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  1. #1
    Community Rep Zhexos's Avatar
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    Letter from the Producer LIVE Part LVI Digest (12/20/2019)

    We are pleased to present the full digest of the Letter from the Producer LIVE Part LVI that was delivered during the special 14-hour Broadcast! If you missed the live stream, or if you just want to watch it again (and again), check it out below!




    https://sqex.to/mDvO0

    * Don't forget to select 720p option to watch the video in HD!

    Patch 5.18

    Patch 5.18 was originally scheduled for release in early January. However, players were requesting the weekly restrictions on Eden's Gate (Savage) to be lifted sooner so they could play during the holidays. As a result, we've decided to implement it earlier on Tuesday, December 24.

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    (00:10:10)

    Season Fourteen of The Feast was originally scheduled for Patch 5.2, but we received many requests to have it sooner, so we decided to have it start on Patch 5.18 instead. However, as we've rushed the start of the season, the adjustments aren't ready. For this reason, the rewards are different from our regular rewards. Although titles and trophies will still be available, please keep in mind that Wolf Collar tokens, used to exchange for weapon rewards, will not be obtainable.

    Aside from the details listed in the above image, we also have other adjustments scheduled for Patch 5.18.

    There will be a number of adjustments to Onsal Hakair (Danshig Naadam) based on the feedback we received after its initial release.

    First, we noticed that ninjas were standing out in terms of power, so we are planning to make some adjustments to them.

    Second, we also recognized that points earned through K.O.s were too effective. To address this, we're planning to adjust the number of points earned from K.O.s and the number of points required for a victory.

    Finally, there has been a noticeable increase in one-sided matches, which we believe may be due to multiple parties coordinating to queue at the same time under the same Grand Company to be placed in the same team. Our solution to this will be to change how teams are formed. Players will be distributed into random teams, regardless of their Grand Company.

    Additionally, after the release of Patch 5.15, we received reports regarding the 2B attire (No. 2 Type B equipment) obtained from The Copied Factory.

    To explain how this happened, FFXIV has a feature that automatically adjusts the size of the buttocks based on the combination of equipment worn on a character. However, the 2B attire was released without this feature enabled, which caused the buttocks to stick out when it was worn with certain equipment. We attempted to fix this issue in Patch 5.15 by enabling the feature as how it should've been implemented originally, but this caused the buttocks to shrink depending on the combination of the gear worn.

    If we can make it in time, we're planning to temporarily remove the feature in Patch 5.18. Please understand that this will cause the buttocks to stick out once again. We'll then adjust the feature itself so that it will not make unnecessary size adjustments.

    Patch 5.2 Special Part 1

    In this part of the broadcast, we covered some of the upcoming content that will be implemented in Patch 5.2.

    Patch Title/Release Period

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    (00:21:00)

    Patch 5.2, “Echoes of a Fallen Star” is scheduled to be released in mid-February.

    New Main Scenario Quests

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    (00:22:18)

    We showed off a screenshot of a character who looks eerily similar to Ardbert with a hollow expression on his face.

    New Instanced Dungeon

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    The new instanced dungeon, Anamnesis Anyder, will be added. We called it the "Ascian official residence" during development.

    Also, please note that while we occasionally added two dungeons in a single patch, moving forward we'll be adding one dungeon per patch to be able to reallocate the development resources to other new content.

    New Tribe Quests

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    (00:25:41)

    The next set of tribe quests will feature the Qitari tribe, and will be for Disciple of the Land players.
    As you can see in the above image, the Qiqirn tribe is known as the Qitari tribe in the First.

    New Chronicles of a New Era Quests

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    (00:27:07)

    A new Chronicles of a New Era Quest series, The Sorrow of Werlyt will be added. This is comparable to the Four Lords series in Stormblood. The tentatively named The Ruby Weapon and The Ruby Weapon (Extreme) trials will be added as part of The Sorrow of Werlyt.

    We're also introducing one another trial separate from The Sorrow of Werlyt; however, it'll be a huge spoiler, so we have no plans to reveal this beforehand. Please check it out yourself!

    New Raid

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    (00:29:52)

    The next Eden raid is called Eden's Verse. We considered making adjustments to delay the release of savage after the normal; however, decided to implement them at the same time. The artwork we revealed depicted some lightning, what kind of enemy will we face this time? The Eden series storyline will also be progressing, so please look forward to it!

    New Quest Series for Upgradeable Equipment

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    (00:31:59)

    The new upgradeable equipment content will be centered around Bzoja Citadel, the home of the Hrothgar race. In 4.x, exploration and upgradeable equipment content were released as one, in the form of The Forbidden Land, Eureka and the Eureka weapon. While they were not completely separated in 5.x, we’re thinking of a design where you can progress one without the other. We're planning to reveal the title of the series in Patch 5.2 Special Part 2!

    Job-Related Adjustments

    (00:33:41)

    We will be adjusting red mage, as well as other jobs. More details will be provided in Patch 5.2 Special Part 2.

    PvP Updates

    (00:34:05)

    We'll make ongoing adjustments to PvP actions. A new season of the Feast will begin in Patch 5.18, so please provide feedback on that when it's available.
    (5)

  2. #2
    Community Rep Zhexos's Avatar
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    Ishgardian Restoration

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    (00:34:24)

    Picking up where we left off in Patch 5.11, Ishgardian Restoration will receive further updates.

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    Thanks to adventurers’ efforts, the dangerous monsters were eliminated from Diadem, which has since become an island of resources. The Diadem has been reborn as an area where Disciples of the Land will be able to harvest resources needed for the restoration of Ishgard. The aetheromatic augur action will become available as you gather resources in the Diadem. Imagine a rocket launcher, which you can use to blast monsters and turn them into resources!

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    (00:39:45)

    The collectable items required for the Ishgardian Restoration will be updated, and new expert recipes, which can be used to earn many rewards, will be added. These expert recipes introduce new statuses aside from the standard ones, and strategically using these will be the key for crafting. As a side note, the recipes for so called "crafted raid gear" is separate from these expert recipes.

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    (00:40:53)

    Kupo of Fortune, scratch-off tickets that can be used to redeem various rewards, will be added.

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    (00:41:38)

    A new ranking system will be implemented for hardcore Disciples of the Hand and Land players. Having the ranking period for extended period of time would make it stressful; therefore, the ranking period has been set to a 10-day period after the update has released. This new ranking system will reward new special titles and achievements. Please feel free to participate without pushing yourself too hard. We're planning to reset the rankings periodically, for example, it may reset once we progress through the Patch 5.3x series and resume once again.

    Crafting and Gathering Revamp

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    00:43:55)

    The crafting system will be receiving a new feature which estimates the effects of your next action.

    Additionally, the party requirement for free company crafts will be removed to so that it can be progressed solo and more casually.

    Finally, while this will not yet be added in patch 5.2, we’re working on a feature that will allow you to practice crafting an item without consuming any materials.

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    00:46:26)

    Level requirements for the fisher actions Patience, Precision Hookset, and Powerful Hookset will be lowered. Along with this change, fish tugging animations will be made easier to distinguish. Furthermore, there are now too many different lures, so an all-purpose lure will be added to make fishing easier at lower tiers.

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    00:47:22)

    We’ll be adding a new content for Disciples of the Hand and Land, known as Skysteel Tools, which are primary tools that can be upgraded over the course of multiple patches. This may sound similar to the Zodiac or Anima weapons, but will not be quite as complicated or difficult. If you continuously work on it, your primary tools will be gradually enhanced.

    As a side note, brand new items will be used for Ishgardian Restoration and Skysteel Tools, so we’d just like to warn that stockpiling existing items may not have a purpose for these contents.

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    00:48:54)

    Up until now, equipment items that reached 100% spiritbond were converted into materia, but usage of this system became scarce. Starting with patch 5.2, equipment will no longer be lost when creating materia, and will instead simply lower reset the spiritbond back to 0.

    Additionally, materia could only be melded by specific classes per piece of equipment; however, starting with patch 5.2, you’ll be able to affix materia as long as you have at least one Disciple of Hand class meet the level requirement.

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    00:50:17)

    Ocean Fishing will be a new content exclusive to fishers, where you can enjoy fishing on the high seas. Rather than creating a Duty Finder content that could be entered at any time, we wanted to implement something where you could sense time slowly passing by, so you’ll be able to participate by boarding a ship at specific times. We’d like to gradually add more fishing spots in the future.

    Miscellaneous Updates

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    00:52:36)

    Various other updates are planned, such as implementation of umbrellas.
    (6)

  3. #3
    Community Rep Zhexos's Avatar
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    Special Talk Session “Ask the Devs!”

    Guest: Sound Director Masayoshi Soken

    (00:55:19)

    Q: I'm really enjoying the Shadowbringers soundtrack. Please tell us about your favorite song in the soundtrack.
    A: I was really moved when I was composing “Tomorrow & Tomorrow”. Amanda Achen-Keenan provided the vocals for the song, and her singing was full of expression. We recorded the song in Los Angeles, did the audio mixing in Japan, then shared it with Amanda. Our in-house staff who heard this mixed version told us that they were blown away. So I listened to it again myself and I had to agree, it was a good song! (Laugh)

    As for Amanda, she was the soprano soloist in the Eorzean Symphony orchestra concert in North America. I remembered her and requested her for “Tomorrow & Tomorrow”.

    Q: What kind of situations provide you with inspiration for songs?
    A: Regardless of time and place, I often have these moments when an idea comes to me. When I get an idea, I record myself playing it on the piano or humming it into my smartphone before I forget.

    Q: Is there someone you consider your musical mentor?
    A: My mother was the first to teach me how to play the keyboard, and may have been the person who taught me the joy of creating music.

    Q: Please tell us about any recent artists or albums that you like.
    A: I watch YouTube videos of a trumpeter named James Morrison quite often. He can play an amazing treble and has wonderful technique.

    I also frequently listen to songs by TWEEDEES. One of their members is Reiji Okii, a former member of Cymbals.

    Q: I really like the song that plays in the Amaurot area in Tempest, ‘Neath Dark Waters, which has a melancholic feeling to it. Please tell us about any stories you have about when you were composing it, such as specific requests you received.
    A: Main Scenario Writer Natsuko Ishikawa had requested me to come up with something that would quietly and melancholically lead up to the climax. We discussed several options and decided to go with just the piano. After creating that song, I started working on the music that would play in the shallower areas of Tempest, Full Fathom Five.

    Yoshida: I wasn’t aware of this context when I was checking the music, so I requested them to switch the Tempest music with the Kholusia music that plays right before climax. Then I heard Soken and Ishikawa’s reasoning, and decided we would have the BGM from the cutscene continue to play up to the part where you arrive in Tempest.

    Lead Level Designer Arata Takahashi and programmers also worked hard to make this possible. Thanks to their efforts, I think the music and game experience complemented each other really well.

    Q: It was really impressive how the BGM in The Epic of Alexander synchronized with the fight. For instance, the B melody of Rise plays during the mechanics phase, and Alexander returns during the hook. Were these coordinated intentionally?
    A: In most cases, the sound team and battle team both make adjustments as they test and play. But this time the song data was finished before the battle content, so I believe the battle team made adjustments to work with the song.

    Yoshida: The staff in charge of The Epic of Alexander meticulously pursues the art of surprising players through presentation. I think when they ask Soken to make the music, they’re confident that he’ll come back with something great.

    Soken: When I was requested to make various sound effects for the Temporal Stasis mechanic, I had no idea what their intentions were. But then I saw the battle when it was released, and realized, “Oh, I see what they were going for!”

    Yoshida: They don’t just leave things up for Soken to decide. I think that while they do ask for certain sounds in their requests, they believe that Soken will achieve something even more amazing.

    In essence, the final Temporal Stasis is just an indicator that you’re out of time. However, the staff carefully crafted the despair of realizing victory is just beyond reach, despite surviving everything to see that phase. Emotions such as these are crucial when the fight is presented to players and viewers who may be watching them progress.

    Q: I hear you're a fan of Rage Against the Machine, and so I have a request! Please add more hard rock and heavy metal songs! Also, are there any music genres that aren't in FFXIV yet that you'd like to try?
    A: I am a gamer, and I believe it’s important to make sure the music fits in, so I prioritize the game’s content or scenario. If I were to push what I personally prefer, then I believe I’d create lots of music similar to Rage Against the Machine, but as a game developer it’s important to create music that goes well with the gaming experience.

    Q: When creating sound effects for a game, not only do you need sounds that’ll make you feel like you succeeded, but you also need sounds that make you feel disappointed as well. Are there any challenges when it comes to making these type of sounds?
    A: In real life, you won’t hear any sound effects play when you’re happy or sad. Sound effects are unique to things like games. For that reason, I always keep in mind the players’ gaming experience, and strive to create a sound that can express those feelings the best.

    Q: In terms of ambient sounds, are there any particular differences between the Source and the First? Please tell us if there was anything you wanted to distinguish between the two.
    A: The ambient sounds of the First were something we discussed in the sound team, and took special care when creating them. The ambient sound we needed to recreate was the “halation.” In a story about bringing back the darkness, the light is a negative factor. However, generally when you consider an ambient sound for light, you would imagine something radiant with a positive connotation. So how we’d want to express this negative halation was something the ambient sound staff and the rest of the team really had hard time coming up with.

    After much contemplation, we decided to try expressing the halation as a feeling of being overwhelmed by some kind of pressure. Our idea was to achieve this by simultaneously using both high and low frequency sounds to give off a feeling of uneasiness.

    However, constantly listening to a truly unpleasant sound would make the gameplay unenjoyable, and so we had difficulty to fine tuning the sound to only give off a faint suggestion of uneasiness. This was tasked to our junior staff, and I believe they got the adjustments just right. This ambient sound can only be heard during the Everlasting Light weather, and cannot be heard again after the darkness has been returned to the First. If you've already completed the main scenario, you can go back using the New Game+ feature, so be sure to check it out!

    Q: I really enjoy the Piano Collections album and listen to it all the time! Please add more orchestrion rolls of the piano arrangement versions!
    A: We have the piano sound data, so we should be able to do this if we can prepare ways for our players to obtain the orchestrion roll items.

    Yoshida:
    However, if we do implement all the orchestrion rolls, it’ll become a problem for us later on, so we’ll need to adjust the timing in which they’re released.

    Soken: An orchestrion roll of the Azys Lla BGM has been highly requested from our Western audience, so I wanted to do it somehow. It looks like it’s going to be implemented in Patch 5.2, so I’m glad.

    Q: I love the piano section of the Amaurot BGM. Do you have any plans to publish piano sheet music for tracks that were added in Heavensward and later?
    A: While I understand that this has been requested from time to time, my honest response would be that we’d need a bit more demand for this. Many of the in-game tracks are difficult to physically play, and arranging the sheet music in a way that would be enjoyable to play requires a lot of effort. This would be hard as we’d need to sell a significant number of copies of the sheet music to cover the amount of resources required to make the arrangements. Of course, I’d like to publish the sheet music; however, if we aren’t able to make any profit, we'd be unable to publish more later on, and that’d be a problem. Also, as a side note, sheet music for orchestral arrangements requires much more work compared to a piano sheet music, which raises the hurdle for publishing orchestral arrangements even higher.

    As mentioned earlier, the higher the demand for sheet music, the more likely we’ll be able to make it happen. So please continue sending in those requests!

    Q: Additional battle voices were added in Patch 5.1. While I'm very happy that we received additional voices, since we’ve grown accustomed to our characters over the years, there’s several voices that feel strange. Are there any plans to adjust the additional voices based on feedback?
    A: First, I would like to answer a question we’ve been seeing from our players. Through various feedback and discussions, there were players asking if we used different voice actors from the original voices; however, this is not the case. There isn’t any voice type that is voiced by multiple actors.

    This voice data actually existed in your client data since A Realm Reborn. We were originally planning to use this voice data for something that was to be featured in Patch 5.1, but didn’t due to technical reasons. We then decided we could release them as additional voices, which was why they were added in Patch 5.1.

    As with the gunbreaker sound effect changes, there will be those who like the new sounds and those who prefer the original sound. It’s difficult to make an adjustment or change that every single person can agree on. The whole sound team has been looking over everyone’s opinions on the forums and social media, but this is something we’re still trying to figure out.

    Yoshida: The additional voices and the voices you’ve grown accustomed to were all recorded by the same voice actors, around the same time, with the same instructions. However, I believe it’s something you may not have gotten used to yet, due to the sudden implementation. For now, we’d like to monitor the situation. If the majority of our players mention that they’ve grown accustomed to the voices, we'll keep them; otherwise, we’ll consider reverting them to the original versions.

    As Soken mentioned, it’s difficult to come up with voices that can be accepted by every single person, so I doubt we’ll record from scratch.

    Q: I'm itching to see THE PRIMALS. How do you feel about doing a live performance sometime soon? I think it'd be great if you could go on a world tour for the Western audience as well!
    A: I'd like to do one. What do you say, Yoshida?

    Yoshida: I’ve been receiving this request from Soken, as well as others from the music department. However, our main occupation is game development, and Soken is the big boss for anything sound-related. A lot of people would struggle without him around, so we’re looking for a possible timing where we could do this without putting too much load on Soken.

    Q: When will there be a Shadowbringers orchestra concert? I was really disappointed I couldn't attend the recent orchestra concert!
    A: When we had our very first orchestra concert, we had no fear! We believed that our Warriors of Light would come even if we held four shows. However, on the day of the concert, one of the staff members from the orchestra mentioned that it’s unusual to start off with four shows, and I was taken aback. (Laugh)

    That said, once we opened the doors to the show, the excitement from everyone was overpowering, and it seemed to fire up the members of the orchestra who went on to deliver a superb performance. However, it’s really difficult to hold a show with that scale!

    As with the request for THE PRIMALS performance, I’d like to set my main focus on game development, which is the most important thing, then possibly look into a best timing to hold another concert.

    Q: When going through previous main scenario quests with the New Game+ feature, there are scenes where I'd like for voices to be added. Would it be possible to add voiced lines to previous main scenario cutscenes?
    A: Though it’s possible from a technical standpoint, the development resources required to do this make it very difficult. For example, each applicable scene would need to be voiced in each of our supported languages, and cutscenes would have to be recreated from scratch.
    (6)
    Tony "Zhexos" Caraway - Community Team