Tales of Luminaria - Alexandra Episode 1 Review: The Sun

“They call me the White Wolf.”

In terms of gameplay, Alexandra is S tier. I’ve never had this much fun with gameplay before. Using her to plow down enemies and getting kill counts of over 700 felt enjoyable. In terms of story, Alexandra’s story is enjoyable. There are minor gripes I have with it but it’s not bad at all.

Alexandra’s playstyle is very different from Leo’s. While Leo moves a bit slower but tanks harder, Alexandra moves faster but is fragile in terms of defense. I do like how each swordsman is different in terms of gameplay. There are 21 characters, each with similar weapons and they all got to play differently or else it would be boring.

Her main gimmick revolves around charging and striking multiple enemies at once. I think this is a very fun mechanic as Alexandra shows off why she’s an elite soldier. Her blade doesn't strike only soldiers; it can also strike towers and small bases that the Federation army built for protection. Defeating them is always satisfying because it shows how terrifying she is in-universe. I feel like out of the characters I played so far, she’s the easiest to play because her gameplay is very simplistic. By the end of the chapter, Alexandra will be the highest leveled character. She’s my highest leveled character so far because of her high kill count that gives her EXP.

My main gripe with her gameplay is the camera. The camera’s pretty bad when she’s charging because it doesn’t rotate towards the direction you want her to charge at and the enemy might not even be at that location and moved somewhere else. It would be great if the camera moved along with her, but I think that’s impossible to want in a mobile game. Alexandra is also quite fragile meaning she loses a lot of HP when damaged. I guess the developers wanted her to have low defense to make up for her speed and attack power. Despite these gripes, Alexandra is still the best in terms of gameplay.

Alexandra’s story starts off in the middle of war. Her goal is to capture Fort Franmage to amp up the Empire’s power. The problem I have with this is why they’re trying to capture the base. Alexandra says it’s for the glory of the Gidillan Empire, but I want to know who issued the order. August? The Emperor? What does the fort have that makes it desirable?

Regardless of the vague plot, I feel like the story is more character-driven as it mainly focuses on the conflicting dynamics Alexandra has with August and Laplace. Alexandra is very noble and compassionate. Throughout the episode, she always mentions how senseless slaughter is not honorable. I really like this side of her. It shows that even if the Gidillan Empire is seen as the enemy side, people like Alexandra still exists. It makes me wonder how she will be handled throughout the rest of her story.

Her love for food is shown here as well. I think the voice acting for Alexandra is great. Caitlin Glass does a good job changing her tone from serious to excited whenever food is a topic.

Her dynamic with Laplace is like dog and cat and it shows with the insults they give each other. Laplace calls her a mutt while Alexandra calls her a grimalkin. Grimalkin has two definitions: a cat and a spite old woman. The former matches Laplace well but the latter is amusing. Given that Laplace is an adult, Alexandra, twenty years old in this episode, is also calling her a hag in an eloquent way. Not only their nicknames foil each other, but their views.

While Alexandra is compassionate and noble, Laplace is anything but. She cares little for others’ welfare and cares less about honor and morality. She’s selfish while Alexandra is selfless. It makes me curious on who Laplace really is because there are instances where she doesn’t seem human. She’s the most enigmatic of the Empire characters.

Alexandra’s dynamic with August reminds me of those shounen stories where one character falls deeper into the dark side and another resolves to bring them back into the light. This is not unusual for Tales. As seen in August Episode 1, August kept drowning in darkness to the point that he’s going mad. Alexandra’s first episode takes place one year after August’s and it shows how far he has fallen. Alexandra vowing to bring August back into his senses shows a possible fight between them in the future. It kind of reminds me of the lyrics to Ring A Bell. To be honest, I like this dynamic because it shows that even allies can have conflicts with one another.

Other details about August are shown here. Despite his depravity, August is also revealed to be a bookworm for he had taken interest in the books they found in a room. He once had a student who had a passion for reading and learning. Given his timeline, him having a student must have taken place before his village was destroyed because if he had one during his time as a soldier, the elite members of the army would have known about it.

There is actually a theory on the identity of that student…and he appeared in that story. If you check the Chronology page for one of the characters that appeared in this chapter, you can see that Lucien was born in Nahatgal Village until its demise in 988 YC—he was eight years old when the village was destroyed. The fact that Laplace seems to have heard of his name before also sparks that theory.

Speaking of Lucien, he and Maxime appear as the final boss of Alexandra’s first episode. This makes me sad because Lucien is the character I’m interested in the most design-wise and story-wise. If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I get excited whenever I see him. However, they both put up a good fight. Maxime jumps up to draw his bow and I find that interesting. I hope he’s fun to use.

I’m excited to see how Alexandra will walk her path without going awry. Will she accomplish her goal of stopping August or will he fall deeper into the darkness?

Tales of Luminaria
Tales of LuminariaTales of Luminaria is an upcoming Tales of Series original title for iOS and Android released November 2021. The game was first announced during Gamescom Opening Night Live. Unlike the recent Tales mobile games, Luminaria has been reported to have its own original world with only original characters and no previous Tales characters, as well as an English dub. Unfortunately, the game has announced termination of service worldwide on July 19, 2022.

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About Grace 71 Articles
Grace is an aspiring novelist currently rewriting her novel for the umpteenth time. When not writing or playing Tales games, she stares at her laptop for hours, ruining her eyes in the process, and watching anime and Let's plays. She is also VERY scatterbrained.
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