So only a few days ago I went to GameStop and picked up Xenoblade Chronicles, the long awaited Wii exclusive JRPG that was the first game in Operation Rainfall, a movement to help the Wii get out of the long drought of high profile games.So the question is, was it worth Nintendo’s time to localize it in North America? Was it worth the time of us gamers to actually buy the game?
I can definitely answer the second question: yes. Xenoblade Chronicles is something like a mixed bag of nuts for a guy like me. I like action RPGs, something where I feel like I’m more of one character working together with a party, and something where I feel like my actions in combat actually matter. Things like movement and placement, as well as what attacks to use. In Xenoblade, the combat system is interesting as it does feature auto attacks, but you can move around freely and select your skills based on a menu that recharge through cooling times rather than MP. So it has both elements of a JRPG and a regular action RPG.
Other cool mechanics include the ability to see into the future, being able to prevent either your own defeat or an allies. It takes some getting use to, as well as some other mechanics where I do admit I had to go look up how to perform these actions, like chaining attacks and toppling (which is basically making an enemy helpless and is the only way for those without the magical MacGuffin sword to damage the main antagonist, the Mechon). But once you successfully learn how to use it, it actually become very easy. Other small things that they pay attention to is almost a Skyrim level of sidequests, which act more like MMO sidequests of hunting and gathering rather than adding additional storylines, which I actually really appreciate. Not my favorite, as I still prefer Skyrim’s system, but so far, I feel more compelled to these quests at my leisure rather and stick to the main story.
Speaking of story, it’s epic. I’m really into what happens, with so far a great cast of characters with interesting designs that are like more toned down Final Fantasy type stuff. One thing that does take some getting use to is the entire cast is has English accents, since the game was localized in Europe and we’re pretty much getting that version (even the spellings of certain words are the English versions). Oddly enough though, I could think of the game no other way, and it definitely makes the game feel more epic in nature, like a video game version of Lord of the Rings. The game also has no penalty for death, which is actually a good thing, since without tons of grinding, the game presents a challenge in even some random fights and since the emphasis is on story rather than kicking the player’s ass, it’s acceptable.
So if you’re on the fence about dusting off your Wii and getting Xenoblade Chronciles, I would say yes. Unless you absolutely hate the things that make an RPG, J.
In the news last week, a bunch of things happened, but I was only able to highlight these two things in our forums.
Pretty much anything I’d say here, I say there, so check them out. Remember, if you find any news you can post them on our forums. We’d really like that.
And now to finish things off with some Legend of Zelda pics: