Countdown to Judgment: The Trial of Final Fantasy XIV - Day 10
We've started playing Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn on the PS4 here at Short Pause, and we want to tell you, our fair reader, all about it! Every copy of A Realm Reborn comes with a free 30-day trial of the subscription based MMO, and we intend to put ours to good use. Over the next 30 days, we’ll chronicle our exploits in the land of Eorzea in explicit detail, regularly updating you of our progress and where we stand, before eventually delivering a verdict as to whether it's worth it to start paying for this game via a monthly subscription and continuing to play. Once again, we meet up with the highly attractive, and even more deadly, Kandy Kane!
It’s been a week since Kandy Kane came ashore in Limsa Lominsa, and much has happened in the time since her arrival. She has quickly made a name for herself as one of the most promising young warriors to come out of the Marauders Guild in quite some time. Everywhere from Swiftperch to the Red Rooster Stead, her good deeds have been lauded all around the realm. Her fame reached feverishly high levels when she thwarted a bombing attack on the Victory, a massive warship being built that also symbolized Limsa Lominsa’s return to greatness. As it turns out, the leader (Ahtzapfyn…WTH kind of name is that? Then again, it could be worse; his name could be “The”) of the attacking pirates is actually the father of the head shipwright (Ahtbyrm) tasked with building the Victory. Geez, I bet Thanksgiving is always a blast at that house:
Ahtbyrm: “Hey Dad, what’s new? I haven’t seen you in quite some time?”
Ahtzapfyn: “Oh not much. Just busy trying to figure out how to blow to pieces that ship you’ve spent years building.”
Ahtbyrm: “Um…WTF dad?”
Ahtzapfyn: “Uh, never mind! Eat your deep-fried Dodobird before it gets cold. Your mother spent all morning cooking it.”
However, the battle at Moraby Drydocks proved to be just the beginning of a wave of attacks planned around the region. Kandy was ordered to make her way to Swiftperch to defend it against a hoard of Serpent Reavers (a.k.a. pirates) in the hopes of protecting the people of the weak settlement from any possible invasion. Kandy Kane battled bravely alongside the Yellowjackets, not only defeating the Serpent Reavers, but also single-handedly defeating Ascian, a masked mage, and her ferocious pet, a massive gargoyle beast...thing. It was this victory that garnered the attention of Admiral Merlwyb (leader of Limsa Lominsa), who would then FINALLY give Kandy a passport to utilize the airship stationed atop of the Drowning Wench, asking her to deliver a letter that is a call to arms to the other two city-states — Ul’dah and Gridania — in the process.
This was an exciting moment for me because after an absurd amount of time played, and tackling many quests on my own, I was able to explore areas outside of Limsa Lominsa. This also led to the cheesiest uniting of friends, as The (Taz’s Pugilist) and Kandy ran towards one another, across a bridge just outside the gates of Ul’Dah, before meeting at the center and exchanging emotes to show our excitement. All that was missing was slow motion and a random Celine Dion song playing in the background.
Crafting 'Til The Break Of Dawn
I was perusing the market place found in Hawkers Alley on the main level of Limsa Lominsa, and I couldn’t help but notice how expensive some of the battle gear was. With a limited amount of gil to spend on hand, I thought to myself, “I wish there was a way I could make this stuff so I didn’t have to pay full price for it.” That’s when the hamster wheel in my head started turning, as I remembered seeing a Blacksmith Guild on the upper decks of Limsa Lominsa. After a brief introduction from the Guild's receptionist, I accepted their invite to join the Blacksmith Guild. I was introduced to Forgemaster Brithael, who would begin tasking me with small jobs to help build XP. As I was creating these items using the Crafting Log, I was surprised to see just how quickly I could rank my character up by simply by crafting each individual item. As I made my way down the list, I started coming across weapons that were unique to my Marauder class. I started paying more attention to the classes that could use the items I was creating. I “smithed” up some Brass and Bronze Knuckles that I was able to send to The using the Moogle Mailing system. By doing that, I had just saved my friend upwards of 1400 gil. As my determined little blacksmith continued to make her way down the list of items, she was ranking up quickly, and I could start making items that my level 18 marauder could use. An Iron Labrys goes for about 1200 gil at just about any lender; but I didn’t have to pay anything for mine (well, I had to pay a small price to get the materials needed). I kept creating items until I had finally reached a point where my guild supplier didn’t have the necessary materials needed to move forward. Elm Lumber was one item that had eluded me, and that’s when it hit me…I should join the Carpenter Guild next!
I headed to Gridania where the Carpenter Guild was located, and just like the Blacksmith Guild, I began making my way down the list of items I needed to create, earning XP, ranking up, and obtaining new action abilities. I almost felt like a damn robot, as I would manually create multiple pieces of lumber I knew I’d need, not only for my Carpenter Craft Log, but also for items on my Blacksmith Craft Log that required certain lumber as well. After losing track of time, thanks to my laser focus on stocking up on as many materials as possible, it had occurred to me that it was five o’clock in the morning; not Eorzea time, but REAL WORLD time!
As Taz alluded to earlier this week, there is just something crazy addicting about crafting. As you sit there and use the “Basic Touch” ability – which allows you to increase the item's quality – you begin to take pride in your work. Just like a real blacksmith looks over a newly constructed sword ever so intently, making sure it has the perfect balance and form; that’s how I felt every time I created an item. If I wasn’t able to craft a HQ cross-peen hammer, I’d more often than not start over and try again. The more I ranked up my blacksmith, the more I wanted to give my friends HQ items to help them in battle. It’s extremely rewarding knowing that they are relying on my work to get them through their respective missions. Knowing that my help is going towards the greater good of the realm is a very satisfying experience that can't be found in most other games.
Whenever I needed a break from crafting, I would make my way throughout the region to see what else there was to do. While traversing through some of the area’s further away from the main city of each region, I noticed the level ranks of the surrounding enemies increased. This necessitated that I often made use of my sprint ability to avoid getting mauled to pieces by such enemies as Velociraptors. I made an effort to try and attune to any aeytherytes I happened across so that I could travel quickly between them should my time be limited; plus you get XP for every new area you discover. Along the way I came across a Levemete, which is an NPC that hands out Levequests to any passing adventurers. I’m not sure when exactly these people started appearing throughout my game, but I’m sure as hell glad I found them! At the time of this writing, I had only participated in battlecraft levequests and tradecraft levequests.
Battlecraft levequests often task you with traveling to a nearby location where you’ll have to interact with something that will trigger an event —usually a hoard of creatures that must be destroyed — that must be completed in a short amount of time. The difficulty level of the levequest can be adjusted, which will not only affect the level rank of the enemies you will encounter, but will also influence the amount of XP and rewards you earn once it’s completed. If you’re short on gil, these are a good way to earn some quickly.
Fieldcraft levequests, in my opinion, are much better for ranking up; though, I’m sure there are more rewarding ways that I have yet to discover. These levequests, which you choose according to your craft type, task you with creating items for individuals scattered throughout Eorzea. There may be a fellow in Limsa Lominsa that needs an Iron Awl, and once you whip one up, simply deliver it to them for a handsome reward. One thing I found out, is if you happen to create a High Quality (HQ) version of the item they need, you will get a 100% bonus added to your XP and Gil earned! So if you are slated to earn 4800XP and 200gil for an item, if you can craft an HQ item, you’ll get 9600XP and 400gil!
The Sky Is The Limit
Since my conversion into a full-blown Final Fantasy fanatic is now complete, I find myself thinking about playing A Realm Reborn at all times of the day; it’s just that good. Now that our characters are getting deeper into the story, I’m looking forward to teaming up with Donner Kohl and The Ammazon and tackling some of these guildhests that I’ve come across. It’s going to be very interesting to see how well we work together, utilizing each other’s special abilities to achieve victory. Kandy Kane is getting stronger and smarter with each passing day, and I look forward to seeing what lies ahead for her.
Keep up to date with all of our previous adventures below!