Square Enix has a knack for information overload when it comes to its active MMO Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. In the latest (and extremely lengthy) edition of the game’s recurring Letter from the Producer Live, a wide variety of information was discussed concerning the game’s upcoming Stormblood expansion pack, the first since 2015’s Heavensward and second ever expansion to the game.
The new and sweeping changes will be a massive upheaval for current and returning players. Like in Heavensward players can expect a large amount of story progression to be included in Stormblood. However, while in Heavensward the progression was mandatory for all players to access all of the content in the expansion; Stormblood will introduce something new. Paid bypasses to access the new expansion, as well as paid Job Level Boosts.
The basic overview of the story upgrades is as follows:
- Tales of Adventure: A Realm Reborn ($18) – This will flag all main scenario quests from 2.0 through 2.55 as complete.
- Tales of Adventure: Heavensward ($25) – This will flag all main scenario quests from 2.0 through 3.56 as complete.
- Job Level Boost – Boost a job to level 60. Initially, Red Mage and Samurai will not be supported.
Here is a full breakdown for all the new purchases:
The breakdown for each purchasable Tales of Adventure set is as follows.
- A Realm Reborn $18.00/₤13.31/€15.75
- This will flag all main scenario quests from 2.0 through Patch 2.55 complete
- Heavensward $25.00/₤18.50/€21.75
- This will flag all main scenario quests from 2.0 through Patch 3.56 as complete
- This will not raise any of your class or Job levels.
- Available at the start of Early Access — June 16th, 2017.
- You’ll automatically get a chocobo — the name will be randomly generated.
- Your Grand Company will automatically be set to your starting city-state.
- Any instanced dungeons you must complete in a Main Scenario will be flagged as cleared, as well as select sidequests.
- Pricing: $25.00/₤18.50/€21.75 per Job.
- It will be available at the start of Early Access — June 16th, 2017.
- Hall of the Novice access will be granted and displayed prominently so you can learn the basics of your Job.
But paid items and level boosts isn’t all that’s being included in Stormblood. There are major changes coming to all classes in PvE and PvP combat. Basically, the number of actions per job are being condensed and reformed into “Role Actions”, with each major role that previously existed now being more clearly defined by it’s actions. Cross-class skills are also being removed in an effort to simplify playing your role. Roles themselves are selected by player choice, not determined explicitly by job, although it is safe to assume that some jobs combinations will fit more easily into some roles.
In PvP, this means that each job has 9 PVP Actions + 2 selectable actions and adrenaline rush. Stuns and item stats are also being nullified in PvP. This will hopefully create a far more balanced PvP landscape that makes it more difficult to steamroll new players with high-level characters. Gear will still have a cosmetic impact, so that badass armor won’t be useless in PvP.
Whether you’re a new or returning player, Stormblood be an incredible and probably confusing experiences for you. And the fan reaction to these “pay to win” changes, as some are labeling them, is doubtlessly going to make you more confused. But take head in the fact that once the dust settles, Final Fantasy XIV Stormblood will be an immersive and expansive MMO with an even better story than before.
If you’d like to see comprehensive set of notes that encompass all of the Letter From The Producer announcements, check here.
If you’re a new player, or just getting back into the game, check out this guide on Reddit to get ready for Stormblood.