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    Game Watch LIVE Producer Letter Summary

    These details are all floating around, but I'm going to go ahead and translate/post this anyway. Let me know if you guys find any value in this or if it's all just rehashed info. Four parts, I'll post as I translate each.

    Original JP Source: http://game.watch.impress.co.jp/docs...22_640817.html

    --------

    Producer Letter LIVE from Sapporo - Item Level 115 and Much More

    Yesterday, the development team of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn held a fan event (FATE) in Hokkaido. The producer and director Naoki Yoshida was on hand to and a "Producer Letter LIVE" was broadcast to discuss a lot of previously unknown information about patch 2.2, "Through the Maelstrom," set to be released on March 27.

    This was the 13th LIVE broadcast, following the previous Osaka broadcast, which served as part 2 of the discussion of content for patch 2.2, including beastman daily quests, a new Hildibrand storyline, new equipment, and other new elements such as the Glamour prism.

    Additionally, Kazutoyo Maehiro (event director and main scenario writer) appeared as a special guest. In his own corner area he answered questions from players about the storyline.

    Following the close of the event, the official preliminary patch 2.2 notes were posted on the home page. The final patch notes will be posted on March 26, just prior to the maintenance and patch implementation.

    A More Detailed Description of Glamour Prisms, Retainer Ventures, and Gardening

    In the second large scale update, patch 2.2 (Through the Maelstrom), in addition to the new primal battles with Leviathan, new turns of the Binding Coil of Bahamut, and other new battle content, a variety of new systems are also being implemented.

    Players have high expectations for these, especially for the new system which will change the appearance of equipment by utilizing a "Glamour prism." The producer letter LIVE began by addressing some questions about this system.

    The glamour prism system allows the projection of the appearance of one piece of equipment onto another piece. Equipment projection is limited to the jobs and classes by which the item can be equipped, for example you cannot equip project warrior armor onto black mage armor. Further, it isn't possible to project the appearance of higher item level items onto lower item level items. Equipment obtained from seasonal events can be projected.

    Items which occupy multiple slots, such as a cowl which occupies head and body, can be projected as well.

    The catalyst required for projection will be dependent on the item level. Catalysts can be synthesized by crafters. The appearance will be shown as soon as you choose the base equipment and the equipment for which you want to project the design. A "+" mark will be attached to the equipment icon in your character data, and the name of the equipment which served as the source of the appearance will be shown on the item details. The projected equipment will not be lost in the process, and can still be registered in gear sets.

    Another new feature being added to retainers which currently serve for storage and sales is the "retainer venture."

    This will allow you to obtain items in real time via requests given to your retainer. In order to participate, a player will need to have completed the main scenario and an additional quest which allows the player to use ventures.

    Upon clearing the quest, it will be possible to set your retainer to a gatherer or a battle class. From the retainer screen in character data, you'll be able to use weapons and equipment in accordance with their class. A fee called a "venture chip" will be required for the requests, and these are available through beastman daily quests or in exchange for Grand Company seals. Real world time must also pass for the request to complete, with some taking as long as eight hours. It is possible to cancel in the middle of a request, but the utilized venture chips will not be returned. You will still be able to view the markets and retrieve or deposit items with your retainer.

    Initially, the available rewards for ventures will be limited, but as the retainer grows with experience and completes certain quests, the amount of items available will gradually grow. Among these items are certain rare items that can be obtained only through retainer ventures. In order to obtain these items, it will be necessary to fully outfit your retainer with equipment. However, if, for example, the player's black mage is level 30, it will only be possible to grow the retainer up to level 30.

    In addition, with patch 2.2, you'll be able to add additional retainers. This will have an additional fee of 200 yen ($2) per 30 days and can be completed through Mog Station.

    Gardening is a new system which will be available to free companies which own housing. By planting seeds in a field installed at the free company house's garden, eventually players will be able to harvest items. There are three field sizes available (small, medium, and large), and the number of plants that can be planted in each is different. It's possible to place a large field on a small plot, but a larger house will allow for more gardens.

    After planting the seeds, you must take care of the plants by fertilizing and watering them. Anyone can care for the plants and there's no disadvantage to over-caring for the plants (they won't die), so you can do it to your heart's content. After about three to five real time days, the items obtained from the seeds can be harvested.

    Additionally, for plants that are next to each other, there's a certain probability that a rare species will be formed. By repeatedly crossing species of high rarity, you can obtain species from which rare items can be harvested. The authority to plant seeds and/or remove the seedlings can be set by the free company leader.

  2. #2
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    Anxious about Item Level? Weapons Are 115 Maximum, Armor 110

    In A Realm Reborn, each piece of equipment has a corresponding item level (IL) which substantially affects the strength of a character. Therefore, for many players, the IL of new equipment to be implemented in patch 2.2 is what they are most concerned with. The details were finally revealed in the LIVE letter.

    The highest item level added will be 115 for weapons and 110 for armor, and the item levels available in the top range will be 90, 100, 110, and 115. New crafted products will be among these levels. Because there were many questions about IL, let's present the information in a Q&A format.

    With the rise of item level, will it be possible to further strengthen job-specific weapons?

    Yoshida: I discussed this a bit in the written producer letter, but Zodiak Weapons will be added. There will be a full quest series regarding the Zodiak weapons which is not meant to be completed solely in patch 2.2. We've already decided on the release for patch 2.25, but there will be a further update at that time, and even one down the road in 2.3, so this is something that's meant to go on for some time. If you look at relics right now, it just takes mythology tomestones to get them to shine - it won't be as simple as that. In A Realm Reborn there's been a pattern of either obtaining items for defeating powerful monsters or accumulating stones steadily over time, but we don't want to limit ourselves just to this, and we want to develop ways to foster a considerable amount of playtime. For example, one of the upgrade stages will require items that have a low probability of dropping. In the weapons' final form, players will have some control over the secondary attributes like Critical Hit Rate and Spell Speed. If taken to the extreme, the visual design of the weapon will also change dramatically.

    Will the item level also increase for Crafter and Gatherer specific equipment?

    Yoshida: There will be new head equipment and new main tools added. These will definitely be needed in order to make some of the new most difficult secret recipes. While there won't be any specific restrictions on obtaining these, it will be quite time consuming to obtain them all, so it might be wise to pick and choose which ones you want to develop.

    Will the item level of Soldiery equipment and that obtained from the new turns of the Binding Coil be the same?

    Yoshida: Strictly speaking, the item level is different. This is because the soldiery equipment is obtained from a simple exchange, but there's a bit of a gimmick for the Binding Coil equipment, so they aren't equal. For A Realm Reborn, there are items that are obtained as direct drops and those that are obtained over time, but we also want to have items which can be developed over a long period of time for those who have more time to play.

    How far can you go with item level 90 equipment in patch 2.2 content?

    Yoshida: I'm sure that both the extreme Leviathan and extreme Mogg battles can be completed at item level 90. There's a mechanism with Leviathan where the weapon isn't just a straight drop, so I'd like you to try it out. The extreme Mogg battle will drop pretty good accessories, so I think everyone will want to try that out as well. Make sure your DPS cooperate because it will be quite difficult.

    Do you have any plans to change the item level for over-melded equipment?

    Yoshida: We have no future plans to increase the IL of forbidden gear. Regarding the materia mechanism in general, I wouldn't consider it something that increases the IL of gear, but rather something that customizes the equipment.


    Gold Saucer Chocobo Races (?)

    A number of other questions were also posed regarding topics other them item levels. Some items which have previously been discussed such as personal housing and the Gold Saucer were referenced. Additionally, the 24-person Front Lines content was also discussed.

    When will you begin selling Fantasia?

    Yoshida: That's one request we received a lot today. The final specifications were determined when I was on my way back from the United States, so we're going to announce it at a time which we need to determine. I've been all over the world so it's been a blur.

    It's only been half a year since service began, but can you give us any update on progress with the add-ons?

    Yoshida: We've been talking about the rough specifications. That said, the UI team has been busy on the PS4 version, and once the PS4 version is released, that will be our priority for a bit, so please hang on a while longer for details. There's definitely been progress, though.

    When will personal housing be implemented?

    Yoshida: I also talked about this a bit in the written producer letter, but there will be some specifications that are changed with housing in 2.2, such as returning from Duty Finder content outside the house. This was done to better manage the server load in preparation for the release of private player housing. I think I'll be discussing this a bit more in the next letter.

    Please tell us about the specific effects of the Echo in content.

    Yoshida: The effect will be different in different content. The echo will first be invoked starting shortly after the release of patch 2.2. After battling for more than three minutes from the start of content, if a group is wiped out, the echo effect will be triggered (this will only happen if you've fought for a full three minutes!).

    In the Binding Coil of Bahamut (turns 1-5), you'll first only be able to register in Duty Finder as a full eight-man party. After you collect the eight required people, you can enter starting with any of the turns - there will be no restriction based on which turns have been previously cleared. In turns 1 and 2, the effects of High Voltage will be diminished slightly and you'll be able to remove the paralysis with Esuna. The restrictions on IL will correspond to each individual turn in the Duty Finder. The echo will be applied every two weeks after the patch. Starting in the second week, you'll be able to enter the Duty Finder solo and the echo will be applied. We are currently planning for parameters to rise to a maximum of 30% more than their normal values, but we'll look at the clear rate at that point and determine if we need to go further.

    Will there be any PvP adjustments in patch 2.2?

    Yoshida: We'll be adding a mechanism for matchmaking which avoids matching low and high rank PvP players together in the same match. When you become rank 30 and obtain all PvP-specific equipment, you become much stronger, so we've implemented stages. In patch 2.25, we're planning to increase the maximum rank to 40 and add new PvP equipment for Wolves' Den called animal equipment. We're targeting the implementation of Front Lines in patch 2.3. I think we'll be able to show some more of the area and equipment in the next letter. In the meantime, keep your fangs sharp in the Wolves' Den.

    Will any new Grand Company ranks be added?

    Yoshida: The soonest we intend to implement this would be in patch 2.3. Just unlocking the ranks would be of no use unless we thoroughly consider what to do for the associated rewards.

    When will you finally be able to enter Crystal Tower with a full group of 24 players?

    Yoshida: We discussed the implementation of this, and it will be with patch 2.3. With the next Crystal Tower update, you'll be able to bring in 24 players at the same time.

    Do you have any plans to publish a road map?

    Yoshida: We went from 2.0 to 2.1 of A Realm Reborn in a fairly short period of time. Because we take player feedback into account regularly for players who want more solo content, more party content, and everything in between, as we look at content updates, if we created a road map we'd have to constantly adjust it based on the changes that we decided on based on feedback. So once we published a road map, it would make improvisation more difficult. With the old FFXIV we were doing update lists, so I'm thinking that's something we might bring back after the dust from the release of the PS4 edition settles.

    Can you give any information on the development status and implementation schedule for Gold Saucer?

    Yoshida: The planning for this is in progress and we're looking at three main parts. We want to have a lot of people participating at once, along with some training aspects. We're also looking at what kinds of so-called table games we could introduce, and other minigames like the ones in FFVII.

    Will you finally be able to summon a companion while waiting for a match in Duty Finder?

    Yoshida: We're looking at possibly adjusting this by patch 2.3. It's actually not so simple, but we have a few ideas. This is a high priority item for us, but it's complex to address.

    Do you plan to have job or class adjustments in patch 2.2? Also will you have other job-associated rewards such as the unicorn?

    Yoshida: We'll be doing very little with classes and jobs, so I think it's basically OK to say "no" as a response to that. To address the tank shortage from level 1 to 50 we'll be increasing the low-level role bonus by about seven times, it'll be really good. On the end-game content side, we have to make sure that the responsibilities for tanking are covered and to really motivate players to want to participate in tanking for end-game content, become true paladins and warriors. We've prepared achievements for each, as well.

    Will you be able to enter with a party setup of your own through Duty Finder?
    [[Not sure what this is referring to since you can already generally do this, maybe for Duty Roulette?]]

    Yoshida: This will be addressed in 2.3.

    Will you be increasing the number of furniture items that can be installed with the addition of garden equipment?

    Yoshida: Because of the heavy load created, if we increased the number any more as is, the performance would take a visible hit. After implementing 2.2, we may make some more adjustments depending on how much demand there is for this.

  3. #3
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    Discussing Future Storylines with Story Director Maehiro-san

    As the program moved along, Maehiro joined as a guest for the second half. To introduce himself, he first showed off a video of a SNES-style Titan battle which was made in the ten days before the Sapporo event. Even though it was Super Nintendo-style, Weight of the Land and Landslide were as strong as ever. The Sapporo fans were joking that the content was strangely realistic.

    Do you have any plans to implement sequels to the daily quests or new Beast Tribe relation ranks in the future?

    Maehiro: In 2.2, we'll be introducing the Kobold and Sahagin beast tribes. We'll be adding the Ixal tribe next in 2.3. As far as a continuation of the quests or increased ranks, I'd like to see the player reactions after everything is introduced. Actually, once players gain the trust of all the beast tribes including the Ixali, we have a little bonus prepared.

    Is the Gilgamesh BGM "Battle on the Big Bridge"?

    Maehiro: Yep, it'll be the proper Battle on the Big Bridge music. The arrangement will be quite familiar.

    Will you be implementing any emotes like the Hildibrand pose?

    Maehiro: We showed some of the new dance emotes that we're implementing in 2.2 on the official blog. The Hildibrand is part of his identity so we don't want to add it until the series is over, but we're thinking it'll be a quest reward.

    Will you be adding any voice acting for Hildibrand?

    Maehiro: If we want to implement voice recording, it needs to be recorded in advance. Also, we have to do it in five different localizations, not just Japanese, so it would need to be done at least a few months before we put in the associated patch. Voice acting can make cutscenes fancier, but it leaves us a lot less production flexibility. There are good and bad points, but in order to keep the Hildibrand cutscenes as interesting as possible, we don't have a policy for voice acting. We make adjustments to the scenario right up until the last minute, so in favor of keeping the cutscenes as fun as possible, we have no voice acting for Hildi.

    Can you implement Hildibrand's costume as equipment?

    Maehiro: I think it might be nice to have as a reward along with the emotes when the dust settles after the current series is complete.

    The private investigator quests have been interesting, will you be adding any others?

    Maehiro: The response from players has been really good and it's been a lot of fun for us also. We're planning the next for 2.3, we want to implement it during the 2.X series.

    It would be cool if you could implement a Hildibrand minion.

    Maehiro: I'll let the staff know.

    What will be the difficulty of the battle with Gilgamesh?

    Maehiro: The Hildibrand battles in general are set up in such a way that everyone can enjoy them.

    Yoshida: I think it'll be clearable by eight people on their first go. You should be on the lookout for some jokes, too.

    Are there any plans for future appearances of Gilgamesh?

    Maehiro: I can't say for sure.

    Yoshida: Based on the way it ends this time, I think it's something that could happen....

    Regarding the Removal of Philosophy

    Yoshida: With the addition of Allagan Tomestones of Soldiery, the role that philosophy tomestones currently play will be replaced by mythology tomestones. Philosophy tomestones are currently obtained from several types of content, but with the update they will no longer be obtained anywhere. So you don't waste the philosophy you currently have, there will be an NPC which allows you to trade for mythology. The items that can be obtained from philosophy now will scattered around to a variety of other content. For example, you might like to have Darklight when leveling up a second job, so Darklight will be dropped in the same dungeons from which you can obtain Soldiery, they go together naturally. Philosophy materials will continue to be available from various places like Treasure Hunts, Grand Companies, and dungeons.

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    2.2 will pave the way towards Ishgard

    Maehiro has been involved in the past with Dynamite Racer, Final Fantasy Tactics, Vagrant Story, Playonline, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, Final Fantasy XII, and The Last Remnant. He was also on the UI team of A Realm Reborn before becoming the story director.

    He continued to answer some questions from fans that were asked in advance.

    Which other writer or creator has been your number one influence on developing the game's story?

    Maehiro: I really enjoy reading also, but i'd say that the person who most impacted me on developing the scenario was the game designer Yasumi Matsuno. I've been involved with the so-called Matsuno group for more than half of my time with the company, so he definitely had a great deal of influence on my writing of the scenario.

    Do you have any plans to add new voice acting for any new quests or scenarios in the future?

    Maehiro: Yeah, we do.

    Will you be digging into the stories from the old FFXIV and add stories like those about what happened during the five years of the Seventh Umbral Era in the future?

    Maehiro: If there's a lot of desire from players for this, we'd like to at some point. However, if we just released it in separate parts, the information would seem a bit scattered. In general, I think it's best for people to get to known Eorzea sequentially.

    After the middle of the main scenario, I noticed that the leaders of the Adventurer's Guilds (Momodi, Miounne, and Baderon) kind of disappear - are there any new scenarios planned where they'll be active?

    Maehiro: We don't have any plans for them to have a major role, but they could play a part at some point in the main scenario. I can't talk much about this right now.

    Can you implement a library where people can get to know the world in greater detail?

    Maehiro: We've seen a lot of demand for this from players, so there have been some proposals that the development team is looking at. However, we've been giving priority to the implementation of the patches so it's been a little tough to get the time for it. There are a lot of elements about the setting that we haven't talked about yet, so we want to spend a bit more time considering how much detail we'd like to go into. Rather than doing a library, we might do something else like having the a journal that contains notes from the NPC or those about the world setting.

    Yoshida: We're also planning a book of armor and weaponry so that players can read about the origins of armor and weapons.

    Can you talk about the theme of the story for the expansion?

    Maehiro: We can't talk about it in too much detail, but the general theme is that of "a thousand year war."

    Yoshida: It's progressing really well, so please stay tuned.

    Are there any particular cutscenes you like best as the main scenario writer?

    Maehiro: Thinking about the cutscenes, there's one in 2.2 with a certain character trying really hard to get rid of a stigma. Looking back to 2.0, I enjoyed it when Yda and Livia (from the Empire) fought.

    Will the city of Sharlayan make any appearance in the future?

    Maehiro: Recently I was in a meeting where we were talking about future patches, and I saw some artwork that said "Sharlayan"... it looked pretty amazing, so stay tuned!

    Will Edda make any new appearance?

    Maehiro: Edda will be back in the new scenario in 2.3.

    Will any other NPC characters like F'lhaminn be returning from old FFXIV?

    Maehiro: Rather than just bringing back characters, they'll appear when there's a need to reference the original storyline.

    We've seen names reminiscent of Ivalice in FFXII like Belias and Dalmasca - is there any connection between Ivalice and Hydaelyn?

    Maehiro: Just to make sure there are no surprises in the future, there is no direct connection between Ivalice, Eorzea, and incidentally Vana'diel of FFXI. This is the story of this world alone. That being said, there are certain relationships within the game world which may have appeared previously in Ivalice.

    With Nidhogg introduced during the dragoon quest line, any plans to add a battle?

    Maehiro: Nidhogg is a dragon from Ishgard, so if there would be a battle, that's where it would take place.

    Yoshida: Are we going there?

    Maehiro: Yeah, let's go (laughs).

    When will we be able to go to Ishgard?

    Maehiro: It won't be too far off. You'll see the story moving in that direction starting in 2.2, and there will be some direct relationship with the story in the near future, maybe in 2.3.

    Any plans to add quests to use the Echo to relive the construction of the three cities or establishment of grand companies from 1500 years before, or the drawing of the map of Eorzea 70 years ago?

    Maehiro: We're not considering that right now. Since Eorzea has been reborn, we're starting from now and moving forward. We'll see where that takes us and maybe consider it in the future.


    Nine Songs from A Realm Reborn to Appear in Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call

    On sale April 24, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call will contain nine songs from A Realm Reborn, including "Answers" and "Titan Primal Warfare." Yoshida showed off a bit of gameplay. It seemed easy to win at first, but it got really difficult on the ultimate mode.

    The seasonal "Egg Hunt" event will take place from April 9 through April 22. Easter-style decorations will be in the towns. On April 26, Square Enix will have a booth at the Makuhari Messe and there will be stage events on the 27th, like another producer (and voice actor) letter LIVE. They're also looking for pre-applications for a cos-play contest.

  5. #5
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    In addition, with patch 2.2, you'll be able to add additional retainers. This will have an additional fee of 200 yen ($2) per 30 days and can be completed through Mog Station.

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    having a summary out before the official one is always nice and good for trying to quote the garbled google translate

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    Posted part 2, lots of interesting stuff in there for those who didn't hear or see already.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocl View Post
    having a summary out before the official one is always nice and good for trying to quote the garbled google translate
    Except it's been out for a while now unless I'm missing something and they do another translation. http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/t...II-Q-A-Updates

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eanae View Post
    Except it's been out for a while now unless I'm missing something and they do another translation. http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/t...II-Q-A-Updates
    I read through that Q&A for comparison, those translations were highly edited and not nearly as clear as the original discussion in JP, which is what I'm translating here.

    Example:

    Q19: With item level 90 equipment, just how far can you go from a content perspective?

    A19: I believe you’ll be able to clear Leviathan extreme and Good King Moggle Mog extreme with all item level 90 equipment. You’ll want to get the equipment that drops from these battles for...well, I shouldn’t say any more right now!

    ---

    How far can you go with item level 90 equipment in patch 2.2 content?

    Yoshida: I'm sure that both the extreme Leviathan and extreme Mogg battles can be completed at item level 90. There's a mechanism with Leviathan where the weapon isn't just a straight drop, so I'd like you to try it out. The extreme Mogg battle will drop pretty good accessories, so I think everyone will want to try that out as well. Make sure your DPS cooperate because it will be quite difficult.

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    I definitely appreciate these translations for sure. Your translations always give the best information. I didn't know if SE releases a better one or not.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eanae View Post
    Except it's been out for a while now unless I'm missing something and they do another translation. http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/t...II-Q-A-Updates
    you've still got people quoting shit from reinheart tho

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    Took a break for a while, posting the last couple parts now. Third part is up there, mostly story-related.

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    Pens win! Pens Win!!! PENS WIN!!!!!

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    There's a mechanism with Leviathan where the weapon isn't just a straight drop, so I'd like you to try it out.
    Wonder what this is going to involve.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Obsidian View Post
    Wonder what this is going to involve.
    With what they have already done to encourage diversified partyies (lb bar filling faster, some mobs only taking magic damage, etc) it would not surprise me one bit if it somehow incorporated the need for 8 different jobs. Now if they can just make it close enough to the abyssea/voidwatch proc system the ptsd laced comments will make for some interesting reading.

    Or you have to stop its regen. Either one is fine.

    But seriously, the best way to stop the pld, pld, whm, sch, brd, brd, brd, blm parties that make up most pickups is to just make the drop dependent on bringing more jobs. It's something I worry they might go overboard with.

  15. #15
    BG Content
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    Slycer Ilerion
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    Added last part, should be everything.

    It sounds like progressive upgrade of items is a big theme of this update with Leviathan weapons, new Binding Coil armor, new crafting heads and main tools, and most notably the Zodiak weapons all apparently involving time-consuming upgrade processes rather than being straight drops or immediate exchanges.

  16. #16
    a p. sweet dude
    Pens win! Pens Win!!! PENS WIN!!!!!

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    If we're back to Inferno Totems I'm gonna be pretty unhappy.

  17. #17
    Sea Torques
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obsidian View Post
    If we're back to Inferno Totems I'm gonna be pretty unhappy.
    While the inferno totems were terrible, what they did with Garuda was much better. I seem to remember you could get 1 person a weapon of their choice every 2 wins. Not sure how that would work with the current loot system though.

  18. #18
    a p. sweet dude
    Pens win! Pens Win!!! PENS WIN!!!!!

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    I never won Garuda in 1.0 but I thought the number of totems you got was determined by how fast you won, and it took a stupid number of totems to get a weapon.

  19. #19
    New Odin
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obsidian View Post
    I never won Garuda in 1.0 but I thought the number of totems you got was determined by how fast you won, and it took a stupid number of totems to get a weapon.
    You always got 2 tokens afair? And I think it was 20 or 40 per weapon?

  20. #20
    Old Odin
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gokulo View Post
    You always got 2 tokens afair? And I think it was 20 or 40 per weapon?
    Not always. If you killed Garuda under 15 (or was it 10?) minutes you got more tokens. Don't remember if it was 2 for a quick kill and 1 otherwise. Weapon cost was high but I believe you could trade tokens and get a weapon for someone in a couple runs.

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