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Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Guide - Tips and Tricks, Beginner's Guide, Collection Points, Heart-to-Heart Guide

Here's everything you need to get to grips with Xenoblade 2, including how to earn money and XP quickly, how to unlock the best Blades, general combat tips and tricks, how to use the Poppiswap and Affinity Chart upgrades, and how to find the rare Blades.

Guide by Hirun Cryer, .

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is a massive game, and is hard to get to grips with whether you're a veteran of the series or a newcomer. In this Xenoblade Chronicles 2 guide, we'll be walking you through many of the essentials of the game, including how to master combat, how to farm money and XP quickly, and all the general Xenoblade Chronicles 2 tips and tricks you could ever need. We've got details on Collection Points, Heeart-to-hearts, and how to boost Town Dev level.

It's important to bear in mind just how vast and complex Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is, and since we haven't completely finished the monumental game at the time of writing, you can be sure that we'll be building on all our guides for the game over the next few days.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Guide

Just below, you'll find our complete list of expansive, in-depth Xenoblade Chronicles 2 guides, covering matters like the best Poppi configurations, as well as the best Affinity skills to unlock for all your characters and their Blades.

On December 22, 2017, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is due to get an update, focusing on making improvements to the map system of the game. You'll be able to trigger a 1:1 zoom option on the map by clicking in the left stick, which "will allow improved visibility of your surroundings and make it easier to check quest locations", said Nintendo.

You can be sure that we'll be updating our guides to reflect the changes made to Xenoblade Chronicles 2, made with the update and December 22, and all future updates that Nintendo eventually bring to the game.

Do I Need to Play Xenoblade Chronicles Before Playing Xenoblade Chronicles 2?

Although it helps if you have played the original Xenoblade Chronicles, you don't actually have to have played the original to enjoy the sequel. There are some story nods back to the original game, but everything about the world of Xenoblade Chronicles is fully explained at the start of the sequel. As for the battle mechanics of Xenoblade Chronicles 2, you can easily go into the sequel without having played the original, so you're fine to pick up the latest entry for the first time on the Nintendo Switch.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Beginner's Guide

No matter if you're a veteran or a newcomer to the Xenoblade Chronicles series, there are some essentials you have to know before delving into this massive game. Our protagonist this time around is Rex, who lives on the back of a Titan that he refers to as "Gramps", and who stumbles across Pyra, an ancient and powerful Blade known also as the Aegis.

Rex's journey to reach Elysium with Pyra brings him into contact with many other weird and wonderful characters, including Nia and Dromach, Tora and Poppi, and many others. Every character in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has a Blade, which allows them to perform powerful magic attacks to smite their foes on the battlefield. Everyone is gunning for Rex and Pyra, and the pair will encounter various enemies on their journey to Elysium.

These are the basics to understanding the story of Xenoblade Chronicles 2, which itself is almost equally as complex as the combat and upgrade systems of the game. We'll now go into some detail about the combat system of the game, and how to get your head around everything that the game immediately throws at you.

Firstly, the screenshot you can see just below is the typical combat style of Xenoblade Chronicles 2. You'll notice that the characters' health bars are in the upper left of the screen, the health bar of the enemy you're attacking is in the upper middle, and the Rex's combat abilities (also known as Driver Arts) are in the bottom right of the screen.

Press R to lock onto an enemy, and then press A to pull out your weapon an initiate combat. Once your enemy is in range, Rex will automatically attack them, and will continue doing so until you command him otherwise. Every blow that Rex lands will build up his Driver Arts abilities in the bottom right of the screen, which can then be executed by pressing the corresponding button. For example, if the Driver Art ability on the left was ready to be let loose, you could use it by pressing Y.

Every time you successfully land a hit with a special Driver Art ability, you'll build up the meter of the ability on the right, which is your more powerful 'super' ability. When you press A to activate this super ability, you'll be faced with the screen just below, where a quick time event will determine how much damage you do. To achieve the maximum amount of damage with the super ability, press B when the circle is in the outer zone.

These are the core basics of the combat to Xenoblade Chronicles 2, but make sure to check out our full, in-depth Xenoblade Chronicles 2 combat guide for a complete walkthrough of how to properly use the Driver Arts skills of your allies to

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Tips and Tricks

Now that we've got the basics of the story and combat in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 out of the way, we'll delve into more general tips and tricks for understanding how to game functions as a whole.

  • You can fast travel to previously-visited points of interest on maps by using the Skip Travel option in the pause menu.
  • Although you can see all your current quests in the Quest Log option in the pause menu, you won't be told what rewards you'll get for completing which quests, so bear this in mind when dedicating large amounts of time to completing side quests.
  • Head into the Characters option of the pause menu to not only equip the best accessories on your various characters, but also to customise your Blades.
  • Select any character or Blade in the Characters menu option, and you'll be able to upgrade their Driver Art skills using WP points gained through battle, as well as equip them with accessories to boost stats like health.
  • To permanently boost the stats of a character, head into the Affinity Chart option in the Characters menu, where you can spend Affinity points earned through battle on boosting stats like Health, Strength, Dexterity, and more.
  • Head into the Pouch Setup menu within the Characters section, to consume items that will give you temporary boosts for certain stats. To acquire more of these, you can always purchase them from any food merchants in a town.
  • To initiate battle with an enemy, press R to lock onto them, and then A to start attacking them with your equipped weapon.
  • If you have a group of enemies ahead of you, but you want to lure one of them away, press R to lock onto the nearest one, and then press down on the D-pad to throw a rock at it, luring the enemy towards you and into battle.
  • It might take a while to evade an enemy, but running away is sometimes the best option in a hopeless scenario, especially if you find yourself hunted by a powerful enemy.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Collection Points Guide

Collection Points can be found throughout just about any area across the entire map of Xenoblade Chronicles 2. If you activate a Collection Point, as pictured just below, Rex and company will briefly mine for valuable (or not so valuable) loot items.

These items will be collectibles, which can then be sold to any trader in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 for an amount of money. Collectibles in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 actually translate to materials, which you can use to refine Aux Cores at some unique merchants.

Collection Points aren't rare in Xenoblade Chronicles 2, and since you aren't limited in the amount of items you can carry on your at once, we'd highly recommend exploiting a Collection Point whenever you come across one, and saving up the items you obtain to trade whenever you're next doing business with a merchant.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Heart-to-Hearts

A small secret in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 are the Heart-to-Heart conversations, entirely optional scenes which are only found very rarely over the course of the massive game.

A Heart-to-Heart is marked on the map by the icon pictured above, and takes place between two characters. During the special event, these two characters converse with one another, revealing key info about either themselves or the plot of the game, and you'll also have to choose a conversation option at one point during the Heart-to-Heart.

Although the Heart-to-Heart event will raise the Affinity between the two characters, they must have first reached a certain Affinity level before being able to activate the Heart-to-Heart. This means that it's well worth exploring areas that you passed through many hours earlier, as we've happened upon a few Heart-to-Heart events while retracing our steps back through previous areas of the Xenoblade Chronicles 2 map.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 How to Boost Town Dev Level

Introduced as soon as you first make it to the large town of Torigoth in the Gormott Province region, the Town Development level (Dev Level for short) governs how well Rex and his party have bonded with all the local villagers and merchants.

While the Dev Level can only be raised through actions performed in a town, such as trading with merchants and completing side quests for the locals, the actual Dev Level itself is tied to the entire region. This means that when you raise the Dev Level in Torigoth, it'll reflect on the entire region of Gormott Province.

But what are the benefits of raising the Dev Level of a region? On the scale of zero to five stars, the higher the Dev Level is, the cheaper you'll be able to purchase goods from merchants for. Although it takes a long time to raise the Dev Level of a region past two stars, it's well worth the monetary savings for Rex and company.

We mentioned previously that undertaking side quests and trading with merchants are the only main ways of boosting the Dev Level of a region fairly quickly. We'd recommend prioritising trading with merchants over doing side quests however, as the majority of side quests in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 are very fetch-heavy, and since you'll be farming sellable items through combat for trading with merchants, you'll be boosting the overall level of your characters at the same time.

These are some of the key tips and tricks for getting you acquainted with everything that Xenoblade Chronicles 2 throws at you in the early hours. There’s a lot to get your head around, even more so if you’re brand new to the Xenoblade franchise, but these key tips will certainly make things easier.

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