We have an entire morning of heavy-hitting Final Fantasy XIV Stormblood preview coverage pieces lined up for you this morning – nine in total beginning with this introduction and leading up to our interview with Naoki Yoshida. Enjoy!
I don’t always go to San Francisco, but when I do, it’s all about Final Fantasy XIV.
The last time I went out to the city was in 2013 for one of the first previews for the game’s impending relaunch. I walked in full of trepidation and anxiety, and I walked out, if not on cloud nine, at least on cloud eight-point-five. I couldn’t wait to play this game in its launched form, and I was beyond excited to see how it felt to play it for real.
That was about four years ago, and to my great satisfaction, that feeling hasn’t changed.
I’ve had countless wonderful experiences in the game through its initial relaunch, its patches, and its first expansion. So I was more than happy to head out to San Francisco once again to take part in the Stormblood media tour, to see the game’s second expansion in all its glory and get a feel for fencing with Red Mage, slicing with Samurai, and experimenting with all of the other changes to the main jobs.
And wouldn’t you know it, I have a lot to say about all of it.
For those who want to read a few more details before you jump into more specific individual articles, allow me to provide you with some information. During our demo, we were limited to exploring Kugane, the Ruby Sea zone, and part of the Peaks zone. Each of our characters had everything available with basic level 70 gear at item level 290; beyond that, it was completely a matter of wandering and exploring and finding what we could find.
We were given the option to record footage and take screenshots, but I focused on information. Part of this was because I figured the information would be of more interest, but part of it is also because I am a stupid man and I am bad about taking screenshots at the best of times. You might have thought this would change under the context, but you would be wrong.
All of what I’m covering here is still in development, a point which was stressed to us multiple times by the various team members on site. That doesn’t mean it’s going to radically change, and I honestly would expect at most that a few numbers may be tweaked. But there’s always the possibility of something more significant; remember that before you place important bets on the preview content.
My personal focus was on seeing how everything felt. I think that ultimately, that’s more important than worrying about the numbers going on. The potency on a given ability might get tuned up or down, the item levels might not be as important, attack scaling might change. But the feel? I tend to imagine that is fairly well set at this point.
Last, and certainly not least, I’d like to thank Fusion and the fine folks at Gamer Escape for providing some invaluable reference material and generally being cool people all around. I’m always happy to see that the community of people talking about the game has grown up to be vibrant and energetic; it really does improve the overall level of information and collaboration. Thanks for being great, guys.
Without further ado? Let’s get on to the meat.