Bandai Namco’s Tales of Berseria has finally launched in the West, giving English speaking gamers an opportunity to experience one of the more highly anticipated JRPGs to land on the PS4.
The game starts with a cinematic featuring Velvet and her younger brother being carried away by Arthur. Arthur leaves to go find Celica, Velvet’s sister, leaving Velvet and Laphicet in the woods. Turns out it was just a dream and Velvet is locked away in a dungeon, fighting demons.
YouTuber Shirrako has a playthrough of the game from start to finish. You can check out the playlist below.
R1 display the current mission objective. On the world map you can tap Square to show the map.
‘X’ activates and interacts with objects and NPCs while Circle will cancels any actions.
You can talk to some of the NPCs around the area to learn a little bit more about the daemonblight as well as the lore behind the Empyreans being able to save the world from the daemons.
The quests are highlighted on the mini-map in the top left hand corner of the screen.
The Prickleboar that Velvet needs for the stew are highlighted on the map with a star. Quest items will always appear on the map as small stars.
Battle encounters will take you to the battle screen where you can unleash combos, block physical attacks, dodge and build combos. You can only block when your combo gauge is filled. Blocking drains your SG so time your blocks based on the enemy’s combat patterns. Press L1 to defend during battle.
You’ll also learn how to effectively dodge. Holding down the L1 button to block while using the left analog stick, you’ll be able to dodge. Dodging doesn’t drain the SG meter like the block does. During another battle tutorial they’ll teach you how to switch between multiple opponents. You can use R1 and flick the left analog to switch between enemy targets. Holding down R1 and pressing Circle will bring up information on the enemy.
You can save the game by visiting the small [S] icons on the map.
You can also utilize and assign Hidden Artes using the touchpad on the DualShock 4. Swipe the pad and then select the button and Artes you want to assign.
You can also alter the control mode of how the Artes are used or use the L2 or R2 buttons to switch between characters (when they join your party) to alter and modify their Artes loadout.
Hidden Artes take extra SG to use but can deal some mean damage to enemies. You can also use various other Artes and level them up by continually using them, just like many other skills in various other JRPGs.
Following some lengthy cinematics, you’ll need to cook some food. Grab some ingredients from around the house, including getting nutmeg and curry spice. Start the fire at the fireplace to cook the meal.
More cinematics will play, and the next morning you’ll need to head through the village and talk to the merchant and then head to the cave through the Tranquil Woods to get to Laphicet.
Following the cinematics, fight the demon werewolf and just avoid dying until the cinematic cuts in. Daemons can only be defeated using skills of exorcism.
During the scarlet moon segment, simply run past all of the demo werewolves and head back to the Tranquil Woods. You’ll learn how to run from battles during this segment, it may take a while but during battle simply run to the edge of the outer ring of the combat area to escape from battle.
Head to the end of the route and another lengthy cinematic will play as Velvet is cast into the sacrificial pit.
During the cinematic you’ll get to use some of Velvet’s demon powers before she’s tossed into the pit.
The next segment involves escaping from the Titania prison. You can check the jail cells to grab some much needed items before completing the escape.
Follow the indicators on the map and free the prisoners to cue the cinematic with Magilou. And proceed to the upper floor of the prison.
You’ll encounter the Red-Eye Demon on your way out. Follow the pathway straight ahead to move up toward the tower to escape.
During the fight with the guards they will attempt to block your attacks. You can dodge around to their back and start a chain combo. You’ll consume less SG by mixing and matching Artes between the Hidden Artes and the Martial Artes.
Follow the path inside and fight Praetor Oscar. Kill his subordinates before you fight him directly.
Another cinematic will play and Seres will be fatally wounded, resulting in her asking for Velvet to consume her. Velvet does so, gaining Seres’ strength in the process. This opens up the ability to use Break Souls by pressing R2 during combat.
They can be tricky to use because they will take one SG to use but give an enemy one soul, which can be risky depending on the enemy you’re facing off against. Break Soul attacks can only be used when you have three or more souls stacked in the SG bar.
More cinematics will play leading up to Velvet, Rokurou and Magilou being shipwrecked in Northgand where they attempt to make their way to Hellawes.
The game maintains a fairly strong sense of linearity in the early goings.
Funnily enough, Magilou comments about Velvet’s lack of clothing in the winter ice land, saying it doesn’t seem “humanly possible”, to which Velvet retorts “I never said I was human”.
This also opens up some side-quests for capturing essences to use to free Katz from locked chests. They can grant you bonuses sometimes, such as extra clothing accessories.
Follow the path to Hellawes and you’ll find some loot in a store house and another lengthy cinematic when you talk to the guild masters about ship repair.
Dyle will need to be captured in order to get the guild to help you repair the ship. Pick up Rokurou and head to the town to track down Dyle, the navigator turned demon.
Proceed to the Figahl Icecaps and you’ll meet up with Eleanor Hume, a Praetor of the Abbey. You’ll meet up with her, as showcased in the video below from AginoEvolutionHD.
Head through Beardslay to the mission location beyond the gate. You’ll learn a new cooking skill that can be used similar to cooking in Monster Hunter. You can earn new recipes throughout your travels and cook it if you have the ingredients. They’ll run you through a tutorial on how to cook if you didn’t already know.
Proceed through the cavern; there’s some treasures to pick up along with some enemies to fight if you need to train.
They introduce some jumping segments, but it’s all pretty simple; yellow indicators show where you can jump and you simply have to hop across to get to the other side. You can also push boulders down to work as platforms to get across some gaps.
Also, for parts of the map that look like dead-ends, be sure to explore them because oftentimes they’re not dead-ends but actually have treasures or other items tucked away in the corner.
They also teach you about weak points – how different enemies have different weak points against certain kinds of Artes. Using Artes in successive combination will activate a weak point combination and will do even more damage to an enemy.
Defeat Dyle and he’ll explain that the guild actually set him up to cover for their illegal smuggling operation, taking from the Abbey. Velvet cuts off his tail to use it as a sign of proof that he’s dead, but suggests for Dyle to attack the guild once she leaves.
You can warp out of the cave and break the rock to the left of the cave to travel through the field and head back to Hellawes.
Talk to the guild members to get them to work on your ship. Proceed to learn how to upgrade equipment and dismantle equipment, so you can improve your gear.
Head back to the shipwreck on the beach and another cinematic will cue where Lady Teresa’s brother, Oscar, makes a return with a bandaged face. He explains that Velvet damaged him and Teresa sets out to capture her after interrogating Magilou.
Head into the Hadlow Hollow and team up with Dyle to cue another cinematic. Head back to Hellawes and battle Teresa’s men in a gauntlet until another cinematic plays. You’ll then have to battle Teresa. She has two healers helping her, so attack them first before you deal damage to Teresa.
From here the game begins to take a shift, and some monsters may begin to get more difficult in some areas as they scale with the player. This includes facing off against Dire Foes the better you get at combat.
More cinematics will play and then you’ll need to fight another boss fight with Eizen. Just get his life down enough until yet another cinematic plays and then you’ll have the new mission of chasing him down. You can also stock up on supplies with the merchant before venturing further in.
Follow the cave to Eizen, who will explain the plan to penetrate the fortress and join your team. Continue to battle through the mobs to get to the end.
Follow the cave out to the Burnack Plateau. The mini-map will guide you along the way. If you need to level up, take the opportunity to grind on some of the monsters.
Head through Vortigen up to the top of the gate. It’s a linear way through, so you don’t have to worry about getting lost.
Head up to the top of the structure following the cinematic with the guard. Knock the rock off the ledge. Go down below toward the docks where you’ll fight a Praetor that Rokurou is familiar with, and then head back up to get the key for the control room. Once you get to the room more cinematics will play as the group gets the compass and the gate key. Follow the path to the lever and open the gate and head back to the ship.
Loegres is the next step, with the makeshift crew ending up at Port Zekson. This opens up new Expedition opens. You can select new scouting expeditions to earn extra items and gear, not unlike the Assassination missions in Assassin’s Creed games for underlings.
While heading to the Abbey, you’ll learn about the 10 Code Red demons. These are special boss demons you can battle, if you’re strong enough. They also teach you that you can get an advantageous jump on enemies if you attack an enemy from behind.
The group ends up in Loegres where they attempt to head to the capital’s church. In order to proceed you’ll need to take on three requests from the Guild of Bloodwing Butterflies.
Completing the side-quests first will then open up more main quests.
After finishing the store house quest you’ll encounter Eleanor again and discover who Magilou’s betrayer was.
The Bloodwing Butterflies will have another task for Velvet and her crew: Assassinate the High Priest Gideon of Midgand Cathedral.
You’ll need to find a soldier with the red scarf in order to gain access to the cathedral.
Head to the castle area and the first guard to your left with a star on his head will lead you into the access towards the villa.
Barona Catacombs will require you to venture through the area to get to the quest destination. Use the levers to lower the water levels in the catacombs to proceed toward the end.
Following the levers through the will eventually lead you to Loegres Villa. The building can be a bit confusing, but move through the halls toward the save point and the red door and you’ll find the target you’re after. A boss fight against Eleanor and Bienfu will ensue, resulting in Magilou finally getting back Bienfu.
Before the team can escape to hunt down Artorius, they’ll have to fight Eizen and another mysterious Malak who captured Eizen’s captain. Velvet wants the mysterious Malak to help them open up the barrier since they need four greater Malaks.
You can train once you enter into the courtyard of the temple; plenty of malakim are in the area to pounce or you can proceed through. Activate the fulcrums around the area and then proceed toward the top of the temple.
Be sure to equip all the necessary gear before entering into the temple to face off against Artorius. The boss fight will commence thereafter.
Fighting Artorius will result in his HP not going down. Keep fighting and stay alive until the cinematic plays and they end up being teleported out of the temple.
A linear segment will open up where Velvet will have to run with Laphicet to the exit; you don’t have to fight and there are no other party members. Just keep moving toward the green portals on the map and it will eventually take you to the exit. Be sure to move toward the green nodes and then the red nodes when they appear on the map. It will lead toward the exit from the earthpulse, which is a star on the map.
More cinematics will take place and Velvet and the crew will end up in the Yvolg Ruins. The mini-map will show you where you need to go to exit the ruins. You can take some of the treasures before you exit.
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