Together Retro [Adventure]: Xenogears


Presented by: Bastion & Racketboy
New To Together Retro? Check out the introduction to the club

This is the first installment of our new “Adventure” path of the Together Retro game club.  As discussed in “Expanding the Together Retro Game Club“, this is a new branch gear towards those interested in longer, story-driven games like RPGs and graphical adventure games.  Each installment will run for about a month or two and will run side-by-side with the “Action” branch (which features shorter games)

About the Game

In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, Squaresoft (now Square-Enix) had the Midas touch when it came to making games for the Sony Playstation. While Final Fantasy VII, VIII and IX dominated the headlines and sales charts, many other Squaresoft games also came out to critical acclaim. Final Fantasy Tactics, Parasite Eve I and II, Chrono Cross, Front Mission 3, Vagrant Story, The Legend of Mana,  and of course, Xenogears, made up just a few of Squaresoft’s Playstation game offerings.

Xenogears is a traditional Japanese style RPG that came out in the US on October 21, 1998 on the Sony Playstation to great reviews. The game focuses on the character of Fei Fong Wong and his quest to regain his memory and find out who he truly is in the midst of war. The story is set in the future where giant robots called “Gears” are the weapons of choice. This leads to an interesting battle system where you are at times fighting as a person and at other times in a Gear.

The story of Xenogears is considered the best part of the game and in true Squaresoft form; there are a lot of cut scenes and dialog to read through, especially on the second disc.


Recommended Ports

The Playstation version is the only version available to play outside of Japan. Square-Enix just recently(June, 2008) released Xenogears on the Playstation Network in Japan.

Emulation for Xenogears

First of all, remember that Xenogears can be played on the Playstation 2 and Playstation 3 as well as the original Playstation due to backwards compatibility. If you do not have those consoles, emulation on the PC or PSP would be your best bet. The POPS emulator for the PSP using the multi-disc converter that allows you to play multi-disc games, works perfectly. A one gigabyte memory stick pro-duo would be needed for this option as well as having custom firmware

How to Play/Controls

Xenogears does not support analog control. Here are the basic controls of the game:

  • D-Pad: Move cursor or character
  • Start: Pause/Un-pause
  • Select: Toggle world map
  • X: Confirm in Menu, Fierce Attack in Battle, Talk/Inspect in Overworld
  • Square: Strong attack in Battle, Display/Close Menu in Overworld
  • Triangle: Weak attack in Battle, Jump in Overworld
  • Circle: Cancel in Menu, Sprint/Cancel in Overworld
  • L1/R1: Switch character in Menu, Rotate camera in Overworld
  • L2 + R2: Dismount/Remount Entire Party from/to Gear

The following controls are for when you are piloting the airship Yggdrasil III:

  • D-Pad Up/Down: Tilt nose
  • D-Pad Left/Right: Move in those directions
  • L1/R1: Yaw in those directions
  • R2: Propel backwards
  • Square: Enter Yggdrasil III Bridge
  • Circle: Land Yggdrasil III
  • Triangle: Propel Forward—To reverse direction, you must hold the triangle button down

Together Retro Discussion

Instead of posting in the comments section of the blog, we will be using the forum for all of our discussion in order to keep things more organized. So play Xenogears and talk to us about your thoughts and play experiences in the forums. We want to know your tactics, your strategies, your successes and your failures.

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