Everything We Know About Xenoblade Chronicles X

Xenoblade Chronicles X - LogoI’m greatly looking forward to this game, and with Monolith Soft tweeting about it every few days, I figured, why not make a post which compiles information as it comes in?


Xenoblade Chronicles X is the next game to come from Nintendo-owned studio, Monolith Soft. I’m a little bit obsessed with their last game, and am looking forward to playing through the rest of their titles.

The purpose of this post is to list and discuss the things that have been officially revealed about Xenoblade Chronicles X so far, as well as things which may be implied by released material. I’ve started this now, as Monolith Soft opened a Twitter which they’re using every few days for Xenoblade X tidbits, so I’ll be updating this post as they Tweet. They’ve also said they’ll be updating their website every week, so keep an eye on this page for those updates too!

Xenoblade X released in Japan on April 29th this year. It will release in North America and Europe on December 4th, 2015, and December 5th in Australia and New Zealand. The localisation process has been underway for a long while.

I feel it’s worth noting here that I have finished Xenoblade, Xenogears and the Xenosaga trilogy.

Trailers will be placed at the bottom of the post. I’ve organised it all by date; because of uni and work I haven’t been able to keep up with updates for a bit. I’ve nearly finished catching up.

I’ve had someone ask if I’m going to be posting story spoilers for Xenoblade X after the game releases in Japan and they start leaking information. The answer is no, I’m not. I’m going to stick with the stuff released by official sources – and translations people have done so we can understand it – but I’m not going to touch story details and such from Japanese gamers. So you can read on knowing that they won’t be sprung on you. I’m also really looking forward to this game, and I don’t want to spoil it for myself or anyone else.

So, without further ado, here we go!

December 25th, 2015 – Video

Lin’s voice actress, Cassandra Lee Morris, has uploaded a video discussing what it was like working on the game, and gave us some interesting facts about the development and localisation process.

You can watch the full video below:

December 15th, 2015 – Video

Nintendo have uploaded their final installment to their Survival Guide. In it, they go over the game’s online capabilities; how to form and make the most of Squads, as well as how to scout other members of BLADE.

December 12th, 2015 – Design

The game’s designers have put together another graphic, this time to explain how Tatsu ended up looking the way he did. Take a look:

Xenoblade Chronices X - Tatsu Inspiration

December 9th, 2015 – Design

Some of the game’s designers have discussed from where they drew inspiration for Meredith armour set. The graphic below is pretty self-explanatory, so have a read:

Xenoblade Chronices X - Meredith Armour Inspiration

December 3rd, 2015 – Video, Battle System, World

Nintendo have just uploaded 24 minutes of Oblivia exploration by speedrunner Alexander “Bowie” Pett. In it, you get a good look at the continent, its monsters, the class system and soul voices.

Watch the full video below:

November 25th, 2015 – Trailer

Nintendo have uploaded a longer story trailer for the game, in which we catch glimpses of the areas we’ll be exploring and get a better introduction to the game’s story.

Have a look:

November 20th, 2015 – Battle

Linkums has uploaded a video going over the base arts for each of the game’s 16 classes. The four minute video can be viewed below:

November 18th, 2015 – Characters

GameXplain has uploaded a video introducing a couple of your party members. Check out the video below to meet Gunban Lao and L.

The former is a BLADE and member of the Pathfinders, whose job it is to plant data probes so we can learn more about Mira. L is an alien inventor who harbours a great curiosity for humans.

November 17th, 2015 – Data Packs

Xenoblade Chronices X will launch with four data packs that will help the game load faster and improve overall performance. Digital copies of the game will come with the packs, while those with physical copies will have to download them from the eShop.

I went over the details of these in the April 14th update, and GameXplain has uploaded a video comparing load times between games with and without the data packs. Check it out below:

November 16th, 2015 – Localisation

GameXplain have released a video showing a couple of differences between the Japanese and the Western versions of Xenoblade Chronicles X.

It appears as if the bust slider has been removed from the avatar customise in the Western version, and a couple of Lin’s costumes have been changed been altered so they’re less revealing. This is not particularly surprising, given she is only thirteen years of age.

Check out the footage comparing the two below:

November 10th, 2015 – Gameplay

Polygon has uploaded a whopping 51 minutes of gameplay exploring all five of Mira’s continents. Check it out below, if you don’t mind the spoilers:

November 9th, 2015 – Battle, Skell, Video

The latest GameXplain footage for the game shows off the battle syste and Skell exploration. You can check  out the full five and a half minutes below:

November 2nd, 2015 – Pre-order

Players who pre-order Xenoblade Chronicles X at Best Buy will receive a $10 voucher for free that they can use to purchase pizza. Pre-purchasing the game gives you a code which can be redeemed at XCXPizzaCash.com.

Xenoblade Chronices X - Pizza Pre-order

 October 1st, 2015 – Gameplay Footage

Nintendo showcased the game at EGX in the UK this week. Check out the 12 minute video that Nintendo uploaded after the event:

September 23rd, 2015 – Skells

TiLMENDOMiNATiON has posted six minutes of footage on Xenoblade Chronicles X, showing off Skells in action. Check it out below:

September 19th, 2015 – DLC

Siliconera has given us a few more details about the free character DLC we heard about a few days ago. The first thing to note is that these characters will be present in the game, whether or not you get the DLC; they’ll just be NPCs if you don’t get it.

The DLC characters have the same classes as some other characters, but have some different skills available for their use, so you can change up your party composition a bit. They each come with a special item or skell as well.

September 15th, 2015 – DLC

Xenoblade X feature in Game Informer today revealed that the character DLC present in the Japanese version – worth 500 yen each over there – will be free in the Western release.

These four DLC packs each gave access to a few quests, which ended in the recruitment of a new character.

Other DLC in the Japanese version of the game makes grinding easier; more EXP, money, materials and union points. The fate of these in the Western release was not discussed.

August 30th, 2015 – Limited Edition, PAX Prime Panel

At PAX Prime this weekend, North America saw its own limited edition for Xenoblade Chronicles X get announced.

The North American edition includes the game itself, a Xenoblade X-themed USB with 10 tracks from the OST loaded on to it, a card with an illustration painted on to it, and a 100-page artbook filled with concept art.

Obviously one can’t really choose which LE they’d like to get because of region-locking, but which do you prefer? I’m glad I’m getting the PAL region one; I just really think that map is going to be awesome, and I LOVE posters.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - NA LE

The North American limited edition was actually revealed at a panel for Xenoblade X, which you can see below in all of its 43-minute glory. I’m going to lay out some new information that hadn’t been revealed yet, of which there is quite a bit. You can get it all by just watching the panel, so whether you read or watch is up to you.

A cool thing that was pointed out was that the piece of concept art below, first seen a while ago, looks like it’s had a hole punched in the side of the White Whale off to the right in the centre of the image, which I hadn’t noticed before. The panellists revealed that that hole is where NLA used to be.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ship Crashing

Think about that for a minute.

This giant city is such a tiny part of the White Whale – the ship itself must have been absolutely enormous. It really helps drive home the scale of the game.

A cool tidbit revealed at the panel is the origin of the blue crystals surrounding NLA. These were formed as part of an impact gel deployed by the ship just before it landed to cushion its fall. This is never elaborated upon in the game.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - NLA Landing Gel

The next image is one old Xeno fans will recognise. Zohars in Xenoblade X are used as the lifeholds you find citizens of NLA in. They have a crucial role to play in the story, though I’m unsure if it went beyond just holding human life. It felt to me as if the panellists hinted that it may have a function similar to those seen in the previous Xeno games, but that may have been in my head, and you should watch it to decide for yourself.

All I know is that with a Zohar showing up again, I really need to sit down and read the Xenogears Perfect Works, and have it finished by the time Xenoblade X releases so I can see if it ties into Gears or Saga or not.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Zohar

The panellists spent the rest of the time discussing the various alien races and characters of Mira. The first were the Wrothians, a tiger-like warrior race inspired by samurai. At the bottom of the Wrothian sketches below, you can see what I thought looked like a warped yin-yang symbol.

This symbol is the crest of the Wrothians, and actually represents a binary black hole system, which sounds so awesome. Pictured below are conceptual images of first their skell, then female Wrothains, male Wrothians, armour based on their god of war (yes, the races in Xenoblade X even have their own mythos), and a general armour set from the Wrothians.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Wrothian Skell

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Wrothian Female Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Wrothian Male
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Wrothian Deity Armour Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Wrothian Light Armour

The next race introduced were the Orpheans. If you play through the main story of Xenoblade X and skip all the sidequests, you will actually miss this race completely. You will not know they exist, as you first stumble on them when you find a distress signal and explore where it’s coming from.

They’re a friendly lots, based on insects. They’re highly intelligent, good with machinery, and excel at predicting the weather. They’ve even made themselves a carapace of sorts that enhances their ability to analyse their surroundings.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Orphean Armour Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Orphean Concept
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Orphean Armour Suit Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Orphean Weapon

We next meet L, who is the last of his race left. He has previously been discussed in this article under the name “Ru”, and he has gone under a huge chance from his first design to his current one.

L chooses to go by that name because his real name is quite difficult to pronounce. We will hear it in the game, but not often. He’s a wandering scholar, often venturing off on his own to study the various ruins on Mira to gain an understanding of the planet’s ancient civilisations. The team did a number of concepts on the clothes he would wear, eventually settling on lighter clothes, as they better suit a nomad.

As a fun fact, L was the very first character the team designed. The panellists pointed out that in the second piece of concept art, it appears as if L has some kind of woody growth on his hands, almost as if he were a tree himself. The last piece of concept art is really interesting, as it seems to imply that L has both a light and a dark side.

Is he a villain? Does he have the potential to become so? Does he function in this game as Alvis did in the last, just a quiet observer of the world? Is he the Wave Existence seen in Gears and Saga…? I’ve no idea, but I can’t wait to unravel his history and that of the disappearance of his race. Maybe he was responsible for their deaths, in that dark form we see?

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - L Early Concept Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - L Scarecrow
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - L Clothing Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - L Light Dark

Celica is of a mouse- or hamster-like race. We heard very little about her, aside from the fact that she exists.

She has a constant companion in Rock, a member of another alien race. Despite his large size, he’s quite young for his ages, and as such acts like the child he is. He apparently also has a childlike voice which sounds completely disproportionate to his hulking mass. There was discussion for a while to make his entire body made of stone, though that didn’t end up happening.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Celica Concept

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Celica Face Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Celica Ages
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Rock Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Rock Stone

The Ganglion were the final race discussed, and they’re the main antagonists. It’s also worth noting that in medical terms, a ganglion is a type of cyst, as this lot seem to be to the human race in Xenoblade X. One of the panellists remarked that their skells look something like deep-sea creatures; the purple one they showed was built for speed and agility.

They have simple two-legged machines operated by robots, that have a gun that descends from the bottom to shoot. This mounted gun can be destroyed in combat, so it can’t use it any more.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Skell Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Mech

Zu Pharg is  the Ganglion’s trump card. It was originally known as “The Aegis”, a mythological shield, and its design to its current form was created from there. The beam cannon on its front can take out a ship as big as the White Whale.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Zu Pharg 1 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Zu Pharg 2
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Zu Pharg Xenoblade Chronicles X - Concept - Ganglion Zu Pharg Screen

Incidentally, the image below, taken from the E3 2013 trailer, shows what I now believe is Zu Pharg destroying what is presumably NLA. That structure beneath it might even just be the rest of it; I assumed it was NLA when I first saw that trailer, but having now seen the full size of the weapon, it might just be the rest of it.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Attacking City

A couple more things revealed at the panel were that as you level up, you unlock more colour schemes for your armour.

Something more important than that is that once you befriend other alien races, they’ll start up their own arms company. They’ll then start flogging their wares in NLA, so you can pick up weapons and armour made by these races, each with their own distinct flare.

With that out the way, check out the panel itself below. Enjoy!

August 24th, 2015 – Release Date

Europe finally have a confirmation of a release date, rather than the window of “December 2015” we had before.

The game will be out in Europe on December 4th, coming out a day later in Australia and New Zealand, on December 5th and a week after Monster Hunter X oh god how do I choose.

That gives us the whole weekend to sit down and enjoy the game. I can’t wait!

August 12th, 2015 – Audio

It was confirmed by a Nintendo representative at Gamescom that Xenoblade X will have both American and British voice acting.

This makes sense, as the humans on the White Whale are supposed to be representative of the human race. I hope there’s a few other languages around the place as well, just to show the huge diversity of people we have on our planet, though I’m not sure that will happen.

August 6th, 2015 – Gameplay

Below is a bit of footage from Gamescom, showing off the party in battle.

It goes for a few minutes, so if you want to see more of the game, take a look!

August 5th, 2015 – Limited Edition

Europe and Oceania today got a confirmation for a special edition of Xenoblade Chornicles X, as well as a Wii U bundle.

If you get the game with the Wii U, you get the game itself, the console, an artbook and a map.

If you get the game’s standalone LE, you get the game, an artbook, a steelbook, a map and a double-sided poster.

My preorder is already down for this. I’m especially looking forward to the map; I feel like it will be super handy when exploring Mira. What do you guys make of this LE? Do you reckon North America will get the same or similar?

Xenoblade Chronicles X - PAL LE

June 25th, 2015 – Interview

Xenoblade X director Tetsuya Takahasi, and Genki Yokota, the director for Nintendo’s Software and Planning Group, sat down with GameInformer for a lengthy interview.

In it, they discusses things like their philosophies behind making games, how Monolith Soft works with other Nintendo studios, their favourite games, and more. Check it out!

June 19th, 2015 – Stream

Nintendo Treehouse played through Xenoblade X again today, this time for about 15 minutes. They then had a brief cutscene at the end, which showed off Lin and Elma’s English voices.

There was not much new shown in the stream. One of the Treehouse members mentioned that your first skell can be purchased at level 25, and that at level 30 you unlock some more. I imagine more will unlock as you level up.

An interesting thing to note was the huge number of options afforded to the player; they popped up all over the place as the Treehouse completed a quest. One notable one was that at one point, they were given the option to talk to a guy, to challenge him or to execute him; selecting the last option, they told us, actually had the party kill him and ended the quest line. So it sounds like there’s going to be a lot of options to personalise your save file.

That was about it. The stream from today is embedded below. Enjoy.

June 18th, 2015 – Stream

Nintendo Treehouse streamed Xenoblade Chronicles X for 50 minutes today. They didn’t reveal much, but they did have a partially localised version there to play. Menus, creature and location names and the like were in English, but the cutscene voices were not; they did have English subtitles though.

There were a few fun facts about development and some other things revealed. I’ll talk about them below:

  • Xenoblade X takes place in New Los Angeles because Takahasi is a fan of the city. They did consider New York, but felt they would have a lot of trouble making all the buildings in a timely manner.
  • Takahashi and his team of map designers spent some time in Los Angeles, walking around and taking photos to make it resemble the city as much as possible. They made sure to walk around the city at night time as well, so they could accurately portray that.
  • New Los Angeles is notably more sparse than its namesake. Throughout the game, you’ll be building it back up and restoring it to its former glory.
  • When designing monsters, the development team’s method was to take the familiar form of a real animal, and then add something to it to make it seem more foreign. This helped to add to the feeling of being in a foreign place without totally overwhelming the player. One example was adding a giant sack of venom to the bottom of a spider.
  • The aforementioned spider venom sack can actually be destroyed. This will affect the battle in that the spider will then be unable to shoot its venom at you. Xenoblade X lets you target different parts of enemies for that very reason; if one particular attack seems to be wearing you down, you can stop that attack by targeting and destroying that part of the creature. Some items only drop after destroying certain body parts too.
  • Xenoblade X contains five continents because the team believed that that was as big as they would be able to make the game in the time limit they were given.
  • Takahasi told us that his favourite continent is Noctilim, and that he is quite fond of Japanese swords.
  • Noctilim is a continent which contains a lot of ancient artifacts left behind by an ancient alien race. There’s a lot of foreign architecture to be found there. It’s also one of the big offenders in having much more powerful monsters walking around at night relative today time.
  • There are a lot of places to be explored in Xenoblade X that are not on the surface. Caves with many twists and turns can be found all over the world, and will take a long while to explore.
  • An outpost filled with loaded up skells was shown during the Direct. The players didn’t interact with them at all so I’ve no idea if you can, but it may be possible to just jump right into one and start flying. But as they didn’t interact with them, I’m not sure.
  • Another cool thing shown was a pair of skell legs, which were just standing on the ground, flying sparks everywhere. It was confirmed that it was an enemy skell which had been damaged in combat. And by “damaged”, I’m sure they actually meant “ripped in half”, as that’s what it looked like.
  • Fun fact: Nopons were designed as an imagining of a cross between a penguin and an owl, with a few liberties taken on shape.
  • Finally, it amused me that Van Damme kept referring to Tatsu as “Potato Skin”.

Below is the video of Treehouse playing through Xenoblade X. Enjoy!

June 17th, 2015 – Release Date, Trailer, Screenshots

E3 this year saw us get a release date for Xenoblade Chronicles X outside of Japan. It has been confirmed to be a December 4 release, making it Nintendo’s holiday title. Check out the trailer below:

For those who wanted to listen to that sweet music, the name of the track is In the Forest, and it’s the version with no vocal effects. Yes, I did recognise the track by name despite having never played the game. I might be a little bit obsessed. I did import the soundtrack though.

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A fact sheet was dropped by Nintendo for Xenoblade X, which comes courtesy of Gematsu.

Explore an exotic world and save humanity

Fight for survival while exploring the vast expanses of an unknown planet where anything you see is reachable in your weaponized mech, called a Skell. Customize a lethal skill set of combat and defensive skills, called Arts, to strengthen your strategies and defeat enemies efficiently. Attack your enemies from multiple directions using melee weapons, guns, and your greatest asset—your tactical mind.

Features

Explore a seamless open world filled with unknown creatures of all sizes

Features a unique battle system that builds on the triumphs of the Xenoblade Chronicles game

Ride and control a giant mech, called a Skell, to fight against aliens and unknown Creatures.

An all-new story involving intergalactic war between aliens and human survivors

Rich character and weapon customization

Join an online squad to share and receive information about items, quests and local wildlife with other players

Recruit other player’s avatars and use them in the single player story

Join an online squad with other players to battle powerful World Bosses and share information about items, quests and enemies

They also released a bunch of artwork to accompany the press release. Good old Kogath was able to extract them from the official website, and was kind enough to send them my way. Check them out below!

Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Vertical

Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Artwork
Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Night
Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Mira

Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 6

Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Elma Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 4
Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Lyn Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 3
Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Tatsu Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 2
Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 5 Xenoblade Chronicles X - E3 2015 - Hi Res Skell 1

Nintendo Treehouse will be streaming the game tomorrow at 3:10 PM PDT. That’s 8:10 AM my time, and I don’t have work, so I’ll be up! See you all tomorrow!

May 20th, 2015 – Skells

In an interview with Famitsu translated by Gamnesia, Takahashi discussed the the large number of designers involved in the game and some of the more powerful weapons available to the game’s mechs.

Takahashi stated that Xenoblade Chronicles X has so many designers because he wanted to ensure that each skell type and its equipment was distinct from the others. He’s also applied this philosophy to the different races of Mira and to the different parts of BLADE, ensuring each components is designed by different people.

He also touched on Super Weapons, which are extremely powerful weapons to go on your skell. These are extremely powerful, and also change the appearance of your skell.

May 6th, 2015 – Review

A number of Japanese gamers have has their say on the Japanese Amazon listing for the game.

It seems to be that people who expect it to be just like Xenoblade or like a traditional JRPG were disappointed. A lot of people, though, loved the new direction the game took, and most of the reviews were 5/5 stars. I’m not particularly concerned, myself.

I’d post them all here, but it would take up a huge amount of space and would be just a copy/paste dump from the website I read this one. As such, if you want to read them, I’ll just direct you to that source article on Siliconera; just hit this hyperlink and you can check them out.

May 5th, 2015 – Story

The script for Xenoblade Chronicles X took a year and a half to write. This was stated in the recent Iwata Asks interview, which I unfortunately still haven’t had the time to check out yet.

Hyodo, who was announced as a staff member in the November 30 2014 update, confirmed that he was given free reign over character creation and could develop as many as he wanted to.

It sounds like there’s going to be a lot of writing, which I’m sure will be fleshed out via sidequests.

May 1st, 2015 – Merchandise

Monolith Soft today confirmed that some Skells will be made into plastic models by the Japanese toy company, Kotobukiya. There’s been no release date given, but you can check out the one they posted about, the FORMULA model, below:

Xenoblade Chronicles X - FORMULA Toy - Skell

Xenoblade Chronicles X - FORMULA Toy - Bike

We’re not sure if they transform or whether they’re separate models. But hey, they look pretty cool!

April 29th, 2015 – Story, DLC, Characters, Online

Before I get into new stuff revealed today, I’d like to remind everyone that Xenoblade Chronicles X released in Japan today! Be careful on the interwebs, and if in doubt, don’t click that link.

The first spot of news is confirmation that there will be paid DLC in the game. Four packs have been unveiled, each cost 500 yen. After completing three quests, they each unlock a new character, some new arts, and either a new Skell or weapon.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - DLC 1

The first pack gives you a character named HB and his unique arts, Atomic Bash and Frame Hand. You will also gain blueprints to make the POLICEMEN Skell.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - DLC 2

The second pack unlocks Boze, alongside his arts, Vortex and Bayonet Arts. His quest will also give you the YUMBO Skell.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - DLC 3

The character Yelouv comes from the third pack, in addition to the arts Spirit Change and Powered Gunner. His quests award you with a whole new class of weapon, known as the “multigun”. The multigun swaps between a cannon, missile or rifle at your choosing, with different arts useble for each form.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - DLC 4

Axena unlocks from the fourth lot of DLC quests with her own arts, Overspec and Voltage Max. She also comes with the design for the Skell known as EXCAVATOR.

Purchasing any of the packs mentioned above will automatically unlock fashion equipment, which allows you to change the appearance of your armour to your choosing.

Additional DLC priced at 300 yen each make it easier to accumulate materials, currency, experience and union points.

All DLC can be purchased for 2,000 yen; this includes all of the first four DLC packs described, as well as the ones priced at 300 yen.

An interesting piece of information to come out of the recent Iwata Asks was that the online component was added after the game was well into development. As the team created the massive world of Mira, they felt that players would be feel lonely exploring the world on their own, and so decided to give them the ability to explore it with others.

Finally, we have a new trailer showing us some online questing in action. Check it out below:

April 25th, 2015 – Trailer, Story, World Details

A Nintendo Direct specifically for Xenoblade Chronicles X aired this morning at 4 am my time. It didn’t give us much new information, and in fact only had 8 minutes of info. After that, Nintendo Treehouse played through the game for a while.

No release date was given either, save for later this year. We did get a few localisation tidbits though:

  • The ship you escaped in has been confirmed as the “White Whale”.
  • The continents are called “Primordia”, “Noctilum”, “Oblivia”, “Sylvalum” and “Cauldros”.
  • The pieces of the White Whale containing the ship’s passengers are called “Lifeholds”.
  • The peaceful alien race previously called the MaNon are now known as “Monon”.
  • The warmongers previous known as Vaias are now called “Prone”.
  • You blue alien inventor ally, previously called Ru, is now “Elle” (sp?).
  • The hover cam can be deployed at any time to gain a good view of the area.
  • Dolls will be known as “Skells”, based on the word “exoskeleton”.

Aside from that, there wasn’t much. You can watch it below:

After the Direct, Nintendo Treehouse played through the game for an hour. Again, there wasn’t much new stuff for people who have been following the Japanese news, but I did pick up on a few minor things.

  • There is a golden arrow on your mini-map in the corner, pointing you in the direction of your quest objective.
  • Multiple in the video, the game prompted the players to choose how to react to the situation they were in. They said around 37 minutes in that your choices will change the way the cutscenes go.
  • If you select a gun-based art while you have your melee weapon out, the game will automatically swap it out for your gun so you can execute the chosen attack. The same works in reverse.
  • Tatsu, while not in your party, is a guest member. In fact, it’s Tatsu that gives and teaches you to use the navigation balls, which will show you where to go should you become lost.
  • Spots where you can drop Data Probes for the Frontier Net each have levels. I suspect that your field skill will need to match or be higher than that level for you to be able to drop a Data probe.
  • If you encounter a monster out in the field that is part of a quest you have, a green exclamation point will appear above its head. This makes it easier to identify what you need to defeat, and saves you having to remember.
  • Equipment of different rarities are represented by differing colours in the menu.
  • Some creatures which are not hostile on foot become hostile when you get near to them in a Skell.

Watch it yourself on the link below:

April 23rd, 2015 – Screenshots, Review

12 new screenshots and four pieces of art have shown up for Xenoblade Chronicles X. Check them out below, and you can click on them to expand the images:

Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 1 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 2
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 3 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 4
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 5 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 6
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 7 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 8
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 9 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 10
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 11 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 12
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 13 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 14
Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 15 Xenoblade Chronicles X - April 23 Screen 16

Some really nice images of the scenery and a Nopon caravan. I’m particularly interested in the one with the big grey beast, as it appears to have buildings in the background. Alien structures perhaps, or some remains of the Moby Dick?

I forgot to mention, but Xenoblade Chronicles X got a score of 34/40 in Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu. The reasons they marked it down are ones I’m not concerned about, as they’re the reason I love Monolith Soft games. See for yourself in the image below. I’m not sure where it came from, so if someone can tell me so I can link to the OP, that would be great.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Famitsu Score

April 22nd 2015 – Story, Gameplay

Two things: That Dengeki guide I posted on April 20th has now been fully fan translated, and a new story trailer for the game has now been released.

The Dengeki guide has some old information and a ton of new. There is also a review, and an outline of the story up until you get your first Doll. I’m not going to repost the review or story details here, but you can view them via the hyperlinked words if you so desire. I will say, though, that the review was a favourable one.

As for new gameplay details, they follow below. A lot of names I’ve never heard of before, so I’m just using the names from the translator.

Exploration

  • You can find native creature nests while exploring. You can also find pieces of your ship which crashes into Mira, the Moby Dick, scattered around the planet.
  • In order to extract items from nests and pieces of the Moby Dick, you’ll need field skills. These can be upgraded when you increase your BLADE level.
  • Field skills fall into three categories.
  • Mechanical field skills aid in setting data probes and opening metal treasure boxes.
  • Biological field skills aid in opening biological treasure boxes. More accurately, it helps you gather things from natural resources, like dung and anthills.
  • Search field skills allow you to search abandoned dolls alien treasure boxes.
  • Alien bases can be found around Mira; the document describes where some can be found, though I’m leaving them out of this article for you all to discover for yourselves. If you want to read where they are, hit the link above.
  • Falling into the misty ravine in the Valley of Oblivion will kill you.
  • The Valley of Oblivion has regular lightning strikes, which will do damage to you as you run around. You can negate this damage if you have high bolt resistance.
  • Auroras can be found in the skies of the Land of White Ash.
  • There are seven different kinds of locations to discover.
  • Zones are vast regions that give no reward upon finding them. I’m guessing these are the continents.
  • Landmarks are notable locations that give EXP for inner stats, and also BP.
  • Areas are smaller pieces of land found within zones, and give inner EXP.
  • Unexplored regions and superb views both give large amounts of EXP, similar to the Secret Landmarks from the first Xenoblade.
  • Base camps are garrisons made by BLADE troops, and they award BP.
  • Frontier Net spots give you both inner EXP and BP, and allow you to set data probes.
  • If a research probe is the type of probe nearest to an unexplored region or a superb view, you’ll gain extra rewards and a bonus to the tourism value for that segment.
  • If you jump while running, you’ll jump higher and faster. Note than when you stop the dashing command there’ll be a couple of seconds before your character stops.
  • Rest points are scattered across the fields of Mira, and can be used to change the time of day. Within NLA itself, you can use red benches.
  • Skip travelling will cause the weather conditions to change. No more changing to random times to make a thunderstorm appear!

Quests

  • There are four different kinds of quests.
  • Story quests have certain requirements which must be met before they can be taken. The sooner you complete them, the sooner you have access to new areas.
  • Story quests have objectives like clearing a particular quest, reaching certain inner level requirements, using specific party members and exploring certain percentages of a continent. Some require a certain affinity level between your party members.
  • Kizuna quests will affect the affinity levels between people in NLA, and many of them involve your party members and other main characters. They cannot be cancelled once they’ve been started, and you won’t be able to remove the relevant party members until after you’re done.
  • Kizuna talks become available after party members’ affinity is high enough. These appear to be equivalent to the first Xenoblade’s heart-to-hearts.
  • Normal quests are taken by finding people with a ? above their head, who are scattered around the place. They’ll show up on the mini-map when you get near to them, and some may be hidden or difficult to reach.
  • Simple quests are taken from the quest board in the BLADE area. The quests shown on the board change every time you look at it, and you can only take up to 20 at a time. Each quest has a number of stars next to it, denoting its difficulty. They fall under three different categories.
  • Subjugation quests have you kill some enemies or an Overed.
  • Collection quests ask you to gather some of a certain item.
  • Talk quests have you talk to people to advance the quest. Some of these even lead to kizuna quests.
  • Story and kizuna quests cannot be taken at the same time. If you want to take one on but are already in the middle of another, you’ll have to complete it before you can move on.
  • Some story quests will require you complete a kizuna quest before you can take them on.
  • You can select any quest currently on your list to have its objective shown on the mini-map, ans its details show up on-screen.
  • There are far more quests in this game than there was in the first, with several hundred simple quests alone.

BLADE

  • Other players can be scouted using a console found within BLADE. It costs in-game currency to have them join your team, and if their level is higher than yours, it costs you more.
  • Gathering union points allows you to increase your BLADE level. When this increases, you get to improve one of your field skills.
  • Union points are gathered as you do things that help BLADE. These include things like defeating native creatures, defeating Overed, obtaining collection items, opening treasure boxes, setting data probes and more.
  • The amount of union points you can gather differs depending on which arm of BLADE you’re part of.

Battle Stats, Skills and Abilities

  • Once your class rank hits 10, you can choose to upgrade to the next class in line. Doing so could change which weapons you have available to you, so be sure to check.
  • Hitting rank 10 in a class at the end of an upgrade line will allow you to use that class’s weapon type in all other classes.
  • Class EXP can only be gained in battle.
  • Inner stats are awarded by finishing battles and quests, as well as finding landmarks and Frontier Net spots. They can be awarded via many other ways as well.
  • More powerful enemies give more EXP, while weaker ones give less.
  • BP, or battle points. are used to level up arts and skills.
  • 100 BP will raise an art to its maximum level. Arts max out at level 5, and increasing their level reduces recast time and increases their effects.
  • There is a menu option to check all available arts for your allies.
  • Tension arts use 1000 TP.
  • The quick-time soul voice events are known as “soul challenges”. When you nail the event, your “soul stage” will go up by one. When it’s gone by quite a bit, you’ll get TP bonuses for successfully completing the event. The soul stage doesn’t decrease if you don’t get a perfect, but it will reset if you get KO’d.
  • Completing soul voices increases affinity.
  • Some weapons and skills will change the ways you can increase your TP.
  • Party members (that aren’t the main character) each have two unique skills.
  • Attacking opponents from their weak points increases your crit rate and your accuracy.
  • Landing crits is an easy way to get more soul challenges.
  • You can dash and jump in battle.
  • Using an art to initiate a battle may give you a soul challenge.
  • You can customise the effects allies get from soul challenges.

Dolls

  • Dolls have extremely high jumps, so they may be able to help you reach areas that you wouldn’t be able to on foot.
  • You cannot use Dolls who frame level exceeds your character’s inner level.
  • The Dolls’ catch ability immobilises your opponents for 10 seconds. More information on this in the April 10th update.

Creatures

  • Some creatures mimic their surroundings, and may be difficult to spot.
  • The criteria by which creatures will spot you may change between night and day. So something which sees you during the day, for example, may hear you overnight.

The story trailer can be watched below:

April 20th 2015 – Development

Kojima tweeted again today, though he didn’t say much. He reminded us that the game will be out in Japan in 9 days, and that there’s still a lot he’d like to talk about that he hasn’t had a chance to yet. He also said he’ll be taking a break from tweeting for a few days.

Dengeki have also released a guide for the game, which I’m sure someone will translate very soon so we can have a read.

April 19th 2015 – Story

The final cutscene at the end of the overview trailer, in the April 15 update, has been subbed by fans! Check it out below:

April 18th 2015 – Gameplay, Online

Twitter updated today with a bit of information on headgear and also online play.

It will be possible to toggle headgear off and on again in cutscenes. This is a feature I’m grateful for, as I’m sure there will be some equipment that prevents you from seeing your character’s face.

Online play in squads becomes available after a certain amount of story progression. After that point, you can choose to swap between offline and and online mode at any point and join you friend’s squad. For a fee, you can even change unions when you go out to visit them in their game, if you want to rank up a different union.

April 17th 2015 – Dolls, Story

The official website updated today with information on the seven different Dolls you can make in this game. These are able to be customised with weapons and colours as you see fit. There’s a trailer as well, showing Dolls as they travel through NLA and out into open fields, which I’ve embedded at the end.

Let’s take a look at the Dolls:

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Amdusias Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Amdusias Vehicle

This, the Amdusias, is the most expensive of all the Dolls, boasting a heavy frame and a high amount of physical attack power and durability. It has a heavy frame, named KURENAI, and a tracked vehicle when it transforms.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Formula Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Formula Vehicle

This Doll belongs to the Formula series. Built for high-speed combat, they have a light frame and transform into a motorcycle. It’s one of the cheapest Dolls, and comes with the JINRAI Gear.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Inferno Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Inferno Vehicle

The Inferno series is has a medium frame, with the HIBANA Gear used in its construction. They are used in both melee and ranged combat, and have high durability.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Lailah Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Lailah Vehicle

The Lailah series is a medium Doll that’s extremely mobile for its weight, but is still powerful despite that. They use the NAGI Gear and come equipped with rifles.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Mastema Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Mastema Vehicle

The Mastema series uses a heavy frame and the GEKITETU Gear. It’s a heavy Doll that moves very slowly, and takes advantage of long-ranged, high-powered machinery to do damage.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Urban Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Urban Vehicle

The Urban series is a light Doll, and happens to be Lynlee’s favourite. It draws its name from the fact that it was developed for use in urban areas, and as such their vehicle version is easy to control. They have heavier armour than their Formula relatives, giving them higher durability.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Wels Doll Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Model Wels Vehicle

Wels are another light frame, but has been customised to have the power of a medium frame. This is Elma’s favourite Doll, and requires a fair bit of skill to operate. It uses the HAGANE Gear.

The Inferno Doll reminds me a lot of Rico’s Gear, Stier, from Xenogears. The colour was what triggered the link, and the fact that it has high durability and a ton of firepower did it as well.

To see them in action with some sweet music playing the background, watch the trailer below:

April 15th 2015 – Dolls, Story

Two new trailers have just been released.

The first shows off Doll customisation, with equipment and changing colour being particularly featured. You can check it out below:

Some of the staff showed off their own Doll designs; translations are courtesy of Siliconera.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Staff Doll 1

“I wanted to make something using white, blue, and yellow, to give it a more robot-like coloring. I think I managed to get that down? Anyway, this screen is taken at the starting point of the BLADE headquarters.”

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Staff Doll 2

“I’d like to freely fly around the vast skies! That will come true with a Doll! (lol) Dolls can take you anywhere, and, well, you can basically fly to all kinds of areas. ‘I’ll beat the enemies on the ground!’ is the feel I went for, while giving it an angle as if it were watching from above.”

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Staff Doll 3

“Aren’t those round shoulders and rabbit-like ears on the head just so cute? As for the colors, I went with all pink. While it can transform into a vehicle on land, I decided to leave it the way it is with a waterfall in the background (lol).”

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Staff Doll 4

“This was taken during night time at the ‘Continent of White Trees’. It’s quite dusky. The plants are also kind of glowing. That’s the kind of scenery I wanted to quietly assimilate. An enemy could take advantage of this and attack from behind. Victory goes to the first to attack! Just win!”

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Staff Doll 5

“There are some fire sparks flying in the background, but that’s nothing compared to the pressure you see from the bottom-half of this body. I’ve always preferred heavier robots. It might look too heavy, but it can fly around just as light as any other. There are places you can also go with just Dolls, but best of all, it looks like it’d hurt like hell to get kicked by those thick legs.”

The second trailer gives an overview of everything we’ve learned about the game so far, which can all be found in previous updates of this article. The only new material is the trailer shown at the end, which I won’t be writing anything on until after someone translates it.

You can watch it below:

April 14th 2015 – Technical

The official website updated with some cool info about how Monolith Soft are going to be reducing load times while exploring Xenoblade X’s massive world. They’ve prepared some data packs that you can download to your console, so it can more easily access data and therefore take less time to load.

  • The basic data pack (2 GB) contains terrain data that makes it easier for everything to load as you move through areas. This one needs to be downloaded for the others to work.
  • The enemy data pack (2.7 GB) installs a bunch of enemy data on to your console.
  • The player data pack (3.6 GB) install information relating to the armour and graphics of the main character. This makes it easier when equipping new armour, and makes NLA load faster.
  • The doll data pack (1.7 GB) makes dolls load faster, and also leads to faster loading of the city and the areas outside it.

Altogether, these add up to 11 GB on information to be downloaded, which wouldn’t even come close to fitting on a Wii U basic model.

These are not necessary to play the game, but they will enhance play, and the basic data pack is required if you want to download any of the others.

April 10th, 2015 – Music

This deserves its own update – there’s been a 17 minute preview of most of the OST released. Watch it below:

The soundtrack releases in Japan May 20th, and is available to preorder on the Japanese Amazon here.

April 10th 2015 – Dolls, Battle

Nintendo showed off the Dolls today in a half hour Nintendo Direct, ahead of the game’s release in Japan in 19 days. Someone has been kind enough to add subtitles to the whole thing, which I’ll be including at the end of this update (thanks for the tip, admin).

For those who want a written version, here we go!

Doll Types

  • There are three types; Light, Medium and Heavy. Each of these have different types of frames.
  • Light Dolls have low HP, but high evasion.
  • Wels is Elma’s favourite Doll, and is a Light one. I swear that name reminds me of something… I feel it’s also worth noting the Wels were a major enemy in Xenogears; no idea if that will be relevant, but I feel obligated to point it out.
  • Urban is another Light Doll, which is Lynlee’s favourite.
  • Medium Dolls are well-balanced.
  • Lailah and Inferno are two Medium Dolls.
  • Heavy Dolls have high HP and defence. A lot of skill is needed to use them.
  • Mastema and Amdusias are Heavy Dolls.

Vehicle Mode

  • All Dolls are able to transform into vehicles, and each one has a different vehicle type.
  • Urban transforms into a motorcycle, which has high speed and drifts well.
  • Inferno transforms into a car. It has more stability than two-wheeled vehicles. This model gets Doug’s seal of approval.
  • Some vehicles transform into ones which run on tracks, like a tank.
  • Vehicles which could travel over water were shown.
  • It appears that Dolls can swap between their regular and vehicle modes without limitation; they could be seen in the video smoothly transitioning from one to the other and then back again.

Flight Mode

  • They’re currently developing a Flight Pack in NLA, so the Dolls will be able to fly soon as well.
  • Fuel is depleted as you fly; make sure you don’t run out when you’re really high up.
  • Dolls can be purchased at a specialised shop in NLA. You may own as many as you like (or can afford).

Equipment – Battle

  • Dolls attack using auto-attacks and arts, in the same way people do on foot.
  • The arts a Doll can use change depending on the weapon they have equipped.
  • Dolls can be equipped with two hand weapons; one on the left, and one on the right. These attack the damage output of your auto-attacks. These also have slots, for Devices.
  • Dolls can also be equipped with a spare weapon, back weapon and shoulder weapon. Each of these have a left and a right; including the hand weapons, that’s a total of eight equipped to a Doll at any one time
  • There is a menu which shows how equipped weapons affect the arts you have access to in Dolls. You can also see available slots there.
  • Arm weapons are for things like beam shields and vulcans. Lynlee notes that most arts have some kind of secondary effect.
  • Spare weapons are usually stored in the Doll’s knees, and are handheld weapons like beam sabres and hand grenades. They’re weak, but have a short recast time.
  • Back weapons are extremely powerful. The ones equipped on the right generally have a higher attack power, with the ones on the left acting as secondary weapons. Some particularly powerful weapons take up both the left and right compartments.
  • Shoulder weapons are more powerful than back weapons and work in the same way; the right more powerful, the left acting as a secondary.
  • Most weapons can be bought in shops, which the exception of super weapons. You can have super weapons created once you find their blueprints. They take up more slots than any other weapon, but their power is massive.

Customise

  • The colour of Dolls can be customised so they can look however you like. Their colour scheme as a whole can be altered, or even individual parts.
  • Doll names can be changed as well, so you can call it whatever you like.

Doll Fuel

  • The most powerful arts use up the most fuel, so using them all of the time is not wise.
  • Fuel is consumed when flying and when arts are used.
  • If you run out of fuel, you won’t be able to use arts or fly. So you’ll be stuck to running and auto-attacks.
  • Running out of fuel mid-flight will cause you to go into freefall.
  • Fuel will refill when you leave your Doll, albeit it very slowly. They can also be refilled at NLA, but it’s very expensive to do so.

Doll Fuel

  • In Dolls, after breaking an opponent, you can catch them. This immobilises them for a short time, and while caught, all of your attacks will do extra damage and will never miss. Nailing soul voice commands while opponents are caught keeps them immobilised for longer. They cannot fight back while in this state.
  • After using an arts, you may go into Cockpit Mode. This changes your point of view from third to first person and recasts all of your arts. I can’t be entered into manually; it appears to be totally random.

Overclock Gear

  • Your attack power increases when this is activated.
  • Some Dolls will get faster recast times and boosted evasion.
  • No fuel is used while overclock gear is active.

Doll Insurance

  • If a Doll’s arms break, it won’t be able to use any of its weapons, and Dolls will be destroyed if they take too much damage. Insurance will cover any damage for free for the first three times. After that, you’ll have to pay your own (huge) repair bill.
  • Doug advised it may be a good idea to jump out of a Doll if it’s sustained a lot of damage. There’s an option to tell teammates to get out of their Doll.
  • At the end of a battle, HP is recovered and broken Doll parts will regenerate.

Doll Defence

  • If someone is fighting on foot, they will get a boost to their defence for each person who is inside of a Doll. In other words, the more people who jump into their Dolls while one person remains outside theirs, the less damage they will take.
  • Doll Armour is armour is equipment which doesn’t do much for battles on foot, but gives bonuses to Dolls.

At this point in the video Mira comes under attack by hostile aliens. Elma informs us that we have many allies who can fight alongside us, and begins talking about the game’s online multiplayer mode.

Network

  • While you’re connected to the Internet, other players can randomly appear in your game. You can talk to them to recruit them. They will also get a share of the EXP.
  • You can join with other people to form 32-person squads to explore together with other players.
  • BLADE Report allows you to share your exploration findings with other players. This is the name the game has given the Wii U GamePad chat, as that’s how you communicate with the people you’re exploring with. Well-received reports will be broadcast beyond your squad to every player of the game, presumably via the Miiverse.
  • Treasure Deal allows squad members to offer loot found after battle to other members. If multiple people want the item, the recipient is decided via a lottery.
  • Squad missions have you all working together to kill a bunch of creatures or find a bunch of items. The number of creatures left to slay, items left to find and so on is displayed in the bottom-right corner of the screen. Kills and item finds are pooled between the party. There are always five different objectives to a squad mission, to be completed as a team.
  • When one of the squad mission objectives is reached, four squad members can join together to take on a special one known as a “squad quest”. A terminal in the BLADE base allows you to recruit other players for your quest, or to join someone else’s. In-game party members can be used in place of people if you can’t find anyone.
  • Clearing these squad missions and quests furthers our exploration of Mira, and increases the global conquest development.
  • As we progress, creatures called World Enemies begin to wake up. These are even more powerful than Overed. They’re hard to kill, but drop the best equipment. Some World Enemies only appear at specific times.

Uniongram

  • There are eight different factions of BLADE, as outlines in the January 29th update. The Uniongram tells you which are working the hardest.
  • Performing actions given to you by the faction, or union, which you’ve joined will increase your rank there.
  • The unions use the Uniongram to keep track of each other’s progress and compete with one another.

Ranking

  • There are rankings for various things, which you can climb to the top of by completing missions throughout Mira.

Doll defence is an interesting mechanic, and means you aren’t completely punished for jumping out of a Doll in a heated battle. I’m really looking forward to the online capabilities of this game as well, and to exploring the massive world of Mira.

At any rate, here’s the Direct, with fan-made subtitles:

April 9th 2015 – Screenshots, Staff, Dolls

The website updated today with a group shot of the main Dolls you’ll be using in the game, as well as individual images of six of them.

These designs were done by Takayuki Yanase, who has also worked on the likes of Ghost in the Shell and Metal Gear Rising.

You can check out the progression of the group shot below:

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Group 1 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Group 2
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Group 3 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Group 4

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Group 5

And here are six of the Dolls, shown individually:

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 1 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 2
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 3 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 4
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 5 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doll Individual 6

They look pretty sweet, if you ask me. Can’t wait to use them!

April 7th 2015 – Gameplay, Battle

Kojima has informed us via Twitter that beating Xenoblade X once will unlock a “fashion equipment” option. The website also updated today with a look at four different classes and a range of buffs found in-game.

What this means is that you’ll be able to alter your appearance and make your character look like they’re wearing any piece of armour without it actually affecting their stats. No more putting up with crappy looking stuff for the best stats! My endgame Melia in the first game looks ridiculous…

The Xenoblade X website updated today with a look at four different classes and a range of buffs found in-game. I’ll discuss the classes first, and then get into the buffs.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Classes - Drifter

The Drifter is the base class, which can learn a decent variety of arts. They can use knives and assault rifles in combat.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Classes - Assault

The Assault class has arts that can be used for either an offensive or a defensive playstyle. They also have stat boosts in health and attack. In terms of weapons, they’ll use long swords and assault rifles.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Classes - Commander

The Command class has a variety of damaging arts. Their stats have increased strength, shooting and evasive abilities. They use dual swords and dual guns.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Classes - Forcer

The forcer is a ranged class with a higher focus on shooting arts and stats. They also have higher stats when it comes to latent abilities. They use knives and ray guns.

And now for status effects and things! We’ll start with buff that party members can give themselves and others, coloured blue in-game:

  • Fighting Accuracy Up increases the accuracy of melee attacks.
  • Shooting Power Up increases the power of ranged attacks.
  • Beam Resistance Up reduces the damage taken by beam-based attacks.
  • Damage Armour brings up a barrier that will prevent some fixed amount of damage from being taken.
  • Bullet Charge increases the amount of damage your next bullet will do.
  • Fake Body will have you dodge a set number of your opponent’s attacks.

The following buffs are conferred by weather effects and battle probes:

  • All Attribute Resistance Up is a powerful buff that reduces the damage taken from all kinds of attacks.
  • Critical Rate Up is, I feel, pretty straight forward.
  • Ether Attack Enhancement is equally straight forward.
  • Resist Down drops your opponent’s resistances, making it easier to inflict them with status effects.

These debuffs are given to the party by their foes, the first four coloured purple and the rest red:

  • Break staggers your character and leaves them open to be Toppled.
  • Knockback sends a party member flying backwards.
  • Stun knocks your opponent out for a short time.
  • Sleep stops the afflicted character from doing anything. They can be woken up by taking a hit.
  • Black Sight drops accuracy and evasion, as well as the damage from gun-based attacks
  • Burn will stay on the character for a set amount of time and cause them to take Heat damage for the duration of the debuff

Your parts can be inflicted with these debuffs from weather and battle probes:

  • Shooting Accuracy Down reduces the accuracy of shooting attacks.
  • Fighting Power Down reduces the power of melee-based attacks.
  • Weather Damage – Heat has everyone take Heat-based damage for a short time.
  • Weather Damage – Bolt has everyone take Bolt-based damage for a short time.

I thought battle probes are our friends, so why is it that they can give us debuffs? A malfunction, or maybe they’ve been tampered with by one of the malevolent alien species in Xenoblade X? It’ll be interesting to find out, for sure.

March 27th, 2015 – Battle

The website updated today. A fair chunk of the information was stuff that came out of the last Direct, so I’d recommend going over the March 6th update if you’ve forgotten it; in particular, there’s lots of stuff from the “Arts Basics” and “Battle Tactics” heading.

One thing which was mentioned in that Direct was Overclock Gear, a special mode which you can enter for 3,000 TP that boosts you abilities by a lot. I’m gonna refresh your memory from the March 6th update:

  • Overclock Gear reduces recast times, so you can use arts one after the other. You need to use arts of the same type; melee after melee, or ranged after ranged. The more you combo, the bigger your damage multiplier.
  • Arts used in Overclock Gear will be able to be triplecast.
  • It won’t be available from the start, but will be gained later.

Bearing that in mind, we now have some more detail as to what Overclock Gear can do.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Overclock Gear

Two things are being pointed out in Japanese in the above picture.

The first is the big purple number. It’s known as the Gear Counter, and changes colour as you use more arts.

The other thing being pointed out is a bar next to the number. This is the Gear Time, and as you may have guessed, indicates how long you have left in Overclock Gear.

There are four options that we know of for Overclock Gear:

  • The Count-up Effect is when the Gear Counter increases as you use consecutive arts of the same type; either melee or ranged.
  • The Colour Combo causes the Gear Counter to change colour as the numbers go up, which give a variety of effects.
  • If your allies reach 3,000 TP when you go into Overclock Gear, they’ll go into it too. This activates a Party Chain for some sweet bonus effects.
  • If you manage to reach 3,000 TP again while in Overclock Gear, you’ll be able to extend its duration.

There’s another battle demonstration trailer below, which was just released. Give it a watch:

March 24th, 2015 – Story

A couple of new tweets from Kojima today inform us that the base for the military organisation BLADE will have a place for the main character to call their home.

You can customise this home using the logos of the various branches of BLADE, we’re told. This place will act as your base in both the online and the offline place.

I would guess there would be other stuff we could use to customise our base, which may be revealed further down the line.

March 19th, 2015 – Creatures

The official website updated today with some information on the various critters you’ll see around Mira! They discussed eleven in total, as well as what have been named “Overed” in this game.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 1

These are Brass Femina Zeus. They’re easily recognisable by the massive lump on their head, and the genders can be distinguished by differing hair and body colours.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 2

Stone hippos do not attack without provocation, and like to live in water. Note the long tusk protruding from its jaw.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 3

Wood fonteras can be likened to giraffes, as they use their exceptionally long necks to eat leaves off tall trees. They can stand over six metres tall.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 4

Everlast Milesauro are gentle giants that will not attack unless provoked. They’ve been seen in quite a number of trailers.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 5

Lake Rutoral share some behavioural traits with cats and dogs, and have a mammal-like appearance. They like to hang out around water bodies.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 6

Quick Strutts ostrich-like birds, which lack the ability to fly. They live in flocks and eat insects they find in Mira’s grasslands.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 7

Junior Simuis are Infernape four-armed creatures that have the appearance of a monkey. They often travel in packs, and are sometimes seen with their giant parents, one of which was seen in the exploration trailer to destroy the main character’s party of three.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 8

Young Lups are aggressive creatures which will attack on sight. They’re carnivorous, and have been seen in a number of trailers; they were shown attacking Mira when Nintendo Treehouse played through the beginning of Xenoblade X at E3 2014.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 9

Docile Ois are adorable herbivores with super puffy tails. Their food of choice is sprouts.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 10

Youth Vasalts are six-legged creatures who have sickles on the end of their front legs. These sickles can be used to dig holes.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - March 19 11Another creature often seen in trailers, the Welkin Lukiora tend to float about the sky within their own territory.

The Overed are monsters that are more powerful than the rest, and as such, have their own name. These seem to be similar to the unique monsters in the first Xenoblade, which means you’d need to be well prepared before you take one on.

Finally, we have a trailer, which as far as I can tell is depicting an Overed showing up. Either that, or they’re just remarking on the creature. Check it out:

March 17th, 2015 – Story

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Mysterious Lady

Kojima put out a tweet today to tell us to watch out for the squid-headed woman pictured above, who was shown at the end of the battle presentation on March 6th.

Kojima tells us she’s pretty popular amongst the staff, and that she was designed by Yoko Tsukamoto, who I talked about in the December 12th update.

Kojima also confirmed that Tatsu will not be a playable character, and will not be used in battle. He will still take a prominent seat in the story though.

March 13th, 2015 – World Details

Three alien races were detailed today on the official website.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nopon

The Nopon race, pictured above, are a friendly lot who are well known as excellent merchants. Just like in the first Xenoblade.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - MaNon

The MaNon are another type of alien people found on Mira. The MaNon are a peaceful race with advanced technology.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Vaias

The Vaias is a race of aliens found on Mira that is openly hostile towards humans. They’re easily one of the most aggressive races.

March 12th, 2015 – Battle

The official website has updated, which a look at battle menus. A trailer showing off some of the battle mechanics has been released, which is embedded below.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Battle Screen

In the top-left you’ll find character information. The blue bar indicates HP, while the green bar indicates TP (tension points). TP is consumed when you use arts and special moves, and restores when you use auto-attacks.

The pale blue bar indicates your character’s inner stats, where the purple one below it denotes class stats. Class stats will vary as you change classes and level them up, where inner stats remain constant. So if you levelled up a class to, say four, and your inner stats were also up yo four, if you were to change classes, your inner stats would remain the same and your class stats would reset.

I’m assuming class stats for each class will remain the same even if you swap to another class and then swap back, as this seems to be pretty standard in RPGs so you don’t lose any levelling process.

A lot of stuff mentioned in the Siliconera translation is stuff I went over in the March 6th update. So I’ll just talk about the battle commands at your disposal.

  • You can choose which enemy to target, as well as get the party to lock on to one.
  • Draw your weapon to initiate the battle.
  • You can lock on to certain parts of whatever you’re fighting; as discussed in the March 6th update, creature body parts can be broken for extra drops and to cripple your foe.
  • Swap between your melee and ranged weapon.
  • You can revive allies at the cost of a lot of TP.
  • You can issue specific commands to your party, including whether to go with melee or ranged attacks as well as getting into their Doll. Of note is an emergency escape, which takes 15 seconds to execute and allows the party to flee to the nearest landmark.
  • The basic retreat, in which you’ll all stop attacking so you can leg it.

The trailer can be viewed here below. Of particular note is that they show a few creature parts breaking. Definitely worth a watch:

March 10th, 2015 – Avatar

The things your avatar shouts in battle and during Soul Voice will chagne depending on the avatar.

I’m not sure if it changes according to appearance or according to personality, as you’ll be given dialogue options in order to develop their personality Either way, director Koh Kojima felt the need to talk today on Twitter about the difficulty involved in recording all of the different dialogue choices, and even with creating all of the lines in the first place.

I love this kind of personalisation. I’m looking forward to really making my avatar my own.

March 6th, 2015 – Battle

Monolith streamed a half hour online presentation on the battle system and arts in this game. Some of it is stuff that was mentioned at E3 2014, but I’ll throw it all in as a reminder and to contextualise the whole thing. It’s ordered according to the different segments of the video. Enjoy!

Arts basics:

  • There are melee and ranged auto-attacks.
  • Arts come in four flavours and are each coloured differently. The types are melee, ranged, support and debuff.
  • Melee arts (orange) are offensive ones used when you’re close to your enemy.
  • Ranged arts (yellow) are attacking ones used when you’re far away from your foe.
  • Support arts (green) gives buffs to your allies, and include things like defence boosts and health restoration.
  • Debuff arts (purple) inflict harmful statuses on your opponents.
  • You can have to eight arts on your palette for in-battle use at any time, and can mix and match as you like.
  • “Recast” is the Xenoblade X term for cooldown; it refers to the fact that you have to wait for a short time before you can reuse an art.

Soul Voice:

  • Soul Voice refers to the act of your allies shouting at you in the middle of battle.
  • Sometimes your allies will tell you to use certain arts; give them cover fire and all kinds of other things. The arts you should use in these cases will glow yellow; use one of them, and its effects will be increased for that use. It’ll also result in a small HP increase.
  • A circle can appear on-screen in the middle of battle, similar to the original Xenoblade’s quicktime events. Nail it, and your party’s health will be slightly restored.
  • The reactions you and your allies will have to soul voice can be customised to suit you and your own strategies.

Battle Tactics:

  • Some arts form combinations together, and when one is used after the other, they’ll deal more damage.
  • Like in the first Xenoblade, enemies can be inflicted with break and then toppled. Toppling enemies stops them from moving and increases your damage by 50%.
  • Your position relative to your foe affects your arts. Attacking enemies from the back or from the correct elevation will increase your accuracy and crit rate. Some arts have added effects when your foe is attacked from a certain position.
  • You can select different parts of your opponent to attack, and break those parts so they can’t use them. Breaking certain monster parts will reward you with drops you wouldn’t otherwise get (I feel like I’m talking about Monster Hunter now).

Auto-attacks

  • Arts can be double cast by allowing it to recast twice. That is, after it’s been recast and can be used again, if you wait a little longer, you can cast it for strengthened or added effects. The double recast only charges while auto attacks are being used.
  • TP refills as you use auto-attacks. 1,000 TP will revive a fallen ally

Overclock Gear

  • Overclock Gear reduces recast times, so you can use arts one after the other. You need to use arts of the same type; melee after melee, or ranged after ranged. The more you combo, the bigger your damage multiplier.
  • Arts used in Overclock Gear will be able to be triplecast.
  • It won’t be available from the start, but will be gained later.

Enemy Icons

  • Enemies with different icons attack for different reasons. Some attack on sight, some attack by sound, and others attack if you pick a fight nearby.

Equipment

  • Melee and ranged weapons can be equipped at the same time.
  • Melee weapon choices include knives, swords, shields and javelins.
  • Ranged weapon choices include rifles, guns, launchers and more.
  • Armour pieces include head, torso, right arm, left arm and lower body (pants).
  • All equipment is developed by a company called ARMS. They have different branches of their company for developing different weapons. Wearing their equipment is like free advertising, so the more you wear it, the more people will buy it, and the more money will go into that company’s branch – and they will then be able to develop better equipment of that type.
  • So, basically, if you want more of a particular equipment type – keep using it so ARMS can make you more.
  • Some equipment has slots, which can have devices inserted to give more skills and buffs to the party.
  • Some of the best gear can drop from monsters. Just don’t ask how they got a hold of such high-tech stuff.

Levelling Up

  • You can level up both your inner stats and your class rank as separate entities.
  • If your inner rank is too low, you won’t be able to equip high level equipment.
  • Experience can be gained via battles, finding treasure, discovering new lands, and more.
  • Changing classes allows for different arts. Early classes have a more balanced art palette, while later ones allow your characters to specialise more.

Allies

  • Lynlee and Elma won’t be the only people able to come out into the field with you. You’ll be able to invite citizens of NLA to come fight alongside you as well.
  • Previously introduced characters Irina, Guin, Mumkhar Doug, Gunban and Ru were all shown in battle.
  • New characters, Mardreth, Fry and Celica were shown in battle.

Because it’s available, I’m going to throw the English subbed version of this trailer in here. So enjoy!

February 26th, 2015 – World Details, Characters

Today a couple of character descriptions cropped up on the website. We also got a trailer showing off weather patterns that has some wicked music playing in the background!

First up is Lao, a member of BLADE with exceptional fighting ability and an excellent sense of judgement. He’s very passionate, and has been friends with the next character they revealed, Doug, since they were at the academy.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Lao A good friend of mine and admin of the Shulk for Smash Bros 4 Facebook page noticed that Lao bears some resemblance to Dunban. He strung together this and the fact that Lao wields a gun and has now dubbed him Gunban.

Doug is Mumkhar a friend of Lao’s, and has been since they were in the US army together. He excels at piloting Dolls, and served under Elma back on Earth as part of her Doll Squad.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Doug The weather varies on Mira just like it did on the Bionis, and even like it does here on Earth. You can change the time whenever you like by visiting one of many BLADE camps scattered across Mira, and the weather will vary naturally.

Different monsters will appear at different times of the day and under different weather conditions. The weather will even affect your allies and your foes in battle.

Watch the trailer below to see different kinds of weather and hear that sweet music:

February 24th, 2015 – Mechanics

A small update – Koh Kojima, the game’s director, has confirmed that Xenoblade X will implement an auto-run feature that will set your character in a straight line to help the player get around. Kojima also stated that he doesn’t want people using it too much as he wants them to appreciate the game’s world. But it’s there as an option.

February 19th, 2015 – World Details, GamePad Support, Characters

A website update on how the Frontier Net works, and what various symbols on the world map on the GamePad mean. A trailer was also released, and another character detailed.

The character goes by the name of Ru, and is a member of Mira’s indigenous race; his race have been living on the planet for longer than any other. He lives off the money he makes from selling off his various inventions, and knows a great deal about the history of his planet. He gets on quite well with humans, which seems to be unusual for one of his race.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Ru The website has explained many of the symbols that you will find on the GamePad as you explore, and what they represent. There are a total of six:

  • Mining probes increases production (I’m guessing this is for NLA) and the amount of Miranium, a rare mineral used for all kinds of purposes back at NLA, that you can gather.
  • Research probes will increase your rewards you gain from discovering secret areas and beautiful views when you find them nearby.
  • Fighting in the same area as a battle probe will aid you in the fight.
  • Storage probes increase the amount of Miranium that the party can store.
  • Power-up probes increase the effect of other probes nearby.
  • Copy probes, as the name suggests, copy the effects of adjacent probes.

You may have noticed in trailers and previous screenshots that the map on the Wii U GamePad is split into hexagons. They can be filled with one of four icons indicating their status:

  • An indication that there is a Frontier Net Spot available in the segment, but a data probe has yet to be installed.
  • The aforementioned icon lit up, indicating a data probe has now been installed.
  • An icon indicating that the player can skip travel to that segment.
  • An black space, which is an unvisited segment.

Finally, five different symbols indicate quest and general objective in each segment.

  • A picture of a beast indicates an Overed, which is a monster that is more powerful than normal. I suspect these may Xenoblade X’s take on Unique Monsters.
  • A couple of shiny pictures indicate there is treasure within that segment.
  • A regular quest objective is shown by a piece of paper with writing on it.
  • An image of two people holding hands denotes “bonding” quests; presumable these increase affinity between party members or between NLA citizens.
  • A golden shield means that segment’s objectives have been met.

The game will frequently have you go “Data-probing”, which as you may have guessed, means you’ll be looking for places where you can place data probes for the Frontier Net. These will help BLADE to gather information about Mira, and to find important resources and more survivors of the crash.

Finally, have a cool trailer showing off the view from a Doll:

February 12th, 2015 – Customisation

The official website updated with a video showing off the customisation options in the game. Looks like there are a ton.

February 11th, 2015 – Hub Details

The video posted below takes you for a tour of New Los Angeles, your new home in the game.

  • It shows off the industrial area, where food is grown, Dolls (mechs) are developed, and weapons and aircraft are tested.
  • The commercial district is filled with all kinds of shops and restaurants. Lots of different people are found in the commercial districts.
  • The residential area is where people live, and even contains a church for people to pray at and a park to play in. It’s a quiet area, excellent to visit with a good book or a heavy mind.
  • BLADE is in the middle of it all. The lower section of the organisation is used for the maintenance of Dolls and is where people go to mingle and accept and turn in quests. The upper area is where the members of BLADE sleep.

This sound a lot like Colony 9, with the residential, military and commercial districts seen there. I’m looking forward to exploring NLA. Video is below:

February 6th, 2015 – World Details, GamePad Support, Online Multiplayer

Nintendo held a Xenoblade X Direct today, which naturally showed off a whole bunch of stuff. We learned more about the world, how the GamePad will aid you as you play, and all kinds of cool things. The full, subtitled presentation will be embedded at the end of this update and at the end of the article (thanks for bringing it to my attention, admin). Here we go!

  • Around each continent you can travel to, of which there appear to be five, you will find data probes. These will tell you about what you can find in each area of the map, and what that area’s objectives are. Finding more probes expands the content and dialogue in each city, which will be very familar to players of the first Xenoblade who worked on their affinity charts. The more you interact with characters, the more they interact with each other, and the more they all and NLA as a whole evolves.
  • Your initial goal on the planet Mira will be to survive and recover “life points”; what these are, I’m not sure. As far as I can tell, they’re part of the initial ship that crashed into Mira that contain important components and items for NLA’s survival.
  • Similar to the first game, there will be landmarks and locations to find, and if you get lost, a navigation ball will show you where to go.
  • They’ll be using the Wii U GamePad to help make all of this easier. It’ll contain some of your objectives, as well as a map and other handy things. It will show where the main party currently is, and will also show quest locations and allow you to warp to areas you have already visited. This is known as the Frontier Net.
  • They also confirmed that the game will support up to four players in its online mode.

The video can be found here (make sure subtitles are turned on):

February 6th, 2015 – Characters, Concept

The website updated today with some concept art and an introduction for one of the people in charge of NLA.

Maurice is the chief administration commissioner of NLA and assistant to the president. He represents humanity on Mira. On Earth, he was the United States Secretary of Defence.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Maurice

The concept art below reminds me a bit of Xenogears; in particular, how people first came to be on the continent of Ignas in that game. I’ll be keeping a sharp eye on any details that sounds similar to that story when I play through the game, for sure.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 2

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 4 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 5
 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 6  Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 3
 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 1  Xenoblade Chronicles X - Feb 5 Concept 7

January 29th, 2015 – Characters, Story Details, Music, Avatar, GamePad, Online, Battle

Big update here, as Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu had an interview with Takahashi. We have information on some of the characters, the organisations you can join up with in the game, a bit on the music and some more technical details.

Nagi was the captain of the Moby Dick, and is currently the military commander of NLA. He is voiced by Takayaki Sugō, who has also worked on the likes of Bleach, Naruto, Berserk, Gundam and more.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nagi

Guin worked with both Elma and Irina in BLADE as their subordinate. He’s voiced by Yuichi Nakamura, who’s worked in a number of games like Tales of Symphonia, BlazBlue, Chaos Rings, some recent Final Fantasy and more.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Guin

Once you arrive in NLA with Elma, you will be able to join one of eight factions, which I’ll list below. Joining a faction will allow you to take quests to help them out; quests will change depending on which faction you’re in. You can join different factions later. The story will unfold in different directions, and I believe that will be because of these factions, and that joining different ones will cause the story to unfold in a new way.

The eight factions are:

  • Pathfinder: Setting data probes and oversee the Frontier Net.
  • Interceptor: Destroying enemy protists and defend Mira.
  • Avalanche: Mira’s offensive organisation, who hunt down dangerous beasts.
  • Testament: Find and recover pieces of the human spaceship and recover items lost on battlefields.
  • Corepedian: Collecting materials and exploring new areas.
  • Land Bank: Collecting materials and securing resources found on Mira.
  • Arms: Help to develop Dolls and their weaponry.
  • Companion: Assisting the citizens of NLA, from mediating feuds to finding stray cats.

In terms of a track list, there will be over 90 songs in this game, and Sawano has had a hand in all of them. The game will have more than the average number of vocalised tracks for an RPG, Takahashi added.

When it comes to avatar customisation, you can choose your character’s gender, face type, skin colour, hair style, eyes, make up and voice. Some famous voice actors have worked on the avatar’s voice, which will be revealed at a later date. The designs for each option have been done by Kunihiko Tanaka, who has worked previously with the team on Xenogears and Xenosaga I.

The GamePad will be used to aid you in finding quest locations, and will show you where you character currently is on the world map. It will support off-screen play on the GamePad as well.

Another fun fact: Takahashi recently finished a final playthrough of the game to check everything was running smoothly. He clocked up 300 hours. I’m going to assume this is including sidequests and things, but man – my Xenoblade completionist run was 150. This game is massive, and struggled to fit on the 25 GB Wii U disc; they almost spread the game across two of them. The game loads maps as you go, so you won’t be taken to loading screens between them, allowing for seamless play.

Takahasi described the online as being “loosely” online. Here’s an interesting quote from GAF user duckroll who translated the interview:

I took a look at the actual text from sinobi about the interview, and the description Takahashi gives the online is definitely indicating something like the passive online features of Souls game. He refers to it as ゆるく繋がるオンラインゲーム which is the common term used these days to refer to stuff like the blood stains, messages, and player shadows.

Your party in the game will consist of four players; one controlled by you, and three by the AI. I’m assuming this is so the game can transition to four player online more easily. There will be more equipment to unique monsters to find in Xenoblade Chronicles X than there was in the original, and the battles will be more fast-paced.

That’s it for this big update. That’s a lot to take in!

January 27th, 2015 – Music

Sound effects are being worked on by a studio named Sound Racer. They have worked on a huge number of titles, which are listed on their website; just hit the “Introduce” tab and run it through a translator.

Games included are Terra Battle, Final Fantasy VI – X-2, Kingdom Hearts, Tekken, a couple of Mana games – the list goes on and on. They have worked with Monolith Soft in the past; specifically, on Disaster: Day of Crisis and Xenosaga II and III.

January 22nd, 2015 – Staff

Two new game characters and five voice actors were announced via Twitter today.

Van Damme is the commander of BLADE. He’s well-known for his rudeness, and was previously the chief engineer of an immigrant ship called Moby Dick.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Van Damme

Irina is a member of BLADE, and worked under Elma as a senior office of the Doll Squad. She feels compelled to protect all of those who have crashed and are now living on Mira.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Irina

I’ll list the actors below, starting with the character name and then the VA:

  • Elma – Houko Kuwashima, who has also worked on Castlevania, Dead or Alive, Eternal Sonata and more.
  • Lynlee – Lynlee is being voiced by Mariya Ise, who has previously worked on Tales of Xillia 2 and a few more titles.
  • Tatsu – Tatsu being voiced by Daisuke Sakaguchi, who has voiced characters in LunarTales of Symphonia and more.
  • Irina – She will be voiced by Nao Takamori, also known as Blaze the Cat in the Sonic games, Katarina Cott in Suikoden and more.
  • Van Damme – The voice of Xord from the original Xenoblade, Tesshō Genda, will be voicing Van Damme; he has worked on many, many other projects in the past as well

January 20th, 2015 – Staff

A tweet was released today simply stating that the localisation process for the Western release of the game is already underway. Yay!

January 15th, 2015 – Characters, World

The official Xenoblade X website has updated with its first three character bios! We also got a trailer out of the Nintendo Direct.

Elma is the woman who finds the main character in their stasis pod. She’s the leader of a military organisation known as BLADE. She led the Doll Squad (the mechs in the game are known as dolls) and is well-respected by her colleagues due to her calm demeanour and excellent sense of judgement.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Elma

Lynlee is a girl in her early teens who first attracted attention in an earlier trailer for the Monado pin in her hair. She’s quite cheerful, and is something of a mechanical engineering prodigy; she has developed dolls in the past.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Lynlee

Tatsu is a Nopon, native to the planet Mira. He joins the party after a series of events, and occasionally says things that seem contrary to his appearance.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Tatsu

We also had a Nintendo Direct today, and we got a new trailer to go with it! It shows off the game’s world; you can see it below.

January 15th, 2015 – Staff, Music

Takahasi used a couple of tweets today to discuss some of the musicians working on Xenoblade X.

Hiroyuki Sawano and his company Legendoor are composing for the game. He’s worked on the likes of Attack on Titan, Kill la Kill and Guilty Crown. Another notable employee is Yasushi Horiguchi.

A number of tracks will have lyrics, which is not usually the case for RPGs; the first Xenoblade, for example, had only one song with lyrics (which, by the way, I’ve totally told my boyfriend we will be dancing to at our wedding).

December 19th, 2014 – Staff

Another couple of staff members were revealed today, these ones working on design and 3D models.

Hideyuki Matsumoto has worked with Monolith Soft in the past on Xenosaga and with Takahashi at Squaresoft. Aside from these, he has also worked on games like Front Mission and Ar Tonelico. He’s worked on some of the weapons used by the characters in Xenoblade Chronicles X.

The Kusanagi Company have assisted in the creation of 3D models based on drawings. A couple of their more notable works include the DS version of Ni no Kuni and the anime cutscenes seen in Persona 4.

December 15th, 2014 – Staff

A couple of designers for Xenoblade X have been announced via Twitter today

Fumihiro Katagai is a designer of mechs whose past works include Gyrozetter, Chaika: The Coffin Princess and the more famous Space Dandy andCode Geass. He is also working on the game, presumably on more mechs.

RARE ENGINE has been confirmed to be working on the game. Previous works include Sengoku Taisen and the 3.0Illustrations art book for LORD of VERMILION III.

December 12th, 2014 – Staff

A couple of artists were introduced on Twitter today.

Yoko Tsukamoto will be assisting in the art department as well; she has worked on the likes of Half-Minute Hero and Lord of Vermilion, as well as helping out with the first Xenoblade. Her website can be found here.

Takashi Kojo has drawn for Gravity Rush, Senran Kagura, Sol Trigger and more. He’ll be helping to design large enemies and the soldiers belonging to Growth, an antangonistic organisation found within the game. Interestingly, he has been credited with the design of the most powerful Unique Monster found in Xenoblade Chronicles X. You can check out his portfolio on his website.

December 9th, 2014 – Staff

A couple of designers for Xenoblade X were introduced on Twitter today.

Yasushi Suzuki worked on the Sin and Punishment games for the Nintendo 64 and the Wii, as a designer for characters and special effects in the former and as the general art director in the latter. In Xenoblade Chronicles X, he’s working on a lot of enemy mechs.

Raita Kazama worked on the first Xenoblade, and will be working on some of the alien lifeforms found on the planet on which Xenoblade Chronicles X takes place.

December 5th, 2014 – Gameplay

A small tidbit from Takahashi today.  He said he was careful not to make the mechs in the game too large, as this would require making a bigger map to suit and would also make travelling on foot tedious.

December 3rd, 2014 – Staff, Story, Gameplay

Takahashi has introduced two of the artists working on the game via Twitter. Takayaki Yunase has been designing some of the mechs. Yunase’s portfolio includes Ghost in the Shell: Arise, Tenkai Knights and Metal Gear Rising.

Takahashi says he sought him out as he needed help deigning dolls that could transform into multiple vehicles, which sounds to me like the mechs in this game will be able to transform into more than just the cars that have been shown; I mean, we do know that can fly, as that was in the E3 2013 trailer.

Kouichi Mugitani has worked with Monolith Soft in the past; specifically, with character designs in the Xenosaga series, and probably more. Takahashi asked for his assistance in developing some kind of special power that we’ll be seeing in Xenoblade X, and has been producing incredibly detailed designs for the game. Judging from what we’ve seen in the trailers, it looks like these two and the rest of the art team have been doing an excellent job.

November 30th, 2014 – Staff

A new staff member has been introduced, and we’ve learned a little about the design of the alien races.

A screenwriter from the Gundam series, Kazuho Hyodo, has been assisting with the story. He will assist Takeda.

An interesting thing to note is that each of the alien races has a different art team assigned to its design, ensuring that they’ll all be very different from one another. It’s a nice touch, which I really like.

November 25th, 2014 – Staff

Today on Twitter, Takahashi confirmed that the main script writer for the first Xenoblade, Yuichrio Takeda, will be reprising his role for the spiritual sequel.

Takahashi also added that Kiroyuki Sawano will be in charge of the game’s sound, and that Kunihiko Tanaka is in charge of character design. The former has worked on Attack on Titan, while the latter has worked on all previous Xeno games.

November 11th, 2014 – Online

Takahashi confirmed on Twitter that Xenoblade X will have online elements. He gave exactly zero details as to what they entail, however.

He also added that they had launched their official website without first seeking Nintendo permission; thankfully the publisher didn’t mind. They were, however, completely overwhelmed by the fan response to the site and soon had to get some more servers up to handle it.

November 5th, 2014 – Screenshots, Trailer, Gameplay, Story

A Nintendo Direct happened today! We got some new info, screenshots, and of course, a trailer.

The interface on the GamePad is shown in a screenshot below, which was taken from the Direct. There’s a completion rate in the bottom-right corner, which is nice and convenient. Also of note, as pointed out by commentator andyjoe522 at the bottom of this article, is a symbol that appears to be of two people shaking or holding hands, which was the heart-to-heart symbol in the original Xenoblade. While it hasn’t been confirmed, it looks like they’ll be back. I’d be willing to bet that they’d let you shape your custom protagonist’s character, too.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - GamePad Navigation

Quests in Xenoblade X  will have you helping out the citizens of NLA, and some will need to be completed in order to advance the story and build stronger bonds with your allies.

Below is a bunch of screenshots, followed by the trailer from the Direct.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 5 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 10
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 7 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 6
Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 3 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 9
 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 1  Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 8
 Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 2  Xenoblade Chronicles X - Nov 5 Screen 4

You can view the Direct trailer below:

September 3rd, 2014 – Gameplay

Takahashi spoke with Edge magazine, and has said that they will be using the GamePad as a “navigation device”. They’re putting objectives and things on to the GamePad so they’ll be more easily viewable to the player.

Seems like a pretty handy feature to me, and the kind of thing I liked to see the GamePad used for.

August 30th, 2014 – Gameplay

Takahashi has told Edge magazine that the quest interface will be more user-friendly in Xenoblade X than it was for the Wii version of the game. He said that they’ve worked on creating a system which is better able to convey quest objectives.

Objectives and people relevant to quests will be shown on the map. I hope it’s done better than it was in the first Xenoblade, where you only saw people and objectives who were nearby. With all the different times of day, it was incredibly difficult to find all of the quests without a guide.

E3 2014 & Before

E3 2014 is what prompted me to create this post, and it was at E3 2014 that we first got a real glimpse at this game. Before then, very little was known. As such, I’ve decided to just group everything we discovered at E3 2014 with everything we knew beforehand, as well as some analysis. So, have a good, long read!

Xenoblade Chronicles X has been said to be more of a spiritual sequel to the first game. The year is 2054, and war has broken out between two alien races, with Earth as the chosen battlefield. As the planet is decimated by the firefight, humans are seen leaving Earth in giant ships known as Arks in a last-ditch attempt to survive, in a scene which reminded me of the beginning of Xenogears.

They travel for two years before they find the alien race has caught up with them; they are subsequently attacked and pulled into the planet Mira by its gravitational field. I feel like this means we will be attacked by alien races at random points in the game, and will have to fend them off.

The main character is awakened and brought out of their stasis pod by a woman named Elma. This takes place two months after the initial crash into Mira. Elma tells you that the surviving humans have set up their own city here named Neo Los Angeles, or NLA for short. She’s been working for the city finding those still asleep in stasis pods, such as yourself, and then bringing them back. They need to find as many people as quickly as possible, as a large portion of the awakened population is comprised of the military. In order to survive, they’re going to need more specialists; farmers, carpenters, cooks and so on.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - AlienThe main character is completely customisable; even their voice can be changed. As a result, I personally don’t think they’re going to be voiced, as being able to change it would imply multiple voice recordings for one character, which I’m not sure they would have done. I’m also not sure how it would affect the story, and any potential heart-to-hearts, if they exist in Xenoblade X. Time will tell.

In this game, BLADE is an acronym for Beyond the Logos Artificial Destiny Emancipator. I don’t think we’ll be seeing a literal blade in this game, like the Monado in the first one. According to a user on NeoGAF, the Japanese dialogue makes it clear that BLADE is something installed inside a person’s head which allows them to “transcend the word of God” and overwrite their own destiny, which reminds me a lot of Gears. A translation of Elma’s section of the Japanese website, though, states that BLADE is a military organisation she is apart of. Until Nintendo or Monolith Soft make an official statement in English, I’m not sure which to trust more; both of these ideas come from translations in which I’m not certain of their accuracy. Xenoblade Chronicles X - BLADEIt also makes me wonder all kinds of things. Do people in Xenoblade Chronicles X all come pre-programmed with some kind of “destiny”? Were they born with it? Was it put into their head by other people after birth? Or was BLADE invented so that they can overcome their pre-born destiny, which was given to them by God, thus giving them more freedom? The Monado, the blade in the first Xenoblade, allowed Shulk to do this very thing with his visions. This makes it sound like, maybe, more than one person will be able to change the future like Shulk could with his visions in the first game.

I’m not sure whether everyone has the BLADE implants or whether it’s just a select few. They’ve announced that Xenoblade X’s story will be deeper than the “basic” one seen in the original, which is a good thing because after they anounced online play (discussed further below) a friend of mine became convinced that would mean less story and subsequently had a meltdown.

Something I find interesting is that Takahashi has stated that he is finally working on the game he’s always wanted to make, and added that it is a world where he believes humans and robots can exist together peacefully. A couple of speculative things here.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - 60 Percent Xenoblade Chronicles X - 59 Percent

What is this percentage shown in NLA, and why is it counting down? What happens if it reaches zero? I mean, in 2013’s E3 trailer, they took a couple of seconds to cut away and show it going down from 60% to 59%, and I’m wondering why.

I’ve heard it suggested that this percentage relates to the amount of people left inside the stasis pods, so it counts down to zero as you find more people.That’s an idea that I really like, though is in no way confirmed. And it does have a hole poked in it by the January 2015 trailer; the main character is referred to as one of the “final” survivors by Elma, as shown below. If the main character is one of the final survivors, that implies that there won’t be many left to track down on Mira.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Final Survivor Also with NLA, is it going to get completely destroyed at some point? The screens below show a giant machine attacking something whose shape reminds me of your newfound home. Maybe it’s not even NLA; maybe it’s another, similar city on the planet. I’m not sure whether more than one Ark that escaped Earth safely or not; It could even be full of friendly aliens. We just have no idea.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Mech Flying Xenoblade Chronicles X - Attacking City

Those of you who have played the first Xenoblade will be very comfortable with the layout. We have an art palette on which you can put eight arts, and the big circle in the middle is used to initiate the battle. It’s possible to switch from ranged to melee attacks on the fly; I’m not certain how this is done, but from what I saw in the E3 2014 treehouse demos you just select the big circle in the middle.

You do more damage in melee mode than in ranged mode; I would guess that this would come at the cost of taking more damage. Another incentive for using melee attacks is that they fill up your TP gauge faster. Yes; in additon to the cooldowns we saw in Xenoblade, there is also a TP bar that fills up as you auto-attack your foes, like the Talent Gauge in the previous game. So, using arts will put that art into cooldown AND consume some of your TP.

As arts warm up, a little bar travels around the circle. What’s interesting is that this can fill up twice for bonus effects. It could make an attack more powerful, make a buff more potent; an example cited in one of the E3 2014 Treehouse demos was the ability to raise your shield twice in succession. The type of arts that will warm up depend on the weapon you have out; melee attacks will allow melee arts to warm up and halt the progress of ranged arts, while equipping a ranged weapon will put a stopper on melee arts. This will really force you to think about which arts you want to use.

Your allies are able to revive you, and you them, at the cost of 1,000 TP. I also want to note while watching the E3 2014 Treehouse demos I saw that TP doesn’t deplete or increase as you run, but remains at the same level from which it was after your last battle.

Soul Voice in action.
Soul Voice in action.

Quick time events, which were called “Soul Voice” in the E3 2014 demos, can provide buffs to allies; a restoration of health was seen in these demos. This is the only way to restore health; there are no healers in the game. They can be failed, have a success, or be a huge success. As you could probably guess, a huge success has a larger effect than a regular success, and requires precise timing.

Your allies will also yell advice at you as you fight. Following this advice will increase your affinity with your ally and bring up a quick-time event. If you nail the event, it’ll add one bar to your Soul Gauge. There are three Soul Gauge bars in total, and once all three are filled, you gain buffs. There’s a whole sub-menu dedicated to the Soul Gauge; you can select the conditions required to generate the quick-time event, the buffs you’ll be given, and so on.

The Soul Gauge will deplete again at the end of the battle. It can also be depleted mid-battle if you revive an ally; when you use up your 1,000 TP to revive someone, a quick-time event may come up and your ally will have more health restored at the cost of one bar of the Soul Gauge. On the topic of allies, you can have up to three, for a total of four; the character you control, and three AI-controlled members. I imagine this would be because of the online component, and the fact that any online games allow for four players.

While battling, your terrain and position will affect how the fight plays out. Just above and to the right of the arts palette is some text telling you whether you’re at the front, back or the side of the monster, as well as whether you’re above it, below it or on equal (middle) ground. They also said that it’s possible to target certain body parts.

“Unique enemies” will be back, and there will be more than there were in the first game.

Now, in the very first trailer, there was a person in a mech who attacked a monster, and it looked like they lopped part of the beast they were fighting clean off.

In the image below on the left, you can see it before the strike. In the image on the right, it looks like that body part is spinning away. If this is true, I hope that it actually affects the battle in some way. I’m a huge Monster Hunter fan, and probably one of the only things about the series which really bugs me is that breaking monster body parts, with very few exceptions, doesn’t actually affect the fight in any way or really disadvantage the monster. So I really hope it does here.

Xenoblade Chronicles X - Neck Xenoblade Chronicles X - Spinning

Each character has two sets of stats. Their inner stats are those which remain constant and are affected by equipment. Their class stats vary as they swap between classes.

These two different types of stats level up seperately. Each class has its own set of arts (skills), and every character has access to 10 classes including the base one. Each character has their own individual set of classes, and you can change them whenever you want, even mid-battle.

When you level up in one class and learn some of its arts, you can then still put those arts on your palette when you swap to another class. Arts level up and get stronger the more you use them. All of this bodes well for those who love to strategise. Arts can be levelled up using BP, accumulated after battle. Levelling up arts can increase their potency and reduces their cooldown time. Xenoblade Chronicles X - Class Tree

Little has been shown on combat in mechs. There was some seen in the announcement trailer and 2013’s E3 trailer, where they were also shown to be able to morph into vehicles for faster movement. It was shown in February 2014 that you can seemingly run in and out of them at will.

The beasts you find throughout the world will start attacking you under different circumstances, like in the first Xenoblade. Some will not attack unless you attack them first, some will attack if they see or hear you, while others will attack if you pick a fight with one of its buddies nearby. They behave differently under different weather conditions and at different times of the day. There will be special monsters with names that are tougher than regular ones. There will also be enemies way more powerful than you that will hang around early levels that you’ll need to avoid. Xenoblade Chronicles X - Attack

Xenoblade Chronicles X will contain online multiplayer. What exactly it entails, we don’t yet know, though I suspect it will be cooperative play as opposed to PvP. I can imagine there being quests where you can go online with your friends to find stasis pods and run errands for the citizens of NLA. An interesting thing to note is that in the announcement trailer, there is what appears to be a chat box in the bottom-right corner.

I hope it has unified servers; I have a number of good friends in North America that I’d like to play with. Xenoblade Chronicles X - Chatbox

That’s everything I have at the moment. Following this is a bunch of trailers, and a link to the official website and the Twitter. Have fun!

Trailers

Announcement trailer:

E3 2013 trailer:

Battle demonstration trailer:

E3 2014 Trailer:

E3 2014 Nintendo Treehouse Demo 1:

E3 2013 Nintendo Treehouse Demo 2:

November 2014 Nintendo Direct trailer:

January 2015 Nintendo Direct Exploration Trailer:

February 2015 Overworld Exploration Trailer (English subtitles are by a fan; if you want to see them, ensure subtitles are turned on):

February 2015 NLA tour:

February 2015 Customisation Trailer:

February 2015 Doll View Trailer:

February 2015 Weather Trailer:

March 2015 Battle Direct

March 2015 Battle Trailer

March 2015 Creature Trailer

March 2015 Overclock Gear Trailer

April 2015 Doll & Network Nintendo Direct:

April 2015 17 Minute OST Preview:

April 2015 Doll Customisation Trailer:

April 2015 Overview Trailer:

April 2015 Doll Travel Trailer:

April 2015 Overview Trailer End (Fan Subbed):

April 2015 Story Trailer (Fan Subbed):

April 2015 Western Nintendo Direct:

April 2015 Treehouse Stream:

April 2015 Multiplayer Gameplay:

E3 2015 Nintendo Direct Trailer:

E3 2015 Treehouse Playthrough, Day 2:

E3 2015 Treehouse Playthrough, Day 3:

PAX Prime 2015: Xenoblade Chronicles X Panel:

Offical website: http://xenobladex.jp/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/XenobladeJP

Last updated: January 10th 2016 at 10:44 AEST.

5 thoughts on “Everything We Know About Xenoblade Chronicles X”

  1. One thing I would like to mention is that there is already evidence that heart-to-hearts will be returning. If you notice on the gamepad screen that they showed in the last Nintendo Direct, one of the icons on the map resembles a handshake between two people, which was the logo for heart-to-hearts in the original game. The icon in question is located just to the right of the gold-badge icon in the middle of the screen. Here’s a picture of it to give you a better look.

    1. Sorry, but I can’t seem to see it. Can you point out where in the image it is?

      EDIT: Never mind, saw that you DID point it out. I’ll add it into the article in a bit; playing a spot of Monster Hunter 4G at the moment.

      EDIT 2: Added that in with an image. Also mentioned you. Thanks!

  2. Thanks a lot for this ! It’s a really good idea to make an article with all we know about it ! I’m really excited about this game, I think I’ll buy a wii U just for that game !

    Also, if there are heart to hearts, I hope it will mean our character will have real interactions with others, just like in xenoblade chronicles !
    (Since it will be a custom made character).

    Anyway good job, I’ll come back here for the next news !

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