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Tales of Destiny is the second mainline entry in the Tales Series. The game was released on December 23rd, 1997 in Japan on the PlayStation. It received an international release on September 30th, 1998 in North America.

Stahn Aileron is a typical countryside boy who stows away on the dragon-ship Draconis with the aim of travelling to the nation's capital and enlisting as a knight to try to care for his destitute family. En-route, the ship is attacked by monsters, and struggling to find a weapon to fight them off with, Stahn stumbles across an old sword in a storeroom. Suddenly the sword starts to talk to him, calling itself Dymlos and claiming to be one of the ancient and powerful Swordian weapons created over a thousand years ago during a world-spanning conflict called the War Between Heaven and Earth.

Having been chosen by Dymlos as its new master, Stahn is thrust into an epic quest revolving around a powerful artifact known as the Eye Of Atamoni, which just happens to have been stolen from a secret temple by its (former) high priest. Along the way, Stahn meets the other Swordian Masters and gathers an eclectic party:

  • Rutee Katrea: A "Lens Hunter" (and/or thief) who is utterly obsessed with money, and the earning thereof. Very much a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. Wields the Water Swordian Atwight.
  • Leon Magnus: A super-serious prodigy knight of Seinegald who would rather be alone most of the time. The Ensemble Dark Horse of the series. Wields the Earth Swordian Chaltier.
  • Garr Kelvin: A mature archer who Stahn finds Walking the Earth. He later turns out to be The Wise Prince of Heidelberg. Called Woodrow in Japan. Wields the Wind Swordian Igtenos.
  • Philia Felice: A timid, sheltered priestess (with a dark streak) who joins the party when the Eye of Atamoni is stolen from her temple. Wears glasses. Wields the Lightning Swordian Clemente.
  • Mary Argent: Rutee's friend and partner-in-crime. She's an incredible fighter, but is suffering from Identity Amnesia, with a sword as her only link to the past.
  • Karyl Sheeden: A runaway bard, and a Prince of Sheeden. Known as Johnny Shiden in Japan.
  • Bruiser Khang: A fist-fighter who is the much-loved champion of the Colosseum, and damn proud of it. He has a crush on Philia. Known as Mighty Kongman in Japan.
  • Chelsea Torn: A young girl who Garr took under his wing. She excels in archery.
  • Lilith Aileron: Stahn's little sister. She's worried about him being on a journey to save the world, so she goes to track him down and bring him kicking and screaming home. Fights with traditional cooking implements, such as a frying pan, ladle, and laser beam.

The game was released in the US in 1998, a time during the JRPG boom caused by Final Fantasy VII where publishers were racing to release anything that had hit points and spiky hair in it. The amount of effort placed into the localisation could be generously described as "enough". All of the skits were cut (and with it, half of the actual plot) but the Japanese voice track remained intact, meaning that characters were calling out their Japanese attack names, even for attacks whose names are localised and/or modified (with said attacks often, but not always, being radically different) in the English text. It can ruin the immersion sometimes; but also can cause a few errors with the "L" and "R" differences for attacks whose names are (mostly) the same in both languages.

A direct sequel to the game, Tales of Destiny 2, was released on November 28th, 2002 in Japan.

A Japan-exclusive Updated Re Release, Tales of Destiny Director's Cut, was released January 31st, 2008. The remake retouched the original storyline with several Ret Cons (and is considered to be the current canon), and the Updated Re-release included "Leon's Side", an Another Side, Another Story starring Leon. Through the efforts of a fangroup under the name Life Bottle Productions a completed translation was made, which can be found here Stahn, Rutee and Leon/Judas appear in the crossover game Namco Capcom as playable characters.


Tales of Destiny provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: By virtue of being player characters Rutee, Mary, Chelsea, Philia, and Lilith all qualify.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: Mary is an easy-going, free spirited sort, so it comes as a surprise that she was part of a rebel militia that tried to overthrow the King of Phandaria, and lost her memory in the chaos when the rebellion failed.
  • And I Must Scream: In the original, Hugo developed a Swordian Disk that would silence Swordians completely. Since the swords cannot move or act by themselves, they were essentially trapped silently watching for a month before anyone realized what had happened.
  • An Ice Person: Rutee, via Atwight, uses ice-based attack magic.
  • Anime Theme Song: "Yume de Aru Youni" ("As Though Just a Dream") by DEEN.
  • Another Side, Another Story: The Director's Cut of the PS2 remake has a special scenario where Leon Magnus is the protagonist. It is available from the start of the game and does not require playing through the standard game first (although that's advisable; Leon is in the know about several things that are spoilers to Stahn). And, of course, it ends a lot faster.
  • Anti-Grinding: In the original version of the remake, a popular power-leveling technique was to set all your characters to "Auto", tape the control stick down so your characters ran in circles, and let the game play itself. Try this in the director's cut, and Barbatos shows up out of nowhere to yell at you for taking the cheap way out, and then kick your ass unless you run away, which you can't if you're using the tapedown method.
  • Apocalypse How: The formation of the Aethershpere causes worldwide societal disruption during the second half of the game, with the threat of the total extinction of the surface world if the villain's scheme goes unchecked. While the heroes succeed in preventing extinction, the damage is extensive enough that some regions of the world are sliding into societal collapse by the time of Tales of Destiny 2.
  • Arc Villain: The main antagonist for the first half of the story is Lydon/Grebaum, a high priest of the Seinegald Straylize Temple. He takes advantage of his rank to steal the Eye of Atamoni, then embarks on a campaign of world conquest with a small army of followers scattered around the globe.
  • Art Evolution: Compare Inomata's character artwork between the original PSX game and the PS2 remake. It's almost like they hired an entirely new artist. (Ten years of improvement will do that.)
  • Awesome, yet Impractical: Attempting to cast any spell with the character you're currently controlling, except for fast-casting ones. Whatever character you're controlling (usually Stahn) makes a great tank for keeping enemies off of your other party members (like Rutee, who is usually the healer). The CPU-controlled party members, not so much. Any hit, no matter how small, interrupts your spellcasting. This leads most of the swordians' spellcasting ability to go to waste, especially a few of Dymlos's spells. You would deal a lot more damage with Stahn's physical special attacks while having Dymlos equipped as his swordian, than you ever would having Stahn equipped with anything else and having someone else using Dymlos to cast spells. Unless, of course, you're in an area with Fire-immune enemies....
  • Badass Family: The Aileron family has a considerable Heroic Lineage. Stahn decides to go adventuring after hearing his grandfather Thomas's stories of serving in the Seinegald army. However, Stahn and his sister Lilith both blow Thomas out of the water in terms of what they are capable of, and both of them pass their basdassery down to their respective children, Kyle and Lymle/Rimul.
    • The Gilchrists, what with Hugo, Leon, Rutee, and Kyle.
  • Badass Normal:
    • The party members who are not Swordian-users are like this. They're far from slackers. There exist videos of the non-Swordian-users soloing the final boss.
    • Lilith is really good in the PSX version if you get her into the party somehow.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed: Both Batista and Ilene opt to end their own lives rather than leave their fates in the hands of the heroes. Ilene appears to regret where her path led her and sees no way out, even though Stahn would have forgiven her. Batista may intend to spare Philia further grief since execution is probably in his future. (Likely an extra-judicial one courtesy of Leon.)
  • Big Eater: Stahn, as a Hot-Blooded country boy, has an comically healthy appetite. Both he and Mary are known to tune out the world when there is a plate of food in front of them. Leon has a major Sweet Tooth, but his self-serious tendencies make his relationship with dessert decidedly complicated.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The world is saved, but at the price of the Swordians' lives. The world is also badly devastated by the Aethersphere's destruction. By the time of Tales of Destiny 2 the Kingdom of Seinegald has all but collapsed into a theocracy, and gets worse in several Bad Future timelines.
  • Blind Without 'Em: Philia wears glasses, and should she lose them she is practically helpless.
  • Blow You Away: Garr can use wind magic while wielding Igtenos.
  • Bonus Dungeon: A full, 60-floor remake of The Tower of Druaga can be accessed late in the game, but just getting to the tower is a Guide Dang It!. Plus, it is just as challenging as the arcade version Tower of Druaga in it's own way.
  • Bow and Sword in Accord: Garr/Woodrow can use both a bow and a sword in combat in the PS2 remake. In the original, he has to choose between one or the other.
  • The Cameo: Destiny R includes cameos by mascots of other Tales' games. The treasure found in the first dungeon that Rutee tries to sell to Walt is a sculpture of Mieu, while Zappie makes a blink-and-you'll-miss-it appearance when the Water Dragon emerges out of the sea to take you to Clemente.
  • Can't Drop the Hero: The original game only allowed for player 1 to control Stahn. The other party members could be made playable with an equipable item, but without cheat codes Stahn had to be in the party. The game allowed for the Swordians to be swapped to Stahn to mitigate any frustration of being locked in to one element only.
  • Casting a Shadow: Berselius appears to be a primarily shadow-element Swordian, but since the only opportunities to see it in action are when Hugo and Kronos use it against heroes it is difficult to get a sense of its powerset. Leon and Chaltier also have some shadow-based magic as a corollary to earth magic. Or possibly just being edgy and tormented in Leon's case.
  • Catchphrase: Kongman/Khang's "Ore-sama wa CHAMPION da!", which means "I'm the CHAMPION!".
  • The Chain of Harm: The Gilchrist-Katrea family tragedy spreads harm to the entire world. Hugo, driven insane by Miktran, abuses Leon and raises him as a Tyke Bomb. Leon interacts with the world in accordance with his upbringing and passes his abuse on to his inferiors - Stahn and Rutee. He doesn't realize it, but he is distancing himself from the only people capable of standing up to Hugo and extricating him from circumstances that will get him killed. Instead he chooses to go it alone, still complicit in Hugo's scheme, and furthers the cycle of abuse while becoming its most tragic victim.
  • Characterization Marches On: In the original game, Leon is a short-tempered Jerkass Woobie who has the authority to inflict corporal punishment on his teammates for stepping out of line, and he makes use of it - a lot - especially on Rutee. Fans latched onto the tragic portion of his character, and in subsequent appearances Leon was developed into a cold-hearted but reluctant antagonist. This modern perspective makes some of his more malevolent actions in the original (like shocking Rutee with her electric tiara every time she said something to annoy him) seem out of place.
  • Cherry Blossoms: The scenery is used in Noischat the first time Stahn realizes just what he wants to do with himself and his family. The scene is further enhanced by his conversation with Irene.
  • The Chosen One: Played with: the whole "Chosen One" tagline was just dropped by Dymlos to convince the thick-headed Stahn to pick him up. While Stahn is special in that he has the ability to hear (and wield) a Swordian, he's by no means a "chosen one".
  • City of Canals: Aquaveil is practically a country of canals. The English version creates new associations to Venice by changing one of the name of one of the Aquaveil city-states from "Toukei" to the Italian-sounding "Terazzi". Originally it was an entirely Wutai-flavored country of canals.
  • Co-Dragons: The game obfuscates that the three Oberon Executives are all Hugo's Dragons; fully committed to his goal of recreating the Aethersphere and willing to put their lives on the line for it.
  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: Straylize Temple/the Order of Atamoni has a Christian-esque hierarchy with bishops and priests, but also has priestesses. Considering that their deity is the all-loving Goddess Atamoni perhaps that is not surprising. Incidentally, Atamoni is the last name of the game's character designer spelled backwards.
  • Dark Is Not Evil:
    • Berselius is a sinister-looking sword with a black blade, but its original owner, Karell Berselius, was a very kind person.
    • Pierre de Chaltier's secondary element is darkness, but the man and sword are both mild-mannered and friendly ditzes.
  • Death Equals Redemption: Leon in the remake. He still betrays the party for Marian's sake, but acknowledges that he could have approached the whole situation better and commits to a Heroic Sacrifice so the the rest of the party can survive.
  • Dirty Old Man: The Swordian Clemente has a grandfatherly personality and is a good source of advice, but he has a fondness for young women that is a little unseemly. He picks the young priestess Philia as his mistress.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: The main characters chase Lydon/Grebaum across the world to recover the artifact he stole. Eventually the heroes catch up to him and have a decisive battle against him, but their sense of accomplishment is short-lived since Hugo's intentions for the Eye of Atamoni are much, much worse than Lydon's ever were.
  • Disc-One Final Dungeon: The events in Heidelberg Castle seem climactic, with Lydon making his final stand in the castle tower and (in the remake) even using the Draconis to attack the party, but there is so much more to come.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: Chaltier is the earth element Swordian and an example of a Power Stereotype Flip in terms of temperament - while capable of great personal loyalty, Chaltier is servile, flighty, and allows others to make decisions for him. And his master Leon's stubbornness may be similar to steadfastness, but he is above all a moody, standoffish grump.
  • Doomsday Device: The Belcrant device built into the flying fortress Dycroft was originally intended for peaceful purposes - drawing surface rock and soil into the air to form Floating Continents that allowed the world's inhabitants to escape an impact winter. But it functions by firing a giant cannon at the ground as the first step in floating continent formation. As sky-dwellers and earth-dwellers came increasingly into conflict, Belcrant was used to destroy cities.
  • Dual Wielding: Leon in the remake and all appearances since then. In the original game, he wielded a sword and shield. Woodrow/Garr fights with bow and sword at the same time.
  • Dub Name Change: A fair number of them, but often the changes are minor; the English rendition of the main character's name was changed from "Stan" to "Stahn" to better inform pronunciation, for example. A few player characters had their last names altered to sound a bit more evocative; for instance, Rutee Katret to Rutee Katrea.
    • There are three big player character name changes - Woodrow Kelvin to Garr Kelvin, Mighty Kongman to Bruiser Khang, and Johnny Sheeden to Karyl Sheedennote 
    • Antagonists also received name changes. Lydon Bernhardt was originally named Grebaum Bernhardt, and Miktran was changed to Kronos back before anyone knew to expect names like Miktran from the Tales series.
  • Dying as Yourself: When the party confronts and defeats Hugo in the PSX version, he admits all of his wrongdoings and apologizes to Rutee with his dying breath before Miktran appears in the flesh.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery: In the remake, Barbatos' "Cheap Eliminate" move is a One-Hit Kill for the whole party that he only uses if you dare to fight him on the easiest difficulty setting. If you dare to hack the game for infinite jumps to dodge it, he'll then switch to another attack that simply encompasses the entire screen.
  • Electric Torture: A Played for Laughs Harmless Electrocution version. Stahn, Rutee and Mary get arrested and Press-Ganged into the plot with shock tiaras fitted to their heads to ensure compliance. Leon serves as their jailer. He has the ability to electrocute them at any time and the willingness to do so for offenses as minor as complaining about what a jerk he is. The original game seems to think this Comedic Sociopathy is all in good fun (but still goes so far as to subvert it with the Batista interrogation; see Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique below,) but the remake dials all of this back to the point that Leon only activates the tiaras a handful of times.
  • Elemental Powers: The game uses the classic fire/water/earth/wind element scheme, but with some common Tales series extensions for lightening, darkness, and light. The Swordians each represent one of these elements but Berselius doubles up and has darkness and light.
  • Empathic Weapon: The Swordians are imprinted with the personalities of ancient heroes, and have minds of their own. Dymlos even takes advantage of some aspects of this trope to convince Stahn to help him.
  • Enemy Scan: The Magic Lens items allow you to see an enemy's HP and weaknesses.
  • Equippable Ally: The Swordians are sentient magical swords containing the minds of a team of ancient heroes. Each Swordian picks a specific wielder, or Swordian Master, although the original version of the game allows for swapping Swordians to gain access to different kinds of elemental magic. In the PS2 remake, the Swordian Masters can only equip their plot-assigned Swordian.
  • Fighting from the Inside: Hugo's original personality does not surface very often, but he does prevent Kronos from killing Rutee and allows the party to escape Dycroft.
  • Fantastic Nuke: The Eye of Atamoni is highly unstable, cataclysmically destructive, and nearly impossible to destroy (in a controlled way, anyway). At the start of the game it is in high-security storage, but it is stolen in an Inside Job. A large portion of the game is an Empty Quiver recovery operation undertaken by Boxed Crook government agents. This all sounds suspiciously like a political thriller, but in practice the game still plays mostly like a bunch of young fortune-seekers on a fun adventure most of the time. At least, until the Cerebus Syndrome really sets in.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: Equipping a character with a Narikiri Doll item causes them to turn into the character whose doll they've equipped. If you go crazy with the Narikiri dolls, there's a skit where everyone in the party (except for Lilith, who is optional) switches bodies with another party member, and they try to figure out what happened. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Game-Breaking Bug:
    • There is a glitch affecting Johnny's Score G cutscene that can soft-lock the game. Go speak to Sakuraba too soon and when he plays the piano in Johnny's room, the scene won't transition properly, forcing you to reset when you get locked in an endless piano loop. There is a very long dungeon before this with no save points in it, and its very easy not to save before going to get Score G.
    • Some interesting but relatively minor glitches effect treasure chests throughout the game. If you enter the house with the movable bushbaby statue in Harmentz, a chest in Terazzi Castle will disappear. If you get the Kite Shield in the temple in Kalviola, a chest in Helraios will disappear. Just entering Dycroft causes some of its treasures to disappear, while causing blue treasure chests throughout the game to reappear.
  • Green Rocks: Lens have a variety of functions in Tales of Destiny - they make it possible for humans to use magic, they can be used as an energy source for lost technology, they can be collected and resold for money to the extent that Lens Hunter is a profession, and animals that ingest Lens mutate into monsters.
  • Forgotten Superweapon: Belcrant was buried deep underground for centuries.
  • Funny Background Event: When Ilene asks Stahn out on a date, Rutee and Mary tail them and somehow manage to avoid their notice despite making quite a scene. Mary quickly gets bored and wanders off to the Softee Kreem stand. By incredible coincidence, she manages to leave the moment Ilene and Stahn arrive, obliviously enjoying her ice cream.
  • Harem Genre: Downplayed, but in the original game every main female character (except Chelsea, who is a child) is depicted as having at least a little romantic chemistry with Stahn, with Philia being the most pronounced. This is removed in the remake to focus on developing the relationship between Stahn and Rutee.
  • Heavy Sleeper: Stahn sleeps so soundly that his family develops special techniques based around Banging Pots and Pans to wake him. It's a good thing too, so they are prepared when the relevant genes are passed down to his son Kyle.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The Swordians sacrifice themselves to destroy the Eye of Atamoni in the end.
  • Holy Hand Grenade: Clemente can harness powerful light-elemental spells such as Indignation and Big Bang, and Miktran/Berselius, based on the few times it is used, appears to have access to spells of all types, including darkness and light elements.
  • Hostile Terraforming: Belcrant, the Aetherian Doomsday Device, was a terraforming laser before being converted into a weapon of mass destruction.
  • Hot-Blooded: Stahn, King of Tales Hot Blood. It helps that he's voiced by Tomokazu "Domon Kasshu" Seki.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: The game generally does not mandate losses in boss fights that it does not want the player to win for plot purposes.
    • It is possible to beat Leon in Harmentz via cheats or insane amounts of Level Grinding. Doing so leads to a Non Standard Game Over - escaping Leon feeds Rutee's ego enough that she completely abandons the main plot before it even begins.
    • Leon's Side in the remake has an instance of The Battle Didn't Count when Leon fights the rest of the party. With determination and lots of items you can beat all of them, but it changes nothing about how the story ends.
    • On the other hand, Leon's Side does have an example of a truely unbeatable boss - the wunderkind swordsman cannot get the better of his dad, Hugo.
  • Hostage For Macguffin: Hugo gets Leon to steal the Eye of Atamoni because of this. Giving him the Macguffin changes nothing about her state, and neither does Leon betraying his friends. She's only rescued when the rest of the party finds her.
  • Idiot Hero: Stahn is a comically thick-headed Small Steps Hero.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Johnny/Karyl uses his lute and songs, Lilith uses a frying pan that sprouts rainbows, a ladle, and a fish she pulls from Hammerspace.
  • Insufferable Genius: Leon fits this mold, being both a wunderkind swordsman and quite insufferable.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: The Comedic Sociopathy that hinges on Leon's sadistic tendencies early in the game takes an uncomfortable turn when the party captures Batista, one of Lydon's accomplices. Leon beats the snot out of Bastisa to try to get him to talk, the point where Stahn is freaked out. He tops it off by putting Mary's electroshocking tiara on him, though that was meant to act as a tracking mechanism.
  • Leitmotif: Use of leitmotif is limited in comparison to some games in the series, but there is a Nostalgic Music Box version of Yume de Aru Youni used in-game. In the remake, Leon's theme Irony of Fate, originally a very intense battle song, gets a sad piano arrangement to compliment the tragic nature of his story.
  • Lost in Translation: So bad even one of the puzzles cannot be solved without a FAQ because of translation errors.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: As part of a big turning point in the story, Rutee, who was raised in an orphanage, learns that Hugo is her biological father. The PlayStation version also formally reveals at this point that Leon is Hugo's son, (though that was kind of an open secret), making him Rutee's younger brother.
  • Making a Splash: Ice and water are both Atwight's elemental domain, giving Rutee access to healing magic. Atwight displays more of the typical character traits of the trope than Rutee does - Atwight is a calm and mature medic while Rutee is abrasive and calculating.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Hugo is the prime instigator of the events of the game, but he would probably have been a normal person if he hadn't found the Swordian Berselius and the real Big Bad that's hitching a ride in its core crystal - Kronos/Miktran, King of the Aetherians. In some versions of the story, like the Mao Kuon manga, Miktran engages Hugo in a Deal With Devil instead, sorting him a bit more definitely in the villain camp.
  • Man, I Feel Like a Woman : Stahn's reaction to being put in Philia's body in this skit. Philia (in Stahn's body) isn't very happy about it.
  • Mighty Glacier: Musclebound Kongman/Khang can deal a lot of damage, but he is not very fast.
  • Mineral MacGuffin: All lens counts merely by being shiny Green Rocks, but the Eye of Atamoni deserves special mention. This exceptionally large lens is the plot-driving object for a large portion of the game, and is it also an Artifact of Doom.
  • Money Fetish: Flanderisation has turned this into Rutee's signature character trait. In the original game, she may be obsessed with money, but not for its own sake: she's earning money to pay off her childhood orphanage's debts.
  • Money Spider: Justified: monsters that imbue Lens mutate into more dangerous forms. The more Lens they have, the more powerful the monster. After you slay the monster, you can then remove the Lens and sell it for Gald.
  • Motive Decay: Big Bad Miktran. In the original game, he was a Well-Intentioned Extremist (like most Tales Series villains are) in that he wanted to revive his people and genuinely believed that the Aetherians were in the right, as the Erthers started the War Between Heaven and Earth (for not wanting to be enslaved). In the remake, this motive has been replaced by simple megalomania.
  • Non Standard Game Over: Beating Leon in the Hopeless Boss Fight early in the game triggers an alternate ending immediately afterwards.
  • Official Couple: While the PlayStation version sends mixed signals about Stahn's romantic interests, the sequel makes it clear that he and Rutee end up together. As a result, the remake all but removes Ship Tease toward any woman other than Rutee. Justified with how they're supposed to be married and have a child in the sequel. Any other pairing would throw said sequel into a paradox.
  • Only in It for the Money: When she is introduced, Rutee has a very mercenary outlook and only gets mixed up in the plot after being arrested for tomb-raiding. But the game is called Tales of Destiny for a reason and she has more to do with the plot than than she realizes.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: The Aethersphere is full of alien-looking biomechanical monsters. Their oddly mundane names like "Placenta" and "Warrior" make them even stranger.
  • Out of Focus: Early on, the game devotes some screen time to the Seven Generals of Seinegald. We learn which of them are popular with the public, and about how they get interact with one another...but they don't help with the Eye of Atamoni recovery. They don't do anything plot-significant until the end of the game. And even then still not much.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Every non Swordian-user tends to be forgotten because the Swordian Masters are just too broken (especially Leon). The fact that you can use Narikiri Dolls to clone them (four-Leon party) doesn't help. However; it's still notable that in the remake, the non-Swordian users actually can be pretty good. Especially Johnny and Lilith.
  • Permanently Missable Content: This game started the Tales tradition of easily-missable side quests by placing items needed to enter the Tower of Druaga in areas that get locked off .
  • Pet the Dog: Hugo has his moments. Early on when he has the heroes under his control (not only does he have shock collars tiaras on them, but he has legal custody because they've been arrested for trespassing) and forces them to search for the Eye Of Atamoni, he still agrees to Rutee's request for a monetary reward. When Leon complains that he doesn't need to do that, Hugo replies that a reward would motivate the heroes to do a better job. This scene takes on a whole new meaning when you find out later that Hugo is being Brainwashed by Miktran, is desperately trying to resist said brainwashing, and recognizes Rutee as the daughter he sent to safety before Miktran took control of him. On the flip side, he takes every opportunity to kick his son while he's down in Leon's Side - even when such levels of cruelty probably weren't necessary to control him.
  • Pinky Swear: Stahn and Irene promise to achieve their respective dreams and seal the "race" with a pinky promise. Irene promises to make a world where everyone is happy, while Stahn promises he'll become a soldier and ensure his family's happiness. It's worth noting they're both pretty idealistic and simple-minded, which is why they get along well.
  • Playing with Fire: Dymlos gives Stahn access to fire magic. Both Stahn and Dymlos zigzag the personality and theming adjuncts of the trope in some interesting ways. Dymlos is good at keeping his fiery nature under wraps, and while Stahn lets his Hot-Blooded flag fly, neither of them look especially like fire-guys. Stahn even looks like he should have air powers with his Scarf of Asskicking blowing behind him - plus an aileron is part of an aircraft wing.
  • Pungeon Master: An early sidequest in Darilsheid includes a guy called "Punny old man" who constantly makes puns with names and challenges Stahn and Mary to do the same with their own names. Stahn does well enough, but Mary just bluntly declares it silly.
  • Quirky Bard: Johnny/Karyl equips lutes as weapons and uses music-themed attacks. Surprisingly they are often very powerful.
  • Racing Minigame: A boy in Noischtat challenges Stahn to a race within the city. You can get a title and a few seeds later if you can avoid all the random people who will try to block your way.
  • Restraining Bolt: In the original, Stahn and company get shock collars tiaras placed on them by Hugo so that they'll hunt down the Eye Of Atamoni. Justified, since they've been arrested and this task is essentially their "community service".
  • Retcon: Leon's retroactive Dual Wielding. In the sequel, Judas actually has an explanation for his change in fighting style, mentioning that he only learned dual wielding after Elraine resurrected him. Never mind that, though. The thing that really matters is that it suits his character so well that it just stuck.
  • Say My Name:
    Stahn: "LEON!! LEOOOONNN!!!!"
  • Shock and Awe: Philia has access to lightening magic through Clemente. Being a magic specialist, Clemente grants spells of other elements too.
  • Shout-Out: The aforementioned Crystal Dragon Jesus, Atamoni, is the name of the character designer, Mutsumi Inomata, spelled backwards.
  • SNK Boss: The Final Boss in the remake (Miktran Excessive) very much counts. He spams lasers like he's at a seventies discotheque and will punish you severely if you ever let him out of combo-lock. He Turns Red when his health hits 25% and breaks out his Blast Caliber at 5%. Furthermore, if you beat Bonus Boss Barbatos before you fight him, he gains three secret Blast Calibers that are so powerful that even one is almost guaranteed to wipe out your party. He will also counter with those special Blast Calibers if you so much as dare to try to use your best attacks against him.
  • Socialization Bonus: Playing the game with more than one player with any skill at all is guaranteed to make the game much, much easier, requiring no level grinding at all, as two players will have a much easier time defending their mages and setting up attack strategies than one.
  • Sprite/Polygon Mix: Every version of the game employs this trope, although the nature of the mix varies. The original entered development as a Super Famicom game and it shows - the game makes limited use of polygons mostly on effects. The remake maintains the 2D aesthic of the original but incorporates 3D to add variety to the visuals.
  • Sweet Tooth: Leon has quite the sweet tooth, something he's rather ashamed of because he thinks it's immature to like sweets.
  • Taken for Granite: In her introduction scene Philia has been turned to stone. In the remake, Stahn and Mary remark on what an uncanny work of art she is until it's pointed out that the statue is really a person.
  • Talking Weapon: The Swordians, with some caveats. They only talk telepathically, and not everyone is capable of hearing them.
  • Tsundere:
    • Rutee's quick wit, sharp tongue, and me-first attitude makes her one of the most tsun tsunderes in the Tales series. She is a Jerk with a Heart of Gold, but it takes fully half the game before she reveals it.
    • Leon, originally just harsh and cold-hearted, is allowed to defrost a little bit in the remake and show some tsundere-style vulnerability.
  • You Didn't Ask: The Swordians have a habit of withholding information from the Swordian Masters.
    • Examples range from minor concerns - like how Dymlos only comes clean about his Call to Adventure Motivational Lie as he says his final goodbye to Stahn.
    • To matters of expedience - in the PSX version, Dymlos reveals that he, Atwight and Clemente planned to destroy the Eye of Atamoni once they recovered it only after the plan fails. They could have improved their odds of success by bringing Stahn, Rutee and Philia into their confidence, even though they would have to overcome Rutee's inevitable objections. Of course, if that worked the whole second half of the game wouldn't occur.
    • To very ill-advised omissions - Atwight knew Rutee's family history all along and passed on every opportunity to tell her, leaving Leon with an opening to use it to hurt both of them.
  • The Wise Prince: Woodrow/Garr is royalty Walking the Earth so he can get to know the people of Phandaria as people, not just as subjects. He doesn't tell anyone he is the prince of Phandaria unless there is a good reason to do it.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable: The game can be rendered unwinnable if you give the Sorcerer's Ring to someone who leaves the party and can't be regained until a certain amount of progress has been made in-story. Or a character that dies. It's generally recommended to equip it to Stahn just to save yourself a headache.
  • Unobtainium: Lens. They enable all magic to function, as humans cannot channel mana without them.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Hugo is the president of the world's largest company and has a reputation that precedes him. He is wealthy, well-connected, and the King of Seinegald counts him among his most trusted advisors. So when he plots to steal the Eye of Atamoni himself, no one sees it coming.


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