Yes, the Nintendo Wii had lots of shovelware but there was one game that just about defined the JRPG in that generation and that was Xenoblade Chronicles. We received a sequel of sorts on the Wii U, which never quite reached the same heights as the original game. Next up is the much anticipated official sequel to Xenoblade, aptly named Xenoblade Chronicles 2.
We still have no release date, though the first bit of gameplay we have below shows off the battle system and how it’s been tweaked. They dive right into battle with Rex as the main protagonist. Nia and Tora join him, along with that they call ‘Blades’ (Pyra, Kaibyaku, Kisaragi) adding their own elemental attributes. Where you strike an opponent (from the side or back) will still play a big part in its overall structure, but you now deal more damage when standing still as opposed to when you’re moving and striking. The healing system has also been switched up from what we expect of a traditional Xenoblade game. Instead of waiting for your healing Art levels to refill you’ll quite literally strike health out of opponents by having bottles of potions dropping. Any character that runs into it heals up a portion of their health bar.
From there it moves on to the blade types and the elemental arts attached to each weapon. There are three blade types namely sword, spear and axe that corresponds with the Switch D-Pad. Each blade comes with either fire, wind and ice elements, which means you’ll be swapping out between weapons mid-battle to deal the most damage possible depending on your foe.
The long gameplay session moves into some exploring and you get a good look at the world. It’s going to be a little different in Xenoblade 2 and will require some basic puzzle solving. For example, you need access to a door but thanks to the water levels being too high in a dam you can’t reach it. According to the developer he used a fire blade to create a waterfall nearby that has the water level dropping and thus you can now get access to a new area. The worlds are, as expected, huge and beautiful. Like the original game the fight will be taking place on some kind of huge titan, but instead of it being based on the outside of it you’ll be scaling it from the inside. The developers go into much more detail, so be sure to set aside your lunch break to watch everything below.