Then I promptly broke it. In a lot of ways, Xenoblade Chronicles X is a bit of a slog. Main story quests are few and far between — and you'll need to level up before attempting each one. So when you're not aimlessly exploring (which, don't get me wrong, is by far the most enjoyable part of the game), you'll more often than not find yourself doing gathering/killing quests or simply grinding levels by massacring the local wildlife.
So as I halfheartedly killed my 10,000th velociraptor-like monster, only one thought kept me going: "At some point, they're going to give me a mecha."
I mean, they'd have to, right? You got a mecha in Xenogears and Xenoblade Chronicles X has one on the damned title screen.
And each and every time you go into New Los Angeles you're guaranteed to pass by a mecha or two on the streets. It'd be cruel not to give me one. But four dozen hours in, I had yet to receive it.
Finally, after completing six of the twelve total story missions, I spoke with Van Damme (or "Commander Hulk Hogan" as I affectionately call him) who then gave me eight (needlessly time consuming) quests to earn my right to pilot a giant robot.
So after killing monsters with inferior weapons, gathering crystals from a lake at the arse end of nowhere, and making money by privatizing the internet (not a joke, I really had to do that), I was finally able to get my first mecha. And it was wonderful, you guys.
After equipping what I could from 55 hours of random mecha equipment drops that had just sat around gathering dust, I headed out into the desert to kick some giant monster arse. And sure, maybe my mecha was a little underwhelming in power (as I seemed to do more damage without it); but I was beating a hideous creature with a giant stun baton, so I didn't really have any complaints.
Then, when I clicked the thumbstick to sprint, I discovered something wonderful. The mecha in Xenoblade X are transformable. The one you start with is basically the Garland from Megazone 23. In other words, the mecha is a giant, transforming motorcycle.
Thus, I began to cruise the desert in my sweet ride only to see a pillar of light on the horizon. It was one of the few internet hub points (i.e., quick travel points) I hadn't been able to reach — as it is on a small island in the middle of a bottomless canyon. But of course, I figured now that I had a transformable mecha with booster jets, I could surely make the jump.
So I backed up, got a good running start, jumped while transforming back into a mecha, fired my booster jets and…
Yeah, I wasn't even close.
When I loaded back to my last checkpoint, I discovered something unspeakably horrible. My mecha was broken — and I had no clue how to fix it or even if I could. (Xenoblade X isn't terribly good at explaining the little things like: what to do if you drive your mecha into a bottomless ravine.)
It took me a good thirty minutes on the net to find out where in New L.A. to repair it. But to tell the truth, I'm not sure I should have bothered. I've got my eye on a newer model, you guys, and it's a real beast.
I bet it can make the jump.
Xenoblade Chronicles X was released in Japan on April 29, 2015, for the Wii U. It will be released in the West sometime in 2015.