Another Xenoblade Arrives

What do RPG enthusiasts do when a new RPG arrives? They become more enthusiastic, right? Well, I’m excited and happy to share that I recently received a new game in my mailbox. It comes at a good time because another game in the series is set to arrive in September this year, and it’s one that I’m sure many are excited for.

So an RPG that has been on my wishlist for a long time is now on my backlog, sitting on a shelf in my bedroom: Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition. Yesssss!

I fired up the game last night on my Switch for the intro and opening scenes, scratching the itch to see it in action and get a sample of what’s to come. So far, it feels and looks just like its counterpart for the Wii U, Xenoblade Chronicles X. But the game already seems like it has a much better story setup and more interesting characters than XCX. So with that sweet sample, I’m eager to sink 100 hours into it; I’ve never played the first Xenoblade before.

As mentioned, though, Xenoblade must wait on my backlog a little longer while I finish Bravely Default II and Octopath Traveler. That said, it can’t wait long because the newest game in the series, Xenoblade Chronicles 3, will release six months from now. It would be nice to play through the first game before playing the third; actually, I’ve heard so much greatness about Xenoblade that I’ve got to play it regardless of any others in the series. As for the XC2, I’ve never tried it…but I have played XCX and very much enjoy it (sadly, I didn’t finish it and hope it eventually ports to Switch, though I don’t think it will).

With so much Xenoblade gaming goodness, there’s much to be excited for. As I look forward to playing the definitive Xenoblade, I’m sure many players are anticipating XC3; the preview looks very good.

If you’ve played Xenoblade, let me ask this - during combat, which do you find yourself looking at more: the action or the arts bar? I find myself watching the arts bar most, waiting for cool downs to complete and then selecting an art. It bugs me because I miss out on the gorgeous enemy models and cool special effects; much of the action flies by. More important, it’s hard to simultaneously observe when and where to maneuver as my party auto-attacks and the enemy becomes aggro.

This is something I want to master, and it’s similar to the challenge I embraced in Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch. I find hybrid action RPGs fun yet challenging because I must watch so much at once. Playing on semi-auto, my eyes flick back and forth between dynamic action and static menus, making selections at the right time while my fingers maneuver characters around a 3D arena for optimal combat engagement. This contrasts with turn-based battle systems that I prefer; they allow time to observe the enemy and party status, select the best menu item, and then watch everything play out.

Are you eager for Xenoblade Chronicles 3 to arrive? What’s your favorite Xenoblade game so far?