Xenoblade Chronicles 3

released on Jul 29, 2022

A vast world awaits in Xenoblade Chronicles 3, the next game in the acclaimed RPG series from developer Monolithsoft. Players will step into the roles of protagonists Noah and Mio amid turmoil between the hostile nations of Keves and Agnus. Six characters hailing from those nations will take part in a grand tale with “life” as its central theme. Explore a new world that will connect the futures of both Xenoblade Chronicles and Xenoblade Chronicles 2.


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Xenogears is one of my favorite Jrpgs of all time, its script is excellent and mindblowing at times and the scope of its world was insane at the time, having played it, i was not a fan of the modernized Xenoblade formula, i enjoyed Xenoblade 1 but i was very disappointed in Xenoblade 2 to the point where i was on the verge of giving up on any feature titles from this franchise, however after Xenoblade 3 successful release i decided to give the series another go and ultimately i didn't regret it, the game overall was worthwhile.
To go straight to my verdict on the game elements i will skip indepth details and write a summary-like quick thoughts.
Tech:
- From a technical point i had close to no issues on the game, it runs well and performance is good.
- Sound design and OST: excellent, there's a little issue here which was that certain tacks got repetitive like the combat and chain attack one, but otherwise the music was nice.
- Visuals: low on graphics power due to hardware limitation, gorgeous world and landscape design, good art-style, character design is a bit generic and bland.
The Writing:
a) Story: grand, epic, adventurous, a bit messy, doesnt know what it wants to be, pacing too slow, moments that contradict gameplay, bloated with filler content that goes nowhere, falls off hard from chapter 5 finale and towards the end due to inconsistencies in the plot and failure to keep up with the interesting themes after the mystery reveal.
b) Characters: mostly okay, few uninteresting faces, few underdeveloped ones but mostly good, the villains on the other hand are so bad. (Note: Time-travel stories with reset button more often than not damages character development heavily)
c) World-Building: okay for the most part, develops upon prior world knowledge and lore that tracks back the the older titles. I would've appreciated a more multilayered dive on its world themes rather than total reliance on previous established ones.
d) Dialogue: juvenile and very teenage focused, writing makes nonsense statements, like how ethel is strong when she doesnt deal damage - situations like this, dialogue tries hard to shove meaningful statements at points where it feels unnatural. Overall; not bad but full of padded text and could be cut by a significant margin.
// Story relies too much on cutscenes to convey its storytelling which is not a good sign, could use a bit of storytelling in form of a game //
One another side-point is that i heard so much praise for Chapter 5 and i was very excited to reach it, as supposedly it was the peak of the game. While its truly a wonderfully executed cutscene that did deliver on the emotional and presentation level, the writing felt cheesy, too many plotholes, the time reset, the lucky seven sudden reveal at the right time, the stakes that could only be described as fake tension, and the conclusion of the chapter all were disappointing and didn't live up to their hype. The peak of the game i would say is Chapter 3 to 5. After it reaches the finale of Chapter 5 the story goes downhill and never really recovers.
Chapter 5 also contains a lot of filler and boring quests where i was running doing prison tasks that felt incredibly padded and waste of time, which is another point why its not really as peak fiction lol as its reputation suggests.
The Gameplay:
a) Combat: meat of the game, enemies lack mechanical variety, limitation of different attacks patterns, they feel similar, mostly change color and level and sometimes shape, hp bloat, however interesting design concepts, a lot of enemies to defeat, chain attacks is the best part of the combat by the end i was dishing out insane amount of damage. overall, a decent battle system
b) Level/World Design: mostly alright, a bit bloated (mobs) and empty(content), a lot of handholding, but other than that gives meaningful tools to traverse, good backtracking and so-so rewarding system. Gives a good sense of scale with its vast
and varied landscape, chapter 5 sea region is a highlight.
c) RPG mechanics: most of the loot is not useful, crafting feels meaningless, too much collectable bloat, no use for money, few uses for the good loot you get, overall weak on the exploration side. Good amount of class customization but has one annoying aspect which is the skill mastery that you get, the customization of accessories and gems are alright, could use more depth but mostly is ok.
d) Quest Design: a mixed bag of great side quests and poor fetch quests, the ones with the tag Hero Quests are often very good and deserve your time, they offer a hero to use entire new class with good rewards and explore the world and the characters even more, the collectable and standard quests are just boring fetch quests that should be skipped and are more or less an excuse to just fight more monsters.
e) Interactive systems: outside of combat, barely anything to do, you just walk and talk, craft and collect, no other system than the battle system.
// The gameplay is decent for what it is but it also could use a lot of improvements, its a stronger highlight than its writing counterpart and its the best in the whole Xenoblade Chronicles series but is still far from its true potential. //
Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is a decent back to form by Monolith, and is a game that offers as much interesting and great stuff as it also offers flawed and poorly executed stuff, in my opinion the series has yet to reach its true potential and is still a long way from reaching the peak of its original in terms of scope and script power.
6/10

I appreciate the clear effort and passion put into these games. the world is pretty stunning, and the characters are fun.. but in terms of gameplay, i just don't know if these games are for me, unfortunately.

Nach den ersten fünf Kapiteln war ich der Meinung, dass Xenoblade Chronicles 3 der beste Teil der Reihe sein könnte. Schon bis dahin hatte ich viel Freude mit der symphytischen Gruppe von jungen Erwachsenen, die sich aufmacht um gemeinsam nach Antworten zu suchen. Die sechs Helden reisen zusammen, interagieren miteinander, entwickeln sich individuell weiter und haben am Ende des Tages jeder sein eigenes Päckchen zu tragen. Auf einmal wird die Story dann aber richtig dramatisch, die cutscenes
Die Welt ist groß, für Switch Verhältnisse echt hübsch und mit einer interessanten Geschichte versehen. Es geht um Krieg, das Hinterfragen des großen "Warum?", den Sinn und Wert des Leben und die Last des Älterwerdens. Das World Building ist wie immer phänomenal und schafft es erneut, eine lorereiche Fantasy Welt zu erklären ohne dafür auf lange Monologe eines Erzählers angewiesen zu sein. Das Voice Acting (habe auf englisch gespielt) ist das beste bisher in einem Xenoblade Spiel. Wenn Harry McEntire in einer gewissen Szene so richtig aufdrehen darf, dann klingt das zum ersten Mal in einem Xenoblade Spiel richtig gut. Trotzdem geht der Charme der "Anime Charaktere mit britischem Akzent" dabei nicht verloren.
Nach dem fünfen Kapitel fällt die Handlung jedoch leider im Vergleich zu den Vorgängern ab. Während Xenoblade 1 und 2 sich für das Ende krasse Plottwists aufgehoben hatten, wartet man nach dem sechsten der insgesamt sieben Kapitel vergeblich auf neue Enthüllungen. Ein Schlüsselcharakter tritt auf und erklärt WER der Bösewicht ist, WO der Bösewicht ist und WAS passiert, wenn man den Bösewicht besiegt. Und genau so spielt sich das siebte Kapitel dann ab. Bis auf kleinere Vorkommnisse passiert hier leider nichts mehr Unerwartetes. In den Vorgängern kamen hier noch einmal große Wendungen zum Vorschein, die das ganze fiktive Weltbild gründlich auf den Kopf stellten. Darüber hinaus sind die beiden letzten Kapitel mit Fillercontent überfrachtet. Es ergibt sich dadurch insgesamt der Eindruck als habe es für das Finale des Spiels an Zeit, Geld und Ideen gefehlt.
Das Ende ist dann aber immerhin wieder richtig gut und schön dramatisch.
Auch das Kampfsystem ist wie immer nicht perfekt. Während es im Vergleich zum Vorgänger zwar wieder etwas komplexer ist (was mich sehr gefreut hat), fühlte es sich auf höheren Schwierigkeitsgraden etwas unbalanced an. Wirklich Damage machen nur die sog. Chain Attacks, bei denen das Kampfsystem kurzzeitig in ein Rundensystem wechselt, bei dem alle aktiven Charaktere abwechselnd Fähigkeiten auf den hilflosen Gegner einsetzen können. Dort kommen mit etwas Glück riesige Schadensmengen zusammen. Im späteren Spiel wird das Kämpfen dadurch jedoch etwas eintönig. Gefühlt versucht man nur so lange zu Überleben bis die Leiste für die Chain Attack wieder aufgeladen ist und man dem Boss das nächste Stück HP abziehen kann. Die normalen Angriffe machen hingegen kaum Damage. Es sei jedoch gesagt, dass dies auf niedrigeren Schwierigkeitsgraden anders sein könnte.
Insgesamt ist Xenoblade Chronicles 3 trotz der angesprochenen Schwächen ein wirklich gutes Spiel und steht, wenn überhaupt, nur leicht hinter seinen Vorgängern. Ich bin schon sehr gespannt auf das angekündigte Story DLC und hoffe, dass es mehr in Richtung "Future Connected" als "Torna the golden country" gehen wird. Bis dahin kann man das Hauptspiel aber durchaus empfehlen.

The most game of all time. Such a huge letdown from the previous games. Worse gameplay than 2, no good music and the villains are terrible and the two main characters (Noah and Mio) are so bland

The most game of all time. Such a huge letdown from the previous games. Worse gameplay than 2, no good music and the villains are terrible and the two main characters (Noah and Mio) are so bland