Patch 6.2 brings neat additions to Final Fantasy XIV as it keeps its post-expansion content drop rolling following Endwalker, which was released last February.
Sadly to players like me who love them to death, 6.2 hasn’t delivered more on the beast tribe quest front, aside from renaming them to just tribal quests. Patch 6.15 introduced the Arksodara faction and its combat-focused reputation grind, but its crafting and exploration equivalents are still yet to be seen. All signs point to one of those being headed by the lovable Loporrits; hopefully the wait will be worth it, as they’re not going to grace the game before patch 6.25, when the Omicron faction enters the field according to the latest live letter from producer Naoki Yoshida.
What’s new in the aptly titled Buried Memory update that just hit is certainly nothing to sneeze at, though. Aside from the usual balance tweaks in regards to all character classes and jobs – worth noting that two of the ones I focus on, Machinist and Gunbreaker, have received some of the biggest buffs out of the bunch – the NPC duty party system that started with Endwalker is now being made available for a host of older instances such as Snowcloak from A Realm Reborn and Heavensward’s Sohm Al.
Those are especially useful for those who play DPS-oriented classes that take notoriously longer than healers and tanks to queue for a player group, so the more options the merrier, especially when simply trying to level a new ones on the run.
More single player-focused, busy-bodied FFXIV fans will also find the new Island Sanctuary feature a potentially fun new distraction. Headed by the Scion of the Seventh Dawn’s accounting wizard Tataru Taru, this new investment opportunity has you managing your very own island paradise. It’s basically an instanced zone, much like Free Company housing, but all to yourself to plan out. You can populate it with minions that you’ve been collecting over the years as well as captured animals, plant and keep crops, and build to your heart’s content.
This game mode is very much inspired by Animal Crossing and Harvest Moon and just thinking about all there is to maintain in it will be enough to keep those who’re already done with the main MMO content in XIV or that are looking for something besides combat quite busy. While I’m nowhere near as interested in this when there’s already so so much to the game to begin with, darn it if I’m not surprised by the sheer effort the folks in the dev team are putting in turning Final Fantasy XIV into an online platform of sorts that appeals to a continuously grander group of people.
And for those who are into more of the usual, patch 6.2 continues the main scenario by having the Hero of Light and co explore the dark depths of the veil in search of Rad-at-Han leader Varshahn’s long lost sister, Azdaja. The story takes many twists and turns throughout its 2-to-3-hour run as it focuses on what Final Fantasy XIV does best, giving depth and personality to voidsents, who up to this point were merely monsters for players to kill in dungeons and such.
Joining the team is an enigmatic addition that Buried Memory leaves plenty of loose ends to look forward to picking up on the following content drops in the form of Zero. They have plenty of baggage as their origin is closely tied to Stormblood and eventually Endwalker’s favorite frenemy, Zeos, and as a voidsend themselves, are privy to information that outsiders are keen on learning, but not before paying the price.
Instance-wise, the main scenario sees a new story dungeon and trial to partake with 6.2. Fell Court of Troia comes in early into the patch’s first questline, having you explore the initial area where it takes place. It’s also where you’ll start getting a glimpse of what’s to come during the 6.2 story arch. It follows the basic three-boss dungeon structure you’re used to at this point, but with a neat little variation of a boss fight in the middle.
The new trial might evoke some memories from early into your FFXIV career as it’s close to the theme of primal Garuda’s fight. It is another fantastic raid boss that makes clever use of the new AOE mechanics first seen in Endwalker with her hair manipulation and wind attacks. Differently timed and shaped influence areas are sure to keep you on your toes as you tackle the fight in either normal or extreme modes.
Speaking of raids, Pandaemonium expands ever further in this patch with the opening of new Circles in Abyssos to run through, and a promise of even more tokens to grind for weekly, which are now called Tomestones of Causality. These can be turned into the very best gear currently available in the game once you have enough, requiring a handful of runs and a lot of luck in your rolls with other raid participants. I’ve yet to jump into these as I haven’t adequately geared up, but I’m planning to in the next week or two and seeing what it’s all about.
Buried Memory is about as forward about the mystery surrounding the new villain and his motives as it could be expected for a relatively early entry in the grand scheme of things that surround the post-Endwalker era of Final Fantasy XIV. Safe to say it’s as reverent to a particular entry in Square-Enix’s long-running franchise, with some overtly on-the-nose references in the form of quotes and even characters brought straight over to XIV’s world quite convincingly.
Such is the case of the last boss in Fell Court of Troia and the new trial, as well as the reveal of the mastermind behind the downfall of the voidsent domain, who shall remain a neatly wrapped surprise for players just reading about the patch for the first time here.
Patch 6.2 doles content for just about every kind of player there could be in Final Fantasy XIV. As the main story gears up for an eventual face-off against the next big baddie, we’re treated to a very heart-wrenching tale coming in from the unlikeliest of sources in true series’ fashion. Well after being done with that, there are plenty of other cool, easygoing and surprisingly deep time sinks like the Island Sanctuary to keep subscribers going until the next content patch rolls around.