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Video Game / Tales of Innocence

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Who are the people you surround yourself with? Are they the friends of who you are now, or the enemies of who you once were?

Tales of Innocence is the ninth mainline entry in the Tales Series. The game was released on December 6th, 2007 in Japan on the Nintendo DS. It was developed by Bandai Namco and Alfa System.

Beneath a foreign sky, the mighty Sensus general Asura leads a charge against the armies of Ratio. His goal is to acquire the Manifest, an incredibly powerful artifact that can unite the heavenly domain of Devaloka and the earthly plane of Naraka into one paradise... or destroy both.

Finally, the battle comes down to a duel between Asura and the Ratio general, "Reaper" Hypnos. Asura uses his trusty blade, the intelligent Holy Sword Durandal, to slay his opponent, and with his last breath Hypnos swears to judge the results of Asura's campaign in another life.

This is the recurring dream that a timid young schoolboy called Luca Milda has been having, a dream where he is Asura leading his armies against Ratio. He lives an ordinary life in the kingdom of Regnum, preparing to one day inherit his father's merchant business. The city is abuzz with talk of the government tracking down and arresting "Avatars": humans who have begun to suddenly develop supernatural powers.

As Luca is walking to school one day, he runs into a girl called Iria Animi, an Avatar being chased by Regnum soldiers. She implores Luca to help her, and although Luca is not a fighter, when he picks up a weapon his own Avatar powers awaken, allowing him to destroy the soldiers with frightening ease. The name of "Asura" echoes in his mind...

The story is an exploration of identity. Each party member must grapple with their true nature: is it the person they grew up as, or the heavenly being whose memories they possess? Should Luca trust his allies as the friends he knows now, or should he remember them as enemies of Asura? What forgotten events transpired after the battle between Asura and Hypnos, and what happened to the Manifest?

Amidst all of this, chaos erupts as people across the world awaken to their "true" nature as warriors of Sensus or Ratio, threatening to reignite the ancient war. Then there's the cult of Arca, led by a mysterious masked woman called Mathias who seemingly wants to destroy the world, and the rebirth of a sinister figure known only as "Overlord".

Other characters include Spada Belforma, a Hot-Blooded swordsman and reincarnation of Durandal; Hermana Larmo, a young girl who runs a shelter for runaway Avatars, and reincarnation of Asura's steed Vrtra; Ange Serena, a kind but quirky nun from the city of Naos, and reincarnation of Ratio tactician Orifiel; and Ricardo Soldato, a cold mercenary who is the reincarnation of Hypnos himself.

The game's combat system, the so-called Dimension Stride LMBS, is a fusion of Tales of Destiny Remake and Tales of the Abyss, and focuses on fast-paced action and nigh-endless comboing. The engine uses the same plane-of-motion control as Tales of Symphonia, but with the added option of free-run, making the fighting intuitive and versatile.

The title received a Video Game Remake for the PlayStation Vita called Tales Of Innocence R on January 27th, 2012, exclusive to Japan. It featured a revised script (which included more insight into the events of Asura's era), updated graphics, a new opening song, a redesigned battle system and two brand new characters: "QQ Selezneva", a spirited archaeologist, and "Kongwai Tao," a quiet spellcaster who dislikes disputes. Yet again, Baba stated they are not exporting this version outside Japan. Although, both versions have a fan translation.

Tropes presented by Tales of Innocence:

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    Tropes for both Original and R Versions 
  • All Gods Are Real: And they're walking among us!
  • All Men Are Perverts: Hermana said something around this line if you choose the "Get excited" option in "Hug Critic" skit.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: With quite a bit of Reincarnation Dissonance thrown in as well.
  • Apologises a Lot: Luca, dear Asura. Several skits show how annoyed other characters get by this.
  • Ax-Crazy: Hasta, also Psycho for Hire and That One Boss.
  • Badass Longcoat: Ricardo.
  • Berserk Button: DO NOT tell Ange she put on weight. Just...don't. Lampshaded by Iria when Hermana accidentally pushes this in Kelm Volcano in the following line. Also, R manages to take it even further by making it a Running Gag, usually accompanied with an eerie smile.
    Iria: Hot damn! She just stepped on a land mine!!
  • Big Eater: Coda and Hermana. Ange is a more subtle example - she loves to eat, but doesn't show that as...vividly as Coda and Her. Although judging from what Ricardo said in a skit in Lemures Marsh, this may apply to all of the girls in the party.
    Ricardo: Goodness, our gluttonous female members never cease to amaze me.
  • BFS: Luca's signature weapon, totally at odds with his personality, as well as Durandal himself.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Iria and Ricardo, though both of their character designs prominently feature straps covered in backup ammunition, so they do need to reload their guns, it's just not a gameplay mechanic.
  • Butt-Monkey: Luca is treated pretty badly by his friends at home, as well as by Iria and Spada. They genuinely care for him, though, and both Iria and Spada actually feel bad for making Luca cry in one skit.
  • Calling Your Attacks: A time-honoured Tales tradition.
  • Captain Obvious: Played straight and lampshaded at the end of Regnum Cavern.
    Spada: Dogs.
    Ricardo: We can see that. There are two of them.
    Iria: We can see that, too!
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Spada, Spada, Spada. There's probably no one who's as fixated on Ange as himself. R seems to downplay this trait a bit, although at the same time he has a title lampshading his perversion: Perverted Noblenote .
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Chitose, who was Sakuya in her past life.
  • Combat Medic: Ange, Iria, and Ricardo all learn a fair amount of healing and support spells, though Ange displays this trope the most.
  • Cooldown Hug: Ange's pretty open-armed towards Hermana when she's down, even offering one soon after they just met.
  • Cute Bruiser: Hermana, who happens to be the Divine Dragon Vrtra.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Referenced by Hasta in his ramblings after the first fight against him. Of course, this is Hasta that we're talking about, this doesn't happen.
  • Dogged Nice Guy:
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: Invoked by Ricardo during a skit when the party crosses the Northern Battlefield. Ange proceeds to reprimand him when he makes Luca cry for doing so.
  • Dual Wielding: Spada and Iria.
  • Enemy Without: Mathias and Overlord, both of whom are Enemies Without to Luca/Asura.
  • End of an Age: Happened before the game's beginning. When Devaloka was still around, Heavenly Artes were used as a miracle-granting power in Naraka as reward to the people being faithful. Since they were the powers of the gods themselves, they were obviously commonplace in Devaloka as well. The prayers are what gave Devaloka sustenance, so the Church of Naraka commanded a lot of power as the conduit between the two worlds. After Devaloka was destroyed, the power of the gods all but disappeared and became a forbidden craft and wars started breaking out on the surface. The face of the world changed completely and is thought to be heading towards its destruction during the game's time.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Inanna and Durandal, to Asura. Both Spada and Iria do not take this revelation well.
  • Evil Laugh: Iria and Spada give this whenever they plan to pick on Luca. Sometimes, each of them proceeds to note how creepy the other's laugh is.
    • In the original, Luca also gives a particularly insane one the first time he really gets the feel for actual battle. Fortunately his friends quickly snap him out of it.
    • Signature Laugh: "Ishishishishishi~" and "Ihihihihihi~" for Iria. "Hyahahahahahaha~!" for Spada.
  • Fantastic Racism: Some humans toward Avatars, also citizens of Ratio toward humans. Also Grigori towards Avatars.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Almost every place you visit if a counterpart of something. The most obvious are Ashihara and Galpos, for Japan and Hawaii respectively. Regnum may be The United States, considering their industrial nature, colonies, and large military, and Tenos may be Russia, but if so it isn't as blatant.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: Averted. Iria's fighting style is Guns Akimbo with a pair of revolvers, while Ricardo fights with a rifle and bayonet. Bottomless Magazines is still in effect, though that's probably a result of Gameplay and Story Segregation, as both their designs show them wearing belts and straps full of backup ammunition, implying that they do need to reload their guns.
  • The Fellowship Has Ended / "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: The party part ways after the story ends, although their parting words indicate they (minus QQ and Kongwai in R) will run into each other again in the future.
  • Fetish: One skit has Luca wondering about things that might happen to Ange while kidnapped. Spada gets a little too enthusiastic about the descriptions.
  • Final Boss: Actually a bit of an inversion for a Tales Series game. While it still does have a final boss, said final boss is actually a large demonic monster instead of the standard human or humanoid. R gives the additional humanoid forms, though.
  • Gender Bender: To execute their Limit Break moves, the characters transform into their past lives. Ange was Orifiel in her past life. Ange is a lady. Orifiel was not. This is noted in a skit.
  • Global Airship: You get one very late in the game from Albert.
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly: A direct, symbiotic case. The Devaloka needs the prayer and faith of people from the Naraka to sustain itself. The church's role was to deliver the prayers of the faithful to the gods. In turn, the gods would bestow miracles upon Naraka with the power of the Heavenly Artes. When the people's faith started to wane, they had to resort to taking human souls to fortify it, and the church lost its influence.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot:
    • Played straight with the main duo of Luca, who uses a sword, and Ilia, who uses twin pistols
    • Subverted with Ange, who weilds a dagger, and her bodyguard Ricardo who uses a rifle.
    • Also subverted by the two characters introduced in R, QQ, who uses a double-bladed lance, and Kongwai, who uses magic even for his normal attacks.
  • Guns Akimbo: Iria
  • Half Human Hybrids: The Grigoris, who are descendants of Thanatos and his human wife.
  • Hates Being Alone: The Primordial Giant, creator of the world before Devaloka and Naraka formed. He created the world and its inhabitants out of his own flesh in an attempt to make sure no one would ever be alone again. He also left a small fragment of his power behind, but made it so that only two people who share a bond can use it.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Albert and Chien.
  • Heroic BSoD: Luca, after the events in the Sky Castle. Spada and Iria also suffer it in the same event, albeit only briefly.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Asura and Inanna. And Sakuya. Asura is huge to start but dang...
  • Humongous Mecha: Powered by People Jars.
  • Hypocritical Humor:
    • During the first meeting with Chien, he is referred to as "Dog Boy" by Hermana. Ange tells her it's not nice to call him like that and proceeds to ask Chien his name. While calling him "Dog Boy". The scene is apparently altered in R, though, losing the Hypocritical Humor part.
    • Iria and Spada both have hilariously creepy signature laugh. When they do it together, each of them will sometimes note how creepy the other's laugh is.
  • It's All Upstairs From Here: In the most annoying form. The game's final dungeon is called the Tower of Dawn and it is literally a trek up three levels of winding staircases. At the end of every level, you will face a boss. The regular enemies might spawn in front of you, behind you, on top of you...and the camera hates you, since it's so zoomed in you can never tell where you're going. The R version fixed this by adjusting the camera and adding a few puzzles, so the trek isn't such a chore anymore.
  • Informed Flaw: Ange being overweight. It isn't even mentioned at all until she's been with your party a while. Though her clothes are much baggier than anyone else's (which she lampshades during one skit), and she does enjoy food.
  • Kid Hero: Boy does Ruca certainly fit this! He's 15, and looks even younger.
  • Killer Rabbit: Cerberus. Dear god, look how cute it is!!
    • It actually becomes a Double Subversion according to additional info in subsequent playthroughs note . It's not that Cerberus looks like a cute critter forever; when he dies, he's reborn as the same being in the same place, and the flashback cutscenes showing him throughout the game happen to be around the time when he was just a puppy.
  • Lady of War: Ange. To top it off, her starting Style in the original is the Fragile Speedster.
  • Level Grinding: Or rather, a lot of things except the levels, which grow quite reasonably: Relationship Values, Arte proficiency, Style levels (or SP in R), and especially Grades. Levels come naturally through grinding other things.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Luca. Very classic example.
  • Love Interest: On the heavenly side, Asura has two competing for him, reincarnated into Iria and Chitose.
  • Man Hug:
    • Spada to Luca after the latter's recovery from Hasta's stabbing. Twice in succession, to boot. He also attempted the third, although reasonably stopped by Ange.
    • Again with Spada and Luca, R adds another one early in the game, after Spada/Durandal finds out that Luca is the reincarnation of Asura. The moment is humorously killed by Iria.
  • Meaningful Name: A lot. To start, everyone in the party (at least, from the original version) qualifies.
    • Luca Milda: Quite mild-mannered, in contrast to his past incarnation, Asura.
    • Iria Animi: Very animate, especially when she's mad.
    • Spadanote  Belforma: He uses two swords fluently, in addition to have been Durandal in his past life.
    • Ange Serenanote : She's a priestess.
    • Ricardo Soldatonote : No wonder he grew up to become a soldier-for-hire.
    • Hermananote  Larmo: Big sister to homeless vagrant kids in Regnum.
    • Chiennote  Tenebro: He was Cerberus before, and now has two dogs he fight together with, which are also actually his genetic siblings.
    • Hastanote  Ekstremi: Guess what he fights with. He was also Gaebolg, and Durandal's arch-nemesis.
  • Merged Reality: Asura's goal, which did not go smoothly thanks to Inanna and Durandal's betrayal. The party successfully achieves the goal for him in the end, though.
  • Noodle People: The character models can get a bit noodley at times.
  • Official Couple: Iria is the heroine and she and Luca were lovers in their past lives, so she's who Luca is "supposed to" pair off with (and is the easiest to raise friendship with). In the original, however, Luca's Relationship Values affect the plot (not significantly, but they do), so you can opt to instead pair him off with Hermana, or Ange. Or even Spada or Ricardo.
  • Omnicidal Maniac:
    • Hasta. It goes way back: Even as Gaebolg, he had the tendency to turn insane anyone who holds him, and attack friend and foe alike.
    • Turns out Mathias is one too.
  • The Omniscient Council of Vagueness:
    • The leaders of Arca appears numerous times throughout the game. That is, before they get offed by Hasta halfway through the story.
    • The elder council of Ratio is apparently composed of extremely conservative, authoritative, cruel old men preserved in jars. We only really see them through Orifiel's eyes, but their main mode of interaction is to be as assholish to Himmel as possible.
  • One-Winged Angel: Those who have lost control of their Avatar power tend become this. Also Mathias' Final Boss form in the original, and first form in R.
  • Past-Life Memories: Probably the most obvious, on-track trope listed here, along with Reincarnation.
  • Path of Inspiration: Arca, the cult led by Mathais, who is trying to destroy the world, which she believes will make everyone truly equal.
  • Power Nullifier: Heavenly Artes cannot be used against the Grigori, since they can shut them with their mere presence. Ruca cannot even lift his sword against them, since they prevent all avatars from tapping into the powers provided to them by their past lives.
  • The Power of Creation: The power of the Primordial Giant, which manifests as a small glowing orb. The Fan Translation calls it "The Manifest". None of the characters possess it, so it's more of an artifact of stored power sought by the antagonists. The one who uses it can create the worlds of Devaloka and Naraka anew, impart blessings or curses on the world, or destroy everything.
  • The Power of Love: The Power of Creation can only be used by two people who share a deep bond. The party believes the Primordial Giant made it so because he wanted to create a world full of people who could laugh, cry and share good moments together.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Hasta and his bright pink hair.
  • Reincarnation: Where do you want me to begin?
  • Recurring Boss: The Ratios early in the game until the fight with Ricardo.
  • Reincarnation Romance: Interesting to note is the fact that said romance is botched since half of the couple (Inanna) literally backstabbed the other half (Asura), thus ending their tale in tragedy. Luca and his friends decided not to have their past control them, however, so it's still all good.
  • Relationship Values: Of the highly visible sort. And not just with Luca. You can view and have direct influence over all 15 relationships between the characters of the party (although Luca's are the only ones that affect the plot).
  • Saintly Church: In contrast to Arca, the Church of Naos doesn't do a whole lot during the game but is largely described and portrayed as good.
  • Saving the World: A given, but rather than winning fame and adoration, the heroes stay pretty anonymous. They don't consult world leaders, they don't lead military battalions, they just do their hero jobs completely under the radar of everybody but the Big Bad. This is commented on at the end. "We changed the world, and nobody will ever know it was us." They then all go on to lead fairly normal lives.
  • Scare Chord: A well-placed one hits at various moments, like when an Avatar transforms into a Ratio.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: Luca points out to Ricardo at one point that his statements about Ange are very romantic when they're taken out of context.
  • Shipper on Deck: Everybody knows about Luca and Iria, but Spada is the one that supports them the most (although how much of it is support and how much of it is tease is arguable).
  • Shout-Out:
    • Surprisingly western ones, mostly with minor NPCs. For example, there is an old man (who is a bit of a poet) who tells the party about Chien's backstory. His name is Edguar Allen Pwo.
    • Iria's brothers and sister, mentioned in an easy-to-miss NPC line by Iria's father, are called Ross, Monica and Gunther.
    • From the original, how about the guild mission where you gather 1UP shrooms?
    • From Hasta: "Hasta la vista, baby", which is said upon his death in the original and early in the game in R.
    • Hasta's first appearance in R has him cracking jokes while imitating other characters' speech patterns in his own crazy way. One of them includes ending his sentence in "Dattebayo, nin-nin!
    • Again from the original, the Hayabusa Sword is meant to be the Falcon Sword from the Dragon Quest series that allows the player to attack twice per turn. The description of the Hi-Tech Swords reads "P-pottery?!", a reference to the Ceramic Knives from the Phantasy Star games.
  • Significant Double Casting:
    • There is a very good reason Atsuko Tanaka voices Matthias and Inanna.
    • Orifiel and Himmel switched voice actors after undergoing reincarnation. Ange's voice actor (Kaori Nazuka) voices the androgynous Himmel, who is Albert's past life. Tomokazu Sugita voices Orifiel (Ange's past life), and Albert who is a reincarnated Himmel! The two characters shared a close familial relationship.
  • The Soulless: The Avatars who have lost control over themselves can be seen as this.
  • Spell My Name with an S: Absolute Zero's translation on the original version follows official localizations' footsteps - that includes re-romanizing some names to their probable original intent (Namco has a reputation for choosing foreign-sounding names that are actually pretty gibberish-y). Therefore, some differences between the translation and the "official" romanizations - Ruca/Luca, Asras/Asura, Sian/Chien, Matias/Mathias, Latio/Ratio etc. While Ruca/Luca tends to get some flame, the other "changes" (note quotations) are generally agreed to be for the better.
  • Steampunk: The setting is more industrialized turn-of-the-century than Medieval Stasis with Lost Technology, a rarity for the series.
  • Sticky Fingers:
    • Ange, of all people, at least in terms of gameplay. In the original, Iria and Hermana will call her out on this the first time she uses her Thievery skill.
    • In R, Hermana also has the same skill.
  • Take Your Time: Oh yes. Especially whenever Ricardo tells you the boat is leaving in a few minutes. Certain skits (like a few for doing X guild missions in the original) have your party tell you off for ignoring the main quest.
  • Tranquil Fury:
    • Ange usually descends into this when her Berserk Button is pushed. Most notably toward Hermana in Kelm Volcano.
    • In R, Kongwai is a subtler example of this. Men who hit on him always end up not appearing until the end of the scene after he takes them off-screen. The key is that Kongwai does not seem ticked in the slightest beforehand.
  • Tsundere: Iria. Oh dear god, Iria.
  • Unlikely Hero: All 6 (or 8 in R) playable characters embody this trope pretty well. The only connection any of them have to the evil plot du jor is their past lives (and even the two new characters in R don't seem to have connection at all), which they start to distance themselves from as the story goes on and they decide that they'd rather define themselves by who they are now than who they once were. They manage to fly under the radar of all the villains but the Big Bad (they're noticed but never really singled out, except by Matthias), they're quite happy to have saved the world completely anonymously, and after the end they go their separate ways and go back to their normal lives.
  • Urban Fantasy: Although there's plenty of magic in the setting, it's unusual to see a Tales game open with a vista of a turn-of-the-century industrialized city and a character busting out mundane handguns to fight.
    • The character designs, aside from bizarre hair colors, are also noticeably plainer and more realistic than in other Tales games, which works very well with the setting.
  • Verbal Tic: Coda, you knownote .
    • Cerberus, the adorable little dog thing that guards the Manifest, with "~wan".
    • In R, QQ's "QQ!"
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Ange is afraid of dogs, although this is revealed very late in the game during the skit with Chien. Also, Ricardo is terrified of heights, as seen after the party gets the Global Airship.
  • A World Half Full: Naraka was implied to be rather crappy in the first place with the wars, but it became much worse after the Fall with disasters and unnatural phenomena began to occur. Doesn't mean it cannot be changed, though, and some people are seen living normally.
  • Wutai: Ashihara. A skit that unlocks immediately after the team first lands on the island confirms it: honorable warriors, raw fish, rice...

    Tropes for Original Version 
  • Bonus Dungeon: Restricted Guild Dungeon. Also a Bonus Level of Hell.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Ignoring Coda's tutorial skits in the beginning of the game, Tales of Innocence takes itself seriously enough to not break the wall. So it comes as a bit of a surprise when Ricardo (of all people) does it in a certain skit. Luca and Iria are commenting on how much stronger they've become ever since their adventure began, leading Ricardo to scold them for being too cocky. He then proceeds to say that Luca and Iria can still become stronger, and cannot let overconfidence stop them from doing so. Luca then asks if he really means it. His answer? Of course he means it; the game's maximum character level is 250.
    • And he does that again in the skit "Ricard, Hermana and I"note  What do they talk about? Starting with the fact that it's one of the most difficult skits to gain, and now that the skit is unlocked, it's mostly pointless, and the player has accomplished nothing. The whole skit is undoubtedly a CMoF.
  • Competitive Balance: Through a brilliant design decision, all members can be assigned to various combat Styles as desired, which affects the stats through various multipliers.
    • Advance Style: Purely offense oriented. Unlocks abilities which allow powerful and relentless attack chains, such as Combo Plus and Critical Focus.
    • Wisdom Style: For the spellcasters. Learns skills associated with spells and TP, such as TP Up and Fast Magic.
    • Guardian Style: Focuses on HP, DEF and M.DEF; in short, taking a lot of hits. Shapes the user into a wall with its Status-guard and defensive abilities such as Lure and Blow Resistor.
    • Technical Style: Very much speed oriented, but not very defensive. Specializes solely on maneuverability in the battlefield, and some item-related skills. Learns skills such as Dash and Backstep.
    • Versus Style: For those looking for an ungodly challenge. Not only does it grant no stat bonuses, its abilities focuses strictly on crippling the user. It unlocks skills such as Handicap 4, which gives an extra 25% EXP for 90% reduction in stats.
      • However, after leveling it up enough, it unlocks abilities which gives bonuses for Gald, EXP or just stat. Nothing gamebreaking, but still worth the effort to an extent.
    • Innocent Stylenote : Like Versus, grants no stat bonuses whatsoever, but unlocks abilities related to Awakening Mode, as well as unlocking each character's Hi-Ougi/Mystic Artes.
  • Disc-One Nuke: Guild Dungeons' chests give randomly generated loot. However, some of the items in the tables are very, very good. Therefore, it is possible, in a rank 2 dungeon, to obtain a "Mythril" Sword with 110 attack and a casting speed bonus at a time where the normal swords you can buy in shops and/or loot in dungeons have maybe 18 attack.
  • Driven to Suicide: Chitose after the final boss fight.
  • Escort Mission: They hardly offer any Grade, Gald, or Guild Points! Who in their right mind would— you mean all I have to do is escort them to the entrance? And I don't actually have to defend them on the way there? And you're going to pay me for this?
  • Fetch Quest: Some of your Guild missions.
  • Handicapped Badass: Gameplaywise, the Versus Style is literally made for this; (almost) all of its unlockable abilities are made to utterly cripple the characters' stats. Since there aren't a lot of bonuses to gain, it's probably meant to be used as a challenge. A real, hardcore challenge.
  • He Knows About Timed Hits: At the beginning from Coda.
    • Lampshaded by Iria. "Once was enough, you cocky tutorial rat!"
  • Idiot Ball: Luca holds one after the first battle with Hasta. Yes kid, the crazed psychopath who is about to be offed wants to whisper something in your ear; of COURSE it's a good idea to get closer to him. Surely he's not going to stab you and run away. That'd be just crazy... OH WAIT.
  • Jump Cut: In the edit of "Follow the Nightingale" that plays during the game's intro, about 55 seconds in.
  • Magikarp Power: As mentioned above, the Versus style provides no bonuses and all its abilities cripple your stats, effectively making it a Self-Imposed Challenge difficulty level...until you level it up to level 45 or so, at which point you get large boosts to stats and post-battle rewards. This is mostly useful for playing on a New Game Plus, however, as leveling a style to 45 generally takes a full playthrough of concentrating entirely on that style.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: Subverted in the opening "follow the nightingale" by Kokia. It's actually backwards Japanese.
    • Maintained in the fan translation- the English subtitles for the backwards Japanese parts are written backwards.

    Tropes for R Version 
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Per Tales series' tradition, various costumes are available as both in-game and DLC items.
  • Anime Theme Song: "New Day, New Life", again sung by Kokia.
  • Another Dimension: Two of the new dungeons in R are this, complete with Ominous Fog surrounding the affected areas.
  • Bash Brothers: Luca and Spada are apparently upgraded into this, with some of their victory poses have them cross their swords in the air.
  • Bed Trick: A very mild, comedic version in one of the optional inn skits that has shades of There Is Only One Bed. Ruca comments that not having to share a room with the other guys is nice for once, only to find Chitose in his bed, suggesting they warm up together. At which point an extremely irate Illia enters the room and explodes, jumping in the bed and fighting with Chitose about who gets to stay. With poor Ruca caught in the middle. Everyone else goes to sleep.
  • Bonus Dungeon: The Triverse Gate, unlocked in New Game Plus. Like the Restricted Guild Dungeon in the original, this also doubles as Bonus Level of Hell.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Ange's quirky nature is cranked up to eleven in this version.
  • But Now I Must Go: QQ and Kongwai don't even say goodbye to the party before returning to their respective worlds in the ending.
  • Childish Pillow Fight: One of the inn skits added for levity. The first stars Illia and Spada initiating the fight with Ruca but the poor guy is clueless and finds it a bit mean and childish. At which point Illia decides to use Coda as her pillow. She claims it was just a mistake.
  • Cypher Language: The Triverse language Kongwai and QQ are using is actually backwards Japanese with slight modification in the spelling, such as when the reversed sentence is supposed to end with consonant. This is noticeable on New Game Plus.
  • Declaration of Protection and Protectorate: Again, Spada and Luca. Although the trope exists in the original, R takes this even further to the point Spada's Declaration of Protection becomes one of his victory quotes.
  • Denied Food as Punishment: Illia tells Coda he is not getting any food after he gleefully stole an apple and refused to admit anything wrong with it. Since food is all that goes through his mind, he strongly protests. Iria doesn't budge.
  • Discretion Shot: Played for Laughs with whoever manages to push Kongwai's button. We will never know whatever he does to them, and at one point he smiled cheerfully upon being asked what happened (offscreen), the party found it unsettling and chose not to pursue the matter further.
  • Dreaming of Times Gone By: The original DS version had visions of the characters' past lives whenever they visited a memory circle or something triggered their memories. R added a lot of voiced skits accessible when sleeping at the inns, where the characters dream of their past memories. Many of them have a lot of foreshadowing.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Kongwai, saved by the virtue of his obviously-male voice. Just don't say that to his face, as some poor NPCs find out in hard(?) way.
  • Fanservice: The Hot Springs Episode, naturally.
  • Famed in Story and Shrouded in Myth: The Stinger in the ending reveals that Luca and co's tale is a famed legend in Kongwai and QQ's world.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Gardel's earlier introduction and Ricardo's dreams about Hypnos established a connection between the characters more concretely in this version.
    • Ange has dreams related to Orifiel and Himmel as soon as she joins the party. Notably the first memory she sees is when Orifiel was given Himmel's custody.
  • Gratuitous English: Hasta now spouts quite a bit of this. Also, NPC Edguar (the old man in Galpos Jungle), to the point half of the party consider him a freak due to how gibberish-sounding his lines become.
  • If I Can't Have You… / Yandere: Chitose now plays this trope straight, to the point she becomes a boss twice (contrasting the original, where she is fought only once and barely mentioned again). And the prelude to the second fight? Have Luca and co taken hostage in a warship she leads (which doesn't last long thanks to QQ), and when Luca refuses to come with her anyway, she sets said ship ablaze while everyone (the Arcan soldiers under her command included) is still abroad, stating that if Luca/Asura refuses to acknowledge her, then she may as well take him and his friends down. Damn...
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: Kongwai and QQ are hinted to come from the world of Tales of the Tempest or Tales of Hearts.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: Instead of having his victim picking up Idiot Ball like in the original, this is how Hasta stabbed Luca in this version. To elaborate: he rambles per usual, but this time, he also throws his spear away before proceeding to pick Luca's attention...which doesn't succeed due to Spada's warning. It is all a diversion, however - while the party is distracted with his ramblings, Hasta picks his spear from behind and proceeds to stab Luca while still spouting nonsense.
  • Magical Girl: This is Luca's unlockable costume in subsequent run.
  • Money Fetish: Iria apparently fits this trope now, if her Search Gald skill (and a victory quote of hers) to be believed. Of course, considering where she comes from, it may be justified.
  • Mysterious Backer: Kongwai.
  • New Game Plus: Almost required, actually. Replaying the game with the clear data will not only unlock the Bonus Level and additional stuffs (such as skits and costumes), but also Style elements only available in subsequent runs. It also gives Translation Convention to QQ and Kongwai's otherworldly dialogues, which reveals that they are actually enemies and only forced to work together for the time being.
  • Refusal of the Call / Freak Out: Instead of descending into Evil Laugh like in the original, Luca does not take the awakening of his power very well at first, especially due to the fact that the Ratio Avatars are now out for his blood.
  • Running Gag: Ange's Berserk Button now becomes this, be it in skits or victory quotes.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Celestial Garden now has this, albeit not to the point of Frictionless Ice level.
  • Stripperiffic:
    • QQ wears a Chainmail Bikini. This is hilariously lampshaded if you fight in Tenos region with the girls (minus Ange) and Ricardo in the party, where two of the victory quotes will have them complain about the cold.
    • One of Iria's unlockable costume? Succubus/bat costume. She is NOT amused, to the point she threatens to shoot the man who gave her said costume.
    • The Magical Girl costume for Luca is also quite revealing. Take that as you will.
    • And of course there are the swimsuit costumes, which needs no further elaboration.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: A very mild, comedic version. Ruca buys hot dogs for Eddie and Nino, but since they push him around and act a bit like bullies, a skit gives you the option to spice their food with extra mustard to annoy them. This gets complicated when Iria is the one who gets to eat those hot dogs and complains about the mustard. If you tell her the truth, she will actually compliment you and get a relationship boost because she likes pranks.

    Tropes for the Manga 
  • Adaptational Badass: In the game, Luca is a badass in his own way, but the manga amps this to the point of him stopping a sword by letting it through his hand, not to mention his Made of Iron trait taken even further.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Several counts, surprisingly.
    • First, when Spada and his friends raiding the Avatar research facility Luca and Iria are locked in. This sadly gets botched when Mathias kills most of the hostages just so the main trio will awaken their memories, however.
    • Later, Ricardo saving Luca from Avatar-possessed Garam soldiers, regardless of his actual objective.
    • Luca saving Iria and Spada from the Gigantess.
    • Again with Luca, when he delivers Spada's weapons just in time during the battle against Hasta.
  • Compressed Adaptation and Pragmatic Adaptation: The manga leaves out significant portion of the story as well as altering many elements of it, especially each characters' role as well as the the events of Asura's era. In addition, the party now merely consists the main trio and the rest (Ange, Hermana, and Ricardo) doesn't join in until very late, and most of their backstories are not mentioned at all.
  • Darker and Edgier: Despite being much shorter, the manga doesn't joke around at all. For starters, the viewers are given a glance of how horrible the treatment to the Avatars are, and the villains (barring Chitose) are depicted in much less sympathetic way, such as Mathias mercilessly killing the hostage Avatars as well as her own followers, and Hasta's brutal way of killing the higher-ups of Arca.
  • Distressed Damsel / Hostage Situation: The manga is not kind at all to Ange regarding this matter. To be fair, she could've avoided such situation, but she willingly goes to keep the Avatar children under her care safe.
  • Fusion Dance and Split-Personality Merge: Luca and Mathias in the ending, allowing him to activate the Manifest.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Luca loses his hesitation to fight much earlier due to his wish to protect Iria and his friends, but it doesn't mean he always goes head-first for violence, as shown with the remaining of Gardel/Thanatos' spirit and even Mathias.
  • Knowledge Broker: Hermana, who also doubles as Miser Advisor this time.
  • La Résistance: Spada leads one against the military, with their mission is to rescue the hostage Avatars.
  • Mama Bear / Parental Substitute: The orphanage that Hermana runs in the game? It is now taken care of by Ange. In fact, this is pretty much the reason she destroys the Naos Church, so the orphanage remain hidden.
  • One-Winged Angel: Hasta is now fought in his Gae Bolg form. Also, Mathias.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Iria doesn't bully Luca at all, and it helps that Luca is much less timid than his game counterpart.