The Affinity Chart is a major game mechanic in Xenoblade Chronicles 2. It is used for upgrading skills for Drivers and Blades. The Affinity Chart in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 differs from the affinity charts in Xenoblade Chronicles and Xenoblade Chronicles X in that it does not display the party's affinity with a given area of the world or the affinity between NPCs.
With the progression of the Affinity Chart, Drivers can unlock new skills by using Skill Points earned by completing Quests, this is similar to the Skill Tree mechanic in Xenoblade Chronicles. Each character initially has access to 5 unlockable skills. This increases to 10 after unlocking 2 skills and 15 after unlocking 5.
With the progression of the Affinity Chart, Blades will unlock new skills by completing certain achievements. The stronger the Affinity bond between the Blade and its Driver, the more skills they can access.
Organization and layout
Blade affinity charts are laid out in a half circle, with ten rows and five columns. Rows are read clockwise beginning at the lower right. Columns are read beginning with the innermost column. Each row represents a skill, and each column represents an affinity level. If a Blade does not have a skill at a particular affinity rank, that spot on the affinity chart is empty.
The first row on a Blade's affinity chart show its Key Rewards, from I to V. Unlocking a Key Reward allows skills to be improved to the level of the Key Reward. The next three rows are the Blade's Specials, from I to III. The Blade's Battle Skills occupy the next three rows. Field Skills occupy the last three rows.
Improving Blade skills
Blade skills are improved by meeting requirements. Examples include defeating a certain number of a specific enemy, or making a certain number of critical hits. For most Blades, Key Rewards are unlocked by increasing Trust with their Driver. Some rare Blades have other requirements for Key Rewards.