Namco Bandai celebrated fifteen years of Tales games with Tales of Xillia, but the PlayStation 3 game wasn’t originally designed as an anniversary game. "In the early stages of planning, we initially did not plan on having a 15 year anniversary title, but as we progressed further along in the planning stage we decided that because of the timing Xillia should be the anniversary title," Tales producer Hideo Baba said to Siliconera.
"Then, if this was going to be the anniversary title, we thought we should return the series to its fundamentals. For example, have the game take place in a world where spirits and humans could coexist. As for the story, we wanted a theme where each character’s actions reflected their ideals, responsibilities, and unwavering beliefs."
Tales of Phantasia, the Super Famicom game that sparked the RPG series, also had a world where people and spirits lived together. Claus could summon spirits like Undine and Efreet by making pacts. The PS3 game also has a Phantasia costume for Jude as another tribute to the game.
"Because this was the 15 year anniversary title, for the first time, we were able to have both Ms. Inomata and Mr. Fujishima work together and collaborate on this title. With both Ms. Inomata and Mr. Fujishima on board for Xillia, naturally, we were also able to have both of them do the artwork."
Kosuke Fujishima was the character designer for a number of games including Tales of Phantasia, Tales of Symphonia, and Tales of the Abyss which comes out for 3DS in February. Tales of Destiny, Tales of Innocence, and Tales of Graces f are some of the games Mutsumi Iomata designed characters for. Check back next week for our interview with two creators from the Tales series.