The script for Xenoblade Chronicles X’s story took “at least” a year-and-a-half to write, members of the game’s development team say in an Iwata Asks interview.
Executive director Tetsuya Takahashi says that while the game’s main story is actually shorter than Xenoblade Chronicles, stories provided through various quests in the game add up when matched with the open-world design, giving more depth to the quests themselves.
“Once the work began, I wrote several quest scenarios,” says scriptwriter Kazuho Hyodo, who worked on the game’s script alongside Takahashi and fellow writer Yuichiro Takeda. “While writing these up, I asked the staff if I could create additional characters, and they responded with, ‘Make as many as you want.’ I was first a little startled with their response about letting me create new characters, but their passion convinced me that everything would work out fine.”
Takeda says Hyodo was brought on to the project to help balance out the game’s cast a little better. Both Takahashi and Hyodo are apparently fond of writing middle-aged male characters, and Hyodo was recruited partially because of his ability to write strong female characters that could play an important role in the story.
“Come to think of it, Takahashi-san wrote a lot,” says Xenoblade Chronicles X director Koh Kojima. “I’ve worked with Takahashi-san for a long time, but this was the first time I’ve seen him write so much for a game’s plot. It was as if he was writing a novel.”