Well, there you have it. With this latest Japanese Xenoblade Chronicles X presentation, Nintendo and developer Monolith Soft have spilled all the beans they're willing to spill before the game releases in Japan on 29th April. In the past we've seen the planet of Mira detailed, how to explore Mira, and how the combat works. With the final presentation, we learned both how Dolls (mechanized suits) work in the game, along with some nifty online features that were revealed as somewhat of a surprise at the end of the presentation.
The first details uncovered were about different types of Dolls. There are three types: Light, Middle, and Heavy - you can see where this is going. Light types move fast but take more damage, Middle types are easy to control, and Heavy types are slow but come with more protection. Each class of Doll comes paired with different models; Light type, for example, features models called Formula, Wels, and Urban. If there were any significant differences other than appearance between these subtypes, we didn't catch it.
Up next we were treated to a Doll montage which showed off the different transformations between the types. For ground vehicles, Light types transform into a speedy bike. Middle type transforms into a car with four tires, and Heavy type transforms into a pseudo-tank complete with treads. The second transformation requires a Flight pack, but Flight mode appears virtually identical between the three types. However, Dolls have fuel requirements, so flying around forever isn't possible. You can also own every type of Doll, but collecting them all is a monumental, expensive task.
How Dolls fight - the really good stuff - was showcased next; Dolls have a ton of different weapon slots. Let's see: Hand weapons, arm weapons, spare weapons, back weapons, shoulder weapons and super weapons were revealed. Hand weapons are mainly for melee attacks or light guns. Beam shields and arm cannons can be equipped in the arm weapon slot. Spare weapons are not very powerful but function as utility weapons. Back weapons look like strong, slow weapons. At least hand weapons, arm weapons, and shoulder weapons allow you to equip one each on the left side and right side. The left and right weapons - at least for shoulder weapons - can combine to make another weapon as well. Fortunately - in the interest of balancing - super weapons, such as the giant, bendy hammer shown in the video or the massive beam cannon, use fuel as well, so you can't fire them repeatedly or risk dropping out of the sky and having to wait for your fuel to recharge. Still, if our math is correct it appears Dolls can be outfitted with approximately nine different weapons, so they're no slouches despite fuel restrictions.
Dolls aren't invincible, either. Since they're so costly, players can purchase Doll Insurance, which makes sure every time a Doll is destroyed the player's bank isn't broken. However, Doll Insurance can only be used three times. If the Doll is destroyed for a fourth time, players will have to purchase it anew. The presentation noted that getting out of the Doll before it explodes and fighting on foot is a rather good idea.
Last, but certainly not least, the presentation covered online functionality. Xenoblade Chronicles X comes with a bevvy of surprising online features that actually caught us a little off guard; they'd only been alluded to briefly in the past. First up is the ability to import your friends' characters into your game and use them in your party. Second, what looks like a type of guild system (Note: our translation suffered here due to a substantial amount of game jargon) is also present, made up of 32 people. In this group, you can share information on the planet Mira, such as what monster is weak to what type of weapon and where to find certain items. Furthermore, Treasure Deal is a new mechanic that allows you to send and receive gear with friends. Need a new gun? You can request it and have it sent to you when your friend finds one.
Furthermore, it looks like there's some leaderboard functionality between friends within Xenoblade Chronicle X's eight in-game Unions. Also, it seems players can invite each other into their games - in groups of four - and take on massive World bosses together. Again, we translated here to the best of our abilities - hopefully the developers reveal more clear information soon.
The presentation closed out with an attack on the city of New Los Angeles. Under siege by some unknown alien presence that won't cooperate or communicate with humans; a dozen Dolls took up position on the city wall, before firing off into the fray.
That was it for all the Xenoblade Chronicles X 'special' broadcast information we're likely to get before its release later this month in Japan. Once Japanese gamers get their hands on the game, the depth of these mechanics will likely be explained in great detail, and then the wait for the game to release in the West will become all the more painful.
Between the three presentations we've seen, what has you most excited about Xenoblade Chronicles X? Let us know in the comments.
Thank you once again Izumi for helping us translate another presentation!