When an individual has spent well over a hundred hours of their life playing Xenoblade Chronicles and Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, there's an initial instinct that jumping into the enormous world of Xenoblade Chronicles X will be like putting on a big woolly jumper. Sure, it's larger and less snug, but it's also warm, inviting and familiar.
Xenoblade Chronicles X isn't like a cozy jumper - it's more like a doctoral thesis. Let's put it another way - we're already planning a "getting started" guide for when this comes out as, frankly, we wish we'd had one.
Some of our confusion has been our own fault. We're too used to games holding our hand and guiding us step-by-step. Monolith Soft, however, opens things with Earth being obliterated, shows New LA - your base of operations - crashing down on Planet Mira, tells you to create a character and BAM - you're playing. The tutorial is fairly hands off, and as we were over-cocky from playing the previous entry we saw the familiar real-time Arts-based combat system and merrily jumped in. Who needs manuals anyway?
With this game we all do. When you buy this game, and our thought right now is that fans of the Wii title should be strongly contemplating it - read the manual.
Anyway, onto important stuff. After a brief linear section you emerge to view the wider world, starting off with the Primordia area in which New LA is based. It's stunning, and on a technical level Monolith Soft has achieved real wizardry here; not only are environments beautiful but they stretch onto a distant horizon with a notable draw distance. When the developers boast of seeing a distant land and being able to simply run there, they're not lying, and the scope on offer makes some modest character animations and the odd rough texture more than forgivable.
The sheer scale here is incredible, and importantly the world's design is accomplished - this shouldn't surprise fans of the Wii / New 3DS title. Primordia is full of grasslands and sheer cliffs, Noctilum is a vast forest with plenty of caves and intriguing areas, while Oblivia is a sprawling and harsh desert wasteland. That's as far as we've gotten in 18 hours and five completed Story Chapters of play so far, and we've not even seen the full extent of those areas - Sylvalum and Cauldros are still to come. Throw in New LA with five distinct districts and it's an extraordinary world that's been created.
Much of the enjoyment - and time - is spent exploring, and you can quite easily pile up your list of pending 'normal' missions that often require you to gather items or see off specific creatures, earning you experience points and money as you go. The Story Chapters, on the other hand, are the meat of the experience and can take a lot of time to clear, for various reasons. Early on progress is simple, but after the first few missions unlock criteria emerge.
This is where we hit a block that cost us about 4-5 hours - 'Affinity' missions are a tier below story chapters but, like those main quests, can't be cancelled nor be replaced with another affinity or story task once they've been accepted. When chapter 5 requested we finish a specific affinity quest before starting we assumed it was the one nearest the briefing area, accepted it by accident and thought "oh well, let's do it anyway". Bearing in mind these quests often have their own unlock requirements we assumed we were levelled up sufficiently for the challenge.
Simply put, it was an irritating few hours on one quest, and we were annoyed at ourselves for sloppiness but also at the designers of the mission. One requirement was to gather infuriatingly rare items from Oblivia, which despite earlier exploration we had none of. We ran around for about 90 minutes before getting the drops we needed. Next we needed to find an area with an obscure foe, then fight them and wait for more to regenerate as the drop from them was rarer than a unicorn's dropping. Then there was more tedious waiting while a mining probe we established - you set up probes of various types around the planet - mined a specific material in its own sweet time; we're not even convinced fiddling with the in-game time sped it up.
That's the worst balancing we've encountered in the game yet, though also came across a frustrating Story Mission in which a target was flanked by seriously beefed up bodyguards; it could only be approached very carefully with stealth, otherwise leading to death and restarting at a checkpoint that wasn't quite close enough. Only by recruiting a nearby player's avatar that was hanging around online (a lovely touch) to bring us up to a squad of four - and relying on a lot of luck - did we clear it. To show that this was down to iffy balancing the next segment of the mission was easy peasy, with us obliterating the 'bosses' courtesy of being a few levels higher than them. These balancing issues, when they occur, have been the only notable downside so far.
To be fair, outside of those frustrations we've thoroughly enjoyed embarking on a range of missions. The general gist is generally to scout more land, destroy certain creatures / foes or to deliver items, but the range of characters in the cast and the joy of traversing the planet are intoxicating. When in a natural flow hours simply melt away, and that sense of discovery will surely only amplify as we see more of Mira and embark on higher level missions. The story so far is thoroughly decent, too, giving a solid narrative of the challenges and dilemmas faced by humans unexpectedly marooned on a strange alien planet.
As for the aforementioned combat, while the real time Arts choices seen in Xenoblade Chronicles returns, there's a different process and set of strategies to consider. We're not even battling in Skells (mechs) yet, but it's immediately apparent that mastering Arts is just one half of the system. You also alternate between ranged attacks (using guns) and melee (with blades) with the X button. Your colleagues often shout cues and instructions while a flashing Art, when triggered, often prompts a quicktime button press to initiate addition buffs and change combos. In the heat of battle there's an excellent tempo and intensity - in addition to strategy - at play. It feels like a natural evolution in the Monolith Soft combat style.
Fans of complexity in their RPG mechanics, meanwhile, will feel like pigs slopping around in mud. The sub menus seem to have their own sub menus, including all of the equipment, Arts and Abilities trees and customisation that were loved in the previous entry. It all seems more complicated, though, simply due to the scale of content; there are even separate Class trees - with their own levelling up - reminiscent of traditional RPGs, in which you can shift course and develop skills to a different style. Do you want to be a sniper, support character or melee attacking force of nature? Those choices are there.
Early on you also choose from eight careers within BLADE, New LA's organisation for doing all of the things; you'd better believe there's a separate BLADE levelling system too, beyond the core and Class variations. It's not a particularly stressful choice as you can apparently change at any point - though heaven knows how, we'll check the manual - but each choice does seemingly tweak how the game treats you and the sorts of optional quests you undertake. Importantly it adjusts which activities reward you the most, so it's wise to pick a path suited to your gameplay style.
This BLADE mechanic is particularly neat courtesy of the online implementation, with each job type having separate team progression ratings; you can see which jobs are most popular, receive rewards and embark on online quests. We're yet to get far enough to truly do much more than grab our freebies and look at play stats for those with early access, but it's an impressive implementation on the surface, and one that could prove to be endlessly entertaining beyond the core play. Online questing could be a significant part of Xenoblade Chronicles X, even to the point that loading your save gives you the choice to focus on this network play if you so wish.
It's important that we cover the GamePad's usage too, which on the whole is excellent - we haven't had the courage to even think about switching to the Pro Controller yet. The screen offers various layers and variations of the world map in order to view different details, manage the probes you've established and even to fast travel, though we missed the latter for a while - again, we checked the manual. If we have a minor criticism it's with the general UI being a little confusing in nature, at least in the first few hours. In general, though, its a solid use of the unique controller.
We've already mentioned the general presentation, of course, praising the stunning locales while accepting there are some slightly rough textures and character designs - all reasonable in light of the size of the game. It's worth highlighting that, outside of fast travelling and cutscenes, load times are non-existent; you can seamless run across the entire world with no interruptions. The music is also top-notch - the modern style and infusion of rap, rock and modern sounds have seemingly had a mixed reception, but in the context of the gameplay and the futuristic sci-fi setting we think the soundtrack is shaping up well.
We could write all day - with way too much detail for a preview - on the hidden treats, the insane depth and all of the weapon types and gameplay styles this game supports; suffice to say until the review that there's immense depth here. This depth can either be embraced, loosely enjoyed or potentially ignored, though the latter option may fall over as the difficulty ramps up. It's a Monolith Soft game, so exploration, experimentation, customisation and some grinding are all par for the course.
We've had some short spells of irritation with Xenoblade Chronicles X, where balancing and aspects of design could be tighter, but overall we've thoroughly enjoyed the experience so far. At times it feels extraordinary to play, and we're aware that we've barely scratched the surface - we're looking forward to continuing the adventure.
... yep, my game of the year for sure, no one will see me for a couple of months come December.
So are you playing the Disc game with all the packs, Disc no packs or the eshop version?
@SetupDisk It's a download with the packs included.
I restrained myself from buying Fallout 4 for this game. December can't come faster.
I restrained myself from buying Fallout 4 for this game. December can't come faster.
What the- double comment? That's a first.
Do you play with one character only or can you switch to any character in your team like in Xenoblade Chronicles?
@ThomasBW84 "Well over a hundred" That's all? After playing the game twice? I can safely assume being a "gaming journalist" you never actually finished it yah? Nah I'm kidding you can finish faster.
Also I don't need a manual. I won't need one...whenever I decide to get this game.
@WireWare Are you kidding? Bro you literally do that every time you post. I'm tired of having to report you. It's one click bro. One.
Also unrelated to anyone but isn't it pronounced Xenoblade Chronicles Cross? Bill said Eks(are they even in this game?)...Well I guess they just call it cross in Japan but with the main character's basic name being Cross.
3 weeks of Fallout then I'll be switching to this. Life will disappear it seems!
Never played the original, but from the moment I heard about XCX, I knew it would be a game I pick up on day one, go through sporadic phases of playing for hours at a time on and off, but I am fully aware that is a game that I will absolutely, positively NEVER complete, or barely even scratch the surface as to what the game offers. I generally only really do the main campaign in RPG games, and leave side missions until the end, if at all, but, by the sounds of it, I doubt I will ever be lucky enough to finish the campaign in XCX.
Between this and Witcher 3, I don't think I'm gonna have a life during the holidays.
So many amazing games releasing this year, so little time.
Am I the only person that thinks this sounds like a bit... much? Surely there's a point where the level of depth, and amount of menus and customisation, get far too much for it to actually be enjoyable? To me, it seems like X may be bordering that line. Don't get me wrong, I adored the original Xenoblade and I'll surely pick this up, but even in the original the amount of... stuff, that you could deal with and tweak got overpowering and slightly unenjoyable, and this game looks set to amplify that. Maybe I'm just being pessimistic?
@GloverMist I know what you mean and I'm being cautious about it. I was overwhelmed when I started to understand how much stuff there was in the original but slowly started to digest it. I'm up for the challenge but, yeah... it's going to be a tough first few hours.
The most important question:
Do you have to spend half of the game time searching for the NPCs who are supposed to give you quests, who only appear at certain times in certain areas after certain criteria have been met? Questing in XC was a toootal quagmire.
Getting the disc.downloading dlc packs now.the wait begins
Are you guys working on a Fire Emblem Fates preview?
Excellent, looks really great. Just one question, do you really need the downloadable packs to truly enjoy the game? I have no space in my Wii U so I would have to buy an external drive or something.
They strongly recommended at least downloading the basic pack (2gb).
If they thought it important enough to actually make these packs, I think I'd do what I can to install them. You can snag 500gb HDD this Black Friday for super cheap. I got a 2 TB for $89.99 so surely you could find a 500gb for $30-40
Oh my gosh. This games sounds like a lot. A freakin' lot... wow.
Kudos to Monolith Soft for accomplishing such a feat. Just wow...
can't wait to get into this game. It's the only Wii U game that I'm getting this holiday. Plus the graphics look amazing. But it will probably take me a long time to beat this game if I do at all lol Oh well at least I have until April to play this gem of a game (Star Fox Zero will be my next Wii U game).
I'm looking forward too playing this and getting lost in the story but also I don't wanna play cuz nothing else will get a look in lol.
That's what I thought. Thank you. I think I'll look for a 500gb I don't think I'll need more for my Wii U, because I prefer physical. I hope I can find something cheap!
Fallout 4 + XCX = see you in Spring!
Wake me up when its Christmas.
I've been so excited for this game since its reveal. The original is my favourite game ever, as the plot, world and battle system were all incredible.
@ThomasBW84 Great review! Thank you for keeping up the hype! I am a little worried that the game won't be very plot based, and the plot will just be tacked onn and not very good. Is this the case, or do I not need to worry?
This is the first Nintendo game (and only the second game ever) that I have preordered. It cannot get here fast enough, and the icon on my Wii U is going to drive me crazy until it unlocks.
Downloaded the support packs this morning. Can't wait for this one. Thanks for the detailed preview!
is there a dual audio option or at least the ability to mute the forced english audio if not?
I'm excited! I'm a little nervous... I won't be using motion controls.
I am pumped for this game but judging on my progress in XC, I could play this for a year and barely scratch the surface. It almost annoys me that Monolith Soft can beef up a game with almost endless content but other Nintendo studios are happy to give us the bare minimum. Let's hope Monolith help fill Zelda U!
@JaxonH @Aran - if you're desperate for a cheap hdd I'd recommend salvaging an old laptop one with an hdd caddy.
@Fazermint Couldn't agree more. The amount of time spent waiting and searching for NPCs or specific mobs was insane. In the end, it actually caused me to give up on the game. I wanted to love it, but the quest tracker was just so horrible, that I was either left with constantly googling stuff (and even then it was a still a hassle), or play for hours on end without doing much of anything really :-/
The other issue with the game was the lack of challenge as far as the story path was concerend. You basically had to go out and find challenging fights on purpose ...
When I read the paragraphs about hunting for a specific rare drop, I was reminded of the worst rpg gameplay trope there is, and it's just sad, that this kind of "quest design" is still a thing. I know it never stopped being a thing with a certain type of MMORPG, and I guess XBC is just to close to those to really overcome that legacy.
I'm still going to try it at some point though, but I for one am more excited for GIR#FE and FE:Fates. The just seem like more focused experiences to me, and I'm perfectly ok with a game that does NOT feature an open-world setting.
From what I hear you could easily fit Fallout 4's world in this game 5 times
The news that the bust slider has been removed from the Western release has killed my excitement for the game completely. The character I had been planning since seeing the footage of the Japanese character creator will now never come to be. From Bayonetta 2 last year getting my hopes up for a new Nintendo, to this kind of stupidity. What else has been butchered in the game, or will be butchered in other releases?
Looks like I have until December 4th to exhaust Fallout 4.
I can't wait for this,Christmas on Mira sounds good 😁
Removed boob slider, not buying it.
So your biggest complaint with the game is that you need to "git gud"? That's no fault of the game. That's your own fault for taking the game lightly and expecting the hand-holding.
So let me get this straight. People are mad that you can't adjust your own boob size? Wow, people, just wow. -_-
@abbyhitter Mad that a character customization option has been removed and wondering what other insane changes have been put on the game.
The only Wii game I still have to finish. The side quests are tedious. Hopefully in Xenoblade X are much better.
@EllenJMiller Are you kidding me? I was going to try to ignore the censorship later but no bust slider either? This Western release is poop. I might have to learn Japanese after this. Good excuse anyway.
@Fee I wish to the heavens I was kidding, but no. I'm not. Check out the Gamexplain video on it, they show the character creator with it just removed and stuck at default.
While this is quite a stunning game, and am sure it is going to be (mostly) great, I can't justify the little time I have for games on such a behemoth, maybe one day, but for now it will have to wait.
@JaxonH Do you use powered HDD or the Y cable? I've never used a Y cable, have one plugged in now, but it's a many years old 80GB so thinking about buying a new one. You read anything about problems with USB 3.0 drives? Maybe I can just replace my old drive, it's in a $15 enclosure. Would be a pain to move everything over that way though.
OK, I'll go do my own Google rrsearch, this is getting complicated.
Screw powered HDD's... Who has the spare outlets nowadays?
Y cable all the way- works beautifully.
USB 3.0 drives and cables are fine, but the ports in the back of Wii U are only 2.0 so you're not going to see 3.0 speeds. Just so you know. But they are totally compatible.
@rjejr @JaxonH I tried a laptop SATA drive in an enclosure with and without the Y-Cable without success. Also had issues with a self-powered HDD, but that was probably the drive since it was old. Currently I had a Toshiba external 3.5 HDD on it, but it required the Y-Cable to get enough power. Even now the quick launch does not work well.
Not sure what's causing your problems but yes, all drives absolutely must use a Y-cable or be powered. They simply won't work on the low power output of just one port.
I recommend a standard WD external drive, preferably as small as possible that's still sufficient. Larger drives have higher chance of errors. I say 500gb is more than you'll ever need for Wii U.
Now for 3DS and Vita, a 64gb men card is mandatory. Well, most could get by on a 32gb for 3DS but not me. And PS4/X1, it's 2 TB or bust. Even then you'll probably fill up. I have 2 TB for EACH of them, and even splitting games between them they'll both be filled in another year
@GloverMist I feel exactly the same... The original Xenoblade was already crazy with the insane amount of things and menus and categories and items and skills and weapons and arts and whatnot. I got around 1/4 into the game, then stopped playing for a few months, after which I'd totally forgotten about everything and couldn't get into it anymore.
This seems to be multiple times worse... Not sure I'm going to get this game, although I was super pumped for it before. However I just don't have enough time and willpower to keep at it for hundreds of hours (and menu screens).
@Yorumi That sounds like something I might seriously have to consider, actually.
Sounds awesome but just too big and complex for my life. I prefer gaming as a part time hobby, not a full time lifestyle.
"Ain't nobody got time for that..."
@JaxonH Thanks, I'll give Y a try. My current HD is SO LOUD, gotta be on it's last legs.
@Darknyht I've had so many issues. I always laugh a little inside when I read how great Nintendo is b/c they saved us so much money by having so little internal storage and letting us use external HDD. I'm glad for the external HDD support, but it's not as simple as it seems.
I think it "seems" more complicated than it really is. Just buy an HDD, buy a $3 Y cable off Amazon that fits your HDD micro-USB port, plug it in. Go to settings, manage data, format hard drive.
Most- not all but most- issues arise from not using a Y-cable, using an old HDD or old cable, or using one that's too large
I love this article, it makes me so happy!
So many modern games...if they aren't made difficult by a matter of being twitchy or competitive action...are dumbed down so that any dude-bro who plays will never get stuck or lost.
Well I'm sorry, but I come from the old-school of RPG gaming, and I don't want a game that any drooling meathead who just got done playing Call of Duty can beat without thinking...because if he can, then there is no challenge for me.
Hooray for games that don't spell everything out for you, and leave you to actually be the protagonist...not an observer with some action input.
So apparently once I start playing this game, nobody will see me outside of work for a couple months.
Good thing this is coming out in winter.
I fully expect this game to stand beside MGSV as one of the best titles this year. I put in my preorder today.
@rjejr @JaxonH I think it was an okay trade-off decision by Nintendo. Those of us that care purchased one, re-purposed a drive for the need, or have just used a thumb drive (despite warnings). But I still know families with Wii U consoles that don't have them hooked up to the internet and only play games on disc.
I do wish the internal had been bigger, but at least they allow externals. My PS4 had to be upgraded internally to 2 TB (most games are 40-50 GB) within a couple months of launch, and now it's nearly filled. Problem is no externals allowed, and 2 TB is the maximum capacity of 9mm HDD's. So once it tops off, I'm screwed. Same for my Vita- my 64gb is full. Any more games beyond another few gigs and I'm screwed.
At least with X1 and Wii U you can use HDD's larger than you'll probably need. I may have to plug a 4 TB in the wall to power it for my X1, but I'd rather do that than run out of space. And 500gb is more than enough for a lifetime of Wii U games. And 3DS can take up to what, like 128-256gb micro SD cards? I have a 64gb currently which is more than enough.
I know that we've seen alot of what this game has to offer but I don't feel that anything was spoiled one bit. It's just so massive. I know that this game will be a black hole for me. It'll be work after many late nights of gaming. Return home to planet Mira for some more yeeeaahh!
I love Xenoblade and I can't wait to become a melee attacking force of nature!
excited for the game, ready for a little bit of frustration
This game looks awesome, if more than a little overwhelming. My biggest concern is the quests. I thought the quests in the original could get annoyingly tedious. I really hope the quests are better in this game. That said, I definitely plan on getting it. I'm just deciding if I want the regular or special edition.
Was it removed by NoA or NoE? NoA does use NoE's localization's sometimes.
So....full of fetch quests?......(sigh)
Please tell me you can use the GamePad screen to just tap on the arts you want to use instead of constantly shuffling through them like in XC.
@KodyDawg If you've got a spare 150 hours this month,you might just get it finished in time for X's release.Seriously though,once you do start you'll wonder why you put it off.Incredible game.
Woo boy... There goes what little time I had.
@KodyDawg Classic comment. I'm right with you on that one. I had XC as an ISO on Wii so thought I'd better buy the 3DS version, but the 3DS cart is still sitting in its sealed case as I prefer the idea of the Wii version. Might have to sell my cart and get the eshop version instead.
I've only put 8 his into the game so far. Seen to have got to far ahead of myself and need to backtrack cos every battle I initiate I seem to insta-die.
I sense XCX maybe a step to far for me, though might still needed to get it to sample that open world...
@JaxonH The size of games is one thing that the XBO and PS4 have as a problem. Unfortunately, technology for storage is shifting from increasing the size of internal notebook drives to "unlimited" cloud storage (with surprising limits usually) and faster flash based internal drives. It is something that consoles will eventually have to address if they truly plan on being physical media free.
One thing of hope for you, apparently there is a 2.5 inch 3TB HDD available now.
@ThomasBW84 Story is usually quite an important feature of Japanese RPGs for me. I really enjoyed the linear story in the first Xenoblade, so just wondering how much of a backseat it takes to the wider spectacle of exploring the open world? Do you think the focus on siide quests could get dull? i.e. get so many of such an item etc etc.
@JaxonH Oops. I was playing Swords & Soldiers 2 last night and I remembered why I can't use a Y cable. I have limited to no Wi-Fi in my basement - would not be good for Spaltoon I'm sure - so I have the WiFi dongle from my Wii in 1 slot in the back and my Disney Infinity and Skyalnders portals in the front. 2 kids, I need 2 portals. My wife and I play both as well.
I recall looking into a USB portal but those moslty needed to be plugged in as well.
On, and the part that was complicated would be how to get all my old data off of th old HDD and onto the new HDD if I was planning on replacing the old HDD w/ a new one in the same external HDD case that I bought for $15 form NewEgg. I like the case - lights, fans, very silent. The HDD is really loud though - grate grate grate. Suppose I could save it all to a thumbdrive between HDD?
Too bad Nintneod won't let us just back up our save files for downloaded games w/o having to back up the entire game. I have several big games on there. Would be easy to back u save files - like I already do for disc games, and then redownload the games. But Nintendo wont let me.
@rjejr I would forget that old hard drive l, especially if it's being really loud. Classic sign it's about to fail.
Yes, just plug in a 64gb thumb drive, or I suppose you could always resort to an externally powered HDD.
But as far as "backing up" games and saves... Not quite sure what you mean. I didn't know you could backup anything tbh. You can store data on a HDD but I've never heard of backing anything up.
There is a way to transfer all data from on HDD to another though. It's in Settings
@Darknyht "But I still know families with Wii U consoles that don't have them hooked up to the internet and only play games on disc.
Oh yeah, I forgot yesterday. My nephew got a Wii U for Chritsmas last year. My brother-in-law bought him one b/c their Wii stopped reading discs and he dind't see the point in re-purchasing an older system. But he won't go online. I even gave him a code for Guaccamele which I thought they could play together. And told him about Vid-chat, he's out of state and his son and my son are best buds, but they only get to see each other twice a year. But he still won't do it.
I'll be there for Thanksgiving for a few days, maybe I can convince him get it set up. Maybe I'll just buy my nephew Splatoon.
Speaking of backups, did I ever tell you how I became a believer in PS+ in the span of 30 seconds? I used to despise that service too, you know that.
When I was transferring my memcard to my new Vita (old one got a scratch on the screen) the data corrupted and I lost everything. Took 2 full days to reinstall the 45 physical games with updates and 200-300 digital games and DLC one by one by one.
Then I discovered I had a backup of my saves because of PS+, and it restored EVERYTHING except for my progress in Persona 4 Dancing All Night. So I quickly turned on "auto-backup" for all my games and it guarantees I'll never lose my saves.
Now, I'm a believer.
The English voice acting in this game doesn't sound as good as the JP imo, is there a way to change it to the JP with sub titles?
@JaxonH "But as far as "backing up" games and saves... Not quite sure what you mean."
Well unless they changed it, when you go into setting you can look at both internal and external storage and click on "Copy" to copy files to another drive. Thats what I started doing w/ a spare thumbdrive. Problem is you can't just select individual "Save" files to copy, you have to copy the entire game folder, which can be quite large.
you kow, it's been awhile, maybe they've changed it, I'll check after I eat. And back some stuf up. I have 3 thumbdrives sitting in front of me, don't know what's on any of them. Need to check those first.
@mookysam Still a little early for me to say. To be fair a lot of normal missions get completed as you simply go about your business, and I've enjoyed the story so far.
@JaxonH Cloud saves are nice. And its actually pretty easy w/ PS3 as well. I miss it since I no longer subscribe. Especially w/ 2 PS3 in the house I could play the same game on both and just move them back and forth. Which reminds me, 1 of those thumbrdives probably has my PS3 saves on it. Maybe the other is Wii U saves? I need a thumbdrive storage bin w/ room to write the contents of each.
@ThomasBW84 Cool, thanks. I look forward to your review
@ThomasBW84 how long does it take for an average player to meet the neck testicle creatures?
@ThomasBW84 On those rare drops, were you perhaps not destroying the body parts? I remember reading that you can only get some items if you destroy parts (and was one reason to not use Mech all the time).
For some reason I didn't think of this before reading your comment: I swapped my PS4s drive for a 2TB one and I put away the stock HDD and totally forgot about it. That'll be my dedicated Wii U drive now! Thanks!
OT: Can't wait for this game to drop. I chose to leave my pip boy edition of Fallout untouched because I wanna play XCX first. No matter how much I like FO, I'll never lose myself in the world as much as Xenoblade can accomplish. I always found it odd that I somehow are less likely to immerse myself in more "realistic" settings, where I always play like some sort of a psychopath, than in a high fantasy or anime sci fi world. In a game like Xenoblade I know the characters, care about my allies and try to be an all around good guy and hero, in Fallout I'd shoot an NPC for talking too long and steal everything I can move out of plain sight.
@EllenJMiller Oh will you freaking stop? "I cant give my character big boobs waaaah censorship waaah." Like that matters even .000001 percent as to the enjoyment of the game. Grow up.
I am all in on this, need to wipe my external hdd so can download all the additional extra's. Once i pick this up all other games will take a back seat until i complete it, I am so pumped for it.
@GloverMist Don't forget that breaks are your friend.
If the game begins to get tiring, take a break for a week then make yourself come back to it.
It helps, trust me.
this is how it should be.if your more on the battlefield than in the menus your rpg is not complicated and japanese enough.FACT.
@LetsGoRetro A game that I've been looking forwards to for years has had a stupid change made to it that has left me wondering what other stupid changes have also been made in localization (and will be made to other games due out). I don't have the confidence in the product I once had.
This was a definite buy for me but the more I read the less I'm sure. I don't have the time nowadays for such long games, tedious waiting etc.
Getting older sucks.
I remember the original Xenoblade was very confusing at first and I'd been playing a VERY long time before I realised about building affinity....and the specific time/place/weather missions were baffling. Yet it still is one of my favourite games of all time.
@GloverMist I have the same concerns. I already feel like I can never make much progress in the XBC3D because I spend so much time managing equipment and gems and crafting and affinities and arts learning/leveling and side missions and grinding and... well you get the point. I've just finally put down MH4U after 250 or so hours, and am spending some time with Splatoon, Smash, Super Mario Maker, and some other, shorter-burst games for the time being. Might have to wait until the spring to dive into this sprawling creation. Doubt I'll ever finish it.
I'm curious to learn more about the story. I'm finding the story in XBC3D to be clunky,the writing cheesy, and the voice acting iffy (and in the case of Riki, Jar-Jar-level terrible). The massive, beautiful world and the real time battle system is the reason to play the game, and it lets me overlook the annoyances. My sense from XBCX is that the cheese factor is a little lower, but I'd be curious to hear any thoughts from someone who has played and shared similar concerns about the last entry.
@earthboundlink Wow, I thought I was the only person that had any complaints over Xenoblade! I thought I'd be evicted from the internet for daring to say anything against it.
While I liked the story, gameplay and most of the voice acting (some of it was too British, and Riki was disgusting, but you can't hate Reyn!), there was so much unnescessary stuff. I thought the gem crafting, skill trees and the entirety of Colony 6 were nothing more than filler. And don't even get me started on the stupid quest system. I just don't like the fact that XCX will be amplifying all that! I'm very interested in seeing what the new story is like, certainly.
@GloverMist I actually think Reyn is the only character who strikes the right tone in the game. Everyone else is way too serious, except Riki, who is like an outcast from a terrible Saturday morning anime adaptation.
Maybe the acting is doing the best it can with the absolutely terrible writing (OMG the writing is so bad; can't video games hire real writers?), but the story and character archetypes are just a little too directly plucked from the stable of fantasy clichés. Normally I don't mind that, since I typically don't care about game stories, but the game has extensive cutscenes and really pushes the story as a main focus of the game (even with that annoying "story memo" icon that won't go away while you're working on something else). I mean, the whole story of the Monado makes no sense (it belongs to this group, but sought out some kid because MAGIC!). Everyone seems to have "heard of" every mysterious thing in the land while simultaneously being mystified that "the legends are true," even after the next crazy thing happens. Whenever there's a dicey connection between two events/things, it's like, "Ether! Bionis! Magic Sword!" They are inconsistent about what separates a Homs from a High Entia. Characters always seems to show up at exactly the perfect moment to result in some critical thing happening... It's just such a big, beautiful world with a fascinating origin story, the story mechanics did not need to be so complex. It just feels like the writers bit off more than they could chew, and the result was inconsistency.
The only Nintendo series I've ever played where I feel like the story is actively very good and worth it for its own sake is the Fire Emblem series, and they keep getting better. The newest set of games promising a lot of character depth and less super good guy v. evil bad guy stuff. I hope they pull it off.
I've written it here before, but my favorite thing is when a game relies on its mechanics to drive the player, rather than the story. Monster Hunter has some of the dumbest storytelling around, and it locked me in for hundreds of hours because the real driver is the weapon/armor building mechanic, and discovery of new monsters to hunt. Pikmin is awesome because it's fun to succeed in missions and explore with your little army of minions, not because you are deeply invested in the planet of Hocotate. The affinity and exploration mechanics (and the battling/grinding mechanics) in XBC are good enough on their own. I'm more interested in getting invested in the character affinities and various locations than I am in wacky royal machinations and obvious turncoat chicanery.
Part of that is just a criticism of JRPGs in general, but XBC is a good example of the excesses of video game storytelling that bother me. And man, do I really hate extensive voice acting in video games.
@Shiryu Oh, me too, most definitely. I am hyped beyond belief. (Also, hello from TAY/Kotaku, friend! <3)
@kaiiboraka Kotau TAY Nintendo Life take over. They won't see us coming. Heck, we are already infiltrated.
Everyone says the graphics are impressive. How does it compare to say Skyrim on PC with ENB?
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