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Xenoblade Chronicles final notes
Bar Harbor
Well, that was a bit of an anti-climax. Sort of inevitable, really, given a hundred-hour game, but still slightly disappointing. Nonetheless, I enjoyed most of those hours, so overall, thumbs-up. And the revelations after the final boss fight were both genuinely surprising, yet sufficiently foreshadowed.

Retraction of earlier statement: As the story goes on, all the notable female characters (PCs and NPCs) *are* increasingly defined by their relationships with men. Sigh.

XC has a "new game plus" mode, of a sort, but after dipping a toe in briefly, I don't think I'll be continuing with it. Other than letting you keep your accumulated weapons and skills, it doesn't change the *world* at all, just starts the plot over from scratch. I had earlier remarked how refreshing it was that there were some corners of the world which had monster way too high level for you to deal with when you first encounter them. Some of these were, as I believed initially, "come back later" scenarios, but many of them turn out to be "come back in New Game Plus", which is less enthralling. Also, there's a certain ludonarrative dissonance to be found when there are lots of monsters in the world who turn out to be literally a dozen levels higher than *god*!

This falls under the category of "If I was 12, and had lots of free time and no money for other games, I would totally engage with the New Game Plus mode". As it happens, money is tight and time is more available than usual right now. Still, as a result of several years of Steam Summer Sales, I have a *large* backlog of games I've been meaning to get to...


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