There wasn't anything big this week in my travels through Final Fantasy XIV. I have been progressing slowly but steadily through the main storyline in Heavensward. I have been spending more time doing some side stuff that I've been wanting to do but put to the side due to focusing on the main storyline in "A Realm Reborn". Now that is done I am back to being my usual ADD self.
On the adventuring side, I got Machinist to level 40. Playing a ranged DPS job has been a pretty interesting experience, specially since it is a gun-using one, something that isn't all that common in MMOs. Something that I noticed, and I commented this on Twitter, is that whatever they did to Machinists seems to have been pretty well received. Before the latest expansion release I only grouped with one machinist ever. And there was a lot of dungeons I did either to progress through the story, to get XP via Duty Roulette or just traipsing through Palace of the Dead. Since 4.0 though I have partied with at least 4 Machinists in about one week. This is between Dutty Roulette and Palace of the Dead. So it seems I am not the only one enjoying this Job. 🙂
For anyone who is googling about Stormblood and stumbled upon here let me give a disclaimer: This post isn't about any of the actual content of Stormblood. My highest job right now is Monk level 55 and I just started Heavensward a few days ago. So as much as I'd like to talk about the storyline or the areas of Stormblood it is just not possible for me. What I will actually talk about is the mechanical changes to Monk (that I was able to experience so far) and my impressions of Samurai. Sorry if you came here looking for something else!
Like I mentioned in my previous post, Stormblood came with a lot of mechanical changes that affected pretty much everybody. In case someone hasn't been keeping up with the Final Fantasy XIV news, here is a summary of them, or at least the ones I can remember from the top of my head:
You only need to level one class to unlock a job now, so if you want to be a Monk you only need to level Pugilist to 30.
The additional traits are gone and have been replaced by role actions. Role action are a fixed set of skills that you can choose from. What skills you get depends on your role. So DPS gets some utility skills that help them do their job better, like lowering aggro, recovering some health, some debuff, etc. While tanks get skills that makes their job easier like reduction damage, aggro generation, etc. Other roles get skills that fits their place in the party.
All jobs had some skills removed, changed and some new ones added.
All jobs got a Job Gauge. It is hard to explain it but it is kinda like a graphical way to see how much you have built up of something to unleash a special skill. It will probably make more sense when I talk about monk.
There was a lot of other changes too but for the sake of this post I think these are the main ones.
While a lot of people were taking advantage of the Early Access to the latest expansion to the game, Storm Blood, I was just reaching the lands of the first expansion, Heavensward. That isn't to say however that I didn't get affected by Storm Blood, quite the contrary as it did bring a lot of mechanical changes to all levels of the game. Just for the sake of keeping things tidy and clean I will talk about those in a later post.
As someone who literally has ADD it was hard to focus for long on doing nothing but the storyline to reach Heavensward. But it was so worth it. I said this before and I am certain I will say this many times again but Final Fantasy XIV has one of the best storytelling in games. In fact, I can only imagine how much it sucked for people who played before the expansion was released to wait to see how the story continued as there was so much going on!
Fortunately I didn't have to wait that much because as soon as I finished it I made my way straight to Ishgard, the city that was previously unavailable to me.
Since my last post I have been working little by little to advance in several areas of the game. On the adventuring front I am half-way through the main storyline of patch 2.3. That puts me about halfway to Heavensward. After that it is the storyline of patch 2.4, 2.5 and 2.55 with the last two appearing to be about the same number of quests as the previous patches when put together.
One thing I find interesting is that all these patches have a mini-storyline that seems to be forming an arch that I guess will have a conclusion by the end of patch 2.55. They also seem to serve the purpose of putting the seeds for future content expansions. Well, future for the time they were released. My impression is that they were the seeds for Heavensward and Storm Blood (which should be released in about a week or so)
And of course, they also introduced new content, like the Rogue class and the Ninja job, new Primal Battles and so on.
Anyway, if things keep going smoothly I might be able to get to Heavensward before the end of the week.
Last night I finally finished the main story line of "A Realm Reborn". That is the storyline that came when the game was relaunched as version 2.0. I thought that once I finished it I could start on Heavensward content (that is the first expansion of the game) but no, apparently there is another storyline they added via patches before the release of that expansion. So that is what I will be doing now.
In any case, I liked how it ended. It felt very satisfying and I am glad I saw it through the end. One side note about the way the story is handled is that they make sure to show that the important NPCs aren't sitting idly by while the world is being threatened. Some times you see them helping you directly in cutscenes, or even in some battles. Other times you just know they are doing something important off-screen. This feels very refreshing after so many games where I felt that I was the only one doing *anything* to save everyone while some big shot is just sitting doing nothing but barking orders at me.
It finally happened! I got Rakuno to monk level 50 this weekend!
To be completely honest I didn't want to level him this fast. But then I was hit with what I call "Clothing Store Accident" by which I mean, my character looked so terrible that I just couldn't stand it. It started when Rakuno had to wear another set of gear that looked like the subligar, a look that one of my Free Company (FC for short) mates dubbed "The Voldo Life". ** Anyone who leveled a Pugilist knows the pain of wearing that kind of outfit.
So I tried to level as fast as possible to 45 to do my next monk job quest, get a new pair of pants (plus other monk gear) and go back to leveling at my own pace. That didn't too long and I was relatively happy with my new look. It didn't last very long.
So, yeah, it finally happened. I got bored playing Rakuno as a midlander hyur (Final Fantasy XIV version of ye olde human) and decided to change him into a Miqo'te.
Now before someone point this out: Yes, I am aware of the irony since the original Rakuno in Everquest 2 was a ratonga. So I will just use the excuse that Mr Tyranny suggested on Twitter and say that Rakuno is doing undercover work. Those Miqo'tes will never know what hit them! Mwahahahaha!
... Ah-hem. Or that is what I would say if the ratongas were plotting something. Which they are not. They are a peaceful and friendly race. This undercover mission is just for the purposes of studying the miqo'te in their natural environment. It is all FOR SCIENCE!, you see?
If I ever regret this I will change him back to midlander hyur. Or maybe some other race.
I was planning to post about something else today but since I've been pretty addicted to Final Fantasy XIV that wasn't possible. So I might as well write what I was planning to Monday now and then figure out something to write that day (spoiler: It will probably be more Final Fantasy XIV. :p)
I a monk!
I became Pugilist level 30 this week. Since I already have the (current) required level 15 Lancer class I went ahead and started on the quest to unlock the Monk job. The quest was pretty amusing with some unexpected moments and the two NPCs that were part of it were pretty interesting.
A long while ago, back when it was announced that version 1.0 of Final Fantasy XIV was going to end so they could relaunch the game with better mechanics, I was totally fine with it. As I said back then the game had a good core but too many systems that were confusing or obtuse to use. Plus during the whole road to the relaunch they were very good at communicating what changes they planned to make, why they were going to make those changes and they also kept channels open for feedback. A lot of it I could completely agree with too. It were changes that the game needed.
Then came the beta for version 2.0, the version where the game was going to be relaunched at as a "Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn". Since I played during 1.0 I was automatically allowed to participate in that beta. But I wasn't able to play more than a few minutes before logging out, heartbroken for what the came turned out to be.
After much procrastination I finally got my gobbue mount on Thursday. Yes, that means I've been also procrastinating to make this post. >_<
Anyhoo, it was easier than I thought. When the announcement hit that the quest to get it was going away with patch 1.23a I had about a month to get 13 levels on one of my classes to qualify for it (the quest requirement is level 30 in one of your classes. My highest level was 17). My plan was to focus on just my pugilist class since it was my highest one, and a few crafting/gathering classes to support it throughout the levels. That I did in the beginning. Then my fickleness hit me and I went playing Skyrim instead. When I was finally able to break free of Skyrim draconian clutches the month was almost over so I had to change my plans and focus just on the pugilist class. The crafting/gathering ones would have to wait for later just like the other adventuring classes.That worked better than I expected and I got it relatively fast. The only drawback is that I spent some money on gear upgrades instead of crafting them as I was planning initially. Probably unnecessary since at least until level 30 Final Fantasy XIV doesn't seem to be too reliant on gear. Still I thought it was better safer than sorry and it did make things easier.
It was also nice to see a bit more of the main storyline as well as the Grand Companies one. Without going into details, as to not spoil it to anyone, some questions were answered and a few more raised. I also got to choose a generic companion to help out during the main storyline quests. As for the Grand Companies storyline it was interesting to see it is more related to the main storyline than I thought. Basically both deal with the Garland Empire threat although the Grand Companies seems to be worried also about something far more larger and dangerous than the Garland Empire. Or perhaps the Garland Empire might be related to it. I am not too sure yet.
Oh, if anyone didn't get the gobbue mount yet there is still time to do it. As of this writing patch 1.23 has been released but the quest isn't being taken away until patch 1.23a. Do hurry though since patch 1.23a should be arriving at any time now. You can find the instructions to obtain it here.
For those scratching their heads because of the similarities on the nomenclature of those patches, this is how Final Fantasy XIV tags its updates: if it is just numbers then it is a larger content and bug fix update. For example: patch 1.22 . If it is the numbers and a letter than it is small bug fixes and minor content they weren't able to get in with the numbers-only patch. They are usually introduced shortly after the numbered patch too. For example, 1.22a which was released about two weeks after patch 1.22.
As for me, my only plans with Final Fantasy XIV for now are to level up all the other classes of my character so they are closer to the level of his pugilist class and trying to earn enough grand company marks to get my own chocobo. Although that will probably be probably be put to the wayside for a little. There are other games I want to catch up on too or just play! We'll see how things go. 🙂