friend.
* HypeBacklash: Given that it's often dubbed "The best Tales of game" by it's fans, it's not surprising that many get disappointed with it as a result.
** Doubly so when coming back to this game after having played later tales series games, and Symphonia will be surprisingly stiff by comparison. Not terrible or bad by any means, but in comparison to advances or changes in the gameplay like Xillia, Graces and Abyss offered, Symphonia will show its age. Adding to it, while Symphonia is where the writing team really hit their DeconstructorFleet, later games had more complex main characters and more complex antagonists. Going from Abyss to Symphonia feels like a step down in story to many for example.
* InferredHolocaust: [[spoiler: This is the prequel to VideoGame/TalesOfPhantasia after all.]]
* InternetBackdraft:
** Just try and explain why Colette or Sheena is a better match for Lloyd and see how far that gets you.
** Also, don't bring up the Drama [=CDs=]. Just... don't.
** Or compare this to ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX''. Doing the reverse yields the same results. Even after pointing out the many, many differences the slightest comparison ''will'' lead to {{Fanwank}} of unimaginable levels. Even pointing out that one has ''heard'' the two games compared can lead to flaming like you would not imagine. ''VideoGame/GrandiaII'' says "hi".
** Bash Colette. Or, similarly, bash Sheena.
** Try to explain why ''Chronicles'' should/shouldn't get a Wii U release, and you'll get either Nintendo fans, or Sony fans breathing down your neck.
* ItsPopularNowItSucks: Before the series became super popular in the states, fans held it as one of the best games ever. Since the series has gotten more fame now, fans of the original UsefulNotes/NintendoGameCube version tend to have this mindset, at least in regards to the [=PS3=] version.
* ItsTheSameNowItSucks: The ''Chronicles'' re-release gets this a bit due to all new features that weren't in the [=PS2=] version being largely superficial. Particular points of contention are the lack of Free Run, and the preservation of the spell queue[[note]]The game's inability to show the animations of two mid or high level spells at a time.[[/note]], the latter of which was only in the original version due to technical limitations.
** And that it runs at 30 fps (because the [=PS2=] version did), while the [=GameCube=] version from ''10 years ago'' ran at 60.
* LoveToHate: [[spoiler: Remiel]] is a well-done example, requiring just one scene to make you utterly loathe him, and then you immediately get to beat the piss out of him. And it feels very good.
* MemeticMutation
** The infamous "Coffee [[MindScrew Mind-fuck]]" has generated a minor meme cluster, with Lloyd being referred to as [[FanNickname Coffee-kun]] on certain ImageBoards, and often being portrayed as an enraged Starbucks employee who offers only two options for an order - "motherfucking hot coffee" or "motherfucking cold coffee," offering none of that "Espresso or Frappucino bullshit."
*** It got to the point where there's an image floating around of Hideo Baba (the director/producer of the Tales series) holding up a fanmade "Lloydbucks" shirt.
*** The Coffee scene is so memetic, that it get ''three'' references in the "Successors of Hope" novel.
** Kratos's apparent dislike of tomatoes (he never willingly uses them as an additional ingredient while cooking, and is less proficient at recipes in which they're required) shows up quite a bit in fanart. Lloyd's dislike of tomatoes is also brought up in various fanworks on a regular basis, [[spoiler: especially when people are trying to come up with father son similarities/bonding experiences]].
** Referring to Mithos Yggdrasill as Disco Lord Yggdrasil, due to his ''fabulous'' white bodysuit.
** Though small, Plantix, the first boss you fight against in Disc 2, has gotten some humor when [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sA7vZRSqaD0 one person decided to replace the final boss with him]], and it rolled on from there with jokes of Plantix being the (true) final boss. It does become HilariousInHindsight when [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRgjKKrxMUk another player's game locked up once after the Plantix battle]], cementing its status as the "last" boss to fight.
** [[YouMakeMeSic home along on a fridey night? juts remember... the Z man]]. [[labelnote:Explanation]] It has become tradition for some Tales fans on Tumblr to reblog [[http://24.media.tumblr.com/0f144f7e06be8da81828831fbf4f21a8/tumblr_msv85iH8Fe1rsdxaho1_1280.jpg a certain picture of Zelos]] every Friday.[[/labelnote]]
* MemeticBadass: Regal and his KamehameHadoken have become a minor case of this, with people theorizing that if he'd just use it during combat, he'd be the most powerful character in the entire game.
* {{Moe}}:
** Colette, in spades: Cute face: check. Small, delicate body: Check. {{Dojikko}}: Check. Adorable voice, courtesy of Creator/NanaMizuki in Japanese and Heather Hogan-Watson in English: OOOOOH! Soooo check! TheWoobie as big as you can get: CHECK, CHECK, CHECK!
** [[WhenSheSmiles Presea]] and [[AdorablyPrecociousChild Genis]].
* MoralEventHorizon:
** Forcytus crosses it by [[spoiler:turning Marble into a monster and forcing Lloyd and Genis to kill her]].
** [[spoiler:Rodyle flooding a passageway where the escaping prisoners are to cut the party off from the Mana Cannon]].
** Magnius isn't quite as bad as the above two, but deserves credit for the sheer ''speed'' at which he crosses the line. In his first appearance, right after his ''first line'', he [[spoiler:[[EstablishingCharacterMoment snaps a civilian's neck for not showing him the proper respect.]]]]
* MostAnnoyingSound:
** Desian {{Mooks}}, when defeated, shout "how could I lose to such ''INFERIOR BEINGS''!?" This happens ''every time''.
** On that note, there is an enemy called a "Mandragora", which is essentially just a cute female flower spirit, but when defeated, they shout "I'm a goner"! Kind of funny, but the voice is [[CuteButCacophonic just annoying]]. UH OH TIME TO FLY UH OH TIME TO FLY I'M A GONER UH OH TIME TO I'M A GONER UH OH TIME TO FLY
** Also, "I'm sorry". Said by ''everyone''. ''Ever''.
** "Hey, what's wrong?" "[[PoorCommunicationKills IT'S NOTHING.]]"
** The pink Sylph fairy has the most ''grating'' voice ever.
** Fighting the Archers with the Japanese track on becomes very irritating because they moan every time they're hit.
** Chocolat's voice, which is very high-pitched and nasally.
** If Presea finishes a battle before [[spoiler: she has her Exsphere properly Key Crested]], she whines, "I wanna go home" which gets annoying if you have to hear it about five times in a row.
* MostWonderfulSound
** "[[TheDitz Oops..]] [[BornLucky I messed up]]." With a very slim chance to happen in an attempt at using [[PerpetualMolt Holy Song]] or [[HolyHandGrenade Judgement]], Colette's mistake ends up activating [[BreadEggsBreadedEggs a combination]] called [[LimitBreak Holy Judgement]].
* {{Narm}}:
** Colette learning Judgment immediately after [[spoiler:becoming an angel]].
** Regal: "What is this ominous light that threatens to '''''engulf''''' us?!" That one is pretty much [[MemeticMutation a meme.]]
** Due to the slow movements and wooden animations outside of battle, many supposedly action-heavy cutscenes can come off as undynamic and laughable. One example would be Genis running slowly in front of someone to block a fireball that got cast over 5 seconds ago and then casually wandering off again.
*** Related to that, the standing and running animations for Desians are so ridiculous that it can be impossible to take some of their story scenes seriously.
*** There's also the scene where Yuan is on the ground and Mithos proceeds to kick him and do an EvilLaugh. It's totally hilarious if you don't continue, and Mithos just keeps kicking Yuan while he's down. The icing on the cake is Lloyd in his idle pose like he's thinking, "Huh, so that's how gravity works..." It's massive spoilers but it can be seen [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luwfQNOSgUk&list=PLAV-xzjVBR0XVBQtMzyGmF_MW2Va3yZPs&index=39&nohtml5=False in this video.]]
** Nothing quite beats [[spoiler: Kratos after undoing Origin's seal]]. There's an intense DuelBoss, and then he stares up at the camera, neck at an entirely impossible angle, and says with dull frustration, [[spoiler:[[{{Wangst}} "it looks like I've failed to die once more."]]]]
** Rodyle mocking Presea when you confront her at his Ranch. After, Presea goes, ''"DIE!!"'' ...And then just stands there. It's as awkward as it is hilarious.
* OneTrueThreesome: While there was a modest following for Lloyd/Colette/Zelos, the OVA ended with Lloyd travelling not only with Colette, but Zelos and Sheena too, effectively launching a new OT4.
* PortingDisaster: The PC port had a number of issues that ranged from annoying to game-breaking, including typos that weren't present in previous release of the game, text not appearing correctly or not appearing at all (especially if the language setting was changed), large amounts of lag when saving or opening the menu, frequent crashes, the game outright refusing to load up, and dodgy DRM that created a new .exe file whenever the game was opened. It was also locked at 720p resolution and 30fps, despite the original Gamecube release running at 60fps.
** Even worse, a modder named Durante released a fix which made the game look much better... And it only took '''[[TheyJustDidntCare 14 minutes]]'''. And even WORSE than that [[SkewedPriorities they had time to put in a DRM file, but not those fourteen minutes to fix the game]].
* RonTheDeathEater: Colette gets a lot of this treatment in Lloyd/Sheena fanfiction. Sheena does in Lloyd/Colette fanfiction.
* SeinfeldIsUnfunny: It's easy to have been spoiled by the later titles, even those without free-run for how radically different their battle systems were from this game.
* SequelDisplacement: In America especially, this is probably the first Tales game many people played and is the most well-known. It's also the first game in the series to sell over a million copies. It gets to the point that a lot of fans forget that ''Destiny'' and ''Destiny II/Eternia'' even got releases outside of Japan, or that a lot of ''Symphonia'''s mechanical and plot elements appeared in embryonic form in ''Eternia''.[[note]]The tiny print runs the [=PS1=] games got sure don't help matters, but...[[/note]]
* ShipToShipCombat: The aforementioned Colette vs. Sheena war, plus the numerous YaoiGuys ships. The various skits and ShipTease moments do ''not'' help one bit. Nor did the sequel, which decided to make ''any'' given pairing happen, depending on a question you ask Lloyd.
* SomeAnvilsNeedToBeDropped: The game's condemnation of racism is frequent and unsubtle, particularly as the game goes on, but it is surprisingly nuanced. Rather than repeatedly drumming in the point that discrimination is bad over and over (though there's certainly a lot of that), different parts of the game focus on different aspects of racism, from open slavery, to separatism, to violent supremacist movements that ultimately [[YouAreWhatYouHate prove no better than their former oppressors]], to showing how even someone who isn't overtly racist against a group is still affected by the stereotypes and discrimination against that group.
* SignatureScene:
** The boss fight against [[spoiler: Genis's friend Marble]].
** Lloyd's coffee gambit, where he [[spoiler: tricks Colette into revealing that she's losing her senses]].
** Lloyd's DuelBattle with [[spoiler: Kratos]].
* SpecialEffectFailure: The explosions that occur when the human ranches are destroyed look ''terrible.''
** Several titles allow the characters to change costume; however, anything that requires the alteration of the character's model (Sheena getting dirty, [[spoiler:Colette's sleeve being blown off]], etc) only has alterations for their original outfit, most of Kratos' costume changes are fix-scripted, and the fights with Sheena, Regal, [[spoiler:Kratos, and Zelos]] feature their normal outfits in battle.
* StoicWoobie: Regal, especially in the anime, which takes his already tragic backstory and elevates it to outright TearJerker status. Despite all the bad things that happen to him, however, Regal never angsts unless the issue's being pressed.
* StrangledByTheRedString: Lloyd and Colette, but ''only'' if you don't pay attention to the RelationshipValues (Colette is the easiest to please, especially by idealistic decisions that are in character for Lloyd) and end up with her as Lloyd's "default" soul mate. Actually investing in the relationship proves to have [[ChildhoodFriendRomance quite the opposite effect]]. It can get annoying if you're trying to get some of the more elusive party members to be Lloyd's closest partner. (Especially Zelos, which is by far the hardest to win over.)
* ThatOneBoss:
** Sylphs, if you're trying to get them early.
** The dragons on the Island of Floating Dragons, since they launch powerful attacks that are difficult to dodge. Strangely enough, they don't even get boss music.
** [[spoiler: Yuan and Botta]] can also be a WakeUpCallBoss if you are under leveled. While most bosses are solo and can thus be pushed into a corner and whaled on, these two are both full blown bosses and fight together, meaning that while you're trying to corner one, the other is whaling on your healers or casting eruption everywhere.
** The Wind Spirit in Asgard is surprisingly tough, especially as it's often too early for Raine to know Photon.
** The boss in the Tower of Mana, especially if you take the Hard Path.
* ThatOneLevel:
** The Earth temple requires that you gave an [=NPC=] in an entirely different dungeon a potion just to get into the temple itself. Beyond that, you need [[FetchQuest a few other things that aren't found in the dungeon]] before the gnomes will let you pass. Granted, the game outright tells you where to find the items you need, but the fact you may end up wandering all over Tethe'alla before getting any substantial meat out of the dungeon makes ii incredibly annoying.
** Shadow's temple, which is basically a dungeon-long puzzle that forces you to wrangle five little NPC blobs that have the most [[ArtificialStupidity critically stupid AI ever]] and can't grasp the concept of straight lines.
** Ymir Forest drags on forever because of ThatOnePuzzle. It's detailed on that trope's page, but put succinctly, it's a very long, very complicated puzzle that has multiple ways you can screw up and be forced to restart. It also has a massive case of FridgeLogic combined with GameplayAndStorySegregation, considering that the entire puzzle revolves around getting a piece of fruit from high in a tree, when one of your party members has the ability to fly.
** And don't forget Volt's temple. There are winding hallways with lots of stairs, no railing, and sporadic lighting that take you back several rooms if you fall over. Of course, if you do happen to fall a few times, you get frustrated and want to get through it in a hurry, causing you to make mistakes and fall even more. Then, finally, you navigate through three of those damn hallways... and fall off a corner three inches from the exit.
** The Ice Temple and Welgaia are no cakewalk if you don't like sliding puzzles.
** Welgaia is especially hard because you get virtually no hint as to where you're supposed to go, the buttons you need to find to progress in the dungeon blend in the background, there are no memorable setpieces, the dungeon goes on and on and once you get lost for the 6th time, the music goes from EtherealChoir to MostAnnoyingSound and endless sliding puzzles.
** Meltokio Sewers for having obnoxious enemies that love to spam status ailments (especially poison) and for basically being a glorified series of trial-and-error block puzzles. Mess up a block puzzle? Then have fun backtracking to the garbage machine and waiting for its stupid animation to pump one out again. The background music is droning and repetitive, too.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot: So, it turns out [[spoiler: Kratos is Lloyd's biological father.]] He never interacts with the adoptive father, Dirk. The OVA series did have a brief scene of them discussing [[spoiler: Kratos exiling himself to Derris-Kharlan]] in the last episode. Think about the potential for them to talk about how Lloyd was raised, how he grew up, and more depth into Dirk's decision to adopt a human boy (since a dwarf will most likely outlive him and might not understand human customs as well). The game already puts heavy Foreshadowing and emphasis on fatherhood. (Remiel and Colette, Kilia and Dorr, anyone?)
* ViewerGenderConfusion:
** Be honest, did you think that figure in pink in the back of the box art was going to be a man? Not only that, but a total Casanova at that? The fact that he's way in the back and in a very androgynous pose doesn't help. Raine can also be mistaken for a very hot effeminate guy... well, until thirty seconds of playing. Later, the kid Mithos also has a quite girly design, rather similar to Colette. Granted, [[spoiler: Colette and Mithos looking similar is quite deliberate and is meant to foreshadow the game's later developments.]]
** It's very common for people to assume Genis is a girl. The voice and hair don't help.
** Apparently, that rainbow {{Kitsune}} with a feminine sounding voice and name (Corrine) is male. [[GenderFlip Except]] in the manga, unless that was a translation error or something.
** Remiel is pretty effeminate. His voice shows he's a guy, but his clothing and face aren't very masculine.
** When [[spoiler:Zelos betrays the party]], three angels show up to be fought. Two of them are obvious female enemies that you have fought already. The third also looks very feminine until he speaks with a voice deeper than Remiel's.
* TheWoobie: Everyone in the party has Woobie moments to some degree. Even the BigBad does.
** Colette. There is a split opinion on her-- and that's [[InternetBackdraft flame bait.]] She was born to be the Chosen and [[spoiler: raised from birth to believe that she was going to die and has absolutely no self esteem to speak of, since she was going to die a martyr.]]
** Presea's father fell ill when Presea was 12, so she agreed to be part of a experiment that completely halted her aging process and sealed away her emotions for [[spoiler: sixteen years]]. In the meantime, her father died in bed and she never noticed. Once Lloyd puts a Key Crest on her Exsphere, she finally realizes what happened and freaks out. She also finds out that her sister is dead and she has to travel with the man who killed her. They deal with that though, but even in the sequel, she's still not completely over it.
** Sheena - she was abandoned in "The forest of death" by her birth parents, then the Chief of Mizuho adopted her. Then she was sent back and forth to Meltokio and Sybak to become a Summoner. (Lloyd even lampshades that they treated her like a bargaining chip.) Then at seven years old, [[spoiler: she fails to control Volt, who goes berserk and kills a quarter of Mizuho's population and puts her father-figure in a coma]], which much of the village (including [[spoiler: her childhood friend Kuchinawa]]) still blame her for. Then she's forced to go to Sylvarant to kill Colette, but can't go through with it when she sees the state Sylvarant is in, causing [[spoiler: Kuchinawa]] to attempt to get revenge on her, and then she is forced to attempt to make a pact with Volt, only for him to go berserk again and [[spoiler: kill her lifelong friend, Corrine.]] All this puts her squarely in Woobie territory.
** Raine also has it bad- [[spoiler: she and her parents were thrown out of the Elven village]], then her incredible intellect meant she was pursued relentlessly by Sybak's Imperial Research Academy to "get their hands" on her (and [[KickTheDog considering the way they treat half-elves]]...), [[spoiler: she falls off a boat and almost drowns as she tries to escape from them with her parents]], resulting in her having a permanent fear of water. [[spoiler: Then her mother is forced to abandon a young Raine and newborn Genis at the Otherworld Gate.]] They make it through there, forcing Raine to raise Genis herself and hide their true heritage from everyone in Iselia to avoid persecution. Ouch.
** Lloyd's mother, [[TheGhost Anna Irving]], was Kvar's precious Angelus Project, an attempt at making a Cruxis Crystal from a human host. He wouldn't stop chasing her after she escaped the ranch with [[spoiler: Kratos and their son.]] He turns her into a monster and [[spoiler: begs for Kratos to kill her to protect their child.]]
** Zelos is a JerkassWoobie. [[spoiler: As a child, his mother was murdered in front of him and her dying words were "You should never have been born.", from there on, his father died and as he grew up, everyone he met never cared about him and only associated with him because he was the Chosen. Since then, he's become a huge DeathSeeker who hates every moment he's alive behind his {{Jerkass}} persona of a flamboyant playboy.]]
** Regal is a StoicWoobie. [[spoiler: He killed the woman he loved after she was turned into a monster from having her Exsphere removed. Since then, he turned himself in and never managed to get over it, even in the sequel.]]
** Kratos is a StoicWoobie. [[spoiler: He also killed the woman he loved, who was Lloyd's mother. She also went out of control due to having her Exsphere removed. A baby Lloyd and Noishe fell off a cliff and by the time Kratos got down to the bottom of the cliff, all Kratos found was the corpses of Desians eaten by monsters. Since then, he's been a DeathSeeker who has no reason to live until he meets Lloyd at the start of the game.]]
** Yggdrasil is a WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds. [[spoiler: He watched his sister Martel die, the only family he had left when all he wanted to do was stop Half Elf discrimination. He then split the world in two to stop it from destroying itself and has spent over four thousand years trying to revive Martel and has gone off the deep end big time. By the end of the game, he goes completely insane and tries to take away Derris Kharlan which would end the worlds. His dying words are so filled with despair that it hurts.]]
** There are also plenty of minor characters that qualify thanks to all the horrific trauma they go through. For example, we have Clara - because her husband is the Governor-General, the Desians perform horrifying experiments on her, mutating her into a monster. Dorr desperately tries to hide this by claiming she died while selling out his beliefs because he mistakenly thinks the Desians have a cure for Clara. When he dies, it turns out Killia was DeadAllAlong and was simply one of Pronyma's minions sent to keep tabs on the situation. Clara escapes Palmacosta as a monster and traipses around Sylvarant, [[AndIMustScream unable to communicate with anyone or control her violent urges]] and is chased by monster-hunters. She can eventually be found in Izoold and healed - but then, [[spoiler: Palmacosta is destroyed]] and Clara ''never leaves the beach'' where you found her. With her husband dead, daughter dead and [[spoiler: hometown destroyed]], she likely simply has nowhere else to go.
* {{Woolseyism}}: Raine and Genis were originally named ''Refill'' and ''Genius'', respectively, in the original Japanese. While the Japanese would find this [[NarmCharm incredibly funny in a good way]] (especially since "Refill" is a healer, thus, she ''refills'' your HP), Namco's editorial team wisely realized that Westerners would find the names eye-bitingly stupid and dropped the "u" from Genis' name to preserve the joke without being too obvious, and came up with a nice equivalent for Raine without being quite as blatant as the Japanese version (that is, her English name invokes the image of a ''soothing rain'' washing away pain).
** Backfiring slightly, as Genis tends to get a rather... inappropriate nickname by some people, and Raine's name is a hilarious/harsher in hindsight moment, considering her intense fear of water.