As soon as you unlock a class, use it
Xenoblade Chronicles 3 classes are highly customizable, as you can mix and match abilities from other classes into one synergized player-crafted build. That said, you need to unlock the ability to use a class with everyone in your party. Here’s how to make sense of the system.
[No major story spoilers will be discussed in this article.]
After meeting a new party member, you’ll inherently unlock a new class
So this is actually important to understand. Typically, party members join up as part of the main storyline, or through optional quests. To find every possible party member (and thus, unlock all the classes), you’ll want to head toward ? icons on the map, which generally denote points of interest like new quests: something meatier than a pickup or item stash.
After finishing their questline (which, for the most part, have yellow quest markers in your quest menu to show that they are character related), they’ll join the party as a “hero,” and you can swap them in as the 7th member of your group. Here’s where it gets interesting.
New classes can generally only be used by one party member at first
Once you unlock a new class, swap that specific core party member (one of the “main six” that can’t be changed out) to that class right away. What you’re doing here is beginning the process of “unlocking” the class for the rest of the party.
Sometimes this will bring you out of your comfort zone. In other words, a “career healer” might drastically shift over to a damage-dealer. This is OK! You only need to keep them in that role until you unlock that class for at least one other person, then they can swap back to their prior role or adjust to something else.
The more class points [experience] you earn from using that class, the faster the class will unlock for everyone else. At some point, you’ll earn enough for everyone on the team to use it, which opens up your options of cross-synergy abilities and more build options.
To level up classes beyond the standard limit of 10, you’ll need to finish a questline
These quests generally come later in the game, sometimes all the way in the back half. You’ll come across many of them naturally, and they’ll be labeled as character/hero quests (with the same yellow quest marker in your quest menu). You’ve seen them before in the JRPG arena: they deal with character-specific storylines and can close out some arcs for guest heroes.
You’ll even do a few of them as required by the main story! Just finish them and you can level up classes to 20, and unlock more abilities.