Caius Qualls is a typical everyday protagonist living a simple and peaceful existence in a small village alongside his not-girlfriend, Rubia Natwick. Unfortunately, his peaceful life is shattered when he discovers that he is actually one of the feared Lycanth, and his hometown is destroyed by two Lycanth-hunting Knight Templars.
Caius and Rubia flee the massacre and start looking for answers to their numerous questions. Who or what are Lycanths? Why do Lycanths and Humans hate each other so much? What happened to trigger the war between the two races? Why is the local Corrupt Church so incredibly mean? And who is that mysterious masked antagonist who probably does not definitely have a profound connection to Caius?
They also run into other comrades along the way, including: Tilkis Barone, a prince from a distant kingdom; Forest Ledoyen, another Lycanth refugee; and Arria Ekberg, a member of the Corrupt Church who is willing to help them stop the madness.
Developed by Dimps (yes, not by Namco Tales Studio), Tales of the Tempest is the ultimate Black Sheep of the Tales franchise. Originally released as an entry in the main series, the extremely poor critical reception and overall quality of the game led to the segregation of the Tales Series into "Mothership Titles" (main games) and "Escort Games" (spinoffs, crossovers and otherwise secondary titles), the latter of which Tempest was dumped into. That said, it is clear that Namco Bandai reserves a little love for at least the characters of the game, including them as cameo characters and costumes in other games in the series. This includes a special event dedicated to Rubia in Tales of Link.
This game provides examples of:
- And Man Grew Proud: Averted with the war - it's treated as a historical event and influences the plot directly.
- Artificial Stupidity: Big time. Party members tend to advance a little, attack a monster twice, then run to the other side of the field for absolutely no reason other than to screw you up. They'll also most likely not heal you.
- Bosses are not much better. Spellcasters will go for melee damage most often if you're within hitting range, despite being able to do much more damage by casting.
- Beta Couple: Tilkis and Arria.
- Bonus Dungeon: one that contains 30 maze-like floors which all look the same, enemies who take a ton of damage before dying, high encounter rate (running from battles is recommended, if you don't want to go insane) and recycled bosses. Like the rest of the game, it's not hard, just terribly boring.
- Cool Mask: Lukius. Oh yeah◊.
- Corrupt Church: Though it's not really all that bad, and some members try to help the heroes out. It's the Pope who's giving out bad orders.
- Crapsaccharine World: Nothing new for Tales games, but this is a generally cutesy world with a ruler who has been crystallizing people's souls for hundreds of years and using them to create a portal into a world which resembles Hell.
- Damage-Sponge Boss: All of them, including the Squishy Wizards.
- Demonic Possession: Strong Spots have the ability to possess people, making them more aggressive and irrational. Red Spots can destroy the former personality completely, leaving a Soulless Shell.
- Difficulty Spike: Most of the boss fights are pretty easy and can be won pretty much by mashing attack until they die. The final boss, on the other hand, inflicts Standard Status Effects, his main attack is a knockback, and he abuses the hell out of Teleport Spam.
- Disappeared Dad: Caius's father is captured in game's introduction. That was just his foster father, actually - his real dad is missing. And he's the pope. Rubia has one of these as well, but he's dead.
- Doomed Hometown: Well, not completely, but pretty busted, yeah.
- Easily Forgiven: Arria turns out to have been spying for Albert for half of the game. Apart from Rubia, everyone lets it slide almost immediately.
- FaceHeel Turn: Rubia. She comes back like a minute later.
- Fantastic Racism: Humans and Lycanths. It's the main thing driving the plot forward.
- Also, everyone against Ogres. Also also, Spots against everyone else.
- Five-Man Band:
- HeelFace Turn: Lukius.
- Human Resources: The Penscients, a stone created by thousands of Leimon souls. They essentially work like Philosopher's Stones.
- Kid Hero: Caius.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Lukius is revealed to be Caius' twin brother, only with cool clothes. And the pope is their dad.
- Missing Mom: Caius's mom. She's dead. Rubia's mother also dies in the introduction.
- Nice Hat: Arria.
- Obvious Beta: While playable; the game seems almost like it was a Tech Demo Game to get used to the DS hardware on part of the developers.
- Official Couple: Tilkis and Arria.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: Lycanths, also called Leimorneans, a race of people with the power to transform into beasts at will.
- Perfect-Play A.I.: In terms of guarding, at least, the AI is very good. Especially on bosses, making them even more tedious.
- Really 700 Years Old: Anyone with an abundance of Penscient Crystals won't age until the souls inside are consumed. But as soon as the crystal is taken away, they die. This is how King Aurella has lived for so long.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Tilkis is a Prince who left his country on foot with one bodyguard to find out why was his country being attacked by so many monsters.
- Rummage Sale Reject: Caius. His shoes are essentially water shoes.
- Separated at Birth: Caius and Lukius, due to Leiman persecution. Caius went to live with his Leiman mother, Lukius lived with his human father.
- Shipper on Deck: Rubia, for Tilkis and Arria. And to a lesser extent, Tilkis for Caius and Rubia.
- Also to a lesser extent, Lukius for Tilkis and Arria.
- Small Role, Big Impact: The game as a whole is considered one of the less liked entries in the series. Distancing it from the main series is also the reason for the whole "Mothership and Escort title" thing.
- Squishy Wizard: Rubia, Arria, Rommy, and Lukius.
- Taken for Granite: How Ramrus meets his end, courtesy of Rommy.
- Too Dumb to Live: Rubia's mother. In the beginning of the game her husband is killed in a church. She approaches from the outside afterward and insists on going inside despite the danger and warning from Caius. Nothing has suggested that she is any kind of combat capable when she confronts his killer. She dies instantly. May have been Suicide by Cop, since she asks Caius to look after Rubia, implying she knew what would happen.
- Tsundere: Both Caius and Rubia. Caius is more of a type B though, while Rubia is a type A.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: The church is trying to wipe out Lycanths because the pope wants to bring back his wife and other Lycanths[/]Leimen using Life Magic. The King, on the other hand, just wants to get home.
- Wham Episode: Fairly early on, you find out that Caius is a Lycanth. Another comes much later in the game when you learn what really happened during the Beast War. Yet another when you find out Lukius is Caius's twin. Then you find out that the King is an alien who wants to get home.
- Wrong Guy First: Albert and Arria were in an ambiguous relationship before she becomes the mask. By the end of the game, she and Tilkas are together instead.