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Jesse Woo
Here's Everything You Want to Know From the Xenoblade Chronicles X Stream
It's big, and it's beautiful.
02.07.15 - 6:55 AM

We have all the latest details on Xenoblade Chronicles X, fresh off the live-stream event Friday morning. First is a virtual tour of humanity's new home on the planet Mira, New Los Angeles or NLA for short. As humans have only recently crash landed on Mira, NLA is the safe haven and base from which the new arrivals launch their exploration. The city is split into four sections, each with a distinct function and architectural feel.

The industrial section is where the private military organization BLADE creates the latest tech and Dolls (mechs). It also houses various factories and food processing centers to make consumer goods for civilian life.

The commercial section hosts shops, restaurants, and other commercial venues designed to allow NLA citizens to relax, and possibly forget the fact that they are stranded on a hostile alien planet. The architecture is meant to emulate 21st century Earth and so should look very familiar. Similarly, the residential area is where the people live. It is also designed to evoke the planet that they left behind.

Finally, the BLADE headquarters lies at the center of the city. BLADE is responsible for protecting the city and exploring Mira, and the headquarters is members gather, assign quests, and manage equipment.

However, quests come from several other sources outside of BLADE HQ. Just as in the original Xenoblade Chronicles, players can accept quests from the numerous citizens of NLA. Doing so will strengthen bonds between citizens and may lead to more quests and story exposition. The relationship chart makes a comeback to help track this aspect of questing.

Your main responsibility as a BLADE member is to find other humans who escaped the crash landing on the planet but remain cryogenically frozen. They are scattered around in pods called "Life Points." Further, the Frontier Net exploration system will help you map the planet as you search for these Life Points. The world map will display on the Wii U gamepad and be divide into a field of hexagonal "segments." Frontier Net Spots, denoted by a beacon of light from the ground, allow players to collect data on surrounding hexes using a Data Probe. Using the Data Probe will place indicators on the hexes telling you what missions are available, such as defeating monsters or gathering treasure. Probes can also be modified to provide boosts like increasing your power in combat or granting resources. Further, exploring the world will have ripple effects in NLA, as unlocking new areas will dynamically alter the conversations of the city's inhabitants.

Speaking of world exploration, the stream showed just how vast and diverse the planet Mira is. The planet has five different continents with very different environments. The first is currently just known as the Starting Field, and it is a large open field around New Los Angeles. The second is the Forest of Nightglow, which is a large tropical-looking forest with many strange creatures. The Valley of Oblivion is a desert surrounded by stark rock formations, and the Continent of Black Steel is a volcanic, mountainous area filled with lava pits. Finally, the Continent of White Trees is the most alien area, full of strange rock formations and white-sand deserts. For a better look, check out our updated gallery that features screens from each continent.

Further, players will have some tools to help them get around this massive expanse of land. Characters can dash and jump, but if that isn't fast enough they can teleport using the Data Probes on the gamepad. A luminescent Navigation Ball will help the directionally challenged find their objectives, and the Camera Hopper will launch into the sky for a bird's eye view of the surroundings. Of course, hopping into a giant mechanized Doll is the coolest way to travel, but only licensed BLADE members can pilot them, and it will take some time to acquire the license.

The variety extends to creatures players will encounter on Mira. There are the obvious monsters of all sizes, including some with special names and strength that will likely be the subject of quests. Veterans of Xenoblade Chronicles will recognize the Nopon, but there is also the blue-haired humanoid Lu-Sylphe race to contend with. One of them, named Luu, is a strange but friendly artist who tries to make a living from his art.

The Manon are a friendly race of technology geniuses that are also aliens to the planet (left). The Vaias (right), on the other hand, are hostile aliens out to eradicate humanity.

If all this sounds overwhelming, players won't have to experience the world by themselves. The game allows parties of up to four players to complete quests together via online multiplayer. In addition, up to 32 players may exchange information and trade items, presumably in some sort of online lobby. A 22.7GB digital download version is also available and is said to provide the best, most seamless experience with no loading. However, Monolith Soft has also promised a seamless experience for those who have a physical disk.

Xenoblade Chronicles X comes to the Japanese Wii U on April 29th. In addition, the digital release will be available at 11PM the night before, so those who opt to download the game will be able to play it on time with everyone else. In case you missed it earlier, you can catch the video with all the info below, and our gallery here.




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