Not sure what’s going on? Check out the Table of Contents
This post reaches from the first arrival at Triet, to the Slyvarant base, to the Seal of Fire, and then ends right before the Ossa Trail.
The Desert Oasis, Triet
After a short romp south, stopping at a House of Salvation along the way (A little church/inn), the grassy plains littered with forests becomes a desert littered small sandy mountains. It didn’t take me long to get poisoned by one of the many snakes and scorpions encountered in the desert, so we rusheded to Triet.
Lloyd and Genis enter Triet, the Desert Oasis. and see, gasp, Desians! They put up a wanted poster that looks pretty hilarious, and Lloyd wonders if he’s really that ugly.
“Don’t worry, they’ll never find you with this.” Genis reassures him.
Well, we set out to find out where the Chosen and her group went. A fortune teller, charging us 100 gald might be able to tell them, but… I didn’t have the money after all my shopping! I sell a healing gel and try again.
“The Chosen’s group is headed south to the Seal of Fire.”
“Are you sure?” Genis asks.
“Yes, a member of their group told me.”
Slightly vexed, Genis and Lloyd exit the town and run into… Desians! They capture Lloyd and Genis and take them to the Sylvarant base! Genis convinces the Desians that he wasn’t on the poster, so he should be set free. Then, he takes Noishe and runs.
The High Tech Prison
Lloyd wakes up in a high tech prison. He has no equipment, except for… the Sorcerer’s ring! Awesome! He burns the guard patrolling, then opens the door. (Not sure why the cell doors don’t lock, there’s a button to open them in arms reach.) He gets his equipment then goes outside of the prison room. Before he can though, the guards catch up, and there’s a fight. The alarm sounds and Lloyd runs out of the only door.
He arrives in another high tech room, this one’s big with an odd piece of machinery in it. Interacting with it changes the bolt of fire to a ball of electricity that floats forward then hovers for a second.
The Sorcerer’s Ring
The Sorcerer’s ring does more than shoot fire and freeze enemies! It’s actually also another point of interaction for puzzles. In most games that don’t have overworld item use, you can really only use one button to interact with the world. Maybe two if there’s an attack button. Symphonia added the Sorcerer’s ring as another way to interact. Now puzzles can be more complex because there are more options the player has to consider. Further, puzzles are always fresh and new because the Sorcerer’s ring’s function changes in nearly every dungeon, and to suit that dungeon’s theme as well!
Desians, heeding the alarm that was set off earlier, rush into the room. Lloyd hides by hanging off the flooring down into a large indent in the centre of the room.
“Where’s that kid in the red?”
“He’s not here. Maybe we’ll find the kid in the red somewhere else.”
“Man, does my outfit stand out that much?”
Lloyd comments as he climbs back out. It seems the Desians had to electrocute two of the defensive robots over blue pads in order to open the door. This is an exsphere puzzle, and it’s a real pain to do. Took me a lot of tries because the machines don’t like to stay electrocuted for long enough!
Anyway, afterwards he explores the rest of the Sylvarant base, finding another puzzle with a giant GameCube in the centre.
Correctly completing the puzzle sends you to a three way corridor. A lot of Desians run towards Lloyd from the right and he’s stuck turning left to avoid them Then he runs into a room for safety. But instead of safety, he finds the leader of the Base.
They both proceed to have the most smug conversation in the entire game, and it’s hilarious. Here’s a screenshot of my favourite line from it all.
So, his second in command, Lord Botta, enters to defend him. Botta! That’s the guy that attacked the Martel Temple and tried to kill the Chosen at the beginning of the game! He’s the guy with the big curved sword!
He says that Kratos is here. Yuan doesn’t want to meet up with Kratos (maybe because he’s so strong?), so he leaves. Then the rest of the party come in, Genis had left to get everyone else! Awesome!
A fight breaks out between the party, Botta, and some Desian henchmen. Not too difficult. Botta uses a big curved sword.
Botta’s actually a fairly hard boss on mania difficulty. He casts rock based spells very quickly, and has a move he can use
instantly that half healths most party members. I beat him after about three tries and a bit of coordination, backstepping to dodge his abilities, and straight up running away whenever he cast the level 2 spell, Stalagmite.
After the Rescue
Kratos ends the fight by breaking Botta’s weapon. He drops it and runs. Raine takes it, it seems he had an exshpere attached to it to power it up. They head back to Triet to discuss it all. Raine becomes smitten with the exsphere, wondering if she can use it too. Kratos finds a damaged key crest among the pile of artifacts Raine brought along with her. Seems she found it near a ranch. Lloyd offers to fix it, and everyone goes off to their rooms. Lloyd finally confirms with Raine that it’s okay for him to come along. Now I got a chance to talk to other people, with options to change affection ratings.
Tales of Symphonia has an affection system built in. It’s much better than a lot of the morality systems built into games nowadays, because it’s more dynamic, and affection is built up over time instead of by big sweeping events. How it works is that each character has a hidden number, and all the choices you make, weather to wait for Raine back at the beginning of the game or ignore her instruction to stay in the classroom, affect people’s ratings. Cooking also effects affection, as well as choosing party members when there’s a split up.
Near the end of the game, the person with the highest affection will come to your door. You may turn them down, and if you do it goes to second, then third. (Unless you’re playing the GameCube version, then someone specific shows up third, and the third highest shows up fourth.) The person you let in gets a special cutscene with Lloyd. Some characters will give him an item, and others will change a major element of the game’s ending. I’ve seen about two endings myself. I have the suspicion that I chose Colette’s twice. I’m interested in seeing Sheena’s, Raine’s, and Zelos’s. Well, all of them really.
Anyway, you can interact with other party members to increase or decrease affection during this time in the inn. Genis sleeping, Colette lying awake silently, and Kratos leaving suspiciously. Kratos exits to go talk to Noishe, which is odd because Noishe doesn’t like strangers. Before anything deep happens, Kratos escapes the conversation by telling Lloyd that he still needs to improve and then walking away.
The Seal of Fire
After the fight, the party exits and we head to the Seal of Fire. I had to run back to the inn to heal up while doing the temple, as I needed to grind up so enemies weren’t so hard. Someone kept waking Lloyd up, an intruder! Raine says it was probably a Desian, but I don’t know. I think it might have been Yuan after Lloyd’s exsphere or something. To be honest, I’ve played this game three times over and I still am not sure who it was, but Yuan is the best bet. This happens once more before it stops.
Right outside the Triet ruins, Kratos teaches the party defensive Techs. Raine and Genis get Force Field, Lloyd gets Guardian, and I don’t remember Colettes. Kratos had Force Field to start. Think of it like super blocking. Blocking stops about half the damage, and it only works against regular attacks. Guardian works against special attacks and regular attacks, and it blocks a lot more damage. These can be the difference between death and survival against bosses with high level spells, especially on higher difficulties.
The temple is simple but unique. You have to light torches to raise platforms using the Sorcerer’s Ring. This can cut you off of chests and other things though, so order is important if you want all the goodies. In no time, I made it to the boss and fought some weird fire dog things with even weirder names (Ktugach). It was easier than Botta, but still they were no pushovers.
After the boss, we talk to good old Remiel, the monotone angel that might actually be Colette’s real father. With the completion of the first seal, Colette is granted the power of the angels. She gets wings and learns the powerful light magic spell, Angel Feathers. Genis gets really excited about the wings while the rest of the party talks about Remiels hint. It seems the next temple is across the sea. They will have to get a ship.
Colette seems to have gotten sick after the Seal, and Kratos says that it’s probably part of the trial and to give it a day. Colette apologizes for turning into an angel, and the party sets up camp. Again, you have a chace to go talk to people for affection points. Colette strolls off on her own, and asks…
“What’s happening to me?”
It’s a chilling question. Even remembering it gives me a touch of anxiety.
We’re caught up now, so I’d better go play some more so I have something to write about. There’s a high chance that the next one will be Ossa Trail to Izoold, including the infamous Sword Dancer. However, I might skip the Sword Dancer and just move on to Palmacosta. We’ll see!
Also, if you’re interested in buying the game, feel free to use one of my affiliate links: