‘Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood’: Benchmark Released, Live Letter Details Expansion Specifics

Final Fantasy XIV is preparing to see its newest expansion, Stormblood, next month.

Players have conquered the woes of Ishgard, and it’s almost time to move on to the next chapter in the Final Fantasy XIV world. Fans have read the stars of the Astrologian, conquered the darkness of the Dark Knight, and riddled foes with bullets from a Machinist’s arm. Square Enix continues to deliver information on the new expansion, and a recent live letter has given fans all the more reason to be hyped for Stormblood.

In a report by RPG Fan, director and producer Naoki Yoshida hosted the 35th “Letter from the Producer LIVE” event on Friday. Perhaps the biggest reveal on Stormblood and what it entails, fans and players alike learned a wealth of information in regards to what we can expect. While the specifics of animation and mechanic are still a mystery, various media showed a look at what abilities every class will be receiving in the new adventure.

The biggest feature of Stormblood will be the increase in level cap from 60 to 70. This isn’t new information, but “Yoshi P” — Naoki Yoshida’s nickname — revealed quite a few new animations for each class. The Benchmark trailer, designed to show players how their PC will perform under various settings for the new expansion, shows new abilities that we’ve yet to receive full details on. From the Ninja class performing what looks to be a summon, to Dark Knights being able to further protect allies with shield buffs, Final Fantasy XIV will be getting a massive overhaul to its core elements.

Another grand feature in Stormblood will involve housing in the new expansion’s lands. A new district, Shirogane, will be available to players at some point in the future. It’s being said that housing plots won’t be available on day one, so the pressure of advancing through the game won’t be as high. Still, it goes without saying that servers can anticipate a high amount of traffic when Shirogane’s doors open to plots being able to be purchased.

Inventory space for Final Fantasy XIV will increase with Stormblood coming out. Yoshi P has shown us a 40-slot increase to inventory space, while there will be an increase from 25 to 35 slots for the armory chest. With as many glamours and novelty items that players possess, this is a welcome change to the struggle of managing what players will keep, sell, or discard.

Fishing and gathering will take on new appearances in Stormblood, as well. With the 4.0 patch that will bring the game in, players will be able to swim for the first time in Final Fantasy XIV. Fishing will take place by use of a spear, and gatherers will be able to collect materials underwater. The benchmark also shows underwater mounts, granting better accessibility when traveling underwater. Additionally, mounts will be receiving upgrades as players progress through the new content. This will most likely mean speed upgrades to new and existing mounts.

According to MMORPG, Yoshi could be toying with the idea of removing Cleric Stance for healers. Cleric Stance has been a source of controversy for months, and Stormblood could reflect a change that alters or removes this ability altogether. The benchmark has shown us that tank abilities are seemingly being transformed into greater support, though one can only speculate at this point.

Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood will release on June 20. If you pre-order the game, you’ll have early access to the expansion starting June 16.

What are your thoughts on the Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood live letter? Let us know your opinions on what you’ve seen so far in the comments section below.

[Featured Image By Square Enix]