This April, the developers at Square Enix along with Masato Kato, one
of the original script writer for Final
(and who also did work on Final Fantasy VII
, Chrono Cross
, and Chrono Trigger
released A Crystalline
Prophecy: Ode to Life Bestowing
. The content has been
available for download since the end of March and was made playable in
April after the version update. While not as expansive as some of the
full-featured expansions that came before it, Crystalline Prophecy is
the first of a trilogy of download-only, mini-expansions that Square
Enix is pursuing in order to bring a number of loose threads in the
game to an end.
To get a general overview of this content, the Ten Ton Hammer staff
went on a tour of A Crystalline Prophecy and what we found will
certainly make veteran FFXI players ecstatic. The content begins for
characters that are level 30, but by the end of the Crystalline
Prophecy players will be expected to have a full party of level 75s to
take on the end encounters.
For players that just tinkered with Final Fantasy XI
when it was originally released, many of you probably remember the
rendered cut scene featuring a small boy and his sister being attacked
by monsters in the middle of a war. The Crystalline Prophecy acts as a
sort of conclusion for that story that occurred twenty years prior to
the events in the original game.
When a player originally purchases the content for Crystalline
Prophecy, they’ll be treated to a rather lengthy cut scene
that sets the scene for players to begin their next round of content.
To make a long cut scene short, the player is basically one of a
handful of individuals in the world that see – and remember
– the appearance of a giant crystal in the sky. The crystal
bursts and pieces rain down throughout the world. It’s then
the players task to go and find several of these objects and return
them to, by way of a weird time warp, the young boy that players
originally saw in that initial FFXI rendered cut scene.
On the tour, I was also shown another cut scene that showcases an epic
battle between a variety of beastmen and a contingent of Mithra that
are defending a walled city from attack. In standard Final Fantasy
style, the cut scene is rather lengthy, but the battle is interesting
enough. I had to blast my way out of the battle, and turned those
beastmen into mush in no time.
Along with the new content, the update also includes three new
customizable armor pieces – Nuevo Coselete, Royal Redingote,
and Mirke Wadecors - that are somewhat novel to the FFXI environment.
Once you receive these armors, you then have a list of 20 supplemental
attributes. Two of these attributes can then be selected and added onto
the armor set. Depending on your playstyle or job, you can then
specialize your gear to the way you’d like it to be.
Another intriguing new addition to Final
is the item
augmentation system, which allows players to modify their items by
choosing a particular piece of equipment to be augmented, and then
defeating a monster that spawns almost immediately after choosing the
piece of loot to be augmented. While this may not be extremely
practical for low level players, end game characters will certainly
take advantage of any extra gear they might have lying around.
All in all, A Crystalline Prophecy seems to hold a variety of new
content for the well-versed FFXI player, but for those individuals that
haven’t had the time to devote to reaching level 30 in the
MMO, this may not be the downloadable content for you. Stick with Ten
Ton Hammer for your FFXI news and previews. We should soon see some new
information from the next mini-expansion, dubbed A Moogle Kupo
The Ten Ton Hammer staff would also like to thank the Square Enix team
for providing us with this thorough tour.