With Tales of Crestoria concluding its service later today, I began to ponder its existence. While the rest of the main story will be told through manga, that’s not a substitute for a playable alternative. My sorrow for Crestoria’s shutdown is primarily second-hand since I never got into it due to it being a gacha. Still, the disappointment I’ve seen from fans worldwide has more than made me realize how precious this mobile title was to many. Despite the obvious faults of the gacha genre, it has the capability to unite players and fans in ways few other genres can. Further, the game’s crossing-over of other Tales of franchise characters within the main story served as another avenue to excite series veterans.
Personally, it bears iterating that I genuinely detest the gacha genre. Its inherent nature ruins prospective enjoyability for me, and, more often than not, it robs characters and stories of chances to be in less predatory games. In the case of Crestoria, that mentality was all too prevalent, yet it was sincerely effective due to how engaging the title’s premise was. It was disturbingly grim, and its introductory chapters were legitimately some of the best sequences I’ve seen in any Tales of game. I was even able to look past the gacha implementation for a time because I was just so eager to learn what would happen next. Seeing characters from other Tales of games also make appearances, and in the main story, might I add, enhanced that thrill of continually seeking progress.
Funnily enough, I only initially attempted to get into Crestoria a few months before its shutdown was announced. And, loathe as I am to the genre, I felt a tinge of disappointment. I ended up dropping the game soon after my initial attempt at trying it, but even I had to admit that this narrative was conceptually stellar, so seeing it essentially abandoned out of nowhere was…off-putting. I couldn’t and still can’t imagine the pain felt by those who followed the game since launch. Sure, it’s every gacha’s fate to be shut down eventually, but it happening in this fashion with the main story still ongoing felt distasteful. The one development this shutdown has had on fans is a justifiable lack of faith in Bandai Namco for future mobile Tales of projects.
Tales of Luminaria, the currently supported Tales of mobile title, isn’t being as eagerly supported by fans as it potentially could be because Bandai has set an unfortunate precedent for canceling the continued production of these titles. To be honest, even when accounting for the anime Luminaria is receiving alongside the game’s English dub, there’s a part of me that undeniably believes the game will be abandoned in a year or two. It’s difficult to think otherwise when such a precedent is already set. Regarding Crestoria, it’s clear it should have been given a chance to thrive otherwise. A mainline console implementation of its original cast and story is very much a pipe-dream, but it wholeheartedly deserves such an effort. Whether that will ever happen is comically doubtful. Still, at the very least, players can cherish the memories they’ve had of this experience while sadly lamenting its lack of realized potential.
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