We know a fair amount about Xenoblade Chronicles 3 already — we've met some of the characters and poured over many of the game's combat in the upcoming RPG. Today, Nintendo has introduced us to two of the game's areas — and one's got a particularly familiar foe for Xenoblade fans to challenge.
These two new areas tick a couple of JRPG boxes and a couple of Xenoblade boxes, but what always makes these locations stand out is the variety of fauna, flora, and the sheer scope and detail of each place. Don't forget, we might have seen snippets of these places before, but this is the first time either location has been named — so get a little refresher from a few weeks ago first:
All caught up? If you're a series fan, you might notice a few connections between these two new locations and past games — so if you're worried about that, now might be the time to step away! Executive director Tetsuya Takahashi has already confirmed that Xenoblade Chronicles 3 "is a brand new adventure bringing together the worlds of Xenoblade Chronicles and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 to take the players into the future." But the more we see of the game's locations, the more real that statement feels.
So, let's take a look at what the world of Xenoblade Chronicles 3 has to offer! We've grabbed everything from Nintendo UK's official Twitter so it's all in one handy spot for you:
A river flows through the vast grasslands of Xenoblade Chronicles 3 ’s Millick Meadows. The lush nature on display here sure looks inviting, but beware – the creatures (and even plants) who live here don’t take kindly to passers-by.
The Millick Meadows looks totally lovely, like a typical Xenoblade early area, and that's not a bad thing! It reminds us of Gaur Plains from the first game and Gormott from Xenoblade Chronicles 2 with its sweeping lush fields to the types of monsters roaming around. The rushing water and big blue skies just take us right back. In some of the screens, you can see the two giant ancient (from the box art) in the background, and something that looks very similar to one of the huge arches from Gaur Plains is in a couple of shots.
Oh, and look who that is in the top left! The Territorial Rotbart has been a mainstay since Xenoblade Chronicles — it's a Unique Monster who is usually around level 80 (with other variants at higher levels), and it's sort of a rite of passage to run up to this severely underlevelled only to get annihilated. We promise.
If you like sand in your shoes, then pay a visit to Xenoblade Chronicles 3’s Eagus Wilderness. You may spot a familiar landmark while evading this desert’s sandstorms. Is that a…giant mechanical finger?
Eagus Wilderness is decidedly less calming (if you can call a field with a giant ape-like creature running around in it that). If anything, this place looks a little like Oblivia in Xenoblade Chronicles X. The plants are all dried out here, and some monsters have rocks and crystals growing out of their backs. But Nintendo UK points towards a mechanical finger — which you can see in the top left picture. But what's it doing there?
It's likely the Mechonis' finger, from the first game. Now, we won't go into details, as it involves a late-game location in Xenoblade Chronicles (and we know some of you are trying to catch up before July), but there are some hints in some of the screenshots to suggest what this place used to be.
We're nearly two months away from Xenoblade Chronicles 3's launch on 29th July. That feels a long way off, but it'll soon catch us up, and suddenly we'll be panicking about having too many video games to get through before it drops!
You can pre-order the game below, and remember, if you're in the US, you can grab a $50 eShop card for 10% less from our store using the code NLIFE10:
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Have a chat about these new locations in the comments, but be mindful of spoilers for those who might not have finished 1 or 2!
Territorial Rotbart my beloved
Sheesh, this game looks gorgeous. If I liked RPGs, maybe I would give it a try.
The environments in the Xenoblade series are so great, and these are no different. July 29th can't come soon enough.
Oh man, no one does environment/world design quite like Monolith Soft - super excited to explore these new areas.
So gorgeous, as is the Xenoblade way. Love the merging of landmarks of 1 and 2's worlds, it's gonna be a treat finding all sorts of easter eggs throughout this whole game. Can't come soon enough.
These look stunning. July 29th can't come soon enough
Loving what I see so far. They look so much like Primordia and Oblivia from X too.
I was expecting the enemy to be that drug dealer nopon
Millick Meadows seems to be the Gaur Plains/Primordia/Gormott of this game. Can't wait to hear its area theme!
Sword art online fatal bullet is a swell grind. Seems similar to this. Seems this has the resources for cinematics but the gameplay seems not much different.
Oh god, orbs scattered everywhere. I was really hoping they wouldn't go back to that after XC2.
@Ralizah I'm really happy it looks like they scrapped the stop-and-click (and-sometimes-wait-for-field-skills-to-proc) collection mechanic from XC2 - vastly preferred the smoother pickup-as-you-run system from the original.
Edit: Also, based on some other footage, it looks like as you approach collection orbs, they turn into a symbol representing what type of collectible they are, so they've retained the only advantage of XC2's system.
@DJDM I'm not. Loot just randomly puked out across the in-game environments always took me out of the experience. It makes no sense contextually, and looks terrible in an otherwise gorgeous game.
After looking back at these screenshots I just realized they seem to have gone back to XC1's old collection system which is a massive disappointment for me since XC2's collection point system was basically an improvement in every way.
Hopefully they improved it though.
@Ralizah I mean, that is an understandable opinion that I do not share. For me, having to stop and click and listen to the same canned phrases over and over again took me out of the experience much more that just being able to cruise through a collectable and keep exploring.
@DJDM I wouldn't necessarily mind the process being sped up compared to how it was XC2. I don't even necessarily want players to have to stop to collect them.
The item orbs are just really unsightly.
Well, at least one of us got what we wanted.
I mean you can just try it anyway, right? RPGs aren't all the same as each other. You can try a game that catches your fancy no matter the genre.
@EarthboundBenjy I might try it out if it ever goes on sale. I just have a very shaky history with RPGs and don't really want to spend $60 on it.
This is Xenoblade Chronicles alright because no other RPG has environments as lovely as this. Next comes the memorable music.
Rick Dalton pointing at the TV
@StarPoint Chances are, if you have tried one JRPG and didn't like it, you probably won't like another. They're incredibly niche. Your initial instinct to save your $60 is smarter than blindly buying a thing you may or may not enjoy.
I'm particularly fond of the very early 80's and 90's JRPGs, but now they're all just J-rock/K-Pop simulators lol
Would I be able to dive into this without playing the previous 2?
@pjzx of course, but story-wise you may not experience the best
it looks amazingly good!
EEEE!!! I think I'm going to expl-
@DJDM I'm with you; I hated the collection mechanics in XC2.
Reading the comments, I guess I'm in the minority here. I should preface this by saying I'm not the biggest Xenoblade fan. But having played through most of Definitive Edition, I feel like the environments from this new game look kinda...exactly the same. Like, I haven't played Xenoblade 2, but from the trailers, the environments in that game look leagues better than the first one. This kinda feels like a step backwards, in my opinion. Maybe they're going for a more open world like X or something, and that's why the visuals don't look as good? I dunno. This just doesn't really do much for me. Not trying to take away from anyone else's hype or say your opinion is invalid, but personally? I'm just not impressed.
Have there been any theories about the floating rock in the 6th picture? It's in the Oblivia-looking area, and I'm getting very intriguing Mira vibes. Can't wait to find out more.
Let me blow your mind, maybe: Noctilum is referred to in shape as both a Dragon and a Whale. So is Uraya. They also are very close in shape.
Each of the XB1 and XB2 areas seem to have combined in different ways to form the continents of Mira. This is just the in-between phase before we get to XBX!
I love JRPGs and RPGs but Xenoblade is not my thing. As beautiful as it looks the battle system is the thing I just can’t get into. Beat the 1st, spent 60 hours on the second trying to like it and it just doesn’t work for me. That battle system is just terrible…
@Not_Soos I can't make you of course but that part you say you got stuck on is very spoilery for new players so I think it would be best to edit it out tbh.
Just give me this and XCX bundled already!
Looking forward to the game but it's coming out at a pretty awkward time for me, got Thee Hopes and Nirvana Initiative the month before, need to renew my Gamepass that month, and I haven't made the time to beat the first game and Torna yet. Whether I get it at launch or wait a bit will probably depend on if I finish the first game by then and what my mood's like.
I think one of the strongest elements of Xenoblades (which is ironically missed by the "I haven't played them but know everything about them" crowd,) is how they always start out in a lush green landscape before cycling though the staple biomes of fantasy with an ice and desert zone, only to eventually just toss it all out the window. Zones that take place inside massive creators with unique ascetics not seen elsewhere, hellscape towers, a sunken city, a sunken city but like ... godzilla happened, future worlds, alternate dimensions, X has the underwater zone that is just off the hook ...
It's basically the visual expression of a core theme; everything is the same and you know what to expect, until it isn't and you don't.
I'm nearing the end of my Xeno1 run, all in anticipation of this game. While I'm not excited about revisiting Xeno2 after this, I do want to give it a fair shake.
I cannot wait for this release, and I'm stalking the preorder page on Nintendo's site; since I own the first two games' special editions, I will pay whatever it takes to get the third game's special edition to complete the collection.
@Not_Soos Nah I agree. Only got maybe 10 hours into the first one because the controls are ass but these screenshots look A LOT like places I visited in that one already.
Sure they're pretty but very samey.
So a generic grasslands and desert area
Just look at those landscapes … then compare them to Pokémon Sw/Sh …. A disgrace.
@diwdiws in Xenoblade games even the most generic themes in the landscapes are accompanied with amazing topographic design. Monolith soft excels at this.
Some of these comments... wow there's grass in the game that's not original. The first game sucked because pressing A is too complicated.
@HeeHo My bad--I've removed it. It's been a hot minute since I played the game, so I forgot that was a spoiler. Was thinking they revealed that way earlier in the plot for some reason. I'm surprised I even remembered his name, lol.
Getting lots of Xenoblade Chronicles X vibes from these screenshots and I love it!
@Not_Soos Its fine! I'm glad you changed it.
I liked the aesthetics of the character design in Xenoblade Chronicles X a lot better than the Xenoblade games since. I don't like the cartoony visual of the mains.
So, areas instead of Titans/Titan parts? This game is looking more and more to be an interconnected open world, and that prospect is exciting
the good old switch pushing out images like this.
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