Letter of the Producer is back with a live segment at this year’s E3. Here the staff of Final Fantasy XIV, including director Naoki Yoshida, talk about the latest updates to the game and what’s soon to come. Today, with only a handful of days left before the Stormblood expansion’s release, we learned more details about its content, QA, and a look at the schedule after launch.
Susano, The Pool of Tribute
Director Yoshida shared a sneak peek of a new Primal we’ll be facing off against in Stormblood: Susano. A level 63 trial called “The Pool of Tribute”, Yoshida pointed out that you couldn’t fall of the sides, but there is a new gimmick involved. E3 attendees will get to challenge him at Square Enix’s booth. You can check ou the footage below:
Swimming in Stormblood
Even if you haven’t unlocked swimming fully, you can swim on the surface of certain bodies of water. You’ll be able to use emotes while you’re swimming, such as the ability to float on your back or pretend you’ve drowned. Director Yoshida recommended turning the Active Help windows back on (he wrote them himself) for some of these streams. Underwater, there will be a distortion effect — but if that makes you motion sick, you will be able to turn it down or off in the game’s options.
You move a little slower while swimming underwater, but you can also summon mounts such as a swimming tiger to move much faster. Bright circular portals will allow you to transition from swimming to an underwater town. While you won’t be able to dive and reach underwater areas right away in Stormblood, you can unlock it at a certain point in the main scenario.
With Stormblood they paid more attention to the air in this expansion – take in the scenery.
Previous areas such as Costa Del Sol have been updated to allow for swimming. A new mount was shown here: a Magitek Armor with the Garlean banner.
The team also took a moment to share a new Eorzea Collection trailer, showcasing new gear in the expansion. The new raid set is in here — can you guess which one?
Looking beyond Stormblood — odd-numbered patches where there is no new tier of raids will have one new instanced dungeon whereas even numbered patches will have two. In odd-numbered patches they noticed that there are less people running the Expert Roulette, and the team feels that re-allocating the cost of making those dungeons to the even numbered patches made more sense. They noticed a lot of feedback from fans wanting harder 4-man dungeons, so they wanted to proceed with this feedback in mind.
Regarding the White Mage changes in the upcoming expansion, Yoshida takes a deep breath and assures people to calm down a bit. During the recent media tour, the information provided was from a build back in April. Screenshots of abilities from that time are dated and have been balanced since then. For those concerned about raid viability, Yoshida encourages you to get to the level cap and try the raids — then judge. The intent behind the Savage difficulty raiding is to have all jobs be viable, and if you spot any situation where there is imbalance, they ask that you provide feedback on the official forum.
Regarding a fan-requested “Glamour Log” in which players could store equipment information in a log rather as items in a chest or inventory space, Yoshida says that the memory needed to create such a thing would potentially crash the server if you were to move from zone to zone. In layman’s terms: it’s too much data for the servers to check. However, they may look into equipment tied to achievements for clearing duties — that may be more plausible.
Final Fantasy fans will likely recognize the Genji plate armor set from the series — it’s going to be rewarded in the new raid: The Bend of Time – Omega.
Final Fantasy XIV’s battle actions are being streamlined in Stormblood, but what will happen to action animations for those being removed? When designing new actions, the battle team is trying to create new animations, but they’ll look into the popular ones and see if they can be transformed into emotes.
Flagging a server as an official role-playing server, Balmung for instance, has been requested, but the team wants to collect more data.
Yoshida also shared the post-launch schedule including when to expect the raid to open.
- June 16:
— Early Access Begins
- June 20:
— Final Fantasy XIV Official Service Begins
- July 04: Patch 4.01:
— The Bend of Time – OMEGA opens
- July 18: Patch 4.05:
— The Bend of Time – OMEGA (Savage) opens
— The Lost Canals of Uznair (Aquapolis-style content) opens
— Allagan Tomestones of Creation available
Allagan Tomestones of Verity will be available to purchase endgame gear and won’t have a cap, but two weeks later Allagan Tomestomes of Creation will be available and will include a weekly cap. Regarding the loot drops, there are 15 jobs in the game now, so there is a good chance items won’t drop for anyone in your party. The team is implementing a new lot system where someone will be able to obtain a new piece of gear for a Job that your party is using — more will be shared before the raid opens with visuals that explain this system.
— A new world, Omega, will be opened on the European data center — details regarding it and the bonuses that apply for transferring to a new world will be shared on July 15th.
— Final Fantasy XIV‘s Real Escape Game “Trials of Bahamut” has tickets on sale currently, North American dates have been announced.
— Plush Cushion Fat Chocobo merchandise will go on sale in July 2017; preorders start today.
— Job icon pins for Samurai and Red Mage are now available for preorder.
— “Fly the Falcon Mount” Campain: Register a copy of Stormblood and subscribe a cumulative total of at least 90 days during the campaign period to get the Falcon mount inspired by Final Fantasy VI. This will be a new campaign series similar to the Veteran Rewards (which they consider concluded) and more will be conducted later.
If you’d like to watch the broadcast in its entirety, click here.
Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood releases on June 20th for Windows PC, Steam, PlayStation 4, and Mac. Earl Access (with preorder) begins on June 16th.