Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV’s first patch 3.3 live letter

    
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Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV’s first patch 3.3 live letter
I don’t know why, but I was kind of surprised by the sheer volume of discussion about Final Fantasy XIV patch 3.3 in the last live letter. I expected it, yes. I knew the letter was going to be about patch 3.3, we had all but been told that it would be, it’s not exactly stunning. And yet at the same time, I found myself kind of blinking in surprise, as if I hadn’t expected to learn this much for a patch that still feels like it’s further out. I still have more tomestone gear to get!

Then again, perhaps it’s only fitting, because this patch is… not the end of an era, but the start of a big sea change. Just like patch 2.3 marked the start of a change from the relaunch story into Heavensward, patch 3.3 looks like it’s going to start setting the stage for the next expansion. Unless, of course, we’re getting elaborately faked out. Regardless, let’s look at what we know so far about the patch.

The end of the Dragonsong War

Do not trust this man.One of the surprises that came out of the letter was the promise that the next patch’s MSQ will include the final chorus of the Dragonsong War, which I honestly had not expected to see until much later in the expansion cycle. I expected it to happen, of course; it’s the next logical step for the story, and too many hints have been dropped. But it seemed as if it would make for a better big conclusion than anything, and it’s part of why I see this and suspect that we might be getting faked out. Perhaps the end of the war will not mean the end of the most obviously associated NPC, or perhaps there’s something else yet to come which we aren’t aware of…

Regardless, I’m looking forward to it. Part of what has made Heavensward so compelling, story-wise, is the fact that the central conflict really does feel at once sadly inevitable and entirely fixable without serving as any sort of allegory. You can completely see why Nidhogg would hold on to so much anger about what was done to his siblings, and yet it’s also very obvious that it’s pointless anger directed at descendants too far removed to have a personal stake in matters any longer. And all of that hate is now quite effectively bundled up in one place.

Mild spoilers herein if you haven't already finished the MSQ for the expansion. Although you should probably be taking a break from the column for a while if that's the case, we're midway in an expansion cycle.
I’m actually going to be kind of disappointed if Estinien lives, given all that’s taken place thus far. If anything is going to heal Ishgard, it’s going to be abandoning rancor, and both Nidhogg and Estinien have illustrated the fact that they cannot or will not let go of rage. It’s counter to their entire beings. You can tell Estinien that peace is here, but he would rather die for hate. Let’s hope that the character gets the ending he deserves.

Of course, assuming this really does wrap up the war, we’ll have to be doing something else for the next couple of patches… but given the whole Warriors of Darkness subplot and the repeated hints about Yda and Papalymo, I’m sure we’ll have plenty of directions to go from here. I also can’t help but wonder if there’s a particular reason we haven’t yet seen Yda’s face during the bits of story hinting…

More moogles (and dragons)

I will admit that I’m not terribly happy for the upcoming moogle/dragon beast tribe quests for a few reasons, not the least of which being that it’s muddying the waters pretty thoroughly. Neither of the races in question are exactly beast tribes unless you really squint and struggle to make the connection; I’d much rather see actual beast tribes getting more time in the sun. Granted, it’s probably going to be a while before we get to chat it up with Mamool Ja, but I can still wish, can’t I?

Aside from definition pedantry, there’s also the fact that unlike the other tribes, there’s not as much to explore with these two. All of the beast tribes are more integrated along the main scenario path this time, definitely, with plenty of screen time given over to the Gnath and the Vanu Vanu even if you never do the daily quests. But learning about the dragons has kind of been the entire point of this expansion, and I’ve already learned more about moogles than I ever felt a need to know. I’m dubious that there’s much new to be shown.

Not that it’s going to stop me from playing the quests. It just has me less excited than I might otherwise be.

Drag-on dragonsong.

More dungeons, more Mhach

I am still kind of sad that we’re going back to Mhachi dungeons for this part of the Void Ark series. Not super sad, but I’d love to see more of the Nymian or Amdapori culture beyond the small hints we’ve gotten in dungeons. Then again, the fact that we’re getting some possible insight into the antecedent of Ul’dahn culture does cover a multitude of sins, especially when one considers that Ul’dah has a huge amount of history which is more or less altogether forgotten. Also, I’m on board with anything that involves a pyramid.

Hullbreaker returning is in keeping with the progression up until now; I don’t think expecting Snowcloak for 3.4 is unreasonable, although it’s going to be very curious to see what Keeper of the Lake looks like for a returning hard mode. Unless, of course, we already know the answer if we think about it a little bit. We already have to fight off a Garlean salvage operation in the original form, after all.

Regardless, Hullbreaker makes me happy because much like Halatali, it’s a dungeon we’re revisiting for reasons other than it being re-infested with new horrors. That always makes me happy, because it shows how the world changes over time and how players have a longer-term impact in the game world. You cleared this place out before, now it’s being used for something different. Add to that how much I liked the original Hullbreaker and I’m very excited to dive back into the island.

There’s not much to be said about the new story dungeon, but I do expect that will serve as one of the big capstones for this particular patch cycle. There may even be a trial associated with it, although we’ve heard no whispers of such. Sohr Khai is rather obviously a Dravanian name, but what awaits therein is as of yet unclear; if it’s not the end of the Dragonsong War in and of itself, though, it’ll no doubt be close.

There’s still a lot to be talked about from what we already know about the patch, of course – new grounds for Frontline, the treasure hunting dungeon, more housing – but there’s only so much space in a given column, and much of what we’ve had hinted about is still just hints. Still, you can feel free to share your own thoughts about what we know so far in the comments or via mail to eliot@massivelyop.com. Next week, I want to sing a song in praise of Merit Points and how I still hope for a similar system to arrive in FFXIV at some point.

The Nymian civilization hosted an immense amount of knowledge and learning, but so much of it has been lost to the people of Eorzea. That doesn’t stop Eliot Lefebvre from scrutinizing Final Fantasy XIV each week in Wisdom of Nym, hosting guides, discussion, and opinions without so much as a trace of rancor.

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Warchant1981
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Warchant1981

I don’t think this will be the end of Heavensward.  Yes, The Dragonsong War is one of the major plots for Ishgard, but we still have a lot of Acian activity and Imperial activity within Ishgard’s realm.  So I predict that 3.3 will end the war, as they have said, 3.4 will either be Imperial or Acian based… and 3.5 will be whichever one 3.4 was not.

StevenWilliams3
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StevenWilliams3

Krenian Eliot_Lefebvre I screamed with delight when the Moogle tribe quests were announced! I had a feeling it was going to happen eventually, especially given the close-knit, tribe-esque environment of the Churning Mist Moogles.

StevenWilliams3
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StevenWilliams3

I need to wrack up some knowledge on the Nymean, Mhachi, and Ampadori cultures. I’m getting rusty when it comes to lore… Maybe you could do an article summarizing the three civilizations (and a bit about the War of the Magi), as well as outlining quests and dungeons to run to learn more? Just throwing an idea out there.

I’m beyond excited for the finale to the Dragonsong questline. The last two main scenario updates (especially the most recent one) were pretty damn fantastic. 

But as much as I love being involved in Ishguardian/ native Sharalayn / Dravanian cultures and affairs, I’m looking onward and upward to Gyr Abania. What are Yda and Papalymo up to? Why haven’t they contacted the Scions? How are we going to be getting involved with the Resistance and how will that equate to the politics of Garlemald?

I think I need to re-watch and re-read everything in my journal now. TO THE GUILDHOUSE!

Flimflamberge
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Flimflamberge

Dope_Danny Loopstah Khalith Incorrect. You can unlock them on any job that is of sufficient level. Which is level 50 for the HW ones.
The catch is you have to clear past a certain point in the story for each one. For HW, it’s the part of the story that’s the earliest possible moment you could unlock flying in the zone they’re in. Also, you really should do all the sidequests and exploring to actually unlock flying in those zones. You outright need flying to do the Vanu quests, and it’s really helpful for Vath. I imagine it’ll be necessary for moogles too.
But for the actual beast tribe quests? Every single one, from the introduction on, can be done from level 50.
ARR beast tribe quests only require you to have completed… I can’t remember it was the Stone Vigil or the Garuda quest. Either way, not far apart. Then the unlock quests pop up at the relevant GC HQs for each tribe.

Flimflamberge
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Flimflamberge

thatchefdude I would expect to launch about the same length of time after the next Fanfest as Heavensward, and I think I heard the next Fanfest is going to be held around the same time of year as the first? So… maybe June next year? But that’s probably at the latest, and there’s a good chance it’ll be as much as three months earlier than that as a solid margin for error.
Keep in mind 3.3 looks like it’s headed for early June, and they’ve mentioned 3.4 and 3.5 as speculative releases for certain features. Those features may not make those patches, but it does make it clear that those patches are intended. I doubt there’ll be a 3.6 since it’d need a 3.7 as the mandatory catch-up patch. That would just take too long. With a major patch cadence of 3 months, so at the earliest it’d be March. But the patch schedule could stretch out a little bit as they work on the expansion, which would probably put June at the far end.
So yeah, whatever way I look at it, I’m seeing somewhere between March and June 2017.
If you wanna really narrow it down, we could look at how long it was between ARR and HW’s launch. Since this expansion is apparently echoing ARR’s patch cycle, there’s a good chance the time before the next expansion will take about the same. ARR was launched on August 27th, 2013. Heavensward was released June 23rd 2015. Extrapolating gives us a 4.0 release somewhere around late April, 2017.

Krenian
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Krenian

Flimflamberge Krenian Eliot_Lefebvre Really?? I didn’t even notice that…Hah, that’ll be hilarious to fly on a tuft as a Roe! XD

I would argue that the Moogle has as much mascot power as the Chocobo. While the Chocobo was introduced as a mount earlier in the games, the Moogles have also been a staple of all Final Fantasy’s. 
A chocobo is a mount. A Moogle actually has story driven content. 

To be honest, I personally put the Moogle over the Chocobo. Would be interesting as a poll to see who would rank who as the mascot.

Flimflamberge
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Flimflamberge

Krenian Eliot_Lefebvre The FF mascot critter is the chocobo, friend.
Also, the moogle mount was revealed weeks ago, well before they confirmed the dailies. Though it tipped off most players, since it’s a floating tuft of Dravanian down. That’s the big fluffy dandelion things floating around Churning Mists.

Krenian
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Krenian

Speaking ill of the Final Fantasy mascot is punishable by Moogles being thrown to you until you’re buried under them, Eliot_Lefebvre! Bad! Moogle is Love. Moogle is Life. 

(I may have a problem in regards to Moogle obsession and me absolutely adoring the Churning Mists zone. My wife has constantly told me that I am flawed in some form for liking this. Seems to be the consensus.)

The Dragon portion is a bit odd, I will say that much. I was under the impression that it was maybe a combination between Dragons and Moogles and we would see the relationship between both but having read further, apparently they’re separate entities so I’m not so sure what this is about. 

Now, I will say this: I CANNOT WAIT to find out what the Moogle Mount is! XD

And is it just me or does it seem like 3.3 is going to be a gigantic patch? Just seems like they are really adding a whole lot to this patch; more than previous ones. Will be crazy to see and I’m honestly excited about it because it’ll get me back into the game more. Been swaying lately with the whole Lore grinding; with me not raiding due to time restraints and not really wanting to, I’ve been finding myself bored a bit lately. 3.3 seems like it’s going to drag me back into the game for many more hours.

Dope_Danny
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Dope_Danny

Loopstah Khalith yes but after that they are locked and level synched to any class you pick them on.

Loopstah
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Loopstah

Khalith Loopstah Do the beast tribes have to be unlocked by the main first?