Nitpick: Am I gliding or walking?
[Continued] Page 2
Exactly how does Tales of Graces f break immersion using its low-altitude flight? Well, simply put, it separates the world and the character. Because the characters decide to glide rather than walk, it's almost as if the characters don't really exist in the world. I mean, if they were part of it, wouldn't the science and physics of the world apply? Clearly that's not the case if they can glide. On the other hand, if they were some deity of a sort then I wouldn't nitpick Graces but it isn't. I just can't feel attached to the character and the world of Graces if the characters aren't even attached to the world, quite literally. Contact with the ground that the characters walk on is absolutely important when trying to keep the world and its mythos consistent. For Tales of Graces f, by having characters that walk on air rather than touching the ground, it's hard to take the game too serious.
I don't want to nag on Tales of Graces f for too long. It's fitting then that I bash on another JRPG, one that has received numerous praise from various websites: Xenoblade Chronicles. Xenoblade's world is phenomenal, full of life and bustling with grace. The contrast between poor movement of characters and the brilliant world crafted in Xenoblade is hilarious as a result. How does Xenoblade's experience suffer as a result? To put simply it shatters the realism of the world.
The world is fabulous and can be described as a vibrant work of art captured in 3-D. The feelings I have for Xenoblade's world is synonymous to Journey. Both games have hauntingly beautiful worlds and I hold them in high regard. Then what's the difference between these two games? While Journey's character movement tied the world and the character together creating an even greater sense of artistic beauty, Xenoblade suffers because of it. Due to the somewhat odd gliding movement, Xenoblade's world feels distant and surreal, not for the better. Think of it as a masterful painting. It's perfect as it is. Then someone adds something to the painting to make it worse rather than making it better. This is exactly what happened in Xenoblade.
Xenoblade and Tales of Graces f are only two examples where the game suffers for its crappy movement. It really stinks due to how amazing these two games are. I hold both games in high esteem due to its entertainment value. Unfortunately, it's hard for me to get over these small details that marr them. Perhaps it's the laziness of the developers or this was intentionally done so the game controls better. Regardless of the reason, I feel that developers shouldn't equip characters with Hover Boots. Just keep it to Zelda please.