Alexander Raid Trailer Released for Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward

Fantasy XIV

Fantasy XIV

Square Enix (known for its Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts role-playing video game franchises, among numerous) has released their trailer for the new raid coming to Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward.

The raid itself will be released in two versions: Normal and Savage. Normal will be slightly lower in difficulty to the original raid, Binding Coil of Bahamut. Savage will be a lot more difficult, and tailored more for the hard core raiders of the game. This way everyone will be able to participate in the raids without being gated or blocked.

Normal-mode is set to be released this upcoming Tuesday with Savage following suit in two weeks time. Loot does drops from both versions, though Savage will, naturally, have higher stats and item level.

Fantasy XIV alexander armor

We get to see some of the inside of Alexander in the new trailer as well as the armor and weapons that drop and they look incredible. They really keep in theme with Alexander with the coloring and overall look. I’m really excited to get in there and see what lies in wait for us and see how different it is compared to the raids in A Realm Reborn.

Check out the trailer below:

Do you plan on tackling Normal or wait until Savage? Or are you going to try out both versions and see the difference in difficulty? Let me know in the comments! I’m really curious to see who does what!

Why is Final Fantasy XIV so good?

Final Fantasy XIV

Final Fantasy XIV

With the extremely successful launch of its first expansion, Heavensward, in the rear view mirror, Final Fantasy XIV has become one of the fastest growing MMO subscriber bases in the current era of MMO’s today. Square Enix proudly announced that they have surpassed two million active subscriptions and are likely well on their way to three, an impressive accomplishment considering the relatively short length of time that the game has been active in comparison with the powerhouse that is World of Warcraft and other competitors. The most impressive feat that this game has accomplished, however, is maintaining these subscriptions as well as growing in popularity considering the complete overhaul of the game’s systems and content making it the great game that is is today.

Disclaimer: This is less of a review and more of my fanboy gushing about how much I love this game. It is also a list of reasons why you should play it too.

Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn was, at one time, simply named Final Fantasy XIV Online. After the huge success of its predecessor, Final Fantasy XI, began to recede, Square Enix made the decision to boot up another MMO in an attempt to revitalize their player base (with some focus on their pocket books as well). The games, ironically, were actually very similar. The five races in XI are nearly identical to the races in XIV with only a few aesthetic differences and, for the races which were gender specific (the cat-like Mithra who could be only female and the gorilla-esque Galka who could be only male) there are male/female options for their counterparts.

FFXI:

Final Fantasy XIV

FFXIV:

ff14

Additionally, the base classes and their advanced jobs are all nods to previous games in the Final Fantasy franchise likely to appeal to long-term fans of the series. The game was clearly aimed at returning players more than new players, and that is even clearer when interacting with the community, as the majority of XIV players came from XI after it started to fall apart.

The original iteration of FFXIV disappointed players with weak color schemes, poor area and class designs, and a clunky, menu-heavy user interface. The game failed so hard in its onset that Square Enix issued a formal apology and made the game free to play for all of their loyal subscribers until they fixed the issues. They scrapped the entire development team and brought in Naoki Yoshida and his team to save the day. So the question now posed is: How is this game so successful after being so very bad to begin with?

Story

Final Fantasy XIV follows the typical quest/sidequest model just like almost every other MMO ever, but what they do absolutely right is lace the questing into a Main Story Questline that follows the current events of the realm. The story begins after the great Calamity wrought by the primal Bahamut. In the opening cinematic illustration, the beast breaks free of his bonds and completely obliterates everything in his path. However, the brave Warriors of Light are whisked away to safety only to return shortly thereafter to an Eorzea filled with sunny happiness and butterflies. This event is the reason the game’s lore can explain why everything looks different, but it also keeps up with the main theme so that the transition for new players is perfectly seamless. Through a number of patches, the story has received add-ons that continued the main quest line, brought in a number of new characters to interact with, and set forth events that impacted the world in a wonderfully immersive fashion. The story has twists and turns, espionage and betrayal, and epic cinematic, voice-acted cutscenes that will drop your jaw while you sit at your computer or television screen as if you were watching a feature film. The writing is top-notch and the voice acting is very well done, making each character unique and bumping the story to another level.

Gameplay

The gameplay is very well balanced for the typical action bar/hotkey type of MMO playstyle. Each of the classes can hold its own in its respective class, whether you’re playing a tank, healer, or damage dealer. The dev team is constantly studying and tweaking each job to make sure that the player has the ability to choose which style they would like to play instead of simply choosing the class based on its pure damage per second output because that is what the raid leader demands. The expansion only amplified this attention to detail with the addition of five new abilities per job that compliment (and sometimes changed) each playstyle, as well as the creation of three entirely new jobs to fit into each of the roles, a greatsword wielding Dark Knight tank, a trigger happy Machinist damage dealer, and a tarot card flipping Astrologian healer. While there are some jobs that perform better than others in certain situations, there is no need for players to be forced into playing something they don’t like just to clear content. Additionally, there are certain rewards and bonuses in place for veteran players to play older content so that new players are not stranded when they start fresh. The best part is that these players do not have to seek out the content, instead a roulette-style party finder groups players together and rewards each group member after successful completion of the task. This keeps older content relevant and, since the rewards benefit the endgame players with endgame currency and items, everyone wins.

Also, while I tend to shy away from crafting, the crafting system in this game is second to none. While most crafting in many MMO’s involves simply clicking two or more materials to create something new. In FFXIV, each crafter has a list of abilities that can be utilized to buff the chance to get a high quality item or the speed with which the item is crafted. There really is no other crafting system like it, and one would be hard-pressed to find an equal.

Upkeep

As with many MMOs, a subscription model that keeps money flowing to the development team will typically motivate them, and provide them with the resources, to produce more content. I have played a few MMOs, with FFXI, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and World of Warcraft listed at the top of my resume, but the flow of content in XIV feels different than all of the others. This could be because I am partial to story, and XIV’s content patches normally include a continuation of storyline to go along with their hotfixes, changes, and new dungeons to tackle, but each patch just feels more complete and cared-for. The game is paced so well that it gives players enough time to finish certain content and become familiar enough with it just before it becomes boring, and then they throw more at you to freshen things up a bit. Before you realize it, you’re geared to the teeth and it’s time for the next expansion. There is just so much love and care that you can feel coming from this game because the team listens to the player base and gives us what we need, not what we want, in addition to what we didn’t know we needed in the first place.

The Heavensward expansion only served to revitalize the few players who began to feel burned out as the content started drying up. It brought back the huge wave of veteran players who were ready for new challenges, and offered a ton of content to interest brand new players as well. I have grouped with new players more in the last two weeks than I did in the past six months in the A Realm Reborn content, and that is just fantastic. I love when a game that I am passionate about gains continued success, and if I’m this excited only a week and a half post-release, just imagine what is in store for us in the future.

FF14: I Believe I Can Fly – How to Unlock Flying and Aether Current Locations

Flying

Flying has now come to Eorzea! The expansion sees three of the new areas be traversed by flight, which is incredibly handy because the new areas are massive. And traversing the lands from the skies is amazing – the view is absolutely gorgeous.

But how do you fly? It’s clear that when you arrive, you don’t have the ability to fly. During the main scenario quests you will be given a black chocobo whistle and an aether compass. Summon the chocobo, bind that compass to your hotbar(you will find it in Key Items) and you can start searching for those air currents.

Using the compass, it’ll point you into the general direction of where the air current is. You will still have to look for the current, though it’s quite unmissable. It looks like a weird ball of swirling wind. Attune to the current and it’ll disappear. Then onward to the next current!

Each area has a total of 15 air currents. 10 of those are ones you must find throughout the area, the other 5 are from quests. 1 of those quests is always a main scenario quest. There is an exception to this and that is the last area where all currents are gotten as rewards from the main story quest.

For quick and easy access, here is the list of all the air currents, the ten you have to attune to, as well as the quests located for the remaining five. It’s well worth hunting for as many currents as you can when entering a zone, though mark down which ones you’ve done in case you get stuck. If you cannot remember how many you have already found, you can go to the travel menu and in the aether currents tab you will see how many you have collected. Unfortunately, it doesn’t tell you where the found ones were located.

Attuning to these currents allows your black chocobo mount to fly. To have the ability to fly on other flying mounts(grand company chocobo, fat chocobo, primal ponies as well as some mounts gotten from quests), you will need to complete an additional quest titled; I Believe I Can Fly. This quest is located in the Ishgard in the Foundation. The quest giver is Arnoulain located at the following co-ordinates; (31×23). This quest requires you to go fight some mobs with your chocobo buddy.

There’s a little too much for me to cover here but feel free to check out more blogs related games.

Coerthas Western Highlands – Falcons Nest
Field;
(x34, y26) , (x23, y9) , (x30, y33) , (x25, y27) , (x29, y24) , (x24, y8) , (x31, y11) , (x11, y18) , (x21, y34) , (x43, y7)
Quests;
For All the Nights to Come; (x16, y22)
Baby Steps; (x16, y22)
Protecting Whats Important; (x16, y22)
Bridge Over Frozen Water; (x32, y35)
Purple Flame, Purple Flame; (x16, y22)

The Dravania Forelands
Field;

(x26, y22) , (x30, y24) , (36×22) , (x9, 36) , (x12, y19) , (x22, y20) , (x19, y34) , (38×28) , (x25, y12) , (x27, y39)
Quests;
Chocobo’s Last Stand(part of a quest chain); (x31, y22)
A Lesson in Humility; (x16, y23)
Mourn In Passing; (x23, y19)
Natural Repellent; (x24, y19)
Some Bad News; (x31, y22)

The Sea of Clouds
Field;

(x34, y20), (x27, y27) , (x25, y38) , (x10, y34) , (x12, y29) , (x32, y36) , (x9, y19) , (x23, y19) , (x26, y13) , (x32, y18)
Quests;
Clipped Wings; (x17, y37)
Bolt, Chain, and Island; (x11, y14)
Sleepless in Ok’Zundu; (x9, y14)
Flying the Nest; (x10, y14)
Search and Rescue; (x16, y37)

The Dravanian Hinterlands
Field;
(x36, y26) , (x37, y21) , (x27, y26) , (x23, y23) , (x17, y15) , (x18, y31) , (x20, y37) , (x5, y33) , (x11, y23) , (x5, y21)
Quests:
Ebb and Aetherflow(in Idyllshire); (x7, y6)
Taking Stock; (in Idyllshire); (x5, y6)
Louder Than Words; (x21, y15)
Saro Roggo’s Common Life(in Matoya’s Cave); (x6, y6)
Forbidden Knowledge(in Matoya’s Cave); (x6, y6)

The Churning Mists
Field:

(x17, y28) , (x7, y27) , (x20, y26) , (x23, y19) , (x30, y35) , (x36, y26) , (x34, y15) , (x21, y20) , (x16, y20) , (x18, y8)
Quests:
Road Kill; (x27, y33)
The Bathing Bully; (x29, y36)
The Unceasing Gardener; (x12, y32)
Into the Aery; Foundation (x13, y11)
Waiting to Inhale; (x32, y15)

Azys Lla
No field aether currents, huzzah!
Quests:
You will do these quests in the following order:
Systematic Exploration ; (x21, y15)
In Node We Trust; (x6, x10)
Chimerical Maintenance; (x27, y10)
Close Encounters of the VIth Kind; (x37, y11)
Fetters of Lament; (x18, y31)

Enjoy the lands from a new perspective as you can now fly through these giagantic areas. Oh, and take a jacket, it’s really cold up there!

Beginners Guide to Hunting in Final Fantasy 14

Final Fantasy 14

So, you’re a new adventurer just wandering about the zones in Final Fantasy 14. Maybe you’re questing, or perhaps you have decided to do some mining or gathering in Final Fantasy 14. It’s a low level area so you feel safe enough to stroll on through without a care in the world.

Until you see that level 50 mob right in front of you. If you’re lucky, it’s got a blue symbol and you’re safe. It won’t aggro you until you aggro it. If you’re unlucky, well, chances are you’ll be lying face down on the ground with a total of zero health. Oops. The red symbol means it’ll aggro you on sight. And most pack quite the punch!

Hunts are back with a fury in Heavensward as you need the new tomestones at level 60 for the new armor and jewelry in Final Fantsasy 14, and the new Centurio seals are used to upgrade it. Is it worth doing? Well, in a way yes. You do get more seals from hunts than you do from the clan board(which that entails hunting specific world mobs for experience and 3 seals apiece at level 1 hunts). The seals cap at 500 so be sure to spend before you hit or risk missing out.

There is some hunting etiquette out there that will make the life of a hunter a little bit easier and less stressful(hopefully!). Defeating a certain amount of hunt marks in specific zones will also yield ingame achievements, and some titles come from defeating ex amount! Pretty nifty.

Here is the unspoken ‘rules’ of monster hunting. I use the term very loosely as some are not rules persay but tips to help maximize your ability to get full credit on mobs.

If you find a hunt mob, check it’s name. If there is a blue symbol, it’s a B rank. If there is a red symbol, it’s either an A rank or an S rank. You can usually determine the rank by size as well. B ranks are small sized, A ranks are medium sized while S ranks are usually pretty big.

B ranks are not usually worth going after once you’ve done your weekly hunt. They don’t award any tomestones or seals apart from the weekly hunt bill. That doesn’t mean you can ignore them – others might be on the lookout too.

B ranks spawn every 30 seconds after they’ve been hunted down. A ranks spawn roughly every 4 hours after they go down. S ranks often spawn 36 hours after their last defeat and some with certain conditions that need to be met before they appear.

If you can, join a hunt linkshell. There are plenty out there and if you let it be known that you’re in need, you’ll find yourself invited into one or more.

Before you shout that the mark is there, make sure you use the position tags. It’s the side arrows with pos in the middle. Have the mark selected, use the position tag and it’ll put a flag on the map for easier time seeing where the location is.

Do not ninja pull. This is a surefire way to get you blacklisted. Pulled accidentally? Just say sorry and move on. Sometimes, especially on PS3’s, the monster doesn’t render right away so getting too close without knowing happens. If you do this intentionally, you will be kicked from any hunt linkshell as well as blacklisted. People take monster hunting seriously.

You will miss hunts. Sometimes it gets pulled before you can make it. Don’t let it get to you too much. Shouting and verbally abusing others will land you in trouble with a GM.

A good way to get enough credit for full seals/tomestones is one; joining a party and two; going white mage. Throwing a couple of stones or some holys and then spam medica II. Not only does it build aggro, thus contributing(and attacking a couple of times ensures your participation), but spamming medica II heals everyone in the party. Which is good. But it also allows others a bit more time to join in and get credit.

Also, for healers, is there is status effects in Final Fantasy, try to esuna/leeches if you can. Some debuffs cannot be dispelled and in that case, keep healing. You might need to throw out a revive or two just in case(have I mentioned the big marks pack a nasty punch?).

You can do this on tank jobs but attacking and using all of your aggro generating abilities. As for DPS, just go wild. With a combination of all three, you should get full credit, even if you’re late to the fight!

Don’t just join a hunt and scout party and not be prepared to scout for the marks. Leaving the rest of the party to scout while you sit idly by isn’t very fair.

As of patch 3.0, you can now teleport whilst on a mount. This makes it a little bit quicker since you can teleport to a zone and start moving rather than having to mount up. If you’ve unlocked flying in the new Heavensward expansion zones of Final Fantasy, it makes it even more quicker as you can avoid the ground terrain.

Have fun! If it stresses you out too much, take a break. This is a game and we all play games for fun.

E3 Gave Us a Lot of Final Fantasy, But no Final Fantasy XV – Is It Time to Start Worrying?

E3

Square Enix show up for the first time with a press conference this E3, and they had a bag of goodies with them. Among everything shown at the press conference were many different Final Fantasy titles, the franchise which made and built the company.

The biggest reveal of them all had to be a true remake of Final Fantasy VII. Whether the remake stands a chance of reaching the same greatness as the original, is something for another time. Which also would include questions on how different the gameplay would have to be to include the new audience and still keep the old fans. Aside from the remake, they also announced that the re-release of the FF VII we have on PC for PS4 will be delayed until Christmas, but will see its IOS release this summer instead.

We also got a new glimpse at Final Fantasy XIV Heavensward with a launch trailer for their first expansion to their newest MMORPG, which still is going pretty strong. Seeing how the game is released in a couple of days on the 23 June, which seemed like the wrong place to show something everyone who wants to see has already seen.

To top this of, Square Enix also gave us a preview on a completely new title: World of Final Fantasy. At first glance it didn’t look like a full priced title or maybe even a mobile title. But after learning more about this charming, colorful game where you play as small bobblehead characters with the ability to ride monsters. We learnt that it is a game focusing on the group of people wanting to play Final Fantasy, but for various reasons find the gameplay discouraging or the world a little too dark and gloomy. It is a Final Fantasy for everyone, and especially families and the younger ones.

But among all these Final Fantasy reveals and trailers, there was one missing, the one many gamers all over the world had hoped to both see more from but also get a release date on: Final Fantasy XV. Seeing on how people who bought Final Fantasy Type O, got their hands on a demo for Final Fantasy XV, one would think that the release of the full game would not be so far away. But after patiently waiting for an announcement both during Square Enix press conference, but also during the whole week of E3, we saw no sign of the game at all. So is it time to start worrying on how the production is going on the game?

To add on this, Square Enix gladly showed off some in-game from Kingdom hearts 3, which of course was great to finally see, and something which fans of the series have been waiting for very long. But it also makes the progress of Final Fantasy XV even more worrying since they last year clearly stated that the production of Kingdom Hearts 3 was prioritized under Final Fantasy XV, and they wouldn’t show anything from that until Final Fantasy XV was ready to launch. And still, no date on that game.

With E3 now over, I´m guessing we will have to wait until Gamescon before any news appear about Final Fantasy XV, and if they don’t give us something there, it may be that Square Enix is working on too much and have left the priority on the game behind. Until anything is official about the game, we have a lot of other Final Fantasy games to look forward to. But be aware and know where you read this first.

Final Fantasy: Heavensward Hype

This year sees the first expansion, aptly named Heavensward, come to the MMORPG Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn.

A Realm Reborn came out in 2013 after being completely remade and re-branded due to a disappointing first incarnation(which did have an epic send off where the great dragon Bahamut came and obliterated everything).

Heavensward sees us across the realm of Eorzea into the unknown territories beyond the gates of Ishgard, a city home to people who don’t really like outsiders. It’s going to be interesting to see how they react to the Adventurer’s presence!

Not only is there new dungeons, new enemies, and a new primal threat to stop but other changes are coming. New abilities as the level cap increases from 50 to 60, the ability to specialize in three crafting classes via a soul crystal quite similar to job crystals and a lot more. The biggest change, and the most exciting from all the talk, are the three new classes. Dark Knight, Astrologian and Machinist.

Ravana, the new Primal; what sort of battle will await the Warrior of Light?
Ravana, the new Primal Final Fantasy; what sort of battle will await the Warrior of Light?

 Read More here.

If you haven’t seen it already, here is the trailer for Heavensward:

Do you play A Realm Reborn or is MMORPGs not your cup of tea? Are you excited for Heavensward and all the new changes and content? What are you most looking forward to? Tell me all this and more in the comments below!