Is Xenoblade Chronicles Worth $90 Used? I Say Yes
It took over a year to get the RPG Xenoblade Chronicles for the Wii from Japan to America, and lots of people thought it would never happen at all. An online campaign finally convince the makers that there was a market here in the US, and it sold well and to critical acclaim.
That was last April, and since then we've moved on to the Wii U and other horizons. Monolith Soft has a new open world RPG called X in development for Nintendo's new system reportedly due in 2014 that is by far one of the reasons to get a Wii U for Christmas, but what about Xenoblade now? Well, it's now selling used for an unheard of $90 at Game Stop.
Such a price tag is highly unusual, even for a top-tier game like Xenoblade. Consider that a game of similar scope like Skyrim still sells for a third less than that used, and on a current generation system to boot. What's the story?
Part of the reason is that Xenoblade had a pretty limited release in America. Game Stop and the Nintendo Shop were more or less the only ways you could get it, so there just aren't that many copies lying around. When you consider that a lot of people are treating the Wii U as an upgrade to the Wii instead of a brand new console, there's also a fair amount of Nintendo folks not trading anything in they don't have to. It's not as if the Wii or Wii U has a lot of other RPG options to trade for anyway.
Leaving aside the idea that Game Stop has been accused of printing up new copies and selling them as used to cash in on the demand, the question is, "Is the game worth $90?" If you're asking me, it's yes.
When I first played the game for review I was blown away by the sheer size of the experience. To be honest, I got gun shy. I was still very new to having current gen systems of amazing power, and the last RPG I had played before Xenoblade was a DS remake of Final Fantasy IV. I was just not equipped to deal with an open-world the size of freakin' real life Japan.
As I gained a more comfortable sense of it, I grew to love it. I can safely say I have never played any game truly like it. By the time I gave up and beat the final boss I had invested 217 hours into the play. And I was no where near 100 percent completion. If I had had the presence of mind to create a separate save file so I could go back to the sidequests I might still be playing the game.
That giant world built on the body of a dead titan feels so incredible animated and real. Take for instance its way of issuing sidequests, which are totally responsible for the best stat growth in your character. To do it properly, you have to literally get to know every single named character in the entire game. There's probably over 300 of them, and they each have their stories, hopes, fears, and ambitions.