23rd Oct: It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
WARNING: Unmarked spoilers ahead. Go on at your own risk.
Xenoblade's possible No Export for You status in America, despite having an English-language localization, was Nintendo trying to see if Americans still gave a shit about jRPGs are aren't Final Fantasy.jRPGs haven't been doing as well as they used to, some American commentators even declaring it a "dead genre", and Nintendo consoles haven't the strongest showing when it comes to them, either. And the Wii's on its way out and has built a reputation as a "Kiddy" console. It's not really the most ideal situation for releasing a big title. So Nintendo decides to make it a European release first, complete with an English-language version, and dangle it in front of American gamers, and see if they start chomping at the bit and complaining about how they're not getting it. And boy howdy, did they ever. Had it not had that reaction, Nintendo would've went "meh" and No Export for You; but since there was such a massive reaction, Nintendo used the already-existing English localization and released it. Maybe this wasn't the plan, but it sort of seems that way.
The name Metal Face is a joke that Shulk and his party inadvertently startedInitially Mumkhar's Mechon identity may have had another name (and it may very well have been Black Face), but Xord and other Faces took to calling him the name the Homs kids and the cripple used because they whooped his ass in spite of his nigh invulnerability. This is one of the few rational explanations as to why a robot would call another robot Metal Face, since they all pretty much have metal faces...
Metal Face didn't talk in his first incarnation because he was scared of Dunban.Mumkhar didn't necessarily like Dunban but he was obviously aware of his skills, having fought along side him for some time. He didn't want to risk giving away his identity as he wasn't sure he could beat Dunban and he was right, obviously. He has no trouble talking when confronted outside Colony 6, however.
The Nopon are a deconstruction of Ridiculously Cute JRPG RacesFor starters, they appear to deliberately be aware of their own cuteness, as revealed in many sidequests, and use it to their advantage, which may explain their widespread trade empire. At least one Nopon is convinced that his cuteness justifies killing Hodes because he would look cuter riding on an Orluga than they would, and it's amazing how frequently they use their cuteness and helplessness to convince the party to kill loads of monsters. Finally, Riki's Heropon status is granted by the chief not by virtue of his skill, but because he owes the village a considerable sum of money. Far from the idyllic paradise their society seems to be at first glance, the Nopon probably have more deep-seated issues than anyone else on Bionis save Zanza himself.
Xenoblade Chronicles is the distant past of Tengen Toppa Gurren LagannJust in case the super-sized Humongous Mecha that comprise the game world didn't make it obvious enough, the game seems to have a strong emphasis on Heroic Willpower, screwing destiny and exploring the stars. Fiora pilots a "Mobile Artillery" (mech suit) , the Faces are all mecha pilots (in mech suits), and Zanza's 2nd Form even resembles his Shulk-like form wearing an improbably organic-looking mech suit. The settings are even similar (part 1 - heroes in ground battles, part 2 - heroes versus an insanely huge robot, part 3 - heroes fighting nearly omnipotent beings IN SPACE). There's a similar theme, too, in that the hero relies on a weapon (Lagann/Monado) for most of the series for his power, but at the climax of the story, wields the same power on his own.
Zanza left a piece of his personality inside Shulk
Xenoblade is a distant prequel to Xenosaga, just as Xenosaga was to XenogearsZanza's experiment to create a new universe involved the Zohar, and is what lead to the disappearance of Earth. The whole of Xenoblade is set in a self-contained reality overseen by Alvis and controlled through Zanza and Meyneth, much like the encephelon dives featured in Xenosaga.
If that's the case, then Zanza isn't just an Expy of Deus...Zanza IS Deus. Consider this, after the end of the game, we see the remains of the Bionis' head in the distance. It's therefore not impossible that other parts of the Bionis, including at least pieces of its Monado, may have survived its destruction as well. What if the Zohar is simply a piece of Zanza's Monado, containing the remains of his spirit until it creates a new host for itself. This host becomes the bioweapon that destroyed the Eldridge in Xenogears' intro, and set off a plot to regain its former strength in much the same way Zanza did with the Bionis.
Meyneth is a benevolent goddess because she's not a biological creature.We learn that the biggest reason Zanza wants to invoke the apocalypse is because if the creatures of Bionis ever migrate away from it, the Bionis will eventually wither and die. This is not the case for the Mechonis: since it's essentially a humongous mecha up to eleven, it doesn't require the same kind of sustenance that a biological being like the Bionis would need. A few Machina even note that all they need to survive is a little water every now and then. Naturally, Meyneth wouldn't be concerned about Mechonis dying, so she doesn't mind the sentience of its people.
Meyneth used to be just as evil as Zanza until this point in the Vicious Cycle.Consider what Zanza said before the final battle, that he has caused the apocalypse many times before. Considering the backstory of the fight between Mechonis and Bionis, and the conversations between Zanza and Meyneth, it is to assume that this is the first time Meyneth fought against Zanza. Fridge Horror time: This means that either Meyneth participated on the massive genocide of all living creatures until this point in history, where she had a Heel Realization and decided to put a stop to the senseless slaughter and let her creations live; or she begrudgingly "played along" with Zanza's slaughter to avoid a massive conflict, until she finally got fed up and decided to stop it. Whatever the motive, this caused the wrath of Zanza and his attack to Mechonis; if she wouldn't continue the cycle of destruction and creation, he'd have to do it himself. (Different Troper): My guess is that Meyneth begrudgingly went along with Zanza so long as it was only Bionis' life that was consumed in each cycle, and that the truce was broken when Zanza started killing her people as well. It would explain the much-longer lifespans of the Machina as well as their technological advancement compared to Bionis' races.
The Machina going into space would not have meant abandoning the Mechonis.The Mechonis is a giant robot. They would have just modified it so it could fly into space and taken it with them, as a mothership.
The Monados take the shape of whatever weapon their owner wants them to be.Consider this: When Zanza takes his Monado back, it undergoes a massive change of shape. It could assumed it is a result of some sort of power overload. Then, when Meyneth (in Fiora's body) reveals her Monado, it takes the form of the dual blades Fiora has been using the entire time; but when Zanza takes that Monado, it becomes a single BFS, similar to his own. It wouldn't be too much of a stretch to asume that anyone that owns a Monado can make it change to any form they wish.
The following is a guess of how Vanea turn Fiora into a Mechon:
A Guess of how the High Elita Regeneration Chamber de-Mechon-ized Fiora
The following were Mayneth's plans if Metal Face didn't put his Face Mechon in.Lady Mayneth was going to talk to them. Explaining why she took over Fiora's body — which was to sink Prison Island with out Zanza getting wise — and offer to join them. If they were still angry at the events of Prison Island — not surprising with the death of the High Elita Emperor and the reveal that Face Mechon are Homs — she would have fight the group defensive — using her god-like powers as shield and full HP restore until she get a change to add her own Monado to the Shulk in order to weak Zanza's soul via her own. If calmer heads show up, Mayneth will give them her Mondao to Shulk — at the same state as Zanza's Monado.
The following is a guess at the reason why Xord was able to be eliminated by the Monado at the Ether Mine's Freight Elevator, despite being a Face Mechon.When Xord fell into the Ether River, all of his still remaining Homs organics were completely eliminated with the exception of his brain. The brain is sometime called "an organic computer". And all you Tropers know that a computer is a type of Machine.
The "red lights" that Shulk notes as being the reason for Faced Mechon's invulnerability to the Monado are actually the blood of the "pilot" running through transparent tubes.