The Final Fantasy XIV Thread [SHADOWBRINGERS LAUNCH 5.0!!]

AKA
The Engineer
@The Twilight Mexican
Sorry for the wall of text! And most of this isn't from Shadowbringers at all, so it's not spoiler territory unless I marked it.

Echo Overview (No Shadowbringers Spoilers)
People have been debating whether the WoL is tempered by Hydaelyn or not for a very long time. And no one still has any solid in-game evidence one way or the other. Mainly because no one knows what the Echo really is and it is the Echo that keeps the WoL from being tempered. New information about the Echo was sevearly lacking in Shadowbringers too, so that debate hasn't really gone anywhere....

While we don't know what the Echo is, we know what it roughly does and we know who has it. However, we don't know how people naturally end up getting it. In terms of what the Echo does, it's main function seems to be to allow a soul to Transcend Barriers of various kinds. It lets people Transcend Time and see into the past. It lets people Transcend Words and understand and speak all languages perfectly. And it lets people Transcend Worlds and travel to the Lifestream without their soul getting swallowed up in it (and get reincarnated as the same soul after death). We even see people possessing bodies with it after death and Ascians using it to fuse their bodies/souls together.

As far as who has the Echo, obviously we do. So does Minfilia, Arenvald, Krile and Ysayle (Iceheart). So do the Warriors of Darkness. Fordola and Zenos got a copy of the Echo by somehow copying it from someone (Fordola got hers by copying Krile's Echo, we still don't know whose Echo Zenos coppied). We also know that in the past, Ramza and Tenzen both had the Echo. The other group of people who have it are the Ascians.

So that's the Echo. There are other powers related to the Echo that are much more closely linked with Hydaelyn and a lot more exclusive. These powers seem to only show up in people who have the Echo, but they aren't the Echo itself. And since so few people have them, a lot less is known about them. The first major power would be the Blessing of Light. This seems to correlate with having a Crystal of Light. Known people who have Crystals of Light are the WoL, Ysayle, Ramza, Tenzen and the Warriors of Darkness. All of those characters mention seeing/hearing Hydaelyn too. And all of them are seen doing the crazy mythic saving the world actions. Ysayle, Ramza, Tenzen and the Warriors of Darkness all seem to think that when their souls finally die, they will see Hydaelyn again and all of them are content with getting that ending too. The WoL seems to have this on steroids as they have six crystals and are considered Hydaelyn's Champion.

The Ascians seem to have their own conterpart of this too, the Blessing of Darkness. Ascian Overlords also have a Crystal of Darkness and that seems to be a anchor for them as they posses still living people and travel between the different Shards or the Rift. Lower level Ascians don't have a Crystal of Darkness and that is directly linked to why they are much easier to kill; so long as there isn't a dead body around for them to posses, they die like everyone else does.

The only major kink about these powers is that they don't seem to be what prevents people from being tempered. Midgardsormr goes so far as to block the WoL's Blessing of Light for a time, and the WoL still never has to worry about being tempered because they still have the Echo.
Tempering Overview (No Shadowbringers Spoilers)
Tempering itself is also a bit weird. On a basic level, it seems to permanently make people worship a primal and dedicate themselves to keeping it alive, whether that be by getting more ather for it or keeping it alive with faith. It also seems that how tempering effects people is specific to the individual primal doing the tempering and some primals are a lot more subtle with their tempering then others are. Some even can temper people with different "levels" resulting in some people with more "free will" then others (Leviathan is a good example). However, everyone we meet who is tempered is obsessed with either keeping their primal in the world or summoning them again. Everything they do revolves around that.

However, this gets a bit more complicated as FFXIV has gone on. For one thing, not all primals temper people. Sure, being around a primal's aether for a long period of time isn't a good thing, but that's not something primals do on purpose. We see Cid and other members of the Ironworks wandering around inside Alexeander on at least three different occasions doing studies on how Alexander works and Alexander never tempers anyone! Also complicating this is how some of the Beast Tribes worship the god the primal is based on, but maintain that the primal isn't the real god. They aren't tempered by the primal, they see the primal as heretical even, but they still think the god the primal is based on is worthy of worshiping. And we've yet to get anything in game that says worshiping the thing a primal is based on powers up the primal or not.

It's also worth clarifying that even before Shadowbringers, primals were always presented as being an idea brought to life with a lot of aether. Even as far back as 2.0, that definition was codified. What has gotten more varried is what idea a primal can be based on (nearly any idea as it turns out) and where the aether can come from (crystals (most primals), people dying (Shinryu), items that absorb aether(Susano)). Another thing that hasn't changed either is why primals are considered dangerous. Not only do they rob people of their free will, but they absorb all the surrounding aether and can't control that they do that. This even leads to both Rhamu and Alexander all but asking the WoL to either defeat them or seal them away specifically so they could stop sucking up aether. Both those primals are based on a lot more benevolent ideas then is usual for a primal and they know their existence isn't good for the world.
The Echo and Tempering

Quite possibly the biggest evidence for the Echo not being a form of Tempering (at least for everyone who isn't an Ascian) is that none of the people who have the Echo worship Hydaelyn as a god. They also seemingly can act contrary to her wishes (the WoD join the Ascians in trying to bring about a Rejoining and even try to attack the Word of the Mother in 3.3 and 3.4 ). And just in general, we see Echo users doing whatever they want to do. For that matter, Fordola and Zenos who have coppied Echos don't even know she exists.

The main evidence for the Echo being a form of tempering is that it prevents other tempering. The only other major argument for it is that everyone we know who has a "natural" Echo seem to tend towards wanting to be self-sacrificing individuals who want to help people and save the world. And that that might be how Hydaelyn is messing with people's heads. However... none of that ever said in-game, so it's all speculation.

The Ascians, The Echo and Tempering (Shadowbringers Spoilers)
Emet-Selch admitting the Ancients who summoned Zoidark got tempered by him was huge. For starters, it means that it is possible to both have the Echo and be Tempered. It doesn't mean however, that having the Echo means you are tempered as we still don't know what the Echo really is. Also... calling both Zoidark's and Hydaelyn's form of tempering by the same name would be a bit odd. Esspeically since they seems to do very different things.

The main takeaway though, is that Emet-Selch (and the rest of the Conclave of Thirteen) will always want Zoidark to survive and Zoidark to have more aether. Given that Tempering is mainly subconscious, I don't doubt Emet-Selch really does want the Ancient souls sacrificed to Zoidark back. However, I do doubt how the Conclave of Thirteen decided to go about doing so.

Specificly, I doubt if they knew Zoidark could even give the souls sacrificed to him back. Those souls are aether Zoidark can use. And I find it very suspicious that the plan the Conclave of Thirteen came up with to get the souls back required giving Zoidark even more aether based on the assumption that they could exchange one set of souls aether for another set. All the primals we know of don't give aether back ever unless they are killed...

Zodiark and Hydaelyn (Shadowbringers Spoilers)
As far as primals go, Zodiark (at this point anyway) seems very typical for a primal. Summon primal with a concept (rewriting the laws of reality) and a huge ammount of aether (50% of the Ancient population's souls). Primal tempers people that summoned it. Primal does the thing it's supposed to. When Primal runs out of aether, it wants more to do the thing it's suppoed to do. Tempered people give Primal more aether (50% of the Ancient population that wasn't sacrificed to Zoidark the first time).

And then Conclave of Thirteen decides to do something... a bit stupid I think from an outside point of view. So far, in order to get Zoidark to do anything, they have had to sacrifice Ancients to get enough aether. Which... given that so far Zoidark has been saving the world, is at least palitable for most people. When Emet-Selch says the Conclave of Thirteen wanted to get the Ancients they sacrificed to Zoidark back, he says that they had to wait for a while to let the world have enough aether in order to give to Zoidark. The thing is... if the only way to get enough aether to summon Zoidark in the first place was sacrificing Ancients... how could the Conclave of Thirteen get enough aether to give Zoidark a reason to give back all the aether he already has? Zoidark already has more aether then the surviving Ancient population. Unfortunetly for the Conclave of Thirteen (and probably fortuently for everyone else) not everyone is Tempered by Zoidark. In fact, one of the Conclave doesn't seem to have agreed with even the plan to summon Zoidark and left the Conclave before the summoning happend. Knowing what the WoL has a habit of doing, that probably was the start of the Concave of Thirteen's real problems.

My gut feeling (not canon mind you) is that Hydaelyn was summoned less because the Ancients had a philisophical problem with Zoidark and more because what the Conclave was planing sounded a lot like they were planning to sacrifice the surviving Ancients' chidren/progeny to hopefully get back the souls of poeple who were already okay with dying so long as the world survived. And that more then likly rubbed a lot of poeple the wrong way. In those circumstances, I can easily see people summoning a counterpart (an inversion rather) to Zoidark. Mainly under the logic that sacrificing yourself to something that would result in being reborn again (even if deminished) would be preferable to watching more people be sacrificed to something that had never given back any souls it had taken at that point.

As it currently stands in canon, Hydaelyn as a primal is very, very, very weird primal. She is nothing like any of the primals we have run into. She doesn't demand to be worshiped. She doesn't demand aether. We've never seen her temper people. The only thing she primarily seems to be interested in is preventing Zoidark from coming back and making sure the life on the Source/Shards does whatever it wants to without any outside influence. Which kinda begs the question what concept she is based on. By herself, Hydaelyn makes very little sense. She makes a lot more sense as a foil to Zoidark. Everything he did, she does the reverse of. Zoidark was created to fix the world because mankind couldn't fix the world; Hydaelyn herself can't fix the world, but she can make mankind strong enough to fix it. Zoidark doesn't seem to care that people are what is fueling him; Hydaelyn thinks of all life as her children and cares about them a lot.

Whatever was done to summon Hydaelyn also seems to have either created or preserved the aether cycle of reincarnation. Hydaelyn herself is in the Aetherial Sea/Lifestream where all souls/aether goes when it dies. And then is reborn from later. This seems to work just as well for the souls of the Ancients as the WoL's soul was a Ancient at one point. Yes, it's part of the soul, not the whole soul, but it's not stuck in Zoidark either. It's out living a life and from the sound of it, the WoL as we know them in FFXIV is very similar to who they were as an Ancient. So at least the essense of who the Ancients were seems to have survived both being Sundered and being reincarnated.

As for if Hydaelyn does temper people... no one really knows. One idea that is making rounds of the FFXIV Lore channels is that if Hydaelyn does temper people, it is probably along the lines of "You have free will". Which would match Hydaelyn being a foil to Zoidark. It also happens to be the entire theme of the song "Answers", which we have known for ages is sung from Hydaelyn's PoV.
TLDR: Is the WoL Tempered by Hydaelyn? We don't know. If they are, it is the weirdest, oddest form of Tempering we have seen yet, in that it almost seems to function the opposite way of all other forms of Tempering.
 
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Ugh, every time there's a big update I get that stupid Unable to download patch files error. And every time i forget about it until it's time to install another...

Dammit! I've tried changing DNS, I've messed with ports, I made sure IE was updated and the settings were what the advice forums said.. Then i restart, it downloads for a bit saying 40 minutes or so, then it climbs to thousands of minutes and gives me an error. Then from then on if I try again it'll say 4 minutes before giving me the error again.

EDIT:
HUZZAH! xivready.jpg
 
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Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
.... Wow, this really is an amazing story so far. Gotta say that's quite the revelation regarding Hydaelyn and the Warrior of Light.

I really cannot get over how in-depth and awesome this expansion's story sounds. Between the unique and fascinating premise and the overarching story, I really cannot help but be fascinated.

One day I just may bite the bullet and end up diving into this because it really, really sounds good. Daunting but fun. I would try it now if I had more free time and I haven't already sacrificed myself to an addictive game of S-E's design already. :mon:
 

Lex

Administrator
Mako, I know everyone would love to see you join the TLS Free Company and we'd help you through the game aswell. It's free to play to level 35 (though you can't join FC's and some things are limited until you buy it), so it's always worth giving it a try if you find the time. The TLS Free Company is on Chaos (datacentre), Cerberus (World/ Server). Post in here with your character name if you make one :monster:
 

Unit-01

Waiting on Evangelion 3.0+1.0
AKA
Sicarius VI, Pink Guy, Sic, Anthony
Well Shadowbringers has been amazing, just waiting on the savage content to be released now. Inner Chaos on my WAR feels like i'm hitting somebody with a truck. Do wanna try to get back into Dark Knight. I can't wait to replay the game with NG+.
 
Got through the first Trial and the immediately following cutscenes before the level 74 MSQ. I am also enjoying it quite a bit so far.

Watching the fairies torment the Eulmore troops was satisfying. Can't we turn that Ranjit guy into a leafman, though? :P I was really bracing when Navi your fairy friend decided to become king. This game has really trained me to expect betrayals and double-crosses.
Ah, and I finally meet the villain everyone's been raving about. One thing that was nice, him recognizing that you've fouled up plans considerably. So often villains either act like, or actually somehow did, plan for you to do all these things. It's nice to frustrate them, haha. Otherwise, intriguing.
Eulmore being a hostile state in a very different way from the Garleans is pretty cool, even if I think Ranjit's strength is a little silly.

Anyway, so far so good. And, to give XIV credit, since I always bitch about this - I've been very pleased that Shadowbringers finally introduced some new dialogue scene music. :monster:
 

Jairus

Author of FFVII: Lifestream
You know, I've thought from time to time about trying out XIV or XI, but I've never had the extra money for the monthly fee. Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 proved that you don't actually need a monthly fee to have a quality, successful MMO, and I wish at least XI would go that route since it's older than XIV and all its expansions are already out and have been for some time. Another thing is that I don't know if the character files would be kept if a player stopped paying the monthly fees for a while to take a break from the game but wanted to come back later. Would he lose everything he had gained and have to start over again? Or do the games store it all so that it's still there when you come back? That was another thing keeping me from trying these, as I didn't want to feel forever tied to a game I might not play all the time.
 

Lex

Administrator
You can unsubscribe if you're going to be inactive and you won't lose any data. You would only lose character data if you got banned from the game - if a credit card charge back or something happened, you would get autobanned. But you can unsubscribe at any time and not worry about losing data.
 

Cthulhu

Administrator
AKA
Yop
They delete your shit with just one chargeback? I mean that's (iirc) a conscious action to do, but is it the same for a failed payment?

Anyway @Jairus if you'd just like to try it out, the game is free to play (of sorts?) until lvl 35 and they have a free week going on at the moment (until the 16th). Monthly fee is $13 / month, iirc you can get cheaper as well in some places (game time cards?).
 

Lex

Administrator
They delete your shit with just one chargeback? I mean that's (iirc) a conscious action to do, but is it the same for a failed payment?
I don't think it applies to a failed payment, just a chargeback. If a payment failed you lose access, but if there's a chargeback it's generally an insta-ban. However, even if that does happen your character and associated stuff survives and can be reinstated by contacting customer support (and paying the amount owed).

This is one of the reasons people prefer to use game time cards or the store currency (crysta). I just pay the monthly sub with my card and have yet to have an issue.
 
You know a minor little detail I for some reason really enjoyed? (big spoilers from the final trial)
The game always sort of acknowledges the other adventurers you bring to dungeons and important battles. Presumably just competent adventurers you know that also possess the Echo. Other times because it doesn't smoothly fit into the story, they don't mention it at all. Or sort of imply that maybe the Scions were actually the ones helping?

But I love how what the Exarch does to help in the last moment is specifically summon heroes from other worlds to help in the fight. It was such an elegant way to not only acknowledge it, but make it feel momentous and pivotal.

I finished the MSQ over the weekend, and it was fantastic. Easily the best expansion and perhaps even belongs in the upper echelons of the Final Fantasy series, something I'm generally hesitant to do with an MMO. But this was just a minor moment that stuck with me.
 
AKA
The Engineer
So at PAX West, there was a FFXIV panel! It was with Takeo Suzuki, the Art Team Lead, and Natsuko Ishikawa, the 5.0 Main Scenario Writer! They went into how they came up with the themes for the 5.0 MSQ and how they designed the Tempest and some other fun bits and pieces, like how they fake certain effects in cutscenes.

It starts about 15 minutes in.
https://www.twitch.tv/videos/475548847
 
AKA
The Engineer
So every year in mid-August to mid-September, FFXIV celebrates its birthday. And every year, the lore team comes out with four short stories about various characters.

This year's are all super, super good. If you have any interest in the FFXIV story, I highly recommend reading them. They flesh out a lot of things in Shadowbringers that were summarized in the game. You can find them here: Tales from the Shadows

Synopsis
One Name, One Promise - Thancred backstory and what his relationship with Minfillia was and how he found Ryne
Echoes of Delusion - how Tataru and Krile get Estinien to work for them
A World Forsaken - the story of how the Ironworks decided to save everyone after the 8th Umbral Calamity
Through His Eyes - how Emet-Selch saw the world before the Sundering vs how he sees it after the Sundering
 

Airling

Ninja-Fairy-Jedi-Princess
I've been waiting for these at the edge of my seat every Tuesday. Yesterday I finally caught up with everything from the previous expansions :joy:.

So every year in mid-August to mid-September, FFXIV celebrates its birthday. And every year, the lore team comes out with four short stories about various characters.

I've noticed the others all have 8 stories. Does this mean we have to wait another year for the rest of the Shadows ones?:'(
 
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