Xenoblade Chronicles 2 gets more information with its own Nintendo Direct.
The game was first revealed during E3 2017 and received a follow up trailer during the Nintendo Direct presentation on September 13, 2017. The trailer during the direct detailed the game’s world of Alrest, where kingdoms live on the backs of colossal Titans. Fighters known as Drivers are granted special powers from support characters known as Blades. As you attack, you will build up Driver Arts which unleash different effects such as doing extra damage or causing HP potions to appear. Blades can further support Drivers with Blade Arts from a safe distance. You can also switch and summon new Blades by using Core Crystals through a process known as Blade Resonance. You can take up to three Blades to battle, with each one being either a Healer, Attacker, or Defender type. Using Arts fills up the Special Gauge, which can be expended to activate devastating attacks.
The presentation this time gave us a better overview of the game’s story. After Rex was murdered by Torna Kingdom leader Jin, his Blade Pyra gave him half of her life force on the condition that he take her to Elysium, a hidden world of plenty.
We also got some more info about the gameplay, in addition to what we learned from the Nintendo Direct in September. We learned that Blades have effects outside of battle such as revealing items and new paths. Blades have different elemental effects and weapon types. Aux Cores increase the stats of Blades when equipped and Core Chips upgrade weapons while changing their appearance. Accessories can boost the stats of Drivers in the same way Aux Cores can for Blades. Every Blade has an Affinity Chart, a skill tree that increases ad Blades get to know their Drivers. Drivers can increase their affinity with Blades by going to Heart-to-Heart locations on the map. Drivers’ skills and Arts can be upgraded via EXP. Unwanted Blades can be dispatched on their own missions in Mercenary Groups to acquire EXP, Gold, items, and increased affinity with the mercenary Blades. Placing acquired items in a party member’s pouch can greatly boost stats.
Pyra can change into Mythra, granting Rex an extra blade. The combination of Blades you bring to battle changes a Driver’s class which effects bonuses earned. Each weapon class has four Driver Arts and you choose three of them to bring into battle. That combined with three Blades per Driver means that Drivers have access to nine different Arts. Allies wait for you to activate their specials. Driver Combos are performed by chaining arts together and can break an enemy’s defenses and make them unable to attack. Blade Combos chain Specials together, and if you chain Specials of the same elemental type together you can do more damage and inflict more effects on the opponent and cause an Elemental Orb to appear. Fusion Combos are when Blade Combos are activated while a Driver combo is in effect. Party Gauge can be expended to revive allies or unleash a Chain Attack where allies activate Specials one after another.
We also got some more information about exploring the world. Our heroes will be traveling through plains, forests, tundras, and more. Different animals appear at different times, and can engage in rituals and other behaviors in the world. Strong enemies can be fought again for additional awards via their tombstones after defeating them. Collection Points in the world map grant you items for quests, unlocking new abilities, or powering Aux Cores. Salvage Points can earn you extra items in the world along with more animals to fight. Landmarks in the world can be fast traveled to, and there are secret ones as well. You can change the in-game time. HUD elements can be customized, such as removing the mini map. Towns contain places to shop at and townsfolk have quests for you to complete.
There’s an 8 bit minigame called Tiger Tiger that you can play to boost the stats of the Blade Poppi. You can also change Poppi’s elemental type.
There will be free dlc on launch day allowing you to play the game with the Japanese voiceover with English subtitles.
The game will be released on December 1, 2017 for Nintendo Switch. Pre purchase is available now for both the game and its season pass. The season pass includes a new challenge battle mode, a new side story, and more. Everything included in the season pass is listed below:
You can get Rex’s costume in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild with a new side quest in the game starting November 9.
The game releases with a special edition Nintendo Switch Pro Controller as well as the game’s own special edition which includes a soundtrack, metal game case, and art book.