Those of you who were unable to get Fallout 4 for whatever reason were probably playing Xenoblade Chronicles X, the JRPG alternative to Bethesda’s post-apocalyptic western RPG. Much like in Fallout 4, Earth is pretty much destroyed and you get some pretty cool power armor and blah blah blah. In all seriousness, Xenoblade Chronicles X is an excellent game with a great story, open world and Skells, the name for weaponized mechs in the Xenoblade universe. Not to mention beautiful graphics that I didn’t think were possible for the Wii U.
However, despite the fact that Xenoblade Chronicles X’s story is compelling, it is also full of holes. Me being the terrible person I am, I will now dedicate this article to exposing five of the biggest mysteries in the game.
MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD!
The Ganglion War
The backstory of Xenoblade Chronicles X is that Earth has been destroyed in a war between two alien factions, and humanity is forced to evacuate the planet on board humongous Ark Ships (Yes, like Noah’s Ark). Those ships that manage to make it past the alien forces find refuge on an alien planet called Mira.
Early in the game, one of the factions is revealed to be the Ganglion, who despise humanity with a passion and will stop at nothing to destroy every last one of them. The Ganglion are the reason humanity is stuck on Mira in the first place. They tracked down the America Ark Ship, the White Whale, after its escape from Earth, and shot it down as it was approaching Mira. These jerks then tried to blow up the Lifehold pods as they were jettisoned from the White Whale. These pods contained cryogenically frozen humans and the preserved knowledge of all mankind. Not much is known about the Ganglion other than the fact that they want to kill decimate humankind.
Who the heck was the other alien faction fighting over Earth? The Ganglion make it pretty obvious that they want humanity dead so the other alien race has to be trying to protect it, right? Well maybe not. The Ganglion are a pretty destructive force in the galaxy. They’ve claimed plenty of planets so maybe this is just a resistance force fighting the Ganglion without regard for where they do it or any collateral damage they might cause. We have absolutely no idea who or what this race is doing here. Only that they are enemies of the Ganglion.
Take a look at something interesting from the opening cutscene:
The gist is that humanity would have been annihilated in the Ganglion’s second wave of attacks were it not for the efforts of a lone hero. The sole savior of humankind gets nothing more than a mention in the opening cutscene. Seriously this could have been a heavy plot point but we’re just left wondering who this guy was. Oh, and why the heck did no one help him defend the White Whale?!
BLADE, the military organization tasked with retrieving the pieces of the Lifehold, has found an alien Skell that the Ganglion are trying to get to but keep getting destroyed by the Tainted, a group of indigenous lifeforms driven mad by a virus (Which also happens to have a stupid name but whatever). Naturally your team is chosen to retrieve the Skell. As it turns out the Tainted have the ability to smell flesh and blood but all other senses are seemingly dull, and your team gets past them with relative ease since they are Mimeosomes, artificial bodies that have no actual flesh and blood for the Tainted to smell.
Once they arrive at the Skell, Tatsu screws everything up by trying to bring the team lunch. Since Tatsu is an actual living organism the Tainted smell him and the team is soon overwhelmed while trying to protect Tatsu. Fortunately, they are saved by a Telethia, the gigantic bird-like creature pictured above.
The Tainted should have been able to smell that huge bird. It was located further up the mountain nearby, but an organism that big should have attracted way more attention. BLADE should have at least some data on it if it was near that area. You know, a heads up like “Oh by the way, there are gigantic, invincible bird creatures in the area so be careful.” Nope, we get nothing like that.
Also, why did it save the team? Its one purpose for dropping out of nowhere was to stop the Tainted from devouring you. Then it just up and leaves. We never see this thing again. It is a classic case of deus ex machina.
Was it compelled by a divine being? Hell, I wouldn’t be too surprised if it turns out the planet is sentient and sent the Telethia this way. We may never know since — just like the lone hero — this is waved off as an insignificant detail. As soon as the team gets back, everyone wants to talk about the weird Skell. You know what: Screw the Skell! I want to know where the big bird went and where it came from.
The Skell License
Remember those mechs that were essentially the sole reason you wanted to get the game in the first place? Well as it turns out you need a Skell License before you can actually drive one. That’s actually a pretty good mechanic as it adds realism to the game. Naturally you’re going to have to undergo a test of sorts.
OK, this is less a mystery and more something that makes no bloody sense. To get your Skell license, you must undergo eight separate quests. Most of them aren’t very hard at all, which is fine. Also, the number eight signifies the eight divisions of BLADE and how they are meant to co-operate with one another, and how even if you are in one division, your skills should be honed for all sorts of jobs. That much makes sense.
However, some BLADE members like the Murderess (forces you to do a mission with her then ambushes you to take the reward for herself) and Alex (a racist xenophobe who resulted to sniping his friend because she didn’t share his opinions) are still allowed to have a Skell so, what the hell BLADE?
Furthermore, how does completing these quests help you drive a Skell? When you learn how to drive a car, do they ask you anything to do with morality? I mean, even the cheapest Skells are still extremely expensive, so maybe instead of teaching us the importance of helping each other maybe you could teach us how to drive so we don’t end in an accident.
No need for an introduction for Professor B, because this guy is shrouded in mystery. In addition to essentially appearing from out of nowhere, Professor B is allegedly from the future and is trying to get back. He is even smarter than the Ma-non who are thousands of years ahead of humans in terms of technological advancements.
Professor B himself is the mystery. No one knows who or what he is, and he has no ties with anything. Even if his claim of being from the future is nonsense (he’s failed to make a time machine on two separate occasions) and he is just insane, that doesn’t explain his enhanced intelligence. One more thing that makes no sense is that he says he “might be what you humans will look like a few hundred million years down the line”. That implies that he is essentially the next stage in human evolution. How is that possible, since humans are all actually Mimeosomes? Does this mean humankind is able to return to flesh and blood bodies after the events of the game? According to the game’s ending (see below) how is this possible?
As previously mentioned, humans had to transfer their memories and consciousness into Mimeosomes due to the unpredictability of space and hypersonic travel. Fair enough. However, there was a catch: People signed up to become robots because they thought there was a chance of eventually returning to real bodies. For some unknown reason, people actually wanted to return to flesh and blood despite the fact that Mims are obviously more combat ready, have a higher chance of survival, and don’t age.
Apparently their real bodies were stored in the Lifehold Core, but that ended up being a lie. As it turns out, the Lifehold Core is just a giant archive where new bodies can be made using DNA stored in the Lifehold. After an insanely annoying series of boss battles, the player overcomes the last obstacle, saves the Lifehold Core, and everyone lives happily ever after awaiting their new bodies. Except for the fact that there’s no such thing.
Here is where I get a bit upset. After completing that last mission, we are greeted to a nice little montage with Lin Lee Koo explaining how the Mimeosomes on Mira can’t be the only survivors and how she believes there are more survivors out there in space. What a great way to leave us in wonder and suspense, eagerly awaiting the inevitable sequel. But wait there’s more. After this, we see Elma and some BLADEs in the Lifehold Core, and as it turns out the thing has been out of power since the crash landing two months prior.
Seriously Monolith Soft, that kind of thing is not what you put at the end of the game. We spend the entire game looking for the Lifehold Core before it can run out of power, which would stop all Mims from functioning. Now it turns out that all our efforts were in vain. The fact that the Lifehold Core was never even functional undermines the whole point of the game. Those 80+ hours you spent just trying to find the Lifehold Core and beat the game are 80 hours you are never going to get back.