So far, this guide does as many things right as it does wrong.
The dungeons all have about the same element – insane puzzle mazes – and the guide is wonderful at providing quick solutions to the puzzles that include collecting all of the treasure chests. I have saved myself at least a few hours of agonizing torture in completing these mazes. For those late to the party, I hate puzzle mazes. And I’m not talking about the Legend of Zelda style mazes. I think a more recent example of such a maze can be found in the Eastern tribe temples in Lost Odyssey. I shudder to think of those puzzles again.
While the guide includes a large overworld map, it contains no other maps. No maps of the dungeons, villages, nothing. This leaves a large black mark on the guide. Since you can’t do any overworld exploring, I’m not sure why the guide includes an overworld map at all.
Boss tactics are in great detail, although I admit I really haven’t looked at them since I haven’t found the bosses too difficult. On the flipside, there is no detail on the bosses themselves. No information on the HP or weaknesses. Sometimes it’s nice to know that a boss has over 14,000 points of HP when you’re slicing just ten points of damage a hit. Occasionally these facts are mentioned in the tactics paragraphs, but that’s just poor design. At the very least, the HP should be designated next to the boss name.
I can honestly say though that I wouldn’t be playing this game without the guide. I like the story and the dialogue cracks me up, but the dungeons drive me insane. Not particularly my idea of fun, so if I didn’t have the guide to soothe my frustration, Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World would be on my Amazon seller account.