After this morning Xenoblade Chronicles 3D news (a livestream on March 28th and some new videos), here comes a new trailer for the game, straight from Nintendo of America! This one is called “You Will Shall Be Done”, and shows various parts of the game from the Gaur Plain up to the exit of the Ether Mine.
Here it is:
But that’s not all: NintendoLife also published their interview with Hiro Yamada (General Coordinator, Nintendo). He explains that development for this New Nintendo 3DS version of Xenoblade Chronicles started back in Autumn/Winter 2013, which means that it lasted roughly 1 year and a half.
Nintendo had a dedicated team working on this project, and most of its members were huge fans who knew the original game (on Wii) quite well. But at Monster Games (the studio who ported the game on the New Nintendo 3DS), there wasn’t any… of course, everything changed when they got to play the game!
Porting Xenoblade Chronicles to the New Nintendo 3DS was quite the challenge, as the basic specs on the Wii are higher than those of the New 3DS. What’s more, they had to take 3D into account (doubling the image processing), which made the whole thing even harder. Therefore, the developers had to use lots of different tricks, but in the end, they managed to get the game running in 3D with pretty much the same graphics quality as in 2D. The only noticeable difference is, apparently, the resolution.
But without the improved specs of the New Nintendo 3DS, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D would (probably) never have happened: the original 3DS was simply not powerful enough. What’s more, with the C-Stick and ZL & ZR buttons, the developers were able to reuse the Wii Classic Controller control scheme without any changes.
As for the UI, the developers put lots of info on the bottom screen in order to make the 3D screen much clearer. They couldn’t really do like on Wii, with all the info on a single screen, as it wouldn’t have worked too well on a small screen. They also put a lot of work into the layout, in order to maintain the same feel as the original.
One aspect the developers struggled with is the immense landscapes of the game. It was quite a challenge to show them seamlessly and without performance drops. And as mentionned a bit earlier, 3D only made things even harder, though Hiro Yamada believes it was necessary to provide players with a good sense of immersion (which is why the team worked so hard to make it work).
He then talks about Collection Mode, which is a feature proposed by some of the developers from Nintendo’s team. They’re all huge fans of Xenoblade Chronicles, which is why he believes that players who really enjoyed the game on Wii should love this feature. He also explains that getting the game to work was a real challenge in itself, and that they had no plans to make any changes to the main game itself (so no amiibo support other than the tokens unlocks).
Finally, Hiro Yamada talks about the length of the game: it takes dozens of hours to beat it (over 100h to complete everything), which can be problematic for people who don’t have too much time to play. But since the game is on the New Nintendo 3DS, players can simply play whenever they want without having to sit down for long periods.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3D (New 3DS) comes out on April 2nd in Japan and Europe, and April 10th in North America.