Months after writing his review, Ragar talks about his adventures in Eorzea.
It's been over three months since Square Enix officially launched Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. In that time players have combed the countryside in search of FATEs to grind, dungeons and raids to clear and classes and jobs to level to 50. Even after finishing my review for the game back in September, I've found myself spending much of my spare time in Eorzea. Normally with other MMOs and that kind of time, I'd be at level cap with some sort of tank class, looking at endgame dungeons, discussing boss mechanics and possibly raiding. My FFXIV character? Well, he is at level cap with two different classes... just not with any that can kill things.
Ragar Kegdrainer, Master Craftsman (and Occasional Adventurer)
So after playing the game and leveling my character from Open Beta to today, what do I have to show for myself? There's been a bit of dabbling in a variety of classes, but the bulk of my time has gone into four different classes. On the combat side of things, I've been all about the Warrior/Marauder (currently 46 as I'm writing this). Sure there's been a little prep work for future job unlocks like getting Conjurer to 15 for Paladin, but I love tanking with a giant axe and self-heals far too much to switch over to a shield. With endgame dungeons still in the future and the always present concern of "Is my class competitive?" it never hurts to have a backup plan though.
My adventures as a Warrior have also taken me through much of the main storyline and dungeon content available in FFXIV. I have forgotten to keep up with the Guildhest content, but I've successfully tanked every dungeon and Primal Trial available to a level 44 character. I'll be speaking more to these dungeons and Trials in future columns, but up to this point I've enjoyed most of the instances fights available to my character. There have only been two dungeons I haven't cared for up to now; I mentioned the sewer level boredom of Thousand Maws of Toto-Rak before, but Cutter's Cry may have beaten that for "most hated dungeon ever".
I did say that there were four classes I'd focused on though, so what are the other three? The bulk of my time has gone into two crafting classes, Armorer and Goldsmith, and the Miner gathering class. Armorer's fallen a bit behind at only 44, but both Miner and Goldsmith have been brought to the level cap of 50 with their story quest lines complete and blue weapons acquired. This has been somewhat surprising to me - even with my normal zeal for crafting and gathering, they usually play second fiddle to combat leveling. While it hasn't been entirely due to the pull of crafting HQ items and farming Wind Shards for hours, I've enjoyed having paths of progression to focus on for those times when none of my Free Company friends have been available for dungeon runs or FATE farming. Well, that and it's stuff you can do when you're living on hotel Wi-Fi for months at a time, but that's just a bonus.
Alright Mr. Crafter, What's Next?
So now that I've caught everyone up from the review to now, what's next for the column? There's plenty to talk about when it comes to Final Fantasy XIV: dungeons, crafting/gathering, Gil making, housing (whenever patch 2.1 shows up), future class speculation, etc. Let’s start with what I've spent so much time working on these last few months. In column #2 I'll focus on crafting and gathering: what I love about the systems, what I hate, and where I'd like to see Square Enix take the Disciples of the Hand and the Land in the future.
Michael "Ragar" Branham