One of the things you’ll notice about Final Fantasy XIV is it’s very consistent. The community has gotten very good at predicting what will happen in upcoming patches because the team is on a set schedule. Outside of delays, like Endwalker’s launch getting pushed back, FFXIV’s patch releases tend to come on a specific cadence and alongside specific types of content.
In past post-release patch cycles, patches x.1 to x.3 generally acted as an epilogue to the expansion’s storyline. Then the final major patches, x.4 and x.5, usually begin setting the stage for the upcoming expansion. We’ve been on a similar path for many years now.
Endwalker’s post-launch patches have already moved beyond that. Patch 6.1, Newfound Adventure, was the start of an all-new story following the end of the Hydaelyn-Zodiark saga. In an interview with Famitsu (translated via Reddit user MKillerby), director and producer Naoki Yoshida said that this patch cycle will continue to chart a new path for FFXIV.
According to Yoshida, all of the post-Endwalker patches will continue the storyline started in Patch 6.1, with hints about the concept of the next expansion / Patch 7.0 appearing in Patch 6.5. In fact, the Patch 6.x cycle will end definitively with a certain event that changes the game’s ongoing plot and kicks off the next expansion.
The current storyline has the Warrior of Light and his friends seeking to travel into the Void to learn the secret of travel from world to world. The path forward is a crack in space hidden under the waves of Thavnair, previously guarded by the dragon Vrtra. Long ago, his sister Azdaja flew into a voidgate and Vrtra has been trying to find her ever since.
Within the Void, the ruined Thirteenth Shard, lies massive armies of Voidsent and a pair of threats highlighted in Patch 6.1. The first is the Voidsent avatar that was once tied to Zenos. The second is the Knight in Black and his minions. These characters look to be references to Golbez and the Four Fiends from Final Fantasy IV, something Yoshida confirmed in his interview.
Yoshida said that the “weakest” of the Final Fantasy IV fiends will appear first. The weakest fiend in the original game was Scarmiglione, the Blighted Despot. The undead monster could appear in Patch 6.2, in either the unknown Trial or the new dungeon, The Fell Court of Troia. According to the special site for Patch 6.2, the latter duty takes place in the Thirteenth.
We’ll see if the fiend appears in Patch 6.2, alongside the new raid wing for Pandemonium, Criterion and Variant dungeons, new Tomestones, and the next season of PVP. We’ll hear more about the patch this Friday, when Yoshida and company host the next Live Letter from the Producer. We’ll be up bright and early here at The Linkshell to cover the entire stream.