Jun 062012
 

Platform: Nintendo Wii ESRB Rating: T (Teen) Nutshell: Xenoblade Chronicles is a very long game featuring relatively restrained depictions of violence with minimal sexual and drug content. The story has many emotionally intense moments, and some parents may find its thematic content troubling. ESRB Descriptors: Blood, Mild Language, Partial Nudity, Use of Alcohol and Tobacco, Violence Time Commitment: Very high – Just going on the critical path might take over 30 hours. With all the sidequests, this game can easily go over 100 hours, especially for players not using guides or FAQs. A save-anywhere feature means that play sessions can [Read more…]

May 222012
 
A Night on Valak Mountain

The almost universally laudatory critical reaction to Xenoblade Chronicles has heaped ambitious praise on the project. Not content to appreciate Xenoblade‘s design on its own merits, many critics have asserted that it points the way towards “saving” the JRPG. There are good reasons to be dubious of this assertion. For the moment, though, I want to focus on something Xenoblade gets right, and the best way to do it is by focusing on something it gets very wrong: Valak Mountain. I haven’t reached the end of Xenoblade yet, but I find it hard to imagine that it contains a worse [Read more…]