Tales of Hearts gets two versions: CGI and anime

File this one under “Awesome Things that Japan Gets that We Won’t”: Namco Bandai‘s Tales of Hearts will get two separate releases, one featuring fully-rendered CGI cut scenes, the other with slick, 2D anime scenes. I’d be willing to bet that all of this could have fit on one card — Mistwalker crammed all sorts of CGI into ASH, after all — but the types of people who buy special edition Tales of Vesperia Xbox 360 bundles will also buy two copies of the same game.

Tales of Hearts will be the first of the Tales of… series to use CGI scenes, perhaps taking some of its cues from Tetsuya Nomura* (those character models could’ve been plucked straight out of Final Fantasy III DS or Final Fantasy XII). The 3D modeling will be handled by Shirogumi, the same company responsible for the environments.

However, if you’re a Tales of… purist, a different version will feature the exact same cut scenes, rendered in the more traditional anime style. The animation will be handled by Production I.G., who also created the distinctive sprites.

Honestly, you probably can’t go wrong with either version. The Tales of… series has always been gorgeous, and, if the above trailer is any indictation, Hearts will be no different. The 2D sprites on the 3D plane are kind of jarring, but, nevertheless, the style is growing on me.

Tales of Hearts is set for December 2008 in Japan, but God knows when we’ll see it in the states. Which version(s) will you pick up? 

[Via Wired, 1up]

*And by Tetsuya Nomura, I obviously mean Akihiko Yoshida. Thanks to Spooky Electric pointing out my embarassing oversights. 

Joseph Leray