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Xenoblade Chronicles Guide: How to Complete Side Quests Quickly and Effectively

These days, an RPG isn’t an RPG without a host of side quests which serve as a distraction, a way to deepen your character’s ethics and story, or a way to level up and get some good loot. Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition approaches side quests with the latter in mind. Side quests in this game mostly boil down to simple fetch quests and hunting quests. An NPC will offer you a reward (money, XP, or both) for heading out into the open world and fetching or killing something, or possibly for finding a lost item within the town. We hope this Xenoblade Chronicles guide will help you!

One of the quality of life updates introduced to the definitive edition of Xenoblade Chronicles is the map markers and dotted lines provided during main and optional side quests. Combining this helpful and streamlining addition with a firm understanding of the game’s more minor mechanics can help you complete a side quests within minutes and collect plenty of loot and XP in the process. Completing side quests, after all, is way more effective and far less dull than grinding out in the field. That is, provided you do it right. And here’s how with this Xenoblade Chronicles guide.

Key things to know about side quests

Here are four things to know about side quests with Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition. These are mechanics, features, and details that, once understood, can help you get aside quests done within seconds of accepting them.

The clock can be changed at any time

xenoblade chronicles change time

A lot of RPGs have a time skip mechanic, where the protagonist will camp or meditate and time will move forward. In Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition, you can simply enter the menu at any time, select Change Time, and choose whichever hour you want it to be. The game will immediately change to that time without any animation, need to stop what you’re doing, or need to set up a campsite, visit a hotel, or anything. You can do it at any time and it takes two seconds.

xenoblade chronicles clock

This is important for two reasons: NPCs who provide the side quests only appear at certain times of day, so you need to skip through the day constantly in order to make them appear. And the exact same goes for enemies on the field that you’re looking to hunt or loot from. If you accept a side quest and check the map to find that your target doesn’t exist, simply skip ahead a few hours.

Fast travel is so quick and convenient

Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition is a quick game. Loading times are nonexistent, and the map is very generous with where fast-travel points are placed. A small town may have three or four specific fast-travel points. And the time between selecting the location on the map and arriving there is instantaneous. There are no loading times. This means that you can zip around the map in the blink of an eye and keep the momentum up.

xenoblade chronicles fast travel

Becoming reliant on the insanely quick and effortless fast-travel, as well as the easy and instant time-skipping, is the key to getting side quests done quickly and easily.

There are two main types of side quest

When you’ve collected a bunch of side quests, you’ll notice a pattern in how they’re categorised: “Monster Quest”, “Material Quest”, “Challenge” etc. These all fall into one category, however: quick and easy fetch quests where you go out into the field and kill or collect something. This category is unique in that it is completed once you find or kill the thing you’ve been sent out to find or kill. You do not need to return to the NPC in order to complete the quest, which is a lovely quality-of-life detail in Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition.

The other type of quest is a named quest. The quest will be called something specific (like “The Broken Watch” or “Mementos of a Lost Son”). These quests have a few unique details. First, they’re offered by named NPCs who have a relationship with Shulk. Second, they usually take a little longer to complete. Third, they will have specific and unique requirements like going to Shulk’s house or collecting specific materials. And finally, these quests always require you to return to the named NPC once the quest is finished. In this sense, they are far more traditional RPG side quests.

The side quests given by unnamed NPCs are the ones we’re really talking about here. They’re quick and easy to complete, as long as you make good use of the time-skipping and fast-travel mechanics. The named quests by named NPCs take more time and effort to complete, but are still simplified by approaching them in the exact same fashion.

Accept as many quests as possible before completing them

Because Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition doesn’t expect you to return to the quest-giver NPC on completing a quest, you can divide your priorities in two: first, situate yourself in town and go around talking to NPCs and accepting as many quests as possible. Just let them stack up in your Quest Log. Find as many as possible and accept them all.

Then, head out into the field and complete them one by one, making liberal use of the Change Time and fast travel mechanics to dart from quest to quest. When you collect or kill your objective, the quest is done and you can move onto the next. Choosing to tackle one quest at a time and constantly returning to town after each quest is a waste of time. Collect as many as possible, then finish them all at once.

How to complete side quests quickly and easily

So, taking everything you’ve just learned, here’s an example of how to get a side quest done within two minutes before moving straight onto the next one. Bear in mind that we’re mostly talking about the generic unnamed quests like “Challenge” and “Monster Quest” types here. They’re the ones that are far more plentiful anyway.

First, when you enter a town, search for the exclamation marks on the map. Make sure to fast travel to the nearest point to them. If you don’t see many exclamation marks, use the Change Time mechanic to find the ones who mostly come out at night… mostly.

See Also
Xenoblade Chronicles Shulk

xenoblade chronicles map

Once given a side quest by an NPC, a prompt will appear in the bottom right to press the minus button. This allows you to check the details of the quest and to press R to “set as active”. Now, the goal of the quest (an item or monster, probably) will appear on the map as a blue exclamation mark. If it doesn’t immediately, use the Change Time mechanic until it does.

xenoblade chronicles objective

From there, search for the closest fast travel point on the map and head over in the blink of an eye. Then run the rest of the way to your objective, which should take less than thirty seconds. Collect or kill the thing or things, and enjoy the Quest Complete screen. You’ll get your loot/money/XP immediately without having to return to the quest-giver NPC.

If, when arriving at your target, you find that the exclamation mark has vanished, simply use the Change Time mechanic again until it appears.

For 90% of quests, that’s all there is to it. Simply bear in mind that you’ll need to explore the map a fair bit before you’re able to unlock all your fast-travel points. The more you unlock, the quicker you can then complete your side quests by taking advantage of the fast travel mechanic.

If you need help on how to battle more successfully, you can check out our Xenoblade Chronicles guide on it here!


Keep an eye out on SwitchWatch for more guides on Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition! We’ll also have a review up in the coming weeks. We just got the game, so it will take us a lot of time to fully check it out and give you our opinion on this remaster. Did this Xenoblade Chronicles guide help you? Let us know!

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