|Game Systems||Super Famicom|
|Character Designers||Yoshiaki Inagaki|
Tale Phantasia (テイルファンタジア Teirufantajia?) is the name of the unpublished scriptset which became the basis of the game Tales of Phantasia. Tale Phantasia was written primarily by Wolf Team's lead programmer Yoshiharu Gotanda and was accompanied with artwork by Yoshiaki Inagaki. Many aspects of this original scriptset were changed during development, most notably the title of the story itself. This led to complications with the game's publishers at Namco, who consequently cut them out of the development process and left their names uncredited in the final game's release, which in turn led to the founding of tri-Ace.
The story of Tale Phantasia was intended to be presented from a total of three viewpoints. The first of these presents the story of Winona Pickford, the woman who meets Dhaos shortly after his arrival on Aselia and sympathizes with his goals at first, until she starts to recognize Dhaos's increasingly violent behavior has consumed all of his noble intentions. This part of the story includes Dhaos's initial interactions with the Kingdom of Midgards as a peaceful emissary of his own planet, only to be framed as an evil figure by members of the royal court, a role which he willingly took on after his attempts at diplomacy failed. Winona's own role involves the gathering of the original heroes who would go on to defeat Dhaos, Edward D. Morrison, Alan Albane, and Carol Adenade, while remaining in conflict over her unrequited love for Dhaos in spite of his desire to destroy all who would attempt to research magitechnology and repeat the tragedy of Derris-Kharlan, without regard to the innocent who gets in his way.
This first phase of the story was cut from the game during the development process due to space limitations on the Super Famicom cartridge, preventing the intended story from being told. As a result, the published game focuses instead on the other two viewpoints, while Winona's story is told in greater detail in the novel Tales of Phantasia: Katararezaru Rekishi, written by Ryuuji Saiki.
The second viewpoint is the story of Rhea Scarlet, the daughter of two prominent magitechnology scientists of Hamel. She experiences the destruction caused by Dhaos's madness firsthand as her parents become the first casualties of the ensuing war, having been targeted due to their scientific research. While Winona's viewpoint expresses great sympathy for Dhaos and his downfall, Rhea's viewpoint is one of great fury and vengeance. This phase of the story was greatly abridged in the finalized Tales of Phantasia, limiting Rhea's involvement in the story to the party's encounter with Demitel following Hamel's destruction.
The final phase of the story is told from the viewpoint of Cress Albane, who goes on a journey through time to have his revenge against Dhaos over the death of his own parents, only to discover the more noble objective which Dhaos originally maintained. The published game focuses on this aspect of the greater story, albeit in a fragmented form due to various details which are not properly explained since this phase of the story represents the conclusion of the intended saga; many aspects of dialogue in the Super Famicom release of Tales of Phantasia were written as if the player is aware of the events told from the other viewpoints.
The characters of Tale Phantasia are directly analoguous to those from Tales of Phantasia, but the main cast originally existed with different names. These prototype character names and designs were used as a work-in-progress, and the sprites of the characters on maps and during battle in the Super Famicom version of Tales of Phantasia are based on these prototype designs. The PlayStation remake and all later versions of the game have different sprite designs to match Kousuke Fujishima's revised artwork, further disjointing Tales of Phantasia from Tale Phantasia.
- Masakinne the Swordfighter (剣闘士マサキン Kentoushi Masakin?), prototype of Cress Albane
- Bowman the Bowshooter (弓射手ボウマン Kyuushashu Bouman?), prototype of Chester Burklight
- Merlin the Magician (魔術士マーリン Majutsushi Maarin?), prototype of Arche Klein
- Temple the Clergy (聖職者テンプル Seishokusha Tenpuru?), prototype of Mint Adenade
- Brambard the Elf (エルフのブラムバルド Erufu no Buramubarudo?), prototype of Brambert Milene
- Klarth the Green Summoner (緑王伝クラース Ryokuouden Kuraasu?), prototype of Claus F. Lester
- Martel the Dryad (ドリアードのマーテル Doriaado no Maateru?), prototype of Martel
- Nancy the Daughter of Greengrocery (八百屋娘ナンシー Yaoya-jou Nanshii?), prototype of Nancy
- Suzu Hattori (服部すず Hattori Suzu?), prototype of Suzu Fujibayashi
- The logo of the Super Famicom version of Tales of Phantasia shows the stylized letters "[téil fæntazia]" as part of the design behind the letterings of the game title. This design was preserved from the original Tale Phantasia logo. All later releases of Tales of Phantasia have removed this part of the logo design.