Friday, September 18, 2015

Predictions for Heavensward 3.1 and Beyond

So this weekend we will be getting some sort of update regarding the next content patch for Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward. Most people are expecting to get a release date, and we will presumably find out more about the new raid and so forth. In the spirit of my previous prediction, I'm going to spin some wild theories about where things are going to go from here.

So first let's take a look at my previous prediction. I theorized that we would be facing the Scions in tempered form and collecting dark crystals after defeating them. Well, we've rescued one of the missing Scions now and, while definitely changed by the process, Y'shtola was not tempered and we didn't have to fight her. Also, rather than collecting new crystals the initial story had us restoring our connection to the existing crystals over the course of our adventure.

Getting lost in the Aether gives you a kicky new hairstyle. Who knew?

That said, we still haven't found out what Urianger and Elidibus were talking about and we still don't have any clue to the fate of the remaining four Scions. Also, the Warrior of Dark appears to be entering the fray at Elidibus' urging. So where might things go from here?

At first when faced with a new female Ascian (Igeyorhm) in the Heavensward story, I thought the body she had possessed might be Minfilia. Especially when our old friend Lahabrea showed back up at her side, consdering he was using Thancred as his body last time around. In the end though, we killed one of them and Thordan took out the other and neither body remained afterwards. I can't imagine we just unknowingly killed Minfilia and Thancred without realizing it afterwards, so I have to assume the Ascians were using some poor nameless saps who don't matter enough to leave corpses when killed.

At this point I'm expecting us to track down one more Scion per content patch. I would expect Minfilia to be the last of those given her leadership status. I'm guessing Thancred will be rescued in 3.1. First, Y'shtola's cast Flow in an attempt to rescue Thancred so now that we have Y'shtola back that gives us a link to follow to try and find Thancred. Second, Y'shtola and Thancred seemed to get less development in the Realm Reborn story, so bringing them back first and second gives us opportunity to work them more one on one without the others around to steal the limelight. Finally, an FFXIV event went live last night in Record Keeper featuring two of the Scions as recruitable characters. Those two Scions? Y'shtola and Thancred. Using Thancred there makes me believe they'll bringing him back into the game fairly soon.

He's back baby.

I still expect Dark crystals to come into the story in some way. At this point I'm guessing the Warrior of Darkness has a similar connection to Dark crystals of Zodiark as we do to the Light crystals of Hydaelyn. It's worth noting that the concept of the Warriors of Darkness originates in Final Fantasy III and you didn't fight them, you sought their aid against the Cloud of Darkness. We still don't quite know what Elidibus' deal is; he hasn't been as belligerent as the other Ascians. It's entirely possible that there's some greater awful out there that will need our combined effort to defeat. If that's the case I would expect that to be the final big fight of the expansion.

Finally, we still don't know what sort of deal Urianger and Elidibus have made. I still suspect that Moenbryda's death is going to have repercussions. It has occurred to me that Elidibus may be trying to offer Urianger a similar deal to what was offered to Tiamat. I just don't see Urianger falling for it. Perhaps he'll do something ill-advised thinking he can outsmart the Ascians? While considering Primals we haven't yet seen in FFXIV I did think of Brynhildr from FFXIII. I suppose it's possible Urianger could end up creating her in an attempt to bring back Moenbryda. Primals usually retain the name of the being they mimic though, so I don't know. If they did use Brynhildr I'm sure they'd heavily redesign her to better fit the FFXIV aesthetic.

I would expect less Transformer, more valkyrie.
Finally, I fully expect us to end up going to the moon. Possibly that will be a later 24-man raid after the one going in this patch that takes place on the Void Ark. The Void Ark seems like a reasonable method of transport to the moon. 24-man content is usually fairly divorced from the story content though, and with the moon seeming to be linked to the Ascian threat and the Warrior of Darkness I would expect it to be part of the main storyline. Maybe Cid's next fabulous invention will be the Lunar Whale. That would be pretty fantastic.

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