December 2008 Version Update
The developers went into some detail with the upcoming December update, providing some specifics on the planned features.
Level Sync Feature
The level sync feature allows players of all levels to play together, the higher level player syncing down to the lower level player, all his or her spells and stats lowering down to that level. The FFXI developers were very pleased at the positive community feedback received and found their estimates of player acceptance much lower than actual usage. “We are very happy that players like it and use it,” said Mr. Sage Sundi, Global Online Producer in responsible for communications with the player community, “and we continue to work on improvements.” One of the enhancements greeted with enthusiasm by the fans was that the party would no longer lose all the buffs and accumulated TP when the character synced to, levels.
Evasion / Enmity / Healing HP / Healing MP equipment effects will also remain and will adjust accordingly to the Synced character’s new level and the Charm on NPCs will not break. Chocobo whistles will also be able to be used as long as the Synced Character is of level to use it after level adjustment.
Fields of Valor
The Devs have taken into consideration player feedback that there was too much of a grind for xp in FFXI and that most quests take too much time to complete. In response to that, Fields of Valor was created that provide 30 minute quests. In this new game system, players access large floating tomes or Field Manuals which provide training regimes. These are hunting quests that require players to kill a specific number of targets within an assigned time period. Successful players will receive xp, gil and Field of Valor points called “tabs” that are redeemable for other benefits. In order to reap rewards, the mobs killed must yield xp to the character. Players can however, only do one training regime in a Vana’diel day. No stacking of quests here!
A new type of “treasure” is being introduced into the original areas of the game. On rare occasions, a one in ten chance, a Treasure Casket will spawn when an enemy is defeated. There are two types of treasure caskets. The Blue ones are unlocked and will yield temporary items that can be used in the area that was acquired, the Brown ones are locked. These will yield regular items such as potions and elixers, as well as regular and rare gear. The Brown caskets have a one in ten chance of appearing instead of Blue, and are 2 digit code-locked. Players will receive four to six chances to unlock the casket and every unsuccessful attempt yields a hint such as “It’s a smaller number than the one you input.” We are also told that characters with Thief as a main job that are attempting to unlock the casket could get better hints.
More world quests will be implemented as well as Wings of the Goddess expansion quests. In particular, players welcomed the news that Lilisette and her little black cat will be back! Players completing this quest will gain a new trophy as well as rewards that will be helpful in campaigns.
We were treated to screenshots and live game characters of male characters in Men’s Formal Wear. Highly reminiscent of 18th century men’s fashions with frock coat, frilly front shirt and high boots, we were told that the men’s outfit was the same price as the women’s Wedding Dress, 50,000gil. However, synthesis recipes for the clothing will also be introduced in the future.
Dancer and Scholar Updates
Relic armor sets for Dancers and Scholars will be available in this coming update and fans again got to see the outfits prior to release. Group Two merit abilities for both jobs will also be available with this release.
May 2009 Version Update Preview
A quick preview of the version update to come was also provided. The features will include:
Certainly a lot for fans to look forward to!