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by Ethos

“Wrong Hole, Darling” – Love Story Misses Countdown #3

Thursday, September 17th, 2009

Well this is slightly later than I would have liked, but it’s a damn sight better than nothing. As Ethos already informed you I’ve been busy with both Arkham Asylum and work all day, so this has been my first opportunity to sit at a keyboard and get to typin’.

Yeah, that about sums it up.

Yeah, that about sums it up.

#3 Worst Video Game Romance: Luke and Tear
Namco’s Tales series is the poster child for bad romantic subplots. Every single one does the exact same thing: scatter a few suggestive scenes here and there, and then proceed to take them nowhere. Ever. Of course, the Tales series is hardly commendable for its storytelling, but some manner of payoff would be appreciated.

But while there are plenty of examples to choose from the Tales series, the most grievous one in my eyes has to be Luke and Tear from Tales of the Abyss. A damn shame too, since ToA remains my favorite in the series. (No, I didn’t think Tales of Vesperia was that great). Again, I thought both Luke and Tear were well-done characters. Luke, the stereotypical spoiled rich kid, and Tear, the oddly mature and determined 16 year-old, seemed like an awesomely unlikely match. Yet somehow, despite the little hints that were dropped during the game’s absurd length, their relationship remained STRICTLY platonic… until, quite literally, the very end of the game.

Word to fiction writers of all kinds: there is such a thing as too little, too late. When two characters have been denied any sort of romantic chemistry for the entirety of the storyline, having the female scream “I LOVE YOU” right before the male character (supposedly) bites the big cheese just… doesn’t… fit. Of course, the game ENDS abruptly afterward, so we never actually get to SEE when Luke and Tear’s sweet love blossoms.

A damn disappointment. Yet again. But then, what can you expect from a Tales game?