Nintendo Teases First ‘X’ Gameplay Footage, and It’s Looking Very Xenoblade Chronicles

Not the Monado, but close enough.

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The highest compliment I could pay a roleplaying game in 2014, at least from where I’m standing, would be to compare it to Xenoblade Chronicles on the Wii, one of the finest RPGs I’ve ever played on any platform.

Monolith Soft’s “X” for Wii U — that’s not it’s final name, or at least we’re pretty sure it isn’t — is what comes after Xenoblade Chronicles, though it’s not a direct sequel. Nintendo unveiled it over a year ago, shortly after the Wii U launched, but all we’ve seen to date are screens — guy by a mech at sunset, mech flying around in a Yes album cover, giant creatures lumbering along mythically — and a confusing sizzle reel that’s cut up too much to get a flavor for the battle system.

We finally have something to dig into, gameplay-wise, and if you squint just so, admiring the circular battle buttons and timed button presses that presumably trigger special maneuvers, you could almost imagine that’s the Monado the protagonist’s swinging.

The company hasn’t yet plucked the “X” footage from its 38 minute long Nintendo Direct, which aired this afternoon and canvassed nearly two dozen Wii U and 3DS games, so if you just want to check Monolith Soft’s game out, you’re looking for 34:52 in the video above. Nintendo saved the best for second-to-last (the final game was Bayonetta 2), and the footage here is generously continuous — a little under three minutes long.