9. Jude Mathis – Tales of Xillia
8. Ludger Kresnik – Tales of Xillia 2
7. Sorey- Tales of Zestiria
6. Milla Maxwell – Tales of Xillia
5. Cless Alvein – Tales of Phantasia
4. Lloyd Irving – Tales of Symphonia
3. Stahn Aileron – Tales of Destiny
2. Luke fon Fabre – Tales of the Abyss
1. Yuri Lowell – Tales of Vesperia
Tales of the World features a player made avatar as the main character, and as such there’s little interaction this character has with others. The avatar character works well in the game, as the main appeal is seeing characters from across the Tales series interact. However, this also means they’re pretty much the least memorable hero of the series.
Emil takes over the role of protagonist from Lloyd in the sequel to Tales of Symphonia. He comes to possess the power of Ratatosk, the lord of the monsters, who can possess his body and boost his power in battle. This also leads to Emil having two split personalities. Unfortunately, Emil himself comes off incredibly whiny, and that doesn’t change until late in the game.
Reid is a hunter born and raised in the village of Rasheans, and someone who’d prefer to while the days away relaxing and eating. He’s a goofy young man that definitely doesn’t want to embark on some world saving quest, and spends much of the game saying just that. He does, however, eventually realize there’s more to life and does his part to lead the team.
Sorey is the chosen Shepard, someone who is chosen to purify the malevolance of the world, and eventually defeat the Lord of Calamity. Unfortunately this mission can combat Sorey’s kindhearted and caring nature. He’s never one to leave someone in need, but his mission oftentimes dictates that. Zestiria shows Sorey struggling with this fact, and makes his character deeper through the internal strife he has.
Ludger is an interesting her as he’s mostly a silent protagonist, but the player can develop his personality throughout the course of the game. Ludger can be a cold uncaring person who’s only goal is to protect his brother, thereby damning anyone else. He can also be a dedicated and protective friend, willing to go to any lengths. Either way his personality goes, he’s a well defined and unique character, especially as you find out more about him.
Milla Maxwell was the first female protagonist of the Tales series, one of two selectable heroes in Xillia, along with Jude. Milla has a duty to protect all living things, something she values above all else. She’s also had very little contact with the human world, meaning she doesn’t quite know how to act socially. She may seem coldhearted much of the time, but she softens up a bit the more time she spends with humans.
Lloyd believes in doing the right thing until the very end, and he’s trusting of his companions at every turn. Although he’s very idealistic, he oftentimes makes rash decisions and rushes into battle. As he grew up in a secluded area he lacks a lot of the book smarts of other party members, but makes up for it in sheer skill and logical thinking. Lloyd has to come face to face with his mistakes at one point, owning up to them and moving on.
The Tales Series
The Tales series is one of the longest running JRPG franchises, with over 10 main entries and a number of spinoffs. As such, there's quite a few protagonists that have graced the series, and we're seeing how they stack up. Please note, characters from Japan-only titles have not been included.