In anticipation of the North American release of Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World for the Wii on November 11th, I have been playing through the original Tales of Symphonia for virtually every waking moment for the last couple days. Currently, I have 108 hours invested in this game; I am currently on my second playthrough, ready to head to Mithos’ Castle for the grand finale. I should be able to kick Mithos Yggdrasil’s whiny butt with ease: my lowest-level character is Colette, and she is level 148. But I rarely use Colette.
My A-team is Presea (level 150), Sheena (level 154), Lloyd (level 156), and Raine (level 152), not because I think they are a particularly optimal team (I really should have Genis for the spellcasting and Zelos for the backup healing ability instead of Sheena and Presea), but because I like their characters, and their ridiculously high level means I can afford to be suboptimal.
Lloyd I like because dual-wielding is just inherently cool. Presea is cool because a little girl with a big axe just makes me laugh. Raine…well, it’s the whole meganekko schoolteacher thing. And Sheena is just awesome.
My goal right now is to build up my Grade, so on my next playthrough, I can buy up all the special abilities to make a third playthrough. I figure I need to have about 6600 Grade to get everything worth getting, or about 5600 if I don’t worry about carrying over my learned techs. I had about 3800 Grade after my first playthrough—and I have learned that if I set everyone’s control type to Auto (in the Tech menu), I earn about 1 extra point of grade from every battle, because the computer controls are much more efficient than I am. Hmmm…
In any case, if I can average 2 points of Grade per battle (easy), and fight 5 battles a minute (not that hard), for 10 Grade per minute, I will have my goal accomplished in about eight or nine hours. I’ll just turn on my iPod, catch up on some podcasts I subscribe to, and fight a couple thousand battles. Easily doable in a day, but not today: I’m taking me a little break from Lloyd & Company.
And I totally need a proper video capture device. Taking screencaps with a digital camera just isn’t working.