FFXIV: Live Letter From the Producer VIII
Moments ago the VIIIth live letter for Final Fantasy XIV concluded. Many things were discussed and a lot of what we were waiting for was announced.
Beta and early Access
The biggest announcement was the Beta Phase 4 and early access schedule. Beta Phase 4 will begin on August 17th and early access the 24th. A key thing to note is that there will be no interrupt between early access and launch. Phase 4 will be capped out at level 20 with all official launch content up to level 20 available. Character data from Phase 4 will carry over unless there is a major critical bug in the game.
The live letter started with a fishing demo, it looked pretty basic, unlike the Final Fantasy XI system. The Fishing Log is unique - it shows a map of all the fishing points. There is also a record tracker to keep track of your record breaking catches. Just a note: fishing will not affect the economy in Final Fantasy XIV.
Naoki Yoshida also shared with us details about the Arcanist class, and both of its Job paths. Arcanist, as most are already aware, branches off into Summoner and Scholar. Arcanist, despite the original theory, will be a DPS class, similar to how Summoner is going to work. You will be able to command your pet and you will have your damage, debuff, and supporting skills but you need to use both pet and spells to maximize your DPS. Scholar will also be able to command a pet, but the difference is Scholar will be a healing class, with AOE heal capabilities.
There was also a sneak peek at a unicorn mount. From the discussion on this mount it appears that each class/job path will have a mount that you can unlock. The unicorn comes from the Conjurer's path, for example. It seems like Final Fantasy XIV is moving away from the canon Chocobo-only mount system. While there is a Chocobo breeding and raising system, as well as a battle system involving Chocobos, there are a lot of other mounts in this game.
Crafters got a bit of good news as well. It seems the Free Company housing will have craftable items to furnish the Company housing. That means crafters can make money by furnishing Company housing for other Free Companies that don't have crafters, or just furnish their own Free Company's house.
A few more pieces of interesting news... Beta testers from previous phases get to start the open beta a day early, so instead of starting on the 17th, they will be able to play on the 16th. Also, the Veteran campaign will allow for those who subscribe for certain lengths of time to receive specific rewards such as mounts, pets, cosmetic gear, and more. Finally, previous version players will be allowed to play free until September 9th as part of a welcome back campaign.
This really has been a live letter that did not disappoint, if you want to see a translated video of the letter - check out the following link. Be sure to check out my upcoming articles about Final Fantasy XIV in the weeks to come.