All aboard the hype train: FFXIV’s next expansion

If you’re like me, you probably completely forgot that Fan Fest for Final Fantasy XIV was happening last week. Some of us do like to live under rocks, after all!

Luckily, Shane was looking out for me, and shared something on Saturday that he’d just seen.

That’s right: It’s already been almost two years since Endwalker, and our next adventure is on its way. So today, I thought I’d explore some of the fun ideas and theories around it so far!

It’s a whole new adventure.

Since the first talks of Endwalker, the FFXIV team has been really clear that the Zodiark/Hydaelyn story is done, and we’re on to entirely different stories.

At first, when the Endwalker raid series came out, it felt like we might be facing something like the challenge of the gods of Eorzea, which had the potential to end up being just as serious. But with this new trailer, it’s looking a lot more like we’re off to hit the high seas, head to new lands with familiar glam items, and partake in fun pirate hijinks.

It's a lot lighter.

Let’s be real: Shadowbringers and Endwalker were both incredibly heavy both in their subject matter and how they dealt with it. It makes sense, though, and I think they did it the right way, but that doesn’t change the facts.

By contrast, the trailer for Dawntrail feels like we’re going to be jetting off on a bright, sunny vacation in the Cieldalaes, just like our island sanctuaries.

Or, as one character in the trailer says,


Enjoying yourself for a change?


I do think this sort of approach was overdue, and I’m really glad to see it. Obviously you can’t take the weight off of experienced players when they’re building up to a doomsday situation, but just watching newer friends and players go through early adventures, it’s been increasingly obvious that there’s a huge gap between that early excitement and the weight that higher-level Warriors of Light have been carrying for years.

It’ll be nice for all of us to get that fresh, excited spark back.

We’re getting two new DPS classes—and one might involve paint.

One of Yoshi-P’s hallmarks is that when he announces major expansions at Fan Fest, he always has some sort of subtle hint as to one of the classes on a T-shirt. He sported a 007 shirt for Heavensward, which brought us machinist; he wore Spider-Man (referencing the 2002 movie directed by Sam Raimi) for Stormblood, when we got samurai; he showed off a likeness of the Grim Reaper before Endwalker, when we got reaper.

This time, he had a T-shirt of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, which I can see going a few possible ways:

  1. We get turtles as a playable race
  2. We get a second scouting class to go with ninja
  3. We get a class that uses paint magic, since they’re all named after artists

He did say in the keynote that both new classes this time around will be DPS, one melee and one ranged magical, so it could even turn out that we get more than one of the possibilities—or something else altogether!

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