One of the biggest new features in Xenoblade Chronicles X is the addition of giant mechs, which are called Skells in the localization. Players eager to start piloting one may have to be a little patient, though. In an interview with IGN, Tetsuya Takahashi, Senior Director for Xenoblade Chronicles X, revealed that it will take about 30 hours of gameplay before players are able to acquire a Skell. He explained that the reason for this was so that players could experience the scale of the game’s world on foot before being able to quickly travel across a continent in a flying robot.
“We didn’t want people from the very beginning being able to be to zip towards the exact opposite end of the continent. We wanted people them 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.” — Tetsuya Takahashi
Takahashi doesn’t feel like this is an unreasonable number, though. In a game as large as Xenoblade Chronicles X, 30 hours is only a fraction of the total game time, and Takahashi is confident that once players get started, the hours will pass by quickly.
“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.” — Tetsuya Takahashi
What do you think? Is 30 hours too long a time to wait to get your very own humongous mecha? Sound off in the comments below.