Xenoblade Chronicles on Wii had a slightly messy localisation and release schedule in the West, with North American gamers even victims of a retailer-exclusive distribution. Its arrival late in the Wii lifecycle didn't help its cause, and those troubles on arrival were far from ideal for an RPG that is exceptionally large and, to those without about 100 hours to spare, borderline inaccessible.
Despite these factors it was undoubtedly a hit among devoted fans, and the arrival of Xenoblade Chronicles 3D gives gamers around the world a second opportunity to enjoy this sprawling adventure. It's a remarkably impressive technical achievement, matching its Wii source material in almost all aspects but screen size.
For those unfamiliar with this Monolith Soft title it fits snugly into the JRPG category, particularly that group of games that demand full commitment and dedication in order to see the credits. Many modern development trends strive for linearity and deliver experiences that are over in a dozen hours or less, but this subscribes to an entirely different model. In moving through a number of vast areas that encompass one enormous world, you embark on a quest with plenty of twists and turns, a sprawling plot and a legitimate sense of wonder. When you throw in the occasionally vital side-quests and tasks to the main campaign, you have a title that'll occupy most players for months, not days.
The initial setup for the plot is relatively simple - there are two inactive, enormous and once-warring mythological beings called Bionis and Mechonis; the former is home to a range of creatures and human-like races, while the latter is the source of Mechon, mechanical villains that lay siege to those on Bionis. There's some dramatic lore and backstory here - with the iconic Monado weapon integral to that - but the focus of the storytelling is admirably character-driven. It's easy to forget how borderline outrageous the overlying concept is due to some respectable and earnest writing, in which you're likely to care more about main protagonist and Monado-bearer Shulk and his various colleagues - such as Reyn and Dunban - than the fantastical complexities of the world and its conflict.
It's excellent writing in that structural sense, though as with the Wii original there's plenty of clunky dialogue in the localisation. It comes across as largely charming, especially as an accompaniment to primitive character animation that was inevitable for a game of this scale on limited hardware, though our view remains from the original that the almost exclusively south-east England voice cast can fall the wrong side of trite. Cockney 'geezers' cackle their way through proceedings as deadly mechon with faces, while Shulk's "I'm really feeling it" and Reyn's "It's Reyn time" loop ad-nausea - those particular examples have since become chuckle-worthy internet memes. It can get wearing after a time, and sadly this New Nintendo 3DS version lacks - at launch - the original Japanese voice-track that provided a welcome alternative on Wii. Time will tell if this gets added at a later date via an update, but with the game already proving too much for the microSD card which ships with the New Nintendo 3DS, we're not holding our breath.
Two things define this experience, then - the extraordinarily large and vibrant world is one, but the gameplay and depth on offer are also fundamentally important. Beyond the core of exploration and combat Monolith Soft developed a truly impressive set of foundational mechanics. Our heroes level up, naturally, while there are various weapon and armour categories to manage for each crew member. There are a host of statistics to accommodate, along with debuff and critical hit percentages, and these can be supplemented by linking Crystals to specific equipment; naturally you collect gems that you can fuse into crystals, for that little bit of extra complexity.
On top of that there are more items besides. You can earn or acquire manuals that boost your Arts levels - more on them shortly - or collect all sorts of odd items that you can sell or hoard. There are limits to your inventory space, so you'll find yourself assessing descriptions of animal hairs and scrap parts to try and figure out whether they'll likely be required in the future; if not they're useful for getting quick cash. The many NPCs in each part of the world often throw up collection quests, and while those that are ongoing mark the relevant inventory items to avoid mistaken sales, it's wise to try and guess which items will be required later on.
The economy and sub-quest system at work here is beautifully balanced; sub-quests are worth pursuing - though 100% completion is for the very few - as they bring experience points, equipment and vital cash. This isn't a title where it's easy to buy all of the best equipment, but rather it insists on you earning the privilege. It's the right side of fair, in the context of an undertaking as hefty as Xenoblade Chronicles, and fulfilling sub-plots, re-building colonies and boosting affinity with NPCs - the latter being yet another facet of the whole package - all add variety and, occasionally, a respite from the full-on storyline. It's all necessary and worthwhile.
Acquiring resources and levelling up are the key tasks for progress as this adventure ramps up. It's useful, then, that the real-time combat mechanic is so well structured and enjoyable that it makes repeated battles - big and small - entertaining. When a battle is initiated with three or less members of your party you can immediately lock on to targets and direct your AI partners to fight at will or focus on your opponent, which needs to be managed carefully if tackling a group of foes. You have free movement throughout - though dodging attacks is down to your character's stats, not actual movement - and can position yourself for automated basic attacks.
It's in Arts where the battles come into their own, however. Whether you're directly controlling Shulk or another member of the party - which vary from 'tanks' like Reyn, to gunners like Sharla and more besides - you activate key moves at the right moments by selecting from a row of icons with the D-Pad. These all have specific impacts, which can be to 'break' an enemy ahead of a useful 'topple', temporarily putting them out of the game, to applying a Sleep affect or even protecting and healing allies. Some attacks are most effective from specific angles, as well, necessitating you to position yourself to the side or behind a foe - initially this can all seem daunting, but it becomes intuitive and second-nature given time.
The strategy at play becomes increasingly vital with progress to the later stages of the game, particularly with Shulk and the Monado; we suspect most players will use Shulk as their main playable character. Some enemies require Chain Attacks to be charged and unleashed in order to cause damage, while for others specific Arts and debuffs have to be used to attack effectively. The combination of movement and Arts management works wonderfully, while protecting, aiding and utilising the strengths of various members of the party is critical. The fact that levelling up Arts with acquired experience points is an extra area on which to focus should come as no surprise - like many other aspects, it commands attention to detail.
The difficulty level in key story quests will show most players, too, whether they've paid enough heed to grinding, completing sub-quests and levelling up across the various areas of the game. Enemy levels should typically be similar or a little weaker than those of your team, and being ill-prepared will slow down core progress a great deal. In a nod to some accommodation among all of this complexity, however, your entire party levels up with progress, not just the three that are actively being used at any given time. Affinity only improves among those active, but completing quests thankfully benefits all of your playable characters.
When you combine the dense structural depth with this strategic, clever real-time combat, you're left with a thoroughly involving, entrancing experience. The scale of the overall quest for the end credits is truly daunting, yes, but the gameplay remains fresh and compulsive.
As the first title exclusive to the New Nintendo 3DS this release does face - however - a slightly odd predicament. It is, we feel based on all we've said above, the very definition of a home console adventure for which you set aside sessions of 2-3 hours at a time. Portability can be a benefit occasionally, if you jump in to hunt down a specific collectible or clear a sub-quest, but if you advance the story or trigger a cutscene it's a long-haul effort. That is in no way a criticism of the game or the hugely impressive job that Monster Games has done porting it from Wii, but a recognition of reality. This is a game to play in a comfortable seat and with plenty of time to spare, so there'll be occasions for legitimate yearning to play on the TV; you can do that with the Wii - or with backwards compatibility on the Wii U - version and lose next-to-nothing in terms of the extra treats you'd miss from this portable iteration.
The extras that are here on the New Nintendo 3DS are limited, though the latest portable hardware is necessary to get the game to run and to accommodate the old Classic Controller button layouts. You do put every button to use in various ways, whether dishing out instructions or locking onto enemies, and the C-Stick works well in manoeuvring the camera; we seemed to upset the calibration of the C-Stick a few times that required restarts, however. There's also a de-cluttering of the top-screen that's welcome, with the touch screen showing a mini-map and the all-important statuses of your party - that said, the complex menu systems and battle Arts are still on the top screen. It's a logical if low-fi use of the dual screen setup, so in that respect Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a natural fit.
Beyond that there's minor use of StreetPass and the Shulk amiibo. These revolve around the Collection menu, which will delight fans with its unlockable 3D character models and music tracks; the music can be played through headphones when the system is in Sleep mode, too, rather like in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS. You need to use tokens to grab these extras, with one token earning you a random pick - where duplicates are possible - and three tokens guaranteeing a new item in either category. StreetPass hits and Play Coins can be used for tokens, while the Shulk amiibo works very simply in a similar manner to non-Link figures in Hyrule Warriors. You can scan Shulk once a day to earn 3 tokens; it is, rather appropriately, a tokenistic and unremarkable implementation of amiibo.
That is all rather throwaway, in summary, so the question of whether this is a better option than the Wii original is up for debate. Considering how rare and expensive the home console original can be in some regions, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a fantastic option. It delivers a technical marvel in producing this sizeable experience on a portable, with only minor detail lost visually, a framerate comparable to that on Wii - always sufficient for gameplay, albeit with some drops - and some nice stereoscopic 3D to enjoy. It feels very much like an indication of what could be possible in the future, as home console and portable distinctions potentially melt away.
For those with access to the Wii version, however, that original remains the best option. That brings no shame to this port, but is a recognition that an experience like this is best enjoyed in the luxury of a comfortable chair with a decent-sized TV. When the landscapes are this gorgeous, the art design so rich, we feel the desire to appreciate them fully on a large, clear display. We're hopeful Xenoblade Chronicles X on Wii U will deliver just that, and with that in mind Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is - for those with a New Nintendo 3DS and a yearning to experience a Monolith Soft classic - a perfect warm-up and accompaniment.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a high-quality port of one of the Wii's most demanding yet brilliant experiences. A sizeable and stunningly diverse world, full of wildlife and fantastical cultures, is admirably recreated for the small screens of the New Nintendo 3DS. Its natural home may be on the TV, but this release gives more gamers an opportunity to set off on a lengthy and dramatic adventure. A brilliant portable version of a true classic, fans of RPGs willing to commit themselves to the task of saving Bionis shouldn't hesitate to pick this up - it is, quite simply, the biggest world we've experienced on such small screens.
Still not enough to get me to buy a New 3DS. No need to buy it again when I can already play it on a current gen system.
Glad to hear it's a good port for those that never got their hands on the Wii game. It's not enough to make me consider a N3DS yet though. Hopefully once this has had time to sell, they'll digitally release the Wii version.
Biggest reason i bought a New 3DS.
Damn, can't get it on release day. But I'll make it mine, sure enough!
Hopefully, more developers will soon utilize the N3DS for their games!
I may get this just on general principle; after 217 hours I think I can claim to like the game.
Great to hear the game didn't lose anything in the porting!
I'm not paying inflated prices just to play this on TV. If it gets a Wii U re-release, I might get it. But I'm perfectly OK playing this on a portable system. To have a game that huge, that you can take on the go, is awesome.
I'm at the final boss right now, tough as nails. (Wii version) The game does drag at times and the abundance of collectathon quests is kind of annoying, but it's a magnificent game regardless!
How does the 3d add to the experience? You'd think having 3d in a game like this really works wonders?
Can't wait! My current goal is to finish up Hyrule Warriors 100% (I'm so close now....it feels like it anyway) and then this game will dominate my time. Hopefully HW is done before the release though!
I'm getting this even though I still have the Wii Version.
I'm buying a New 3DS for this. I really need to play this before X comes out.
Great to hear. I have this game pre-ordered. Hmm this or MonHun.
If you missed this on the Wii and bought the New 3DS, this is one to support. A rare golden moment from a company that too frequently sticks to the "tried and true" and the same three franchises over and over again.
Xenoblade Chronicles was the modern evolution of the JRPG--incorporating a lot from Western RPG to make the experience deeper, more active, and more involved.
I was really tempted to get a New 3DS and to get this again, as it was the Eternal Darkness of the Wii, for me. That rare Nintendo gem that broke molds, forged it's own path and identity, and did it all beautifully--but was under-appreciated in its time.
I think it's time to start my Wii version (on the Wii U) this weekend.
What a wonderful review.
Ya me too. I played DKC Returns 3D just to warm up for DKC Tropical Freeze, and I wanna play Xenoblade before X releases.
Between Xenoblade, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate and Fire Emblem 14, I very well might not have time to play any other game this year though, as that's just 3 games on the 3DS. My FF15 demo is still untouched, and I was straight hyped for that. So yeah, Idk how Im gonna squeeze in playing all the Wii U games coming out this year (and Witcher 3 and Arkham Knight). Not enough time, something has to give.
Cool I might get this if I see it at the store. Altough I hope for a virtual console version on wiiu before the release of X
I'm with you on that. Fire Emblem, Monster Hunter, and Xenoblade consume a lot of time. I still haven't picked up a PS4 or XB1 yet. I'm waiting until FFXV is near a release. I'm looking foward to Splatoon on top of all of that.
Awesome to hear it did well. Will nab this and a New 3DS later in the year.
Glad to hear that it's made a good transition to the handheld.
Will totally be picking this up since I wasn't able to get my hands on the Wii version. Everyone speaks so highly of it, so I'd like to check it out.
Still on the fence.
If I own the Wii version and I own a New 3DS should I buy the game again for 3DS?
I did really enjoy it and I tend to play on handhelds a lot more but I'm unsure....
Xenoblade Chronicles is my #1 favourite game, but it's a little hard to get repumped up to play it as I already know what's going to happen in the story... I'm still going to buy it as I do have the N3DS haha. Who knows when I'll play the game though.
Probably won't get this, still have it on Wii, but they're releasing the cover plates separately when it launches right?
So there is no option to declutter the interface?
Remove health bars/damage counters?
Why didn't they move that disgusting Arts-bar down to the bottom screen?
The interface is a cluttered, smothering mess.
So the best RPG of the last generation gets a 9, and A Link Between Worlds gets a 10? This number scoring system is crazy.
I have the Wii version so I'll pass.
Can't wait and it's good to hear it hasn't skipped a beat.
No japanese voices? Ahahahahahahaha, just no.
I've played the original for about 13 hours. Still not too excited about it. The Wii U sequel looks more promising.
The problem with this game is that its so long your batteries will run out before you can finish it
Different games in a lot of terms, same scoring policy. It doesn't mean the other one doesn't have flaws.
I never played this game. I own a N3DSXL. I like RPGs. I have the time. I want to play this game. My couch is comfy. I am done with my exams. I think the game looks awesome. Pokémon is not fun atm. Mario games COMPLETED. Apartment cleaned. Dog has been walked. I can't look myself in the mirror. I can't travel because I only have 35 pounds. The outside is cold as ****. Who AM I. Quack quack. My parents and the entire gaming community looks at me like a fool for not having played this yet. Yeah okay. I'm going to buy this game and play it.
Already sank 180+ hours into the Wii version, so I don't need this (also don't have a New3DS yet) but it truly must be experienced.
Good luck waiting for the Wii version on VC. DKC Returns Wii VC came out on Europe after like 20 months after the 3DS version.
You're not missing much. I just bought em because I knew I'd get one eventually, so why not now. The one game I'd say you missed is Dragon Age Inquisition. Definitely worth picking up whenever you do get one (unless you go Xbox- then you can add Forza Horizon 2 and Halo to the list).
Splatoon looks awesome too, I'll definitely set time aside from my 3DS for that one.
Just out of random curiosity, does the cartridge look any different?
Now all we need is Pandora's Tower and The Last Story on the =NEW= 3DS!
Actually own the Wii version, but the thought of experiencing it on a portable was too much to pass up. I'll clear it first on the New 3DS (which I bought mostly for this game) and then do a more complete runthrough on the Wii version sometime in the future.
Ooooo! The Last Story on 3DS!
Is this worth buying and playing again if I've already played the original?
@abbyhitter whats your score for ALBW mr? Xenoblade is a powerhouse rpg but not without flaws.
@JaxonH I've heard good things about a Dragon Age Inquistion. I'm still unsure on what console to buy. I think PS4 will have the edge for exclusives after this year. I've been wanting to get LBP3. Of course Scalebound has my interest too, but that's years away. Decisions..
@ThomasBW84 Wouldn't you say those same things in this review about Monster Hunter 4U though? Both games need to be played for hours in one sitting and tv or not I enjoy my 3ds a lot more these days. I'm looking more forward to playing this in 3d and on the go far more then sitting confined to the tv of which I rarely get to.
@Spoony_Tech I'm pretty sure I said somewhere (might have been in a feature, not the review) that I'd LOVE Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate on Wii U.
They are rather different though. In MH4U you can jump on and do a quest or two in less than half an hour, whereas Xenoblade is rather different. As I've said, you can dip in to try and tackle some sub-quests etc, but I think its natural home is on the TV.
Not a criticism of the port though, which is excellent. As an individual option this New 3DS one is great, and I did ultimately give it the same score as I gave the Wii original.
@ThomasBW84 Well I guess Monster Hunter doesn't need to be played for hours but who really doesn't though. I find myself and I'm sure most people that got into it sitting for hours and watching the red light start blinking before I put it down. After all, with sleep mode you can play for 5 mins here and there on any games no matter what type it is.
@abbyhitter ALBW isn't full of garbage fetch quests
PS4 has a better interface, but, X1 does, at least to me, seem to have better games coming out. Either way, there's not much difference in the two. My big two games I care about this year are Witcher and Batman, which are both multiplats anyways.
But, I just don't have time for them anymore. Heck, I barely have time for my Wii U anymore ever since the new3DS launched, and I was playing that thing every single day.
I tell you what though- I might play MH4U until Splatoon, then go paint some ink for a month, then run through Xenoblade quick, then switch over and run through Batman/Witcher, by which time X should be released, then after that move on to Star Fox and Zelda, and by the time those are wrapped up FE14 should be localized, and after that, FF15 should be out.
I got my game plan set for the next 12 months
@rjejr: Can you afford a minimum of 100 hours away from your family? This game is a time sink, fantastic game though. It is tempting me to finally buy a 3DS just to go back through this game "casually."
@adamatsu Well, most games take longer than 4 hours to finish.
@Ryno - "Can you afford a minimum of 100 hours away from your family?"
My family's a bit weird (I'm raising them, what did you expect?) and they are the ones who are looking forward to watching me play this. Not that I don't want to, I do or I wouldn't, but they are eagerly awaiting to see what all the fuss is all about. It's our version of "family hour".
This is the reason why I bought my New Nintendo 3DS XL.
@JaxonH That's a good schedule. I'll pick up Arkham Knight and Witcher 3 eventually. PS4 and XB1 are very similar consoles. I'll make my decision after E3. Out of all of the games this year, I'm looking forward to FE14 the most. Kingdom Hearts 3 is my most anticipated, but that's 1-2 years off. I'm betting we will get a Fire Emblem Warriors game too. It makes too much sense to not happen.
I do want to play this again, but I think I'd rather start a new game + with all the gear and stuff I have from my prior playthrough on the Wii version.
Ideally, I wanted to use Dolphin to play it on PC. The game looks incredible on PC, though Dophin isn't perfect yet and I can't get the configuration for Xenoblade just right yet to make it playable. But those vast enviorments animated on a PC screen look so much better than the Wii version, it isn't funny (and they looked great on the Wii version as it was)
I'm still undecided about this game... I take everyone's word that it's great, but most other 'great' RPGs on 3DS I just haven't been able to get in to.
I think it's now time for a Nintendo Direct where they will hopefully announce some more New 3DS exclusives.
@ikki5 SAme here
This will help to bare the wait for Wii U's "Xenoblade Chronicles X". It remains my all time favorite Wii game and responsible for reigniting my passion for JRPG's. A great job by Monster Games cramping everything into the New 3DS.
This title is not like many others though. Some may not be into the type of game but even if you aren't it is a nearly flawless game. The handful of negatives are massively outweighed by the positives.
I hope a demo will be available so everyone will realize they need this game. If you don't you are missing out.
This game sure looks promising and I will definitely pre order it with the cover plate. However, my concern is that my New 3DS is in repair at the moment so I really hope it will be fixed in time for the release.
@DarthNocturnal 50 bucks for Xenoblade on wii is too much for you? Not much more then the 3ds version
Try $100+ And used wasn't much better. This was Amazon.ca. The game was only released to ONE retailer in North America (GameStop).
Any idea on the file size for this?
I bought a New3DS for this game... now I don't have the money to buy it. Seeing all these positive reviews doesn't help. Just gets me more hyped.
I predicted a 9, it got a 9. This site is like that Beatles song, number 9
Good to hear the game is great. Still wish they would've ported it better with more detail, lighting and such. But looks like a good game none the less.
It's supposed to be a straight port and the only additions are some StreetPass stuff and something for Amiibos. Also, the graphical fidelity has been scaled back for the 3DS.
Over 4 GB, apparently.
So really the only major draw is if I wanted to play it portable or not
I am so feeling it. I own the Wii version and when I play it on my Wii U I want to play it on the game pad. This is clearly the freedom I have been looking for I can't wait to get my N3DS. I just hope they have the Xenoblade 3DS bundle, although it is unlikely considering the GBs. I am still hopeful and will pay top $$$$.
I'm not interest only cause I already have the Wii version and considering the game is so so huge I never manage to finish it, I'm very glad this new version offers little to no reasons for a double tip.
It's surely a game worthy a rivisit, but I'm not sure I wanna pay for fail to complete it again, luckily I can risk for free without missing anything important XD
That would be amazing! Although at this point, even the mysterious FE x SMT would do the trick. Guess we'll find out at E3. I'm just happy we have a new one coming on the 3DS though. That's so awesome...
Nice review, great game!
I failed to see any mention of the implementation of 3D. Is it used? If so, how well?
@TimeGuy "Considering how rare and expensive the home console original can be in some regions, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a fantastic option. It delivers a technical marvel in producing this sizeable experience on a portable, with only minor detail lost visually, a framerate comparable to that on Wii - always sufficient for gameplay, albeit with some drops - and some nice stereoscopic 3D to enjoy."
I think after four years of 3DS most games qualify as having decent 3DS, but I did confirm this has stereoscopic 3D. It frustrates me when games are 2D only, so I normally have a line in there to acknowledge its presence
@abbyhitter it likely got a 9 due to the smaller screens of the n3ds, which is a hardware limitation that nonetheless hampers the experience.
@ThomasBW84 Thanks for pointing that out. Admittedly I haven't completely read the review and that escaped my notice as I scanned through it trying to find mention.
Those who haven't played it, enjoy, I've had my fill on the Wii it is definitely a 9, and technically there's nothing like it from a JRPG standpoint, so I'd even give it a 10. Regardless, if you fancy yourself an RPG person, get your hands on this game, period.
I absolutely loved it on the wii but I don't think I'm ready to lose another 140 hours of my life obsessively completing side quests.
@DarthNocturnal buy the cheapest version you can find with a language you speak, hack your vWii/Wii and play it on your Wii U/Wii so you can bypass region lock, no pirating it or doing anything illegal. Done.
@JeffreyG maybe for you mate, i'm pretty quick at games most of the time.
If the recommendations above didn't do it for you, just go buy this if you missed it on Wii. The best way I know to describe this is the Single Player JRPG MMO.
Someone hasn't read the Navy Commander review.
I predicted a 9 because it's deserving of that score.
I'm so excited to replay the game! The game is brilliant and I can't wait to experience the story again!
So... you want me to potentially IMPORT (which costs MORE money) a game (that might be rare, and thus expensive, or at least as expensive as this re-release), with the intention of messing around with my several hundred dollar Wii U, just to play that ONE game? On my TV?
Yeah, no. If they put it on the eShop, good for them. If not, no big deal.
Hmmm, sounds amazing! This'll be a nice warm up for X, and since I've never played the original, I can't wait for it. Playing games like these for the first time is always an amazing experience. It's the kind of game you wish you could experience for the first time over and over again.
Question: Anybody know where you can actually buy a New 3DS XL in the States? I haven't seen any, and stupid Amazon still isn't selling Nintendo's consoles...
I want... But a 100 hour quest??? That's too big, I hope I'll be able to finish it.
After Bravely default, pokemon X and Smt IV im finally ready to upgrade to the new 3ds! Still havent played fantasy life which i downloaded.. Also bloodborn on Ps4...
I need this game since the wii U will come eventualy when Xenoblade X arrives
I hope pre-orders are still up; I'm going to try and do it in a few minutes at my local Gamestop
Also not so sure if most of us will finish this game before the WiiU version comes out.
@DarthNocturnal it is impossible for you to brick your Wii U by messing around in your vWii. Even then you'd have to be a complete moron to brick your vWii (ie doing something that is clearly stated to not do), which doesn't affect your Wii U mode in any way whatsoever. $100>$240+not as good of an experience+portability.
I never played this game, and I would probably just skip it normally. But everyone is so hyped for the Wii U game, so I think I'll give this a shot and hopefully it will hook me.
I've got the money, just not the time
I didn't like Xenoblade that much - I felt that the combat was driven too much by menu selections and cooldowns. I guess I spoiled myself with Tales games.
Now all I need are ports of The Last Story and Pandora's Tower and my Wii can finally sold off.
I have no reason to get this version (or the New 3DS) with my mostly complete original version still taking up some of my time. There's no real reason to double dip on this almost completely straight port.
Still, for those without access to the original version, this sounds like a still excellent way to experience one of the best JRPGs ever made.
I'm very glad I preordered this game on the Wii a few years back. It was undoubtedly worth it.
I still can't believe that a game like this can now exist on a handheld. This coming from somebody who had an original Game Boy growing up. Things have sure come a long way.
@larry_koopa just wait until handhelds become powerful enough to handle games like XCX or FFXV.
I dislike buying used on relatively recent (i.e. current gen or late releases on past gen) games. I see it as a crapshoot. Picky? Maybe. But there's a reason why I'm waiting for Kirby's Return to Dreamland to come to Wii U eShop. Despite being a later Wii release of a popular franchise, the game is apparently uncommon and/ or rare. Since the digital copy will be, in essence, new, and only $20, it's win-win (plus no shipping needed).
I even did a search on EB Games (Canadian version of GameStop). All they had was Xenoblade Chronicles 3D. Which means ordering the original from the US, which I imagine will add to shipping costs.
If we were talking about a decade or older game, then sure, used is pretty much your only option.
Clearly you care more about playing it on a TV then I do. If the port is done correctly (and judging by this review, it is), then really, it'll be a great experience regardless of which version I play. I get where you were going with the N3DS price factored in, but if I already have one (and I do), then why jump through hoops for a small luxury? A luxury that may be infinitely easier AND cheaper in the future?
I didn't need to read the review to know that I'll be picking up a copy next week, but it's still nice to hear that I can look forward to this version. With a 40 minute commute each way to work, I'm not worried about finding time to play it, either. What I am worried about is when I'll be able to get around to buying a New 3DS. Oh yeah, and when I'll finally get around to finishing the Wii version, which I've logged 230+ hours on. Also, it sure would be nice if Shulk Amiibos actually existed since that's the one Amiibo I wanted more than anything else since the beginning. Man... this game is hard.
I can't even begin to describe how excited I am for this. I was fortunate enough to pick up a copy of the wii version back when it released (and of course I still own it), yet for some reason I didn't play much of it. After this got announced for Japan I was over the moon (I mean they announced the New 3DS at the same time too!) but was hesitant, as it was yet to be confirmed for release elsewhere. When it was though, the hype train began and I've been counted down the days since. Can't wait to pick it up at launch and see first hand how it turned it.
I'm also really interested to see what the next New 3DS exclusive game will be. Potentially another remake/ remaster (as I'd imagine this would cause the least amount of discord with original 3DS owners) but of course I'd be happy for just about anything. I know it's unlikely since it's already been remade, but I've always wanted a 3DS verion of Super Mario 64/ DS. I just feel that was one of the most revolutionary Nintendo games and it would look amazing in 3D! But only time will tell...
I'd love to play this, I really would. But I'm not prepared to get the new 3ds to do so. Dang. My loss, I guess...
@SpriteMaster Then you can imagine how exited I am. I'll be playing it for the first time!
IF I can't find the Wii version of this game, I guess this is the next big thing.. If there any other reasons for me to buy a New 3DS.
@Giygas_95 Haha. Hope you enjoy it
Too bad the game looks so ugly..
Got to have this. Day one buy for me. Er...download.
@adamatsu Games are played best when you take your time.
But I guess you're just talking about Call of Duty, 'cause that's the only frachise I can think of with such a short story mode.
I've never seen someone complain because a game's story mode is too long...
I don't like the look of the 3DS Version, I prefer it big on my TV. Ok I bought OoT, SF, and MM too, but I wait for X
@Mus1cLov3r Call of Duty? No I'm talking about handheld games like Super Mario Land, designed so it's actually possible to finish them without the batteries running out!!
I'm not buying this,Xenoblade Chronicles is suppose to be played on the big screen not a tiny handheld.And i'm not going to buy a new handheld for one game! Try harder Nintendo.
You also need the New 3DS.
I've got the Wii version already, but I just might pick this up when I get a New 3DS, if only to show support for the series. Nintendo needs to keep this series alive.
You could use your Wii for Homebrew...not that I do that or anything. Just a thought.
This game imo was never meant to be played on a handheld. However, I'm glad they brought it out for those who missed out on the Wii version
@SpriteMaster Thanks, you too!
My local GAME (Northampton) have broke street date, and selling this today.
If you bought a new 3DS for this I'm sorry.
I was thinking about buying this game again. But no Japanese voice? Then no, thank you very much. Shulk's english voice is quite good, in my opinion, but I really dislike the rest of the casts' to the point that I can't bring myself to buy this game knowing that I will have to listen to their battle dialogues for 80 hours.
I want this so bad, but it won't be a day 1 buy because I am still deep in the throes of Monster Hunter. I am still about 3/4 of the way through Majora's Mask, and that is the tip of the iceberg of my backlog. I can't decide whether XBC or Codename STEAM should be my next purchase. And my poor Wii U is relegated to Netflix duty while these deep and time-consuming 3DS titles continue to bombard me. And all of this is murder on my Smash skills, which are atrophying as I spend my time mastering the bow and the light bowgun.
Monster Hunter 3, Monster Hunter 4, Majora's Mask and Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is the reason I upgraded to New 3DS XL. That little nub is very handy!
Will it play on the old 3ds? I'm confused.
@jj87 Yes, it's New 3DS only. The packaging indicates that.
I'm planning to buy this if only to support localizations of and the continuing viability of JRPGs.
I don't think people who don't have a new 3ds XL realize just how good the "new 3d" is. LOZMM3D was the most immersive game I've ever played. It's like I was really in that world, I forgot I was playing a video game. Of course you need good ear buds for the full effect. I looked at the whole 3ds library and was dissapointed in the fact that the only other 3d adventure was OOT. Note: 3d in the sense that there's fully 3d modeled characters in a fully 3d modeled world, with 360 degrees of movement of the characters. Xenoblade will hopefully fill that void. I can't even play Wii games anymore because they just look bad. Maybe the wiiU upscales Wii games but I haven't tried. Therefore I'll be buying this. Also, why can't you sit in your living room and play 3ds? I did that for Majoras Mask as I'd play for up to 6 hours straight.
As an aside, what happens if you place a new 3ds cartridge in the old 3ds?
This sadly is an extremely lazy port by Monster Games. They really took the route of least effort here. The collection mode is very underwhelming, you can't even create a playlist of favourite music.
What bothers me most is the extremely lazy port of the user interface. They just cut the HUD from the Wii version and slapped it on the touch screen on a grey background 1:1. The touch screen looks like its from an alpha build of the game!
Also they just left the menu you bring up with the X button as it is in the Wii version. This whole menu interface belongs on the touch screen!
This excellent Wii game really would have deserved a port with much more effort put into it like Grezzo did with OOT and MM! This is an embarrassment for Monster Games.
Can any European who has the 3DS and Wii Version tell me how the 3DS version compares to the wii version
The Wii version averages about $75 for auction sales and $90-$100 for Buy-It-Now sales and that is totally worth it. This game deserves a big screen but I can see that this would still be great on an XL version of a 3DS. I do have a New 3DS XL but I don't see myself getting this game for it. I seriously doubt that there will be a Wii U re-release of this game or even a Virtual Console version like they did with Mario Galaxy. I would still like to check it out if they load it on the Gamestop demo 3DSes.
@winter123 You can still view the game's home menu icon (bottom screen and the animated one on the top screen) and hear its intro sound, but if you click it, a message comes up that basically says "This is New 3DS software. It cannot be used on this system."
The 3D, portability, second screen AND lower cost more than makes up for playing last gen tech on a big screen.
That said, I don't know if i should drop the cash on this title since i have a bad habbit recently of not being able to finish lengthy games.
I just bought new 3DS to fire up this Classic happy days.
This is officially my FAVORITE GAME EVER. Glad i bought a new 3ds xl.
@ThomasBW84 I know you like or puns sooo...here's mine for Xenoblade.
Mad Gods and Englishmen.
@Ducked LOL fancy finding you here, Ducked the Playstation guy... that Nintendo's pretty hardcore.
I loved this on the Wii. It was such an impressive and beautiful game. It's now 2021...the switch has an amazing remake and I debated for TOO long which version I should choose to replay something I loved so much. It may seem odd to some...but I chose the 3ds version. The reason is simple tho ,because I LOVE the 3ds, it's my all time favorite console. I love it's battery life and how easily I can take it to work or wherever I want. I'm having a blast reliving this game. I knew the visuals would be lesser than the original Wii version, but it's not that big a deal, imo it's still beautiful on the 3ds and every inch of the ENTIRE massive map size is still here. That was the most impressive part back on the Wii, there were no games of that scale on Wii until Xenoblade. And 3ds has similarly rare exceptions of games of this size so to have the option to experience on 3ds instead of switch or switch lite....I just couldn't justify NOT getting the 3ds version.
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