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The first subseries is the Narikiri Dungeon series, which itself is a Spin-Off from a sequel to Tales of Phantasia. The series' key feature is the ability of the Original Generation main characters to "dress up" as various character classes (Fighter, Thief, Mage, etc.) and gain new powers depending on which role they are portraying. Their wardrobe includes the outfits of various Tales (series) heroes and villains, and even cameos from various Namco Bandai games.
Narikiri Dungeon 2 (2002) and Narikiri Dungeon 3 (2005), revolve around a pair of youngsters named Calo Olange and Frio Sven, who must wander the Tales pseudo-timeline and prevent it from being mucked up. Narikiri Dungeon 3 incorporated tactical elements, allowing you to recruit all the Tales heroes, arrange them into four teams of up to three each, and move them around the map to solve puzzles and administer a collective beatdown to the boss.
Narikiri Dungeon provides examples of:
- Bonus Dungeon: Narikiri Dungeon 3 has one like The Tower of Druaga but shorter.
- By the Power of Greyskull (Parodied when Frio and Calo try to come up with one.)
Frio: Narikiri Change! Narikiri Illusion! Narikiri Henshin!
The second subseries is the Radiant Mythology series for the PSP. There are currently three games in the series, with the roster of available Tales characters increasing substantially with each new title.
The Radiant Mythology series takes place in a multiverse of worlds, each with their own World Tree. When a World Tree senses a threat to its world, it creates a warrior called a Descender as a defence mechanism. In each game you take the role of a Descender, and you must join up with the rest of the Tales (series) characters to battle whatever is threatening the future of your home world. Joining you is an original character named Kanonno, appearing as a different incarnation in each game: Pasca Kanonno in the first (2006), Kanonno Earharts in the second (2009) and Kanonno Grassvalley in the third (2011).
Gameplay revolves around accepting quests from Ad Libitum, a Heroes-R-Us guild run by a multitude of Tales (series) characters. The game uses a Class and Level System for your character, along with Elite/Advanced Classes. Really though, it's all a Rule of Fun excuse to team up with your favourite characters and watch them interact in skits.
Radiant Mythology provides example of:
- Alternate Universe: The Tales characters in each world are from that world (or a similar parallel world), with alterations in back story to keep their personalities intact while integrating them into the larger scenario. This becomes complicated when they need to justify 15-year-old Kyle interacting with his 19-year-old father, or Suzu joining the guild alongside her 4000-years-hence ancestor, Sheena.
- However, some of them are more welcome. Fans of Asch and Luke would be more pleased primarily because in this universe, the two are brothers, albeit still very vitriolic. This keeps them both alive, giving both of them a happy ending.
- Amnesiac Dissonance: In RM1, Kanonno remembers that she was once on the same team as Widdershin and actually came to Terresia to help him assimilate it into Gilgulim.
- Apron Matron: RM2's mascot, Paneer.
- Assimilation Plot: Widdershin intends to absorb every single world into Gilgulim, creating an eternal but solitary world.
- Battle Butler: RM3's mascot, Rocksprings, taught Kanonno to wield a sword. Plenty more where that came from.
- But Now I Must Go: Supposedly the ultimate fate of every Descender after completing his/her mission is to be re-assimilated into the World Tree... but that doesn't prevent him/her from coming back for a New Game+.
- The Chosen One: The player steps into the shoes of the "Descender" who was created by the World Tree to protect the world from whatever threatens it.
- Cool Airship: From the second Radiant Mythology onwards, Chat's Van Eltia serves as the Ad Libitum guild's home base.
- Dark Messiah: Lazaris in RM3 masquerades as the Descender of Luminasia. She's actually Jildia's equivalent of a Descender.
- Despair Event Horizon: Kanonno in RM1, after her homeworld of Pasca was consumed by war and all her efforts as its Descender failed miserably.
- Discontinuity Nod: Subverted in RM3, where a puzzle element listing the main-series Tales games in order includes Tempest right behind Abyss.
- Easily Forgiven: In RM1, you learn that Pasca Kanonno worked for the other side and has pretty much committed genocide. On multiple accounts if you count all the worlds she helped Widdershin feed to Gilgulim. But none of that matters apparently because you're friends. Oh, and don't forget that she tried to destroy the city right before her boss battle with you.
- Exposition Fairy: Mormo in the first game, Niata Monad in the second. Paneer and Rocksprings, from RM2 and RM3 respectively, politely stay the hell out of the players way most of the time.
- Expy: Widdershin, the Big Bad of the first game, looks a heck of a lot like Sephiroth. Their motives, however, are completely different. Just don't tell that to the VII fanbase. You'll get a lot of Fan Wank for it.
- Genius Loci: The worlds themselves border on this, what with a World Tree that can actively sense danger and conjure sentient defenses. Jildia in RM3 plays it more straight, bordering on Eldritch Location.
- Gone Horribly Right: So if a world is on the brink of destruction, its World Tree creates a Descender whose entire purpose is to save the world no matter what. How could that possibly end badly? Oh hi there, Widdershin, Aurora and Pasca.
- Gratuitous Latin: Possibly spoofed by the Descender's guild's name, "Ad Libitum."
- Heroic Mime: The Descender himself/herself. In RM1, Mormo does all the talking.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: New character Rocks from RM3 is voiced by Hiroki Aiba, better known as Ikenami Ryuunosuke/Shinken Blue
- Inexplicably Identical Individuals: Each entry features its own new Kanonno, not entirely unlike the old Kanonno. This is Handwaved in RM2 but becomes a plot point in RM3, where all three appear.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: Niata Monad appears for all of two minutes in RM3 before being sniped from off-screen by Lazaris.
- He gets better though upon returning to the site where he was shot down, and soon joins Kanonno on the bridge of the Van Eltia.
- The Heartless / Humanoid Abomination: Goede, Big Bad of RM2, is a personification of the negative emotions of the people of Granide.
- Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: From Radiant Mythology 2 onwards, magic is nerfed significantly... but Iria is still quite the powerhouse.
- Massive Multiplayer Crossover
- Mythology Gag: A puzzle in the Almanac Ruins in RM3 involves tracing out a word on a series of alphabet panels (RADIANT), in a direct homage to Destiny 2. The original solution can also be spelled out.
- One Steve Limit: Each game has its own version of Kanonno: Pasca Kanonno for RM1, Kanonno Earhart for RM2, and Kanonno Grassvalley for RM3. In RM3, however, all three of them can be in your party!
- Original Generation: A few, most prominent of which are three pink-haired 15-year-old girls sharing the name "Kanonno". There are also the Big Bads: Widdershin for RM1, Goede for RM2 and Lazarus for RM3.
- Playing Against Type: In true Tales style, Lazaris in RM3 is voiced by Satomi Sato. That Satomi Sato.
- Spin Offspring: In RM2, Granide is the world born at the end of RM1.
- The Time Travelers Dilemma: The Pasca Kanonno making an appearance in RM3, has not yet gone Axe Crazy and killed everyone in Pasca. Ultimately an Inverted Trope, as Niata is a refugee from the world P. Kanonno has yet to destroy and tries very hard not to let in on this.
- Villain Override: Lazaris suffers this fate in RM3 when the Document of Jildia forcefully takes over her body in a last-ditch effort to stop the heroes. It's almost enough to push her into Alas, Poor Villain status, given how hard she tried for the sake of Jildia, only for Jildia to hideously mutate her and strip her will.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Widdershin and Pasca Kanonno in the first game. Aurora is implied to have been one herself, but by the time the game begins she's a full-fledged Complete Monster.
- Lazaris in the third game just wants her world (Jildia) to be born, even though that involves destroying Luminasia. She even acknowledges that her wish is a selfish one, but justifies it as Luminasia essentially denied Jildia the opportunity to be born as a world.
- White-Haired Pretty Boy: In order as of RM3 Woodrow/Garr, Loni, Veigue, Senel, Ruka.
- The World Tree: It's what ushers the Descender into existence.