Tales of the Abyss Anime Coming To North America

By Ishaan . July 31, 2010 . 10:31am


Looks like this one slipped under our radar amidst the Comic-Con coverage. Bandai Entertainment, the North American anime distribution subsidiary of Namco Holdings, hosted a panel at the event, where the company announced their upcoming anime licenses.


Instead of licensing brand new series, Bandai are looking into their back catalogue of existing productions in Japan. First up is Tales of the Abyss, which was a 26-episode series produced in 2008. It ran until 2009. The second license is Turn A Gundam, a series from 1999 written in celebration of the franchise’s 20th anniversary.


Hopefully, the announcements will make a few fans happy. It’s nice to see that Namco Bandai, like Square, are finally exploring the full extent of their catalogue across various media.


Earlier in the year, Bandai Entertainment launched a dedicated manga portal in order to help their manga content stand out better.

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  • Draparde


  • vrakanox

    Wow great news. Looking foward to watching it on the big screen.

    • thebanditking

      Yeah the big (SD) screen, the complete lack of proper blu-ray support from Bandai is ridiculous. Especially because their reason for not supporting it is because we are on the same BD region as Japan and they are afraid of Japanese re-importers picking up the series at a cheaper price.

  • Kris

    The ToA show is actually pretty good! If only Namco-Bandai would localize their games, too!

  • kupomogli

    I know why we’re getting this. Namco Bandai has to do less localization and voice acting on an anime than an RPG so the profit is much higher.

    • Of course. As well, the pay rates to VAs for anime are much lower than for a game. Of course, there’s other risks involved, but you can’t win.

      Considering Namco Bandai’s current fiscal position, can you blame them for trying to make money?

  • Hours

    This is interesting. Hopefully it’ll get played on TV too and not just a DVD release.

    Constant exposure to the Tales franchise could do a lot to boost the series’s profile with the casual gamer/anime crowd if it’s shown alongside shows like Bleach and Naruto.

    It might even inspire Namco USA to do their job and actually release some Tales games in English! (Wishful thinking, I know.)

    • kupomogli

      That’s a really good idea actually. Namco Bandai could strike up a deal with Cartoon Network as one of the new adult swim tv shows and then localize Tales of Vesperia PS3 and air a commercial during Cartoon Network showing Tales of Abyss.

      • Hours

        That is exactly what I would do. Get the show a following by putting it along side other current popular series in the evening. Then advertise the newest installment during the commercials and during the other shows in the block.But that would make too much sense for Namco it consider it.

    • thebanditking

      A blu-ray release would also benefit Bandai and the series as thats the only sector of the R1 anime market showing any growth, as DVD sales decline due to digital distribution and more then anything pirates.

  • ForeverFidelis

    I never expected this…

    I really was certain that they’d never even consider it..

    Hopefully this means they might localize the Vesperia movie as well

    • I’m glad that Funimation didn’t get the license, because if they were to have dubbed it, I doubt the game’s voice cast would have been used.

  • nonoko

    Wow this and Turn A? Awesome!

  • The preview pic is exactly how I feel about english dubs

    • Hraesvelgr

      I would absolutely watch this show dubbed if they brought the game’s original dub cast back. I thought the English version of the game was just as good as the Japanese, for the most part.

      But I doubt they will even bother to dub this one, so it doesn’t really matter.

      • Letiumtide

        The only reason why I prefer the Japanese audio for Tales games is because of voiced skits, beyond that I tend to love the English cast they get for VO.

        • Which is why I loved Versperia WAY more than Abyss.

          The english voiced skits were awesome.

        • Hraesvelgr

          Yeah, no doubt about that. The laziness (or cheapness?) of not voicing the games entirely up until Vesperia was just bad.

    • You don’t give them a chance?

  • Well well this is shocker I’ll definitely get this.

  • If someone makes an abridged series of Tales of the Abyss, I easily see them, using this disclaimer:

    “For the record, Namco Bandai owns Tales of the Abyss. However, IT’S OVER 9000 times busy with Dragonball, to the point you don’t get to play other Tales games outside of Japan, or for that matter… in America!

    So, enjoy this abridged series and please support the official release. This way, we’ll see more Tales games, released outside of Japan.”

  • Electrium

    I’m really looking forward to this. The anime may have arrived a bit late but ToA is still probably my favorite entry in the series!

  • this would be great if it wasnt because they could localize a game instead of doing this, (and i prefer this 10 times more than an anime of a game i already know what will happen)

    • Hraesvelgr

      Pretty sure Bandai Ent. has little to do with the process of game releases in the series.

  • Jirin

    Huh. I appreciate the thought, but story and characters aren’t exactly that game’s strong point.

    • Hraesvelgr

      Story is arguable, but characters are definitely a series strong point.

      • Jirin

        I respectfully disagree. I think it’s one of the worst casts in RPG history.

        First you’ve got Luke, who starts off as a spoiled brat then has a ‘presto-chango’ catharsis and turns into a saint overnight. Then you’ve got an annoying little girl, an annoying guy who spends all the time making smug comments, and a guy with an inexplicable third grade attitude toward the fairer sex. Then there’s Tear who is just kinda vanilla, and Natalie who’s a walking cliche. Then I forget that thing’s name that was the substitute for the sorcerer’s ring, but him just being there screams ‘Anyone over 13, STAY AWAY. This game is not for you’.

        And don’t get me started on the villains. Every one is an over the top cringe-inducing stereotype. Then there’s that woman who swears revenge on you because you killed a wild animal in self defense.

        The game’s only saving grace is it’s combat. The story and characters were clearly created with ten year olds in mind.

        • M’iau M’iaut

          Luke is definitely among those RPG ‘heroes’ whose pure unlikeability make it hard to enjoy playing as him. Other Tales games have leads who far better walk the fine line between edgy and asshole. (Yuri in Vesperia and Stahn come to mind here)

          In the case of god old Mieu you knew from the first pic he/she/it/whatever was going to be one annoying MF…..

          • Ereek

            Really? I liked Luke at the beginning of Abyss, he wasn’t a “normal” hero. His whininess made him unique and enjoyable to watch. I couldn’t stand his character when he “changed” later. I also found the rest of the cast annoying and unlikeable. It’s sad, because Abyss is the only Tales title where I didn’t like the characters.

            Ah, but opinions will be opinions.

          • Well, I don’t agree. I precisely hated Luke during his “whining brat” stage. I mean, I totally wanted to rip his freaking head off. The only redeemable thing about it is that the rest of the characters treated him like the asshole he was. I’m seek of seeing annoying characters in anime/videogames and the rest of the cast ends up liking him BECAUSE of his assholeness (Naruto anyone?)

            But I totally liked after that, since this character has something that most videogames characters don’t: an arc. Meaning he evolves through the story. He passes some several stages through the game and feels compelling. He has an emo stage, but it is fine since he is emo FOR A GOOD REASON, unlike almost every single other emo J-RPG protagonist. And he eventually gets over it.

            And you could say something similar about the rest of the main cast. Even Anise, by far the weakest of the group, have treats and an arc that redeem her.

            You can dislike them, alright. After all liking a character is like liking a person. You like some kinds of person more than others.

            But when you analize them, you can’t help but see that they are very well constructed characters. All of them have virtues and flaws. All of them have arc. All of them are HUMAN.

  • shion16

    TOA US voices plz!!
    Lowentall = American Luke

  • shion16

    TOA US voices plz
    Yuri Lowenthal = Luke fone Fabre
    Johnny Yong Bosch = Guy Cecil , etc

  • MrRobbyM

    Something is funny about all this…

  • BraveWind

    OMG YES! Wooo!!!! Jade Curtiss’ sexy voice! I’VE BEEN WAITING! I swear I have!…Finally!! T-T I promised my self not to watch this until I hear Jade’s Sexy English VoHOIIICEE!!

  • gatotsu911

    Which would you rather have localized? Show of hands: An actual Tales game, or this?

    • thebanditking

      Thats the Bamco way, stupid decisions that give the fans something related to but not what they want. So that they can later say “We tried with series X in the west, but no one bought it”.

  • gatotsu911

    That said, I do think it’s kind of cool that they licensed an 11-year-old anime series. Gives me some hope, however small, for the likes of Legend of Galactic Heroes or Space Runaway Ideon. (Yeah, right.)

  • thebanditking

    This had better get a release on blu-ray Bamco, I am tired of your penny pinching ways. As as side note its really sad to see this company in shuch shambles, they were once in my top 3 favorites.

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