Videogame Review: Xenoblade

Xenoblade

The only thing I really liked about Xenoblade and what stood out the most was this:

Not surprising because this ending theme is the only musical piece by Yasunori Mitsuda. The ending theme makes up for the heart-warming feeling that Xenoblades lack in its ending.

Xenoblade does not live up to the hype–acclaimed as the best JRPG of this generation. I haven’t played JRPGs of this generation but all I know is, it is mediocre compared to last generation’s JRPGs/RPGs. Yet I post it on this blog because I’ve been looking forward to it and it’s from Monolith Soft. It isn’t a poorly done videogame and is worth the time, just not up to my expectations. If this is the best JRPG of this generation, then I can only imagine how terrible other JRPGs are.

Xenoblade took god knows how long until I became a little more interested in the game. To be exact, the point where Alvis saves Shulk through a mysterious encounter, enabling Shulk to reconnect with Dunban. I never developed a love for or interest in the characters, only a small interest enough in its story. The problem with Xenoblade from the start is that there wasn’t much to love such as the town and characters. Hence, once tragedies happen, they bore little heartache for me.

There are grand themes similar to Tetsuya Takahashi’s earlier RPG’s Xenogears and Xenosaga, however, these themes are not executed as well as the aforementioned. There is a lack of scale despite grandiose themes of man versus machine and man versus god(s). The music is good but none of them stirs my heart. They often are whimsical and tries to be emotional but does not evoke any emotions. Had Yasunori Mitsuda been hired as the main composer, the music would have turned out differently–much fonder.

Other tidbits:
- Even the most serious scenes are ruined by Riki’s yapping. Can anything be more annoying than the Nopon? And people thought Chu-Chu from Xenogears was worthless…
- Sidequests and Affinity are pointless. Sidequests should supplement the game, driving the story further
- Xenoblade lacked those fun puzzles every RPG has
- Kallian is most princely *swoon* (sorry, just fan-girling)

I am in the minority with my negative review, but my stance is justified by Tetsuya Takahashi’s statement in an interview his goal of producing a videogame anyone can like. Producing an RPG anyone can like means the game is diluted for the masses while alienating those with higher expectations. It has also been said by Tetsuya that Xenoblade is only 5% of what Monolith Soft can produce and they aim to produce better games than Xenoblade. If so, I await for that day. For an RPG that can surpass Xenogears. Despite my negative review, I’m proud that Tetsuya Takahashi created RPGs viewed as the best in both this and last generation: Xenoblade and Xenogears, respectively.

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Comments (2) Write a comment

  1. Shame you didn’t like it, one of my favorite games, I couldn’t stop playing. The music is beautiful and I have the soundtrack too.

    Reply

    • I’m glad that you loved it. Have you played Monolith Soft’s other RPG’s and Tetsuya’s Xenogears? I just had different expectations for Xenoblade.

      Reply

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