Almost 4 years since Rays released and nearly 3 years since Regal first made an appearance in Rays, he finally makes his playable debut this month!
The first new event of 2021 is a Tales of Symphonia focused event. The only new character this time is Regal Bryant, the only Symphonia party member to not make it into Rays until now. He was first teased at the end of Arc 1 and has made several appearances in the story since, but it took until Arc 4 for his proper debut with this event. It's only fitting he gets an event all for himself with how long fans of the game have waited! The returning featured characters are Raine, Genis and Presea. This isn't some seasonal event either: all 3 are getting new Decisive Mirrage Artes. Normally, those are reserved for Raid events, but the main hero and heroine of Symphonia already got their Decisive Mirrages in previous Raids.
The event follows the standard currency farming format, despite the Decisive Mirrage Artes. There's a common (teacup this time) and rare (golden bag for this event) type of currency, with the team you use dictating how much you get of each. Using the new/featured characters gets you more of the rare currency, but the amount they give depends on how well they're equipped. When forming a party for the event quests, you can sort them by the amount of currency they give. It's suggested to maximize the amount of rare currency you get, but since you can exchange common currency for rare currency, it can be worth it to use a character that gives enough common currency that it converts to more rare currency than a featured character would give. For this (and most) events the exchange rate is 100 common currency to 20 rare currency, so it's more worth it to have a character that gives 100+ common currency as a bonus than one who gives less than 20 of the rare one. If you don't want to think too hard about it though, just using the new and featured characters are fine. You have to complete all the quests in the event and then can repeat the 40 AP quests to farm until you get what you want from the event shop. It's highly suggested to get Regal's Event Shop exclusive Artes since they'll be exclusive to this event, and also the Nexus Shards and Symphonia 6th enhancement orbs since those are very hard to come by.
However, this event in particular provides a new twist to the farming formula. After the 40 AP quest is a 15 AP challenge quest involving a singular boss fight. Since it's one enemy it shouldn't be too hard to beat it and reap the rewards (including Regal's formal attire if you bring Regal into the fight!). The 15 AP challenge quest isn't new for these types of events, but the real reason to complete it is that it unlocks a new 80 AP Farming Quest. This quest has 7 battles and 28 chests, as opposed to the 40 AP quest's 4 battles and 12 chests. Each fight also has more enemies, so despite costing twice as much AP, it gives more than twice the reward! It is a little more difficult, but if you're good at crowd control and keeping pressure off your healer, it shouldn't be too hard to use this as your go to farming quest. It'll certainly make it possible to complete all the rewards much faster.
Here's a list of times to keep in mind for this event. Keep in mind the Anniversary Boss Challenge is still running! The Arte and Costume previews will be below.
|Regal Rescue Event
|January 11, 14:00 JST
|January 20, 10:59 JST
|January 11, 14:00 JST
|January 27, 10:59 JST
|January 11, 14:00 JST
|January 20, 10:59 JST
|Free Ticket Gacha Banner
|January 11, 14:00 JST
|February 3, 10:59 JST
Here are the Arte and Costume previews starting with a group shot of the new costumes given to the featured characters! They're New Years themed, with Raine, Genis and Presea wearing Japanese style clothing and Regal wearing his fancy suit from Dawn of The New World befitting his status as a CEO.
— 【公式】テイルズ オブ ザ レイズ (@talesof_therays) January 11, 2021
Now for the invidual Artes:
— 【公式】テイルズ オブ ザ レイズ (@talesof_therays) January 7, 2021
Regal's Gacha Mirrage Arte is not new. It's Final Fury Hungry Wolf, his Mystic Arte from Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of The New World/Knight of Ratatosk! The animation is greatly improved, finally doing the move justice. It looks quite smooth compared to the original!
— 【公式】テイルズ オブ ザ レイズ (@talesof_therays) January 8, 2021
— 【公式】テイルズ オブ ザ レイズ (@talesof_therays) January 9, 2021
— 【公式】テイルズ オブ ザ レイズ (@talesof_therays) January 10, 2021
Sharp eyed Symphonia fans may recognize the backgrounds of the art and animations for Raine, Genis and Presea's new Decsive Mirrage Artes. They're based on a certain dramatic moment in Symphonia that we won't spoil. However, sharper eyed fans may notice the ending of the animations...
Spoiler Warning: From this point on in the article, we'll get into spoilers from not only this event but also Tales of Symphonia.
If you're ok with spoilers, read on!
This event reveals a lot of love for Tales of Symphonia on the part of the Rays devs. Tales of The Rays' lead writer, Takumi Miyajima, also wrote for Tales of Symphonia and Tales of The Abyss, so we could take some of these revelations as canon as well! The first thing to point out is the new Decisive Mirrage Arte animations. They're based on the scenes where the party "sacrifices" themselves in the Tower of Salvation. In Symphonia proper, there's a skit prior to the tower where Raine and Regal share the idea of sacrificing themselves for Lloyd to continue on ahead. However, they don't truly die, instead reuniting with Lloyd with the explanation that Zelos (or Kratos) saved them. This explanation was commonly seen as flimsy by Symphonia players, as the traps each party member falls in appear truly hopeless.
These decisive mirrage Artes explain, at least for Raine, Genis and Presea, how they were able to survive. Maybe not save themselves, but at least buying enough time to be rescued by Zelos or Kratos. Raine uses an Arte to create a net of light to break her fall after falling down the pit trap. Presea broke part of the ceiling and held it up, preventing it from totally crushing her. Genis uses Force Field to stop the magic barrier from totally smothering and suffocating/crushing him. With these animations in mind, the idea that they were rescued by Zelos or Kratos makes a lot more sense, as the situations they end up in after saving themselves look a lot more survivable then what we see in Symphonia. They also reasonably happen just off screen from what we see in Symphonia as well.
That's not the only bit of respect for the source material shown. There's also the event itself. The premise of the event is that Regal has become a Living Doll Beta, and must be rescued and restored to normal. Normally this is a bit of an excuse to have a boss fight against characters who'd normally join the player without issue, but we don't actually fight Regal when he's in this state. Instead, the villains have actually used Fomicry (the knowledge of which they got from Dist) to create a replica of Regal. This Regal replica was given incomplete memories of the real Regal and powers of Mirristry similar to Ix and Mileena, and he aims to fill in the gaps of his memory by exoflecting Alicia, which the heroes try to prevent. It is this Regal Replica with fight against before we can recruit the real Regal to our side.
Symphonia fans may remember that Regal remains handcuffed for the whole game, and even in Dawn of The New World where he's no longer cuffed he still only fights with kicks. This is because he swore not to take another life with his hands after being forced to take Alicia's. Naturally this is reflected in a moveset with only kick Artes. We do get a glimpse of how he'd possibly have fought with his hands in Welgaia where he shoots a massive beam from his hands to break open a cage, justifying it as helping his friends and not taking a life. As it turns out, the Replica Regal we fight in this event has no qualms using his hands to fight, as he hasn't lived through the events Regal has, and also doesn't keep his hands cuffed. Instead of a player character turned into a boss, this event has a unique fight against Regal using his original fighting style with his hands!
Thankfully, Rays players have been taking videos of his moveset, which apparently includes moves such as Hell Pyre, Final Fury and even the beam he fires in the aforementioned Welgaia cutscene!
— えちえちお兄さん (@hx2_023) January 11, 2021
He also has a unique Mirrage Arte interaction where he attempts to counter Final Fury Hungry Wolf should a player activate it against him, which you can see at 15 seconds in the video above. Here's a standalone video of the counter Mirrage Arte as well!
Spoilers end here. That's about it for this event. The Producer's Letter this month mentioned that they put more effort and money into this event and it shows. It took years for Regal to get into Rays, but they did not disappoint. It was completely worth the wait, and his debut wouldn't have been as high quality had he been introduced earlier. Hope you have fun with this event, and even try mirror matching the enemy Regal with your own Regal!
And with that, we hope you stick around for more info. Remember, the remaining 4 party members will be introduced in the next event this month, and it's looking very likely we'll get a part 2 preview for this month as well. Until then, see you!