Joined : 2008-05-21
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|Subject: Dengeki Alpha Report Sun Jun 06, 2010 9:37 am|| |
More new info from the same magazine last week, and there may even be more being translated atm, and more images to come hopefully! I really like the info about the circlets made of different crystals elements, and previous info where you can make similar items from different types of material....oh the crafting already sounds incredibly deep!
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The New Encounters to Come in the land of Eorzea
Adventuring Guilds: players take on the role of adventurers, who will join up with a variety of guilds!
We’ll also introduce the faces and facilities you’ll encounter in the town of Limsa Lominsa!
Limsa Lominsa’s Elegant Cityscape
FFXIV is not only the newest addition to the franchise, but it has also garnered a lot of attention in the realm of MMORPGs. We’ll discuss alpha test reports, along with a look at a town that will act as a hub for adventurers, followed by a developer interview double feature. All this new info delivered to you across eight pages!
Introducing the cityscape and guilds of Limsa Lominsa, the sea capital! And don’t miss the developer interviews! About a month has passed since the start of alpha-testing, and the beta-phase is already being painstakingly tweaked in response to player feedback. This time we’ll be taking a look at Limsa Lominsa’s view and its various guilds, followed by an interview with the developers!
Dengeki Alpha Report, Vol.2010/05: Login has been stabilized. On to adventure!
As stated in previous issues, the alpha test takes place once or twice a week. Perhaps because there was such a vast amount of players trying to log-in simultaneously, it seemed like the server was down more often than not. The situation was slowly remedied, and as of now the server hardly ever goes down. However, there are still some log-in issues remaining. At the start of an alpha test, logging in is easy. But as the server population increases, so does the waiting time for those trying to log-in. That being said, wait-time is now around ten minutes or less, much shorter than before.
Most players finish what will become the main storyline and focus on leveling up via Guildleves and defeating monsters. The search for party members for such adventures mainly takes place at the Aetheryte closest to Limsa Lominsa, Camp Bearded Rock. Higher level players search for battles at another Aetheryte east of there by the name of Cedarwood. At the start of alpha, there was barely any lag, and battles and Guildleves were going off without a hitch. However, two weeks following alpha launch as the population increased with time, many were experiencing lag in battle. These problems should be fixed by the time beta rolls out, though.
Eorzea Behind the Scenes: The editing department also had the opportunity to participate in the alpha test. Let’s take a look at their experiences.
The start of a journey is indeed exploring the world!
Finally! I was a little later to the game than the rest of the editors, but I finally joined in on the alpha test. I finished the opening cutscene and tutorial as fast as possible and made my way to Limsa Lominsa. Oh, the things to do once I arrived! Should I talk with NPCs and move the story along? Or shoud I, in classic MMO fashion, group up with fellow adventurers and start leveling up? No, no.
After all, I have to see this world with my own eyes! Even then, it felt as if I had already walked across this entire strange new world. A memory of a former life, perhaps? So I wished my best to my fellow
editors as they happily began their leveling, and I started on my journey. Since it would be a waste to wander aimlessly around, I decided to visit the Aetheryte in each area.
Once you have been to an Aetheryte, you can teleport back there via the Teleport command in the menu. Thus I headed northeast from town straight along the road toward Camp Bearded Rock. The surroundings gave the impression of being out in the peaceful countryside. I arrived safely in under five minutes. From there I tried heading northwest to Camp Skull Valley, but since the scenery wasn’t much different from before I arrived in about five minutes. Upon talking to an NPC, I was told of a nearby place called the Valley of Whispers.
I immediately looked at my map and spotted it east of Skull Valley. Speaking of which, I think I saw what looked like a cave entrance on my way here. I quickly doubled back. Advancing northeast through the cave I encountered various creatures, such as hyenas and bomb-like napalms. As I fended off hyenas, I spotted it to the south. The Valley of Whispers! Here I found what looked like a small Aetheryte. When I asked my fellow editors, they said it was something called an Ethereal Gate.
Once touched, it allows you to warp back and forth between it and a specific Aetheryte, in this case probably Skull Valley. Once I finished looking around, I decided to avoid all the danger I had passed on the way and took the Ethereal Gate back. Finally back at Skull Valley, I opened my map again and spotted Camp Bald Knoll (not sure of the spelling). This time my travels took around ten minutes. If you leave the path a bit, you’ll see some old familiar faces…cactuars! Despite their lovable little pose, I remembered the dreaded 1,000 Needles and ran off before I could fall prey to it. Onward to Bald Knoll.
Without so much as a break, I turned southward and made my way to the Mirage Archipelago. As I continued south, I eventually found myself in a wide-open plain. According to the map, if I continue south I’ll find a bridge to the archipelago. However, I found no such bridge. I consulted my map once more. Well, if there weren’t two entrances to caves marked on it! Surely I’ll find my way to the island if I pass through the cave to the east!...or so I thought.
I still couldn’t quite make it to the island. The bridge to the island was still somewhere else underneath the shore. It seems like this area, like Limsa Lominsa, is divided into upper and lower pathways. I guess
the correct path was further south of the cave (*this part was hard to make out due to the scan).
(caption) During the alpha test I tried to make my way eastward. Further east of here there’s a desert! More on that to come.
I tried a Rank 10 Guildleve!
I had already tried many different things on the alpha. Since I finally reached Rank 10 with spears, this time I thought I’d report on the Guildleves available at Camp Skull Valley. In terms of enemy strength,
it comes right after Camp Bearded Rock, a Rank 1 area designed for two fighters. Guildleves here are for two players Rank 10 and up.
If you’re unsure of your ability, setting the difficulty on 3 stars as a test should be just right. If it’s too easy, you can up the difficulty more. If you come out thinking, “That was pretty tough…” then all you
need to do is lower it a bit. On this particular day, we had a group of three consisting of a Lancer (myself) and two Conjurers. Since I was the only one in melee range, we set it on 3 stars. A typical battle consisted of me dealing damage while the two Conjurers kept me healed up with Cures. Typical by anyone’s standards.
One Guildleve caught my eye, ‘Purging Cedarwood’. Our targets were three Carrion Chiglets, four Wingrats, and one Boggart. I was a little daunted at first, but soon we began to fell beasts one-by-one. However, the final fight with the Boggart proved to be an uphill battle. You’ll remember Boggarts from the opening movie, looking a lot like a flying jellyfish.
With high attack power, it took me and my paper-thin armor down in two hits. After that, it was a quick wipe. But just because we wiped doesn’t mean this fight is over! The beautiful thing about Guildleves is that you can keep retrying within the time limit. In this case, we had fifteen minutes of our thirty-minute time limit left. We used the Warp command to return to Cedarwood, found the Boggart’s stomping grounds and waiting for our weakness to wear off. This time the two Conjurers blasted me with Cures while I pummeled the Boggart before I could be taken down.
There were a few accidents, but we scraped by! Unexpected accomplishments are a part of the fun of MMOs. After clearing the Guildleve, I received my reward of 2750 Gil and a Canvas Beret. Just by
looking at the icon I could tell that not only did it look cool, but it also had a nice set of stats! But alas, it required me to be Rank 17 before I could even equip it. That seems so far away, but just by getting new gear my motivation to level up has increased exponentially!
Well, since we still had some time left, we decided to try another Guildleve, The target was Bukki (a whitish version of FFXI’s imp family) only, so I figured I had plenty of leeway. That was before I knew that Bukki would flee when he was low on health! He fled right past two night wolves, two more beasts I would have to add to my list. I killed the night wolves while pondering this, when we suddenly cleared the mission! I didn’t receive a reward since I wasn’t the one who took the Guildleve, but it was still one exhilarating fight! The real reward is the progress saved to each player’s Guildleve Plate. The better the
contents of your plate, the better the reward it seems. Thanks to them, I’ve managed to save up quite a bit of Gil. I think it’s about time I try my hand at crafting.
(caption) Night wolves in the path of a runaway Bukki! Is enjoying such situations just part of the charm of Guildleves?
I finally stood at the alpha test’s starting point…I think?
Lately the server has been pretty stable. There haven’t been any problems like server errors or inability to login like there were when alpha testing first started. I been focused on playing as a Thaumaturge,
but everything moved so slowly I could hardly cast a spell. Now that those problems have passed, playing has become a lot easier.
I particularly liked one ability they have, “Hex Missiles”. They don’t use MP and are single-target attacks, so you don’t have to worry about catching the attention of surrounding enemies. Unfortunately, spells like Banish and Scourge do hit multiple targets, so they can be difficult to use in situations where you’re surrounded. Even then, it is said that FFXIV’s battle system focuses on group fights, so it seems like we’ll definitely be seeing more use out of such abilities.
I’ve been walking around quite a bit but have yet to find many zone changes. It seems like everything is connected, so the world feels wide open! Aetheryte allows you to travel to places you’ve visited before (a la teleport crystals in FFXI), so traveling is a breeze. Right now it seems like I can travel anywhere on a whim, but it does take some work to get there first.
I’ve run across various monsters while hunting out Aetheryte, but the ones that stand out the most would definitely be Peistes. Compared to the other beasts, they’re huge! Then there are the cute Spriggans. Well, cute but still defeatable.
In Limsa Lominsa, I checked out Hawkers’ Alley, where I found a shop selling three different circlets. But what made them different? It turns out the materials with which they were made affects their elemental
alignment. Those made of sunstone were fire-based, those of sphene were earth-based, and those made from fluorite were lightning-based. You’ll be able to tell an item has received special enhancements from such items by a graphic on the item description. I feel like this will have a big effect on gameplay…
There were various stands from all over the world, but the one that really caught my eye was the Qiqirn Mutual Aid Society. Anyone who has played FFXI will remember Qiqirns and their peculiar way of speaking. I wonder how they’ll be involved in FFXIV!
There have been seven or eight rounds of alpha testing, but there are still many things I have yet to do! It seems like I’ve finished most of the quests, but there are still many areas I have yet to see. I also
need to work on my Physical Level and various class ranks! I want to switch weapons around a bit and try out the other classes. Since I can only play during allotted times, my desire to play is doing nothing but increasing.
(caption) The cute round-eyed Spriggan. If you look closely at its mouth, you can see a frightening set of sharp teeth…
For Every Class There is a Guild!
Leader of the Pirates, Carvallain de Gorgagne
An Organization of Pirates in Search of New Recruits In one corner of the harbor rests a galleon, the Astalicia, claiming to be a trade ship. However, it is common knowledge that it is in fact a warship commanded by One-eyed Hyllfyr. In order to attract new recruits, he has made the vessel the Marauders’ Guild for those wishing to wield an axe. The ship itself is rather large, containing three floors.
(caption) Docked in the southwestern part of Limsa Lominsa, it seems like a normal trade ship but is in fact the headquarters of the Marauders’ Guild.
NPC Item Check!: Pirate Fashion When looking at the NPCs of the Marauders’ Guild, one cannot help but
notice how maneuverable their clothing seems. Giant two-handed axes carried on the back are also a key characteristic.
There are axes hanging all over the walls, even ones that appear small enough to wield with one hand.
A Roegadyn of the Marauders’ Guild. (*illegible, something about gloves)
A Miqo’te wrapped in chainmail. The ear area of the helmet is very reminiscent of a Viking design.
Wawalago Momolago, Founder
A Small Assembly of Fishermen Turned Huge Organization!
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Originally a small network, Fisherman’s Bottom has grown into a full-fledged fishing guild. From controlling all the major fishing spots to selling fishing-related merchandise and even providing weather forecasts, this guild has its hands in a lot of things. Inside you’ll find various giant aquariums and tanks among other things, and it looks as if they’re conducting fish-related research on a constant basis.
(caption) You’ll even find a shop selling all the fishing gear you’ll need, such as rods and bait.
NPC Item Check!: The pole on the back is the mark of a fisherman
And it seems like you’ll see a lot of that in Fisherman’s Bottom. The majority of NPCs here also sport hats or bandannas have a plethora of pockets around their hips. It looks like they’re really going for functionality over style.
A huge aquarium. It you look closely, you can see what look like deep-sea fish in there as well.
A Miqo’te fisher. Poking holes in the hat so her ears can stick out is sickeningly cute.
A Roegadyn fisher. Making a hobby of tempering his body, he carries more than a typical fisher would. And is that an extendable fishing rod I spy?
The Sights of Limsa Lominsa
Limsa Lominsa has acted as the sole base available to players during the alpha test. Not only does it house a wealth of guilds, it also boasts many facilities adventurers’ should find helpful in their daily lives. Here we’ll introduce four such places.
(caption) A cityscape so beautiful bards call it Llymlaen’s Veil.
Mizzenmast: The tower at the center
On the lower levels there are archers’ holes for defense purposes. On the middle floors are inns, pubs, etc., and the upper floors house government offices and even the airship docks. The tower is also home to the adventuring guild’s HQ, the Drowning Wench (*translator’s note: in Japanese, it’s called the Drowned Dolphin).
Limsa Lominsa is one huge base for adventurers.
(caption) The biggest building, Mizzenmast can be seen from anywhere in the city.
The Octant: A plaza for adventurers to relax in Northeast of Hawkers’ Alley, it is a memorial for Jovanni Gnonno and named after the revolutionary nautical device he invented. At noon you can see performances, and at night it is transformed into a romantic hotspot. The Octant is often crowded with adventurers and vendors alike.
A memorial plaza where the cityfolk gather.
(caption) In the center of the large bowl-like structure, there appears to be what resembles a fountain. At night with torches ablaze, it makes for quite an enchanting atmosphere.
Armorers’ Guild: Applying ship-rigging techniques
H’naanza Esi, Forgemaster
Named after it’s founders, a cannonwright and the other a shipwright, Naldiq & Vymelli’s houses the Armorers’ Guild. Here ship-rigging and outfitting techniques are applied in a new direction, crafting armor for the adventurers who need it. Inside are plenty of giant furnaces and bellows. There are also shops for both the Armorers’ and Blacksmiths’ Guilds.
(caption) The Armorers’ Guild’s facilities are generally indoors.
Blacksmiths’ Guild: Developing shipwright techniques
Mimidoa Nanadoa, Adept Blacksmith
The Armorers’ Guild isn’t the only guild inside Naldiq & Vymelli’s. The Blacksmiths’ Guild was originally also in the business of ship-building. Much of what the guild makes is used by the Armorers’ Guild. They also manufacture ingots.
The Blacksmiths’ Guild is generally outside!
NPC Item Check!: Functional Fashion that Protects from Flying Sparks
Armorers’ Guild members typically wear long sleeves and gloves. This must be to protect them from all those sparks while working. Only those working hot metal with the hammer wear sleeveless jackets, even then they still make sure they have their gloves on tightly. What stands out around the guild are the bellows they use to cool the searing metal.
Despite his torso being bear, this Elezen wears thick gloves and long sleeves for protection.
A Hyur wearing a unique set of goggles and a sleeveless shirt. Is this the fundamental style of the Blacksmiths’ Guild?
Armor decorating the workshop. It looks as if there are more decorations behind.
Here is where they beat the heated metal into armor. A powerful-looking Roegadyn is hard at work.
NPC Item Check!: the hammer at the hip is the mark of a blacksmith
Blacksmiths’ Guild members typically wear long-sleeved clothing that appears to be made of linen. This, too, must be to protect from sparks. They also keep a small hammer at their side. With this they manipulate metals into various weapons. Most seem to work outside.
(top and bottom-left)Most members carry a small hammer on their hip. We also spotted some large levers indoors.
(top-right)Most, like this Elezen, are nearly fully covered in clothes.
In order to keep the hammer from slipping, you can’t forget your gloves.
Pharos Polaris: A landmark to act as the North Star
Located in the southwestern section of Limsa Lominsa, it sits on the inner part of the dock where the Astalicia is berthed. In order to stand in place of the North Star and mark the way back home, it was built of stone over the course of many moons. The blue-white flame is rumored to be born of either Bombs or of some secret technique to capture and store sunlight.
Protector of the seas, a chalk-white lighthouse.
The beauty of the lighthouse as seen from a hill in the southwest part of town. The large fences separate the sea from the town.
Hawkers’ Alley: Buying and selling various weapons and items
As you stand at the Mizzenmast and face west, on top of a huge bridge you’ll see but one corner of the market district. There are shops lined up selling tools and materials for those craftsmen hailing from Ul’dah and Gridania. In a different corner, there are places for those adventurers who pay the fee to set up shop with wares they made themselves or the spoils of war in “Sword Town” or in the fish market. The barking of hired Retainers (*employed by adventurers?) rings loud and clear and full of fervor. And on the edge of the central island Hawkers’ Alleys splits into East and West, each carrying its own flavor of merchandise.
The Adventurers’ Guild, the Drowning Wench: Originally a Shop for Shipmates
A beerhall inside Mizzenmast. The owner decided to make the change from a bar for seafaring folk into a mercenary hub and thus opened the Adventurers’ Guild. Nowadays, adventurers come and go whether day or night. Because this is where they get Guildleves, adventures consider this an important base out of which to operate. It is a beerhall, so you will see a fair number of NPCs grabbing lunch here. I wonder if adventurers can do the same?
The counter that gives out Guildleves. Adventurers are sure to be crowded around it.
Around the middle of Mizzenmast on the middle level lies the Drowning Wench, the Adventurers’ Guild HQ
NPC Item Check!: Shopkeepers’ and Their Differing Uniforms
There are two faces to the Drowning Wench: a beerhall on one side and the Adventurers’ Guild on the other. On the beerhall side, shopkeepers are dressed casually, but the guild-side tenants are dressed in white robe-like uniforms.
The elevator leading to the exit that connects the Adventurers’ Guild to the outside world. Using this, you can make your way outside in a flash.
An Elezen with a handsome pair of glasses tends the counter at the Adventurers’ Guild.
An adventurer seated in the Drowning Wench. The combination of the gauntlets and helmet make her really stand out. Will we be seeing more full-faced helmets in FFXIV?
Coral Tower (Gunmen’s Guild): Recruiting for the Navy
Commodore Reyner Hansred
The base of the Knights of the Barracuda, the navy that protects the waters surrounding Limsa Lominsa. In order to train officers with the handguns they’ve supplied, the guild maintains barracks, firing ranges, etc. This guild is located inside Coral Tower, in the northwestern part of town. Since soldiers are always brushing up their skills, perhaps the tower was built here to keep the sounds of gunfire from reaching the rest of the city?
The underground firing range in Coral Tower. With plenty of targets set up, someone can always be found here practicing.
Are the flags bearing designs of guns a symbol of the Knights?
NPC Item Check!: Is this unique cap a mark of a Knight?
Sure, they are knights, but you won’t see any wearing platemail like in the fairy tales. That is to say, their manner of dress is fitting of a navy. There are even some who wear masks to keep their past hidden.
They excel with handguns, but there’s also a rifle there along the wall. Perhaps it’s not just pistols they can wield?
The uniform of a female member of the Gunmen’s Guild. It looks like there’s a ribbon on the front as well as lace around the collar.
Like the picture to the left, a Miqo’te Knight. Judging from the colors of the uniform along with the accessories, she looks to be of lower rank. Furthermore, she’s sporting a pistol on her left hip.
Culinary Guild: Food from all over Eorzea in one kitchen
Lyngsath Doesfalksyn, Guildmaster
As the best restaurant in Eorzea, the Bismark keeps busy with charming taste buds with recipes from all over the five seas. The Culinary Guild accompanies it. This battlefield of a kitchen is the best place to learn the craft. Most who train here go on to become world-famous chefs. The restaurant itself sits on the rooftop, allowing one to enjoy the scenery and skyline while eating delectable delights. It’s not just the locals, either. People come from faraway for the chance to dine here.
Carefully selected ingredients are stocked in bulk.
In order to make large amounts of food, the cookware itself is usually quite big.
NPC Item Check!: The Cleanliness of a Cook
The Culinary Guild’s uniform seems to be a clean, white robe. So not a single stray hair finds its way into the food, they are also required to wear either a hat or bandanna. The kitchen is home to large ovens and rooms packed wall to wall with tables.
Even a whole chicken cooks to the core here. Surely we’ll also see pizzas and the sort baked in this massive oven.
Typical attire of a cook in the Culinary Guild. To help with ease of movement, their cuffs can be cinched shut. For some reason, only master chefs hide their face with a mask…
The attendant at the guild shop. The uniform is of a different design than the chefs’. Even then, one must take care not to dirty the ingredients.
Last edited by Khalus Akuhei on Mon Jun 07, 2010 7:09 pm; edited 1 time in total