Xenoblade Chronicles 2
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
This article may reveal major plot points, especially considering the game had either been released recently or not in specific countries yet.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is a action-role playing game by Monolith Soft and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch.
Rex, a young salvager, is hired by Argentum Trade Guild Chairman Bana to aid a group of people— Jin, Malos, Nia, and their Blades— in the salvage of an ancient ship. Going inside, they find Pyra, an especially powerful Blade known as an Aegis. When Rex reaches out to touch the sword in front of her, Jin fatally stabs him. He awakens on a field and is introduced to Pyra, who asks him to be her Driver and bring her to Elysium and gives him half of her core crystal to revive him. With help from Gramps, Rex's Titan companion, and a defected Nia, they manage to escape. However, Gramps is wounded and reverts to his larval stage. Soon after, they meet and are joined by Tora, a Nopon inventor, and Poppi, an artificial Blade invented by him. The group try to get to the World Tree, only to be stopped by a monster known as an Artifice named Ophion. While searching for a way past him, they get embroiled in the rising tensions between Mor Ardain and Uraya. They also learn that Jin and Malos are the leaders of Torna, a terrorist group named after a Titan destroyed in the Aegis War 500 years ago. Consisting of Flesh Eaters, which are Blades infused with human cells, they seek to destroy humanity by unleashing the most powerful Artifice, Aion, on the World Tree; after which Jin and Malos plan to kill the Architect. During a battle with Malos, Pyra unleashes her true form, Mythra, and switches between the two numerous times.
The group's search for a way past Ophion leads them to join forces with Drivers Morag and Zeke and the Indoline Praetorium, which controls distribution of control crystals and its leader, Amalthus, who is Malos' Driver. They learn that he unleashed Malos, another Aegis, after stealing his and Mythra's core crystals from the World Tree, starting the Aegis War with Malos' rampage, though he claims it was unintentional, with another Driver, Addam, unleashing Mythra to stop him. When the ensuing battle destroyed three Titans, Mythra created Pyra to seal away her power before Addam sealed her away. Unlike other Blades, Aegises are able to maintain their bodies and memories after their Drivers' deaths. After Amalthus attempts peace talks between the two nations, the group stops an assassination attempt by a warmongering Bana, during which Nia reveals her status as a Flesh Eater. Soon after, in another battle, Jin threatens Rex's life to force Pyra to surrender. Malos, weakened in the Aegis War, syphons her power to restore himself to full strength. Gramps leads the group to the third Aegis sword and Addam appears to Rex, deeming him worthy. Armed with this new power, they confront Jin and Malos at cliffs near the World Tree. Despite Pyra revealing that she wanted to go to Elysium to ask the Architect for death, Rex convinces her to not give up, forcing Malos to summon Ophion, who knocks them all into the abyss beneath the Tree.
In the Land of Morytha, the group is forced to work with a weakened Jin. He reveals that Amalthus destroyed Torna after the Aegis War to destroy the Aegis, unaware that Addam had already sealed Mythra away, resulting in Jin and Malos forming the group after the former lost his Driver, Lora, and consumed her heart to retain his memories. It was also Amalthus' hatred for humanity, fuelled by his mother's murder, that contributed to Malos' malicious nature in the first place. Planning to destroy the World Tree and by extension, the world, Amalthus unleashes a devastating attack. The group severs his connection to them, only for him to take his true form and kill all Torna members except Jin and Malos, who goes ahead. Jin uses the last of his strength to kill Amalthus before fading away. The group arrives in Elysium, a massive space station, and meet the Architect, a scientist named Klaus. He explains that he discovered a device called the Conduit which sends objects into different dimensions, the use of which resulted in his body being split in two, one half going to another dimension, as well as the destruction of his world.
To atone for his mistake, he created the world around them, bringing them into existence through evolution, with Blades created to maintain the established cycle of Life. However, he was so disappointed when humanity started acting as they did in his home that he didn't intervene when Amalthus stole the core crystals. Sensing that his other half is about to die, which will result in his own death, and finally seeing the good in humanity through them, he sends them to stop Malos, who fights them using the weapon Aion. The group manages to defeat Aion and defeat Malos, who admits that he wishes he'd met Rex earlier. After saying this, Malos dies. Before Klaus dies, he grants Rex and the party 'one final gift.' After doing so Klaus dies, resulting in the Conduit shutting off and the World Tree begins to crumble, which will destroy Alrest. Pyra gets the rest of the group out, as she must sacrifice herself to use Aion to safely detonate the World Tree. Rex is greatly distraught by this, but he and everyone else leave and barely survive the detonation when Gramps, thanks to Pyra, returns to his normal size and flies everyone down. As the Cloud Sea fades, they all watch the other Titans come together to form a new landmass. Pyra/Mythra's core crystal, restored previously, unleashes her and Mythra, now separate, who reunite with Rex.
Why It Rocks
- Very beautiful and incredible graphics and environments. Thanks to the incredible art direction from variety of artists like Tetsuya Nomura.
- Good voice acting with certain characters from certain dubs. While the English Dub isn't too good, it isn't terrible, as there as some good voices (like Nia), some decent acting at times, and it does improve later on in the game.
- Solid and good controls.
- The cutscenes in this game are full of action and humor. There are also great emotional moments as well.
- The game takes over 100 hours to complete, with lots of story-driven experiences.
- Amazing soundtrack composed by Yasunori Mitsuda, Kenji Hiramatsu, and Manami Kiyota. It would make you want to try to get it to your head or play the levels longer to listen to the music, or even go to YouTube and download the music on your computer, phone or tablet.
- Tons of fun bosses.
- Lots of likeable and awesome characters.
- Fun and good DLC that added mechanics to keep things enjoyable.
- The Skill RAM “Shackle Blade Resist” I – V have been added as parts you can create via Poppiswap.
- An Easy mode has been added through a free update.
- The ability to acquire the Rare Blade, Crossette is now available via the Expansion Pass.
- A core crystal is available that will guarantee bonding with Crossette. Crossette possesses the following characteristics:
- Weapon type: Ball
- Element: Fire
- Role: Recovery Crossette
- The fourth and final round of DLC quests is now available via the Expansion Pass.
- The difficulty levels “Bringer of Chaos” and “Custom” have been added to the game options as a means of supporting your adventures in the Expansion Pass content.
- With the difficulty level set to “Custom,” a maximum of 10 parameters related to battle such as enemy attack power and max HP and Party Gauge Gains can be adjusted as you see fit.
- Selecting the default settings when using “Custom” difficulty will be equivalent to playing at the Normal difficulty level.
- These additional difficulty levels are not available when selecting difficulty for a New Game. After beginning the game, they will be available in the game options under “New Difficulty Levels.”
- The difficulty levels “Bringer of Chaos” and “Custom” have been added to the Challenge Battle: Nopondemonium in the Expansion Pass.
- The ability to change the battle music when fighting unique monsters to the track “You Will Know Our Names” from the original Xenoblade Chronicles has been added to the game options in the selection “Special BGM.”
- To listen to this alternate music, you must first have one of the characters Shulk or Fiora in your party. (Shulk and Fiora are available via the Expansion Pass)
- This functionality is added automatically by updating the Expansion Pass and is set to “Enabled” by default.
- Nopon crystals can now be exchanged for additional items in the Challenge Battle: Nopondemonium, available via the Expansion Pass.
- In addition to items that will slightly alter a character’s outfit, there are now also items that will improve Tora’s “Idea” level.
- Select “Gift from Zuo 2” then “Nopon Invitation” after choosing Expansion Pass on the Main Menu to make these additional items available.
- Check marks have been added next to any items you already possess when viewing the item list while exchanging Nopon crystals for items in Challenge Battle: Nopondemonium.
- The difficulty of the Expansion Pass Challenge Battle, “Attack of the Aspar” has been adjusted.
- Yackle Aspars, who appear when playing on Easy will get a smaller amount of HP when leveling up.
- The mercenary quests give you special bonuses after each completion.
- Some poor and mediocre English voice acting, due to bad voice direction, despite the voice acting improving later on in the game. An example is Rex's infamous scream.
- The dialogue in the game can sound really awkward especially with its occasional use of millennial slang. This is especially in the case with English subtitles.
- The minimap can be confusing to navigate sometimes.
- Some people rather find the combat system boring. As a matter of fact, in comparison to the previous entries of Xenoblade Chronicles, you cannot Auto-Attack while moving!
- In addition, while the bosses are awesome, you fight the same bosses over and over again with just some buffs and debuffs, which can get repetitive.
- Just like Another JRPG, The story, while good, has some unresolved plot-holes.
- Mythra can sometimes act a bit unlikable.