The story of Xenogears revolves around Fei Fong Wong, a young man with no memories of his childhood. Suddenly he gets caught up in a conflict that could decisively change the future of the whole world. The story is told in great detail and includes references to historical events that span several thousand years.
Both 2D and 3D graphics are used in Xenogears: characters are portrayed with traditional 2D sprites , while the “gears” (the mecha of Xenogears ) and the backgrounds are shown in 3D. Many anime-style scenes with a Japanese touch are used to present the game, as well as other pre-rendered videos. The Square company eventually became famous for having these high quality videos in their products, especially during the PlayStation era .
The music was composed and arranged by Yasunori Mitsuda. The background music was seen as one of the strongest points in the presentation. In addition to Mitsuda's official music, two other soundtracks were released: Xenogears: Creid and Xenogears Light (a fan-arranged album).
There are a wide range of merchandising products for Xenogears, both from the manufacturer and from other manufacturers. The most popular of these is a detailed book on Xenogears called Perfect Works . Perfect Works explains the history and background of the game as well as the time before Xenogears, which are not told in the game itself, but form the basis for the game. There is also an art book called Thousands of Daggers , which is a kind of libretto for the plot of Xenogears. It contains almost all of the text that appears in the game.
When work on the game began, an anime called Neon Genesis Evangelion was being produced. Both Xenogears and Neon Genesis Evangelion contain ample references to Judeo-Christian theology. Both are related to the work of Nietzsche , especially in the struggle between good and evil, self-recognition ( id, ego, superego ) and the balance of power.
It is a constant rumor that Xenogears' release in the United States has been delayed because of its religious relevance, but there is no hard evidence to support this. In the game, the story develops in such a way that religion is used to bring the masses of people under control. This is done by the "Ethos", an organization that officially tries to preserve the culture and technology of the world of Xenogears. The ethos, however, do not preach God, but try to enforce Darwin's theory of evolution. However, this also serves a completely different purpose, namely to cover up the truth: The people of the world of Xenogears have only been walking on the planet for 10,000 years. The story treats religious mythology from a very scientific point of view; this could have been a reason for the alleged delay in the US.
Xenogears is the fifth episode in a series that is designed to be divided into six parts. Monolith Soft has produced a series of role-playing games called Xenosaga , which are a reinterpretation of the story of Xenogears. Xenosaga is distributed by Namco and no longer by Square Enix . These games tell a modified version of the never released Episode I of Xenogears and also use diagrams and mechanics that are illustrated in the book Perfect Works . In Xenosaga there is again a strong reference to religious issues and an analysis between good and bad. This is also proven by the German subtitles of works by Friedrich Nietzsche, which are also shown in the original in Japan and the USA. The Xenosaga series was canceled due to lack of success after the third part.