Xenoblade Chronicles X has no shortage of stuff to do. You'll find hours' worth of battles, party customizing and exploration, whether you're wandering around Mira or New Los Angeles. However, it helps to have a good idea of what kind of missions you can take on.

There are various mission types available, and you're free to pick and choose which ones are best for you. Here's a quick breakdown of how each mission set works, and what it can do for your character.

Story Missions

These are the main story missions that keep the general plot moving along throughout Chronicles. You'll get started with the Prologue, Awakening, and then work your way through twelve following story chapters, starting with New Los Angeles and eventually coming to a close with Into the Core.

Each of these missions have a breakdown of things that you need to do in order to successfully complete them, and also give you the opportunity to access other missions, like Affinity and Normal, which we'll cover a bit later in this article. You'll also be able to have Heart-to-Heart conversations with characters in order to establish a better relationship with them. The healthier your relationship is with your party, the better you work together as a team in battle.

Affinity Missions

With Affinity missions, you have the opportunity to complete missions that revolve around one of your party characters. While these don't entirely tie in with the main story at hand, they will help you establish a better connection with said characters, which can help you when it comes to combat.

Keep in mind that some of these missions come with Prerequisites. For instance, with What the Skell? (which comes later in the game), you'll be required to have Alexa as an Affinity, reach level 36, and complete particular missions, like finishing chapter 9 and finishing the Weaponized affinity mission. It can take a little while to keep track of your progress, but a sub-menu should be able to help you sort out what needs completing.

Heart-To-Hearts can be vital with these missions, so you want to make sure you say the right thing to keep your Affinity in high spirits. For instance, Alexa may be feeling down after a weapons test, but you can easily cheer her up and bring her back into fighting spirits with the right dialogue. Try telling her she'll "just have to knock it out of the park next time" for best results.

Normal Missions

These are probably the most basic missions you'll come across in the game, but don't be surprised if you'll have to complete a few of these while you're taking on a Story Mission or even an Affinity Mission, as part of the prerequisites to get them completed. Most of them are pretty basic, requiring you to gather certain resources or defeat certain enemies.

Don't be afraid to take on Normal Missions, as you can easily earn experience with a good majority of them – and they'll get you that much closer to completing the other parts of the game. Some can take a little time – like defeating a larger enemy – but you could use the combat practice anyway, so that you can level up and take on larger foes. Fortunately, you can take on more than one Normal Mission at a time, if you can balance it.

Basic Missions

These are general missions assigned by Mission Control that give you various duties to do. They're broken down into three groups: Social, Gathering and Bounty.

Social Missions are probably the easiest of the bunch, as all you need to do is talk to specific non-playable characters in the world, which you can track down with ease. You'll want to get these out of the way first, just so you're not running around like crazy.

Next up are Gathering Missions. These non-violent missions require your party to collect a number of specific material in the world, although some resources may be a little tougher to come by depending on the request. No matter – this'll allow you to get your exploration skills on, and in a world like this, those are always nice to have.

Finally, Bounty Missions ask you to hunt down a number of a specific enemy group for return to Mission Control. These are probably the most entertaining missions offered up, since they actually make you feel like you're doing worthwhile bounty hunting.

Squad Missions

Finally, for those who prefer to take on missions with a group, there are Squad Missions. You do have the option of playing them on your own alongside an AI party, and require you to battle several waves of foes. Really, though, this is a great opportunity to work with others online, as you'll be able to learn better battle skills – and might even make a new friend or two in the process. Give them a try.

You’ll find more tips in our free Xenoblade Chronicles X Guide!