Well I've started it... and I've enjoyed it so far. What I have noticed is the interaction with the population..and that they react to you walking into them. The details of the environments, as Grant has said in another thread, is much better then Xeno..but the sense of scale is not there. That's ok though.
I haven't played an epic console RPG in a long time, but I'm going to get this one, I love old-school Final Fantasy (pre VII) and from what I've heard this game does a good job of combining the old-school sensibilities but in a modern context with a modern combat system. Plus it just looks freaking cool, I really want to try it.
Question, can you play this game in Japanese with subtitles or is it all in English?
I'm about 5 hours in and really enjoying it so far. I really like the battle system and while the story is certainly nothing special, it's decent and so far everything is moving along pretty quickly instead of dragging on like most of these games tend to do. I'm not all that far in Xenoblade, so I'm not going to try to figure out which is better, but it seems like a very good game.
I have been playing this off and on this past weekend and when I can when I am not hosting my forum game but I have been enjoying it and it is pretty deep as far as the combat goes the further you get into it and level up your team. I think most of my team is in the mid 20's and one is I think mid teens. Party members don't level up when they are not apart of your team but there is lots of points in the game where you can fight an enemy many times in a row.probably the hardest part of the game right now is coming across items to upgrade your armor but I think as one of the NPC said in the game you want to focus on the weapons more and with smart use of the area and your skills you can circumvent the defense issue a bit.