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Letter from the Producer Live XVI

July 21st, 2014 by Tony Garsow

Letter from the Producer Live XVI airs today, detailing more on upcoming patches post Defenders of Eorzea, including 2.4 out later this year. Lead Designer Nobuaki Komoto is this episode’s guest and will be taking QA from fans.

Stay tuned as we update this post!

— PvP gear will receive adjustments for Frontline, as Morale is currently a non-contributing stat.
— The team is looking into adjusting The Hunt by adding buffs to S-rank monsters other than HP, more Allied Seals for Daily Marks.
— A short video was shown of the Ixal beastman area and cutscenes.
— You’ll be able to obtain an outfit of a certain Final Fantasy character similar to Lightning and Snow in the future.
— A video was shown with footage of Ninja using more abilities, as well as an economic report with Minfilia.
— Gold Saucer concept art was shown, Triple Triad and Chocobo Racing hinted.
— A 14-day Free Trial and Recruit-A-Friend system are in the works.
— Eorzea Cafe will open in Japan, featuring food from the game.

Read the full QA by expanding the article below!

Q1: When participating in Frontline and changing jobs, you have to constantly re-do your PvP actions and traits. Can you make it so these are saved for each job?
A1: I understand the request and we’ve started to look into making it so the actions set per job are saved. Please give us a bit of time to work on this.

Q2: Are there any plans to randomize the starting point of each of the Grand Companies in Frontline?
A2: We will look into this to see if we can make it happen.

Q3: In Frontline, PvP gear is somewhat disadvantageous since Morale is not utilized, but I’d really like to wear this gear and play. Can you please make it so glamours work in PvP only for PvP gear?
A3: In patch 2.35 we will be making it possible to use glamours. We are also aware of the disadvantages when it comes to the stats and we will be making adjustments.

Q4: Currently, the daily mark bills are difficult to complete due to the spawn rate of certain FATEs. Is there any way we can complete this in an easier fashion?
A4: While we won’t be able to make FATEs spawn constantly, we will look into increasing the spawn rate of FATEs.

Q5: Will you ever add elite marks that are higher than rank S?
A5: We’re thinking about adding elite marks moving forward, but if they exceed rank S that means they will become something like the level of Odin or a Behemoth class monster. We’re also working on things for the expansion, so we’d like to explore a variety of things.

Q6: Do have any plans to expand Frontline? If so, what kind of expansion do you have in mind?
A6: Looking at all regions, Japanese users seem to be playing Frontline content the most. Since it’s receiving a lot of positive attention we are proactively looking into the addition of maps and rules. Map-wise, it’s important to create them so it’s balanced for all three groups, so we expect this to take a bit of time.

Q7: Currently, there are many players that enter the Syrcus Tower to obtain an unidentified Allagan tomestone or oil of time. Due to this reason, there are a lot of equipment drops that go to waste. Is there any chance we can split the weekly lock out for the tomestone and oil?
A7: We currently do not have any plans of doing so since both the upgrade items and equipment may be an upgrade for a player.

Q8: Please implement content for Frontline that allows us to compete for standings with other Grand Companies.
A8: While it’s a bit different, we’re currently testing Frontline rankings for the Lodestone and we will be releasing this shortly, so we’d like players to first use this feature. Additionally, we’re thinking about holding a real-life PvP event at GamesCom in Germany for the first time. We’d like to use the same setup to hold PvP events around the world.

Q9: Is there any way you can make the Syrcus Tower similar to Frontline where we are able to enter the instance without every single player having to select “Commence”?
A9: The feature was a feature that we implemented in response to the issue with Frontline, so it may be difficult to implement in Syrcus Tower.

We will look into this matter after we implement the feature where players are able to queue as an alliance.

Q10: Please make it so equipment drops more than crafting materials in instanced dungeons.
A10: Since the demand for glamours is ever-increasing, I’ll be talking to the lead for this and be making adjustments.

Q11: Do you plan on adding another stat for PvP equipment instead of Morale for Frontline?
A11: We designed Frontline to be an even PvP playing field, so we are not thinking about adding Morale or swapping it for a different kind of stat. However, I understand that compared to other equipment with similar item levels, the PvP equipment is inferior, so we would like to make adjustments to this.

Q12: In Hullbreaker Isle, we only fight the tentacles of the Kraken. Will we ever see the Kraken again?
A12: Of course! You will see the Kraken reappear in the near future so please stay tuned.

Q13: Is it possible to lower the cost of the equipment that we can purchase with Allied Seals?
A13: Instead of lowering the cost, we are currently looking into increasing the awards for completing the daily mark bills.

Q14: What’s that tapestry art behind you?
A14: Brand-new art based on Frontline!

Q15: Will you be adding ways to obtain Allied Seals in the future?
A15: Since this was just implemented, we don’t have any plans to do this at the moment, but that’s not to say it won’t happen in the future.

Q16: Please increase the maximum number of participants for Frontline.
A16: The Frontline map was designed specifically for this amount of players. If we change it to something like 30 vs. 30 vs. 30, it might break the balance of the map by having more players attack the center. If we decide to increase the maximum number of participants, we will have to create another map tailored specifically for that number of participants.

Q17: Will you be adding more to Edda’s story?
A17: Hmm…I wonder (laughs). I really want her to be happy… I guess it depends on everyone’s feedback, but I’m really curious as well!

Q18: Currently, the elite marks die instantly even after the recent adjustment. Are there any plans to make further adjustments?
A18: We are currently looking into ways of addressing this issue without simply increasing the HP of the marks.

Q19: Will you be implementing more riddle solving quests similar to Winebaud’s Riddles in the future?
A19: I believe that those of you who have already cleared this had quite a tough time, but these are also extremely difficult for the people who design the quests, so we’d like to make them bit by bit over time instead of releasing a lot all at once.

Q20: Are there any plans to implement additional costumes and hairstyles of previous FINAL FANTASY series characters similar to Lightning and Snow?
A20: While I can’t say too much, let’s just say you will be able to obtain a costume for a certain famous FF character by completing certain content in a certain patch!

Q21: The rewards for Mark Bills and Elite Mark Bills feels a bit low. Do you have any plans to adjust this?
A21: We are currently looking into increasing the amount for Mark Bills. We’re concerned that if we increase the rewards for elite marks it would cause even more people to focus on them, so to start out we are going to prioritize adjustments to daily marks.

Q22: Are there any plans to add mechanics to the elite marks similar to those that bosses use?
A22: We are able to maintain balance in dungeons because of the specific battlefield you fight the boss in. If we do the same for elite marks, it might end up even killing the players that do not want to participate in the fight.

Q23: Are there any plans to implement a savage mode for the Binding Coil of Bahamut?
A23: We have been receiving a lot of feedback regarding the shared flag for the normal mode of the Second Coil of Bahamut and savage mode of the Second Coil of Bahamut. We are currently in the process of discussing if we want to keep the flag shared or to separate them.

Therefore, we would like to ask for your feedback regarding this matter. Depending on the feedback, I personally think it’s okay to separate the flags and making it possible to challenge at any time. As for the savage mode of the Binding Coil of Bahamut, if we were to implement it, it would most likely occur at the same time as this adjustment.

Q24: Can you give us an update on the Armor/Weapon Guide?
A24: We’ve finished putting together the details and have been estimating the amount of work necessary for making it either a fun, collect the items-type of thing or content that we can reveal the lore for the weapons and armor you obtain. However, this will affect the amount of saved data on your character, so we need to make a final and thorough check on this.

Q25: Will the story for the Crystal Tower end in the next Crystal Tower update?
A25: First, the story for the Coil of Bahamut will end in patch 2.4. Next, the story for the Crystal Tower will come to an end in patch 2.5. We are also planning to make the Forbidden Land, Eureka, but because it might have a different feel compared to the Crystal Tower, we are thinking of possibly introducing it after waiting a while.

Q26: Previously, Yoshi-P mentioned that it would be interesting to go to the moon, but do you have any other information about the alliance-based instanced raid to come after Crystal Tower?
A26: Well, I don’t know if we will be going to the moon, but the next alliance-based instanced raid will be something brand-new for FINAL FANTASY XIV.

Q27: Is there any progress on the update list you mentioned in the previous Letter from the Producer LIVE?
A27: We’re gradually working on this, but the release has been delayed a bit due to preparations for the expansion pack. I apologize.

Q28: In a previous Letter from the Produce LIVE, you mentioned something about increasing the magic defense of dragoons. Are there any updates on this?
A28: We are currently in the process of carefully looking into this matter.

After the buff to black mages in patch 2.3, we have been receiving additional feedback regarding the current situation of dragoons. We feel that each job has its pros and cons. For example, it’s harder for black mages to do a lot of damage in a fight where they don’t have much time to stand still and cast magic.

As for dragoons, we understand they currently take a lot of magic damage so we are looking into this matter with care. We don’t want to break the balance by simply making the dragoons immune to magic, so we are currently trying to find the right balance.

Q29: Komoto, did you bring anything from your mother (Takai) for show and tell?
A29: (Shows off a video of Ninja)

Q30: Will you ever be making a song out of Tataru’s song?
A30: We will look into this, but I’m thinking each of you have already created a song in your head from Tataru’s song and it might not match up if we made an official version.

Q31: Komoto, what are you in charge of?
A31: I’m more in charge of overseeing everything instead of being in charge of something specific. Also, I’m in charge of leading the daily meetings where we go over topics that were brought up via GM calls and posts on the forums and discussing how we can address the matter in an upcoming patch. Other than that, I oversee the economy of each World. If I notice any strange movement in the economy, I look into the cause and consider how I can address the matter.

Q32: Will you be introducing content in the future similar to Giruveganaus from Stone Vigil (Hard Mode) where you have to decide what attacks to use based on a monster’s behavior that makes the battle really come alive?
A32: Since it seems like everyone was able to clear Giruveganaus without any problems, in addition to the pattern-based content that was implemented this time around, we’ll also look into content with random elements.

Q33: In patch 2.4, you will be adding a new class and job (rogue/ninja). Are you planning to make all of the future full-party content in the format of Tank x1、DPS x5、Healer x2 similar to the Syrcus Tower?
A33: While you may see this format in alliance-based raids, we will continue to use the standard “Tank x2、DPS x4、Healer x2” format for 8-man dungeons. The last Coil of Bahamut that will be implemented in patch 2.4 will also be in this format. We put a lot of extra work into this dungeon so please stay tuned!

Q34: In a previous interview, you mentioned that you are aiming to make this an MMORPG that continues for over 10 years, but at the moment how far have you planned into the future?
A34: Currently, the area where players will be and what they will be doing in patch 4.0 has been coming into our vision, so to give you a rough idea, we’ve progressed our planning to about four years into the future.

Q35: Komoto, are there any instances where you were able to use your previous experience as an MMO developer in a positive way while developing FFXIV: ARR?
A35: In FFXI, I was also in charge of operations and economy so I believe I was able to use that experience for FFXIV: ARR.

Q36: Komoto, what’s your favorite food?
A36: Ramen.

Q37: Komoto, when development for FFXIV: ARR began, what was something you felt you wanted to fix?
A37: Since the game failed, more than wanting to fix a certain aspect I really felt more strongly about remaking it from scratch.

Q38: Komoto, is there anyone, or any games, that had a major influence on you as a developer?
A38: I really loved the games “Derby Stallion” and “Best Play Pro Baseball” so Hiroyuki Sonobe had a major influence on me. Also, I played a lot of the FINAL FANTASY series during the Super Famicom (Super NES) era so the FINAL FANTASY series had a major influence on me (also this is when I started working at Square).

Q39: Will you be making it possible to place a planter in our personal chambers and garden?
A39: When we were planning gardening from fields, we were thinking about making it possible in the future to garden from pots as well. However, we need to look at gardening from fields a bit more, so we’d like to implement this later.

Q40: Will we be able to garden in our personal houses?
A40: That is currently our plan.

Q41: When logging out in our private chambers and logging back in again we are placed outside of our house. Can you make it like inns so we log into our chamber?
A41: I realize there is a demand for this and we have been checking it out, but there are some technical aspects that make this somewhat difficult, so it seems it will be a bit in the future.

Q42: Are demimateria only obtainable through desynthesis?
A42: Currently, we believe that demimateria should only be obtainable through desynthesis.

Q43: Are there any plans to add more horror stories similar to the quest “Corpse Groom”?
A43: The 3 dungeons that were implemented in patch 2.3 had strong ties with the main scenario and each of them had a strong story. We will continue to put a lot of effort into the stories of the upcoming instanced dungeons (not just horror). Please stay tuned!

Q44: Please add more Disciples of the Hand-specific equipment to make it so we can increase desynthesis skill more efficiently.
A44: We’d like to look into a variety of ways to do this which include both equipment and food.

Q45: I feel that the cost and difficulty for cleaning the stables and gardening the vegetables to feed chocobos for chocobo raising is rather high. Do you plan on making adjustments so chocobo raising can be done more easily?
A45: As I mentioned earlier about cleaning, I am very sorry. In regards to the vegetables, we feel the way it is currently is just about right and I also think that the methods for how to garden these vegetables hasn’t quite been found out completely yet, so I urge you to experiment.

Q46: Currently, we are unable to desynthesize ilvl 95 items. Will we be able to desynthesize them in the future?
A46: Yes, you will. We will look into making this possible as the maximum ilvl increases in the future.

Q47: Komoto, when designing content, how do you decide to set the difficulty and judge the rate in which players will clear it?
A47: It depends on the content, but we separate the content largely into two categories: battle content and live content. I’m in charge of live content. When it comes to battle content, we think about the percentage of players that will clear it after release at their current main job’s item level, but for live content we make adjustments based on economic trends.

Q48: Are there any plans to implement a new role such as buffer or debuffer?
A48: We will be sticking with our existing roles (Tank, DPS, Healer) for a while. This is mainly because the matching process is much faster and it’s easier to understand for the newer players. While we are not completely ruling this out, we are currently putting an emphasis on making the game easy to understand for the new players that may start playing the game from patch 3.0.

Q49: During the 15th Letter from the Producer LIVE, you mentioned that you were intrigued with the game “Evolve” at E3. Are there any plans to implement something similar to this game style (4 vs. 1)?
A49: Since the game style consists of 4 players going against a monster controlled by another player, we would have to consider various aspects such as creating a new interface. We might look into the idea further once we start implementing updates after 3.0.

Q50: Komoto, were there any instances where players’ reactions were different than what you had expected or anything in particular you felt was difficult when developing an online game?
A50: For things that we have to estimate ahead of time, we set a certain range and arrangements are made roughly within this range. However, there was a time that we inconvenienced players due to a mis-estimation beforehand, and I apologize about this. For example, the short supply of gil for patch 2.0.

Q51: Komoto, do you have any updates on the Eternal Bond system?
A51: The developers in charge are currently working very hard. They put a lot of effort into the system such as the cut scenes, quests, customizable options, etc. The system should be implemented in patch 2.4 or one of the sub-patches of 2.4. Please stay tuned!

Q52: I would like to place an armoire and the Unending Journey inside my personal room. Are there any plans in the future?
A52: We are planning to make this possible in patch 2.4.

Q53: Will you be implementing furnishings that will let us store equipment or racks that we can decorate with equipment for private chambers?
A53: Currently we are not thinking about introducing racks that you can decorate with equipment. We understand the requests for increasing the space of Company Chests, but if we were to give too much memory space to private chambers, it would become difficult to increase the availability of land. So, to start off we would first like to add more land and we will be looking into this carefully.

Q54: The magicked stable brooms are too costly at the moment. Can you make it so that we are able to clean the stable with the “magic broom” minion?
A54: We sincerely apologize for the cost of the magicked stable broom as it was much higher than what we expected. We will be adjusting the recipe of the magicked stable broom so that they can be created at a cheaper cost. Additionally, we are considering selling them in NPC shops so that players do not sell them higher than that price.

Q55: The vegetables for chocobo raising can only be obtained through gardening, but do you have any plans to make adjustments so that there are more ways to obtain them in the future?
A55: Currently we do not have any plans. We will make adjustments as we keep an eye on the balance between the value of gardening fields and chocobo raising difficulty.

Q56: I would like to be able to obtain the new crafting tools that were implemented in patch 2.3 without having to desynthesize.
A56: We currently do not have any plans to do so. However, we may consider other ways to obtain the tools in the future.

Q57: An extended version of “Slumber Disturbed” was playing in the Tam-Tara Deepcroft (Hard). Are there any plans to introduce extended versions of songs in the future via new dungeons?
QA57: Yes, we do have plans of gradually introducing extended versions of songs.

Q58: Please make it so there will be differences in how you can raise a chocobo (stats, etc.) when combining different vegetables to feed to your chocobo.
A58: Currently we are not looking into something like this. As it’s possible for anyone from your free company to feed your chocobo, there could be a possibility where someone feeds your chocobo the wrong kind of food. Considering our direction for chocobo raising, we wanted to make it possible to take care of each others chocobos, and that is how we made the current system.

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  • masterlobo

    Comments now work!

    So much tease…can’t wait!

    And I do hope Triple Triad becomes reality *.*