In the following months I will dive deep into the land of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. In this series of articles I will share my journey as a completely newbie of both the series, yes I am a Final Fantasy newbie and not especially proud of the fact, and the genre. I have tried to get into numerous FF releases but nobody has really grabbed me, I have also dabbled into numerous MMOs with the same end result. This time its different, I think I have found the reason as to why so many people love this game especially because somehow Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn has managed to do the one thing that other MMOs couldn't, get me passed level 20 and still have my interest. So join me as I stumble across the beautiful land and learn, by failing mostly, how to master this game and hopefully reach level 50 at some point
I have read up on Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn and it is the second MMORPG in the Final Fantasy series following Final Fantasy XI, it is dubbed A Realm Reborn as it is a completely redesigned version of the original and judging by the reception of the two this is the one they did everything right by, fans love it and critics seems to love it so why wouldn't I love it. I am playing on a PS4, I am a level 25 Pugilist and I am currently earning currency to get my first mount.
To keep myself interested I have learned from previous MMOs that I need to have small end goals that I constantly need to try and reach. If I start thinking about hitting level 50 so that I can start on the expansion my head would implode and I would be too scared to even try. Seeing as I review games on a regular basis I had put this entire week aside just so I could focus purely on this game since I knew that mixing other games into this experience would probably make me loose interest or keep me unfocused on the object at hand so this is my first week with the game, again, as a complete newbie.
Luckily my PR for the game has been more than helpful, as she herself is a Level 57 White Mage, which means she has spent more than enough time in this game to know what she is talking about, and she has been more than willing to help me with all the weird questions I have, unfortunately we play on different servers so she couldn't join my game and guide me but I have been able to ask her anything I wanted to know and gotten a reply shortly after, so thank you Daniela!
Now, as soon as I customized my character, I named it, MC Hammer... I know, I am already breaking the lore with that name but it was the only thing that came to me. If you had met my other characters in other MMOs I played, MC Hammer is mild compared to what the other ones are called. Also, I tried to name it something that would tell other people that there is a newbie in the room and he wants to play so be nice to him, at least that is what I hope they say.
So far I have been killing everything from tiny, cute, almost defend less ladybugs, to huge enemies in Duty, similar to raids in other MMOs. I have collected my items and delivered them to the person asking for said items. I have travelled numerous miles, on foot, not knowing where to go next, I have met people with mounts and characters that make my character look like a hobo, but none of this has stopped me, I knew that if I kept digging into this I would eventually be that guy with a huge mount and the cool armour, yes that is my end goal.
There was two things early on that kind of ruined the experience for me and almost made me cave in, the lack of loot dropping from enemies and the map, but as with anything else I had a problem with early on it has all been explained to me and now kind of makes sense. You see, I have been spoiled by random loot drops from my numerous hours of playing Diablo and now lately Destiny. So when I killed enemies and nothing dropped I felt kind of disappointed to be honest. However, when I got to my first dungeon and met the Need, Greed, Pass system and I desperately clicked the Greed button every time just to try and horde as much green, delicious rare loot as I possible could I quickly realized that this isn't the way to move forward, and I needed help.
I learned that the game and the community is more about mutual respect. I haven't been yelled at for not knowing how to play yet, I haven't been told to “play my class newbie!” so far either. People have been extremely reasonable with me and my character, MC Hammer... And after a few Dutys I always took the extra time before a boss to sit and read chat and usually someone in my party explained the rules and what we were supposed to do so that even I could understand it and it clicked with me, it is all about mutual respect. You give something and you usually get something in return.
I have dabbled in the black market, as I call it, the marketplace where other people put stuff they don't need out for sale, to a somewhat higher price mind you, but you can score some nice items here if you check regularly. I also got the ability to sell some of my stuff after unlocking a character that takes care of that for me, she is polite but hard so I know she will get the price I want for me and I don't even have to think about it. I could be walking around the world and a message pops up telling me that one of the items I put up for sale is now gone, and the money is now in my wallet, nice!
The random events spread across the entire map is a nice way to get some combat experience in and also a great way to earn some extra XP along the way. The events in WOW, that I encountered always scared me away before they even started. They might not have been as complicated as I figured they would be but the way they were put together always scared me. In FF XIV however the events are more similar to the ones I encountered when I played Guild Wars 2, the random ones where you can just run into a circle and you are automatically a part of the event. If you are below the level for the event you can still play along but you get a notice saying you might not matter all that much, however if you are overleveled for the event you can level-synch and earn XP that way. It is a nice way to keep travelling through the world a more interesting experience.
Now mind you, when I say interesting experience I don't mean that the world doesn't look interesting because it does. The world and the different areas around the world looks absolutely beautiful on my PS4. The characters and the scenarios are beautifully textured and the entire feeling of the overall experience is of a living, breathing world waiting to be explored. Some areas are huge desert wasteland while others are lush forests with creatures resembling something that would live and prosper in set environment which is nice as it helps keep the players invested in the lore and the world.
Quests, quests, and more quests! Quests for everyone! There is so much stuff to do in FF XIV that I am having a hard time trying to put it all into words and describe everything without forgetting something important. I know I will forget half of what I experience, not because it was forgettable but because there is so much stuff here. You can run through an area and pick up quest and when you get to the end of that zone you could have 10-20 new quests. Without the side quests there is a main quest that you can follow but as with any MMO you sometimes need to dabble into the side quests to grind your level. You also get a quest line for your class which rewards you with armour and weapons as well as XP.
I need to stop writing, because if I don't I know I will write a book about my experience so far. This is a diary of sort though so I will try and write up a few lines whenever I get more time with the game. As I mentioned earlier, I review games on a regular basis so sometimes I don't have a week like this completely free of games to review and able to spend this much time with just one game, but I promise I will try to get as much time as I can and eventually get that fancy mount, those fancy clothes and those fancy weapons, and by that time I will probably be addicted and have new end goals, but lets not get ahead of ourself here. So if you enjoyed this little write-up of my experience so far in the land of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn then keep checking back here for the new addition to my diary, which I just now dubbed: A Newbie Conquers Final Fantasy.