Following the announcement of the new Final Fantasy XIV expansion "Dawntrail," Square Enix has revealed plenty of details, screenshots, and videos.
We start with producer and director Naoki Yoshida sharing an updated look at the new map of Hydaelin, expanded to the west beyond the Indigo Deep to include the "New World," the land of Tural.
Square Enix revealed the first new hub city in the area called Yok Ural, and it's named Tuliyollal. Incidentally, we also hear that there will be more cities to explore, but this is the only one we see today. The city is the capital of a federal nation-state and it's governed by a two-headed Mamol-Ja named Gulol Ja Ja. The city is full of diversity and it actively trades with Old Sharlayan via an established sea route.
Below you can see the first artwork.
We also get to see a few screenshots including the port and marketplace of Tuliyollal, alongside a view at night. The graphics update promised for version 7.0 is shown here with more objects on display and better shadows. Incidentally, we learn that there are many places in the new world in which players can swim.
We then take a look at new field areas, starting with the mountainous region of Urqopacha. It used to be the heart of an ancient empire of giants. We get to see a settlement which also shows the visual improvements, especially in the shadows and foliage.
Next is Yak T'el, accessible from Tuliyollal via dirigible flights. It's a forest area divided into high and low areas that have very different vibes. It's home to settlements of Hrothgar and Mamool Ja. Again, we get to see screenshots of a local village.
We then get to see a new allied tribe that we'll encounter, the Pelupelu, who returns from Final Fantasy X. They're a diminutive race wearing masks. They're skilled merchant and famous beverage makers.
Yoshida-san then introduced more of the content coming in version 7.0. The level cap will increase to 100 from the current 90 for both job and gatherer/crafter classes. There will be two new jobs, but they have not been announced today. That being said, we learn that they will be both DPS, one melee and one magical ranged DPS.
Yoshida-san was wearing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles shirt which is supposed to be a hint to one of the new jobs. Of course, it can't be Ninja because we already have Ninjas in the game. Make of it what you will.
The expansion will include new dungeons, as many as players have come to expect from a Final Fantasy XIV expansion. No screenshots were shared today, but the variety is very high.
We get to see artwork of a new boss, the "legendary Valigarmanda."
Durty Support will get an update alongside new plans about places in which Duty Support will be implemented. A number of new characters will be added as companions.
There will be plenty of new gear and recipes for gatherers and crafters and expansive new lifestyle content in a similar vein to Island Sanctuary.
We'll have new Variant Dungeons, a new Alliance Raid, a new 8-player Raid, and a new Ultimate Raid. Interestingly, Yoshida-san mentioned that the new Alliance Raid will be "even more Final Fantasy-ish." On top of that, PvP will be updated once again, including Crystal Conflict, Frontline (with new maps), and Rival Wings.
Blue Mage will get its own update, and our beloved clumsy detective will come back with "Inconceviably Further Hildibrand Adventures." New plans for Deep Dungeons are being considered but the developers are also considering entirely new battle content. Lastly, there will be an update for Gold Saucer.
It's now time to take a look at the previously-announced graphics update. The aim is to "improve the screen-wide aesthetic appeal" of the game, including higher-resolution textures and shadows and improved material qualities, while still preserving the overall look that players know and love.
It's important to make sure that the image players have of their characters won't change, so they won't become photorealistic. Below you can see a new video (recorded by YouTube user GamersPrey), but you should keep in mind that it's still under development and we can expect even higher quality when the expansion releases. The major improvements are hair textures, better skin, and realistic eyes.
Since the game has an incredible quantity of gear, the existing sets will be upgraded gradually throughout the 7.X updates. NPCs and areas will also be improved on an ongoing basis. The video also showcases improvements to the environment. While older scenes will not have the additional elements immediately, they will still benefit at the expansion's launch due to the improvements to lighting and shadows.
Another big improvement is greenery, and you can see the difference in the video. This will be automatically added throughout the world.
The improvements go beyond pure graphics. The Dye system will be upgraded by letting players apply two dyes per gear piece. This will apply to as many gear pieces as possible. Again, updates to older equipment will be done gradually.
Eyeglasses will become a separate piece of equipment that will be separate from headgear. That being said, they won't be functional gear and won't take space in the armory gear. They're purely fashion items.
After the release of the expansion, during the 7.X series of updates, the limit of furniture items per housing will be increased.
The system requirements will be inevitably increased by just a little. You can find the minimum and recommended specs below. PlayStation 4 will continue to be supported.
Interestingly, we also see a non-final "Strategy Board" system that will let you and your buddies visualize strategies when facing group content.
We also her about features still coming before the release of the expansion, including an expansion to the Free Trial. It will include the Stormblood Expansion and will release in update 6.5, about which we'll hear more at tomorrow's Letter from the Producer Live broadcast.
Square Enix then announced a Fall Guys collaboration, which will bring the characters of Final Fantasy XIV to the popular game. It's coming on August 22. The "Warriors of Light Fame Pass" will be available until October 3.
Since it's a crossover, a Fall Guys-like minigame is coming to Final Fantasy XIV's Gold Saucer. It's currently in development and will be playable by up to 24 players at once. It'll come in a minipatch after 6.5.
Final Fantasy XIV is currently available for PC, PS5, and PS4, while an Xbox Series X|S version has just been announced today. We already know that the expansion will launch in the summer of 2024. The massively popular MMORPG has recently received the major 6.4 patch "The Dark Throne" and its follow-up updates.
Recently, Yoshida-san himself teased the possibility of a collaboration with Final Fantasy XVI of which he is also the producer. Unfortunately, nothing specific has been shared about that yet.