Sometimes, in a great, great while, you play a game that is Legendary. One that, you know as you are experiencing it, people will talk about and play for years to come.
Xenoblade: Chronicles is one of these games.
It isn’t simple to create a masterpiece like this. Xenoblade’s staff have crafted RPG’s for almost two decades, and this fine polish shines like a diamond.
It is, firmly, a JRPG. You are here to watch a story unfold, an epic tale of battles between gods. The story will get you, and it doesn’t start out stupidly trite like most JRPG’s.
The graphics are, quite contrary to the Wii’s reputation, fantastic. It is truly breathtaking to be in the Lungs of the Bionis, surrounded by killer monster antibodies while blood cells whir around above your head. Or the view from the Knee, looking up to the head, it is truly immense and all rendered right there in front of you. Everything is gorgeous, the monsters look menacing, the dungeons ominous. The weather is rendered in real time, and changes dynamically as you wander. These areas, by the way, are gigantic, literally the whole of the Mechonis is one giant dungeon, which you travel to the top. I found myself progressing when I didn’t really want to, because I had to see Sword Valley or The Heart of the Bionis. It’s scale and size are mind blowing, and threw my expectations even from trailers out of the window.
The combat is an expansion of Sands of Destruction. Imagine that game in 3d, add a dash of MMO logic, and you pretty much nail Xenoblade. The triforce of healing, damage, and tanking is very much there, though late in the game the line begins to blur a lot. A certain character indeed can tank whilst doing a ton of damage, something I think should be more prevalent in game such as these.
If you are a fan of either Xenogears, or any of Monolith-soft’s works like Sands, you will find Xenoblade a beloved son of these. If you own a Wii and haven’t tried JRPG’s, I would highly recommend this to you, this is an immense project that really shows the genre in a way we won’t see again soon.
It is available in April at Nintendo.com and Gamestop.