Developer: Monolith Soft
Release Date: April 6, 2012 (April 5 in Canada)
Available exclusively through GameStop & Nintendo.com; GameStop preorders come with an exclusive artbook
Box art and reversible box art:
Xenoblade Chronicles is a role-playing game for the Nintendo Wii. The game was developed by Monolith Soft, the creators of Xenogears and the Xenosaga trilogy. Despite the team's involvement and the name of the game, Xenoblade Chronicles has no story relation to either Xenogears or the Xenosaga trilogy. Taking place on the bodies of two giant gods frozen in combat, the game follows Shulk as he discovers the history of his world and attempts to save it with the help of a mysterious sword, the Monado.
The game is particularly notable for its giant, diverse world and stunning landscapes. Xenoblade is designed to offer the player a large degree of freedom; there are no time limits, very few invisible walls, and plenty of places to explore and discover. Featuring nearly 500 quests, a multitude of customization options, and a long, complex story, Xenoblade Chronicles should provide the average player with dozens of hours of content. The soundtrack features tracks and collaborations from ACE+, Yoko Shimomura, Manami Kiyota, and Yasunori Mitsuda. The soundtrack took first place in NeoGAF’s Official Game Soundtracks of the Year 2011 thread with several great tracks, including Gaur Plains, Those Who Bear Their Name, and Mechonis Field.
The battle system is frequently compared to Final Fantasy XII, though there are notable differences. With few exceptions, the AI controls your party members during battle. Party members will automatically attack when an enemy is within range. Each character has a set of unique “Arts”, which can be used by selecting icons during the battle. These techniques can be used at will but all require a cooldown period, similar to a MMORPG system. Under special conditions, quick time events can be activated that provide the party with certain bonuses or abilities. Performing actions during battle fills the “Party Gauge”, which allows players to prevent enemy attacks, revive fallen party members, and perform a Chain Attack.
Note: linked images are very large
US Launch Trailer | Field Map Exploration (warning: location spoilers) | Field Map Exploration Pt. 2 (warning: location spoilers)
Note: this is an edited version of chaosblade's original FAQ, which can be found here.
Do I need to buy a Classic Controller Pro for this game or will the Wii Remote and Nunchuck be sufficient?
Both control schemes have their pros and cons, and different people will have different preferences.I'm tired of having to wait around for NPCs to appear so I can talk to them, can I break into their houses and force them to talk?
The Classic Controller Pro offers better camera control, but at the cost of being able to select arts as easily while moving. On the other hand, the Wii Remote and Nunchuck make it easy to move and select arts, but the camera control is worse. Neither issue is game-breaking by any means, you can't go wrong with either choice.
Well, no, but you can change the time of day and meet with them whenever you want. In the second menu from the right, you can select the clock and pick an hour.I'm also tired of having to run alllll the way back through dungeons and huge areas to Colony 9. When do I get the airship?
No airship travel unfortunately, but you can warp to any previously visited landmark instantly. By pressing the minus button you can select a landmark from the current area, and by selecting the full map from the menu, you can go to any landmark you've found from any area you've visited.I'm having trouble finding an NPC for a quest. Is there any way to find out where they are?
Not exactly, but highlighting the NPC on the Affinity Chart will give you their general location in the game and the time of day they are active. Also, going to the Quest Menu allows you to find out where you received the quest, which can be helpful if you need to return to a NPC. If worse comes to absolute worst, you can check the all-encompassing spreadsheet, but watch out: even just visiting the spreadsheet can spoil major elements of the game.Oh my god! Some quests have time limits? How do I know how long I have to complete them? Will I be able to start it again if time runs out? Now I'm all stressed out!
There are only a few points where timed side quests end or areas end up off limits (points of no return, basically). For some of these points of no return – but not all – you will be given a fairly clear warning. You generally have an adequately large amount of time in which to complete timed quests, but be careful: if you miss out on a timed quest, there is no way to go back and do it until you start a new game.I just got to the gem crafting tutorial and have no idea what's going on. Can someone make heads or tails of this for me?
Yes! Check out Man God's Godly Guide to Gem Crafting. Keep in mind that gems become much more important during the later areas of the game; for most of the early game, the gems you receive as quest rewards are sufficient.I tried using Melia, and she hardly does any damage. Everyone says she's like the best character, so what am I doing wrong?
Melia is fairly unique character, and she's pretty involving. In general, you want to summon elementals and use the talent art to discharge the element, which damages enemies. Zornica wrote a thorough, helpful guide to using Melia here.What is affinity, how do I increase it, and why do I need to make my characters love each other?
Party member affinity is the relationship between all of your characters. Increased affinity allows you to view heart-to-heart chats throughout the game, increases the chance of continuing chain attacks, improves gem crafting, and allows you to link more skills between characters. To increase affinity between characters have them complete quests together, encourage and help each other in combat, perform chain attacks, engage in heart-to-heart chats, and gift them items they like. Starwolf_UK explains some of the technical aspects of affinity here.
Area affinity increases as you do quests in each of the major areas. As affinity increases, more quests will become available. Many of the quests with the best rewards will be part of quest chains that require high affinity.
Bebpo and Sadist for making the Japanese and EU/AUS OTs respectively
chaosblade for compiling/creating a great FAQ
Man God for his godly guide to gem crafting
Zornica for a thorough and useful guide to using Melia
Starwolf_UK for a breakdown of affinity
Maddness for helping create banners and generally being an awesome dude
Clipper for his work in this thread and this wiki
RPGCrazied for being a one-man hype train prior to the EU release
Aeana, kiryogi, Luigiv, Oxx, BlazingDarkness, wsippel, Wichu, and everyone who hung around the other threads to answer questions and help new players