Like you probably know by now, Xenoblade Chronicles X includes a feature that allows players to obtain and fly a large mech suit known as a “Skell”.
According to senior director and chief creative officer Tetsuya Takahashi, while talking with IGN, it takes about 30 hours of gameplay before Skells become available to the player.
Here’s what he had to say:
“The reason we decided to do that was because the scale of the game changes once you get a Skell. We wanted to make sure that the initial difficulties you might have had maneuvering across terrain or trying to figure out how to reach a certain spot would be something you had a full sense of before you got the Skell.”
“We didn’t want people to be able to zip towards the exact opposite end of the continent from the very beginning. We wanted people to have the experience of knowing that distance first hand by running it. Once you do have the opportunity to control a Skell, it really does change the feel of the game. And we feel like these are gradual steps that ease you into that process.”
“When people hear 30 hours of gameplay, they might be reacting to that number a little bit. But I think that something that’s going to be familiar to MMO players is the idea that 30 hours is not necessarily a really long time if you think about the total gameplay time that might pick up. Now, certainly in traditional JRPG terms that may feel like that’s quite a ways out, but I think that we’ve designed the content in such a way that it feels fast as you’re going through it.”
Xenoblade Chronicles X is set for release in both North America and Europe in December.