Final Fantasy XIV Races Revealed
Square Enix opens up on next year's big MMORPG event.
August 5, 2009 - Square Enix has been pretty quiet on Final Fantasy XIV since its big surprise E3 announcement. But the silence came to an end today via Famitsu, whose latest issue has a huge update on the game.
The big reveal in the magazine are the game's character races. FFXIV will feature the following five:
Hyuran: The race with the highest population in Eorzea. They're split into midlanders and highlanders, depending on where they reside.
Miqo'te: A race of hunters that's split into day and night clans, referred to respectively as Sun Seekers and Moon Keepers.
Lalafell: A small-framed, highly intelligent farming people that originates from islands in the southern seas. They've now spread throughout the land, although there aren't too many of them in cold environments.
Elezen: This ancient race once ruled over Eorzea. They have excellent hearing abilities thanks to their ears, which stick out. While they once fought with the invading Hyuran, the two races now coexist almost completely peacefully.
Roegadyn: A large-framed sea going people based in the northern seas.
These races correspond, respectively, to FFXI's Hume, Mithra, Tarutaru, Elvaan, and Galka races. FFXI fans will probably recognize them instantly once Square Enix shares official artwork.
As detailed above, the Huyran and Miqo'te races are split into sub types. In an interview with the magazine, director Nobuaki Komoto wouldn't disclose if this character setting will play a part in the game.
Also introduced in the magazine are four job categories: fighter, sorcerer, gatherer, and crafter. These have sub jobs beneath them. Fighter includes swordsman and archer, for instance. Crafter includes blacksmith and cook. Traditional FF classes like Black Mage and Warrior are being avoided, said producer Hiromichi Tanaka to the magazine.
Using the game's Armory System, you can instantly change your character's class by making equipment and accessory changes. Your character earns experience in individual classes, learning new skills along the way. Based off your equipment changes, you can create a specialist in a certain job, or make your character into a jack of all trades.
Komoto noted that this system could be used by players who sometimes feel like adventuring on their own. They'd probably want a character who can both fight and heal.
FFXIV also features the Guild Leave system, which is basically like the quests you see in other online RPGs. Guild Leaves are special plates (in the artwork shown in the magazine, they look like cards) that adventurers can get through guilds. The plates direct you to perform quests based off your current level and status. Clear the quest, return to the guild, and you'll receive rewards.
It appears that Square Enix wants players to team up to clear these quests. The magazine suggests that players could get a bunch of quests together and plan a week of adventuring in advance. Only one player in your party needs to have a given Guild Leave in order to take on the quest. In fact, only the person hosting the quest gets the rewards at the end. The other players are in it just to build up their characters. Square Enix is considering making it so that it's easier to build up your skills when you're out on a quest.
To help out on your adventure, the game features something called Etelites. These are special stones located in major cities and areas. Play the person who manages a given Etelite, and you'll be able to use the device to warp to other areas of the FFXIV world.
The magazine also shared details on FFXIV's world setting. As detailed at E3 and in subsequent interviews, your adventure in Final Fantasy XIV begins in Eorzea, although this is just a part of the larger world known as Hydelin. Eorzea is split into city states, of which the magazine introduces three: the sand city of Urudan, the forest city of Guridania, and the sea city of Ramusa Rumansa.
If you're big on MMORPGs, you'll probably be expecting a dynamic world, with time and weather changes. FFXIV has just that. One day in Eorzea passes in about an hour of real world time.
Kawamoto mentioned one goal with the time aspect of the game. He wants the game to be enjoyed by people who play just a little bit every day. If, for example, you end up logging in at the same time every day, he hopes the game's time schedule works out so that you'll end up playing at a different time each time you log in.
Final Fantasy XIV is still due for release some time in 2010.
More @ IGN: Final Fantasy XIV Races Revealed