Tales of Xillia Review

Tales of Xillia Review


Game Title: Tales of Xillia

Genre: RPG (JRPG)

Players: 1 – 4

Platform: Playstation 3

ESRB Rating: T for Teen

Developer: Namco Tales Studio

Publisher: Namco Bandai Games

Release Date: September 8, 2011 (Japan), August 6, 2013 (NA)

Review Author: ossiecastro5



Tales of Xillia was brought to the NA region one year ago, from this day. It has quickly became very popular ever since localization and will have its sequel, Tales of Xillia 2, localized and brought to the NA region August 19, 2014. After playing week after week of Tales of Xillia, and then spending more weeks on a second playthrough, Tales of Xillia has met the expectations and deserves the praise that it has received.



Story Overview:

At the start of the game, you have the option to choose between two of the protagonists, the kind medical student Jude and the mysterious Millia, and you are able to play from their respective perspectives. Millia is sent on a mission to seek and destroy a secret weapon of untold power. Once Jude encounters Milla on her path, their roads are crossed and Jude journeys alongside Milla in a story filled with plot twists, conspiracies, and entertaining humor. The story itself is engaging and people you encounter along the way change the outcome of events. Both Millia and Jude have their own exclusive perspectives to the story, where certain events in the story are revealed to each individual. This alone makes the story feel fresh and different when you choose to play as one or the other, even though it’s still the same story.


Xillia 1


Everything has its beginnings


Jude and Millia are the main protagonists of the story. But along the way, more allies join your party. Alvin, a mercenary with his own agenda, is the first the duo encounters. Next is Elize, an abused girl with a mysterious past, and her chatty doll Teepo. Afterwards is the butler Rowen, who seemed to have his glory days behind him. Last but not least is Leia, Jude’s childhood friend. All of them are unique and have their own personalities that keep the game intriguing. All of them are finely detailed with appearances that matche them along with excellent voice action; Millia’s voice acting isn’t that good though.

NPCs and enemies in the game are just as interesting. Basically each person in the game has their own struggle and their own history that is sooner or later relevant and impacts each other as a whole. Even the enemies, the people you have to face, are interesting and have their own story that makes you feel sympathy for them. Plot twists and character developments appear throughout the game that shows how different characters are as you progress.


Personality is easily shown on and off the battlefield

Graphics and Appearance:

Tales of Xillia came to the NA region about 2 years after it was released in Japan. The graphics aren’t really as good compared to other games around this time. But it’s art and style makes up for this a lot. As said earlier, characters in this game are greatly detailed and fit their personality. You are even able to customize your characters with items you find throughout the game, which is pretty entertaining. Environments are just as vibrant in appearance as the characters. But some locations aren’t really as good as others. You have nice large cities and exotic locations with fine detail. Then there are locations that look a bit empty and almost like the previous locations. And I still don’t understand why all of the sea ports looks exactly the same.

Despite that, the game does look good. The anime movie scenes bring out some life to those that aren’t impressed with the game’s overall appearance.



Xillia 5



Sound and Audio:

As soon as I heard the intro of the game, I knew that this would be impressive. The soundtrack of Tales of Xillia met this expectation. The background sounds during dialogue is always fitting. Even while wandering around a monster – infested path, the audio was so tranquil and fit in with the nature of the environment. Audio during towns makes the environment seem so busy and the audio during battle kept me and my player moving.

Voice acting is also very well done here, as mentioned earlier. Mostly every character had their voice well done and matched their respective person. Conversations are executed well and displays emotions just as well. Above all, there is a lot of talking here, which makes the game feel immersive at times. Even when you are simply walking, there are discussions called skits in the game that occur very frequently and are mostly entertaining and help you learn more about each character.




Nice things to randomly discuss


Tales of Xillia is a third person game. You get to choose between any of your six allies and travel. The locations are many and large. Dungeons and outside are filled with enemies. The world is open world, but slightly linear, as you explore and progress each place you visit. There are secret items, chests, and loot scattered around. This encourages you to look around every corner. There are brief platforming and puzzle elements shown in a few moments of the game, which is inviting. Towns and villages offer side quests and sub events to fulfill. Shops are also everywhere with different items to buy; you can even level up shops by giving items you find around the world.

Once you run into a monster or during a mission, a battle starts. After you win, you gain experience points, money and items gained from the battle. You can use these experieance points to boost up your characters’ stats in a very unique leveling system, where you use your points to raise stats and unlock skills and attacks. Skills give new abilities during combat and artes, your flashy attacks, grow more.



xillia 2.jpg


Don’t fall now


Not only is the combat system in Tales of Xillia accessible, but it is also addicting and very in depth. Battles allow up to four characters to play at once; if you have an extra controller, you can play offline co-op with friends and they can control other characters to fight with you. At first, it might feel repetitive pressing the X button in different directions for basic attacks. But once you gain access to your special attacks, artes, then things get interesting. Artes take up TP and you regain TP by attacking. Artes can be as simple as a special attack to very large and devastating strikes and can be strung together in combos. Each character you control has a completely different weapon, playstyle, and set of artes. This makes variety in fighting very large and lets you choose however playstyle you want.

Not only that, but you are also able to ‘link’ with one ally. Each character has their own support skills that they can use while linking with you, from medic to stealing the enemies’ items. While you are linked with an ally, you can combo attacks with your ally and also combo artes together for more devastating results. Many combinations of allies and characters allow you to experiment and choose carefully.

While having an ally, you have a special meter on the side while fighting. This increases while you attack. You can do special combo artes when this reaches to a certain level. Once this meter is complete, you can unleash multiple combo artes. If you use a specific attack while in this state, you will be able to pull off your character’s ultimate attack!


Xillia 4


Did somebody say overkill?


Tales of Xillia took me about 40 hours for my first playthrough and a lot more for my second. After the story, you are able to fight secret bosses and freely explore. This game was incredible to play through and worth the time. Not only does it have a fun, addicting combat and gameplay, but it is also very entertaining and keeps you thinking. For those that are on the PS3, I recommend you play this. For those on the PS4, you better hope it will be on PS Now. For those that already played this, Tales of Xillia 2 will be out August 19th to continue the story.



  • Fun, addicting gameplay
  • Well created characters and voice acting
  • Hours of replayability
  • Creative characters and environments



  • Inconsistent art and design


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3 comments on “Tales of Xillia Review”

  1. Avatar DieFinstereSeele says:

    Personally, I thought that this was one of the weakest entries in this series to date. The graphics are nice, but there are so many flaws and things in this game that just lack a sense of care and completion.

  2. Avatar Fexelea says:

    This was a wonderful review, thank you so much for taking the time to do it! I’ve never gotten into this series but I’m rather intrigued now. Does anyone have some free time I can borrow?

  3. Avatar GrinTwist says:

    The mention of the secret bosses got me excited, for me that’s one of the best things to add on into a game. So you’ve sold me on this, I’ll have to buy the game. :biggrin:

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