You've probably tried to get new players excited about Final Fantasy 14 one time or another, and you may have had the same experience as me. Because of all the friends and acquaintances I was able to inspire for the world of Eorzea, a good half threw in the towel again during the level phase. The reasons for this were almost always the same: the part of the main scenario "The 7th era of light", which extends from patch 2.1 to 2.55, is too tough, too long and tiring. It is difficult to explain to new players why they have to complete 100 boring quests before they can finally jump on the cool content of the first expansion Heavensward. The ongoing main scenario is one of the outstanding features of Final Fantasy 14. An adventure in which we can be the heroes and change the world around us with our actions. With each of the major content updates, a new chapter in this story awaits us, which is so complex that it can keep up with many single-player role-playing games. A great concept. In fact, I know some players who regularly reactivate their subscription just for that.
Now, however, it makes a difference whether you can enjoy the new story sections bit by bit or whether you are forced to play them all one after the other in order to reach the end game. And this is exactly where the problem lies: the older Final Fantasy 14 (buy now) the more difficult it is for beginners to catch up with their friends. This can be frustrating and unfamiliar, especially if you have played other MMOs before, where the level phase is completed much faster. A long series of quests may be a lot of fun for long-established players. But if a newcomer has to catch up on all tasks in one go, the initial motivation can quickly stall.
The adventure stories – just a half-baked solution
In my opinion, the adventure stories are only a very unsatisfactory solution to this problem. For many players, the purchase price and the monthly costs that Final Fantasy 14 brings are an investment that should not be underestimated. Paying another 40 euros just to be able to play a job class in the current content is not really well understood. In addition, players who use this offer face exactly the problem that should be avoided with the ongoing main scenario: They are thrown in the middle of a story whose beginning and middle they do not know and which it is therefore difficult for them to follow . At least the pretty cool "New Game +" mode, which was brought into play with Patch 5.1, counteracts this problem and allows you to relive old story sections. Nevertheless, the original problem is not solved by the adventure stories, but only avoided.
Patch 5.3 promises improvements!
To make life a little easier for beginners in the future, Naoki Yoshida announced some extensive changes to the main scenario during his 58th letter from the producer LIVE. Accordingly, around 13 percent of all quest lines will fall victim to the red pencil. Especially the many intermediate steps that are sometimes necessary to reach relevant plot points are to be consistently removed in the course of this revision. To compensate, players get more routine and some new item rewards to cope with the challenges in the dungeons and story content. This revision should cover the entire ARR range from 2.0 to 2.5.
If you want to know more about the upcoming patch 5.3 "Reflections in Crystal" want to know, we recommend you take a look at our Summary of the 58th letter from the producer LIVE.
Why the red pencil is important
The announced changes are very welcome. Of course, I also have my own ideas about what this revision is and what improvements I hope to see from it. First of all, however, I would like to emphasize again that the main scenario is out A realm reborn was anything but bad and set high standards in the MMO area at the time. When I stopped using World of Warcraft around 2013 and tried the beta of FF14 a few months later, I was fascinated by how complex and dense the world of Eorzea was. I was also surprised at how consistently the main scenario told a coherent story that started at level 1 and ended with the brilliant finale in Castrum Meridianum ended. But even if the story and the way it was told were excellent for this genre, there are some problems with it that cannot be denied.
On the one hand there would be the constant change of subject with which the players have to deal with. In ARR in particular, the many facets of the game world lead to a wild jumble of very different storylines. The war against the Garlear, the Wild Tribes, the Primae, the Ascians – the constant changes of the current danger make it difficult to get enthusiastic about history and to follow it with suspense. The extensions had it much easier here – the world and the elements in it were already established at this point, so that the authors had more freedom to knit an exciting story. However, this is more of a marginal problem that is easy to overlook.
Another annoyance weighs much more heavily: the many errand boy tasks that we encounter on every corner in the basic game. Even at higher levels, we were repeatedly forced to do completely marginal and insignificant things that were anything but fair for a warrior of light. These tasks were also not optional and had to be done if you wanted to move forward in the main scenario. This probably peaked around level 35 when we were at Sunny coast Gathering ingredients for a banquet while the world was threatened by a new primae. But we also encountered such tasks again and again in the range from 2.1 to 2.55, for example when we were once again postman for Tataru were allowed to play.
The many filling tasks are the point at which the revision should start and most likely will. In his 58th letter from producer LIVE, Yoshida himself conceded the problems associated with the main scenario of the basic game. So there is justified hope that the corresponding phase will soon no longer be such a stumbling block. So are the days when we have to repeatedly assure newbies that everything will get better once they have reached the first expansion? I hope so, because if more players stay with it and the community grows as a result, it is always welcome. So I'm all the more excited about how exactly the changes will affect and how the result will ultimately feel. Maybe I'll even create a completely new character for this and report on my experiences here. After all, there has never been a better opportunity!
My suggestion: An alternative entry
Of course, there are also other ways to make it easier to get into the fascinating world of Eorzea: For example, an alternative start would be conceivable, in which the plot and the journey for your own character begins just a little before the current expansion. A new hero would step onto the stage and get caught up in the events in one way or another. Newcomers could therefore decide whether they would rather play the entire game from the start or use the alternative starting point.
Understandably, this would be quite a challenge for the authors. On the one hand, they would have to describe the complex world with a manageable number of quest steps and also explain why their character plays such a central role in the plot. Especially with an extension like Shadowbringerswho also plays in a parallel world would cause a lot of problems and would probably not be practical. On the other hand, this would be easier to imagine with the events around Stormbloodthat involved a lot of different factions. There would be many starting points for a new character to gain a foothold in history. But it would always be better than the adventure stories. And if you want to catch up with the old content, you can do so with the ingenious "New Game + "Mode still do as soon as he feels like it.
Of course I'm also interested in your opinion. How did you get started in Final Fantasy 14 and just experienced the phase from patch 2.1 to 2.55? Did you use the adventure stories to get the current content quickly? Would you like an alternative introduction to the game? I'm looking forward to your comments!
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