Square Enix has just released the trailer for Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood‘s upcoming patch – Patch 4.4, also known as the Prelude in Violet. It looks like this latest patch is going to bring a whole host of new Main Story Quests, some insight into the Garlean-related shenanigans that Alphinaud has been dealing with, and everyone’s favorite: new primals. From the new trailer, it looks like this latest addition to FFXIV is going to lead us in even wilder directions that before, and to places that may possibly include the not-quite-dead, not-quite-possessed Zenos yae Galvus. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, we don’t blame you! We wouldn’t worry too much though; our FFXIV Patch 4.4 guide will cover what to expect from the latest in storyline goodness.
FFXIV Patch 4.4 Guide: What to Expect from MSQ
For those who are curious about where the story has led so far, it can mostly be summed up in four words: Zenos is not dead. We’ve already become acquainted with the curious Elezen gamboling around Eorzea who appears to have Zenos’ personality transferred into his lanky body. As per Square Enix’s page for Patch 4.4, it explicitly mentions “the mean who wears Zenos’ face”. Reddit conspiracy theorists can rejoice – our speculation about whether or not Zenos was truly himself has finally been addressed, and we’ve been right all along. However, what does that mean for the rest of the world that’s trying to move on in the wake of the Empire’s displacement in Doma?
The trailer touches on a few upcoming, key events that have the potential to cause send even more political shockwaves through the land. In particular, the eagle-eyed may notice that the main scenario updates on the Patch 4.4 page talk about the Ascian storyline that Alphinaud has been dealing with alongside the tall, dark, and handsome stranger that is probably going to be Gaius van Baelsar. However, there’s still plenty of unexpected twists that have been hinted at.
FFXIV Patch 4.4 – Doma Summons a Primal?
Rumors abound that Doma, the newly-liberated land, has summoned a primal. For those of Eorzea’s great nations, this is a grave offense that has only ever been dealt with in one way – annihilation. Whether this turns out to be the phoenix fight that is hinted at in the promotional material as being Suzaku (another one of the auspices) is unclear. However, this bodes ill for the relationships between Doma and its new political allies who are all too familiar with the destruction that primals can bring.
Of course, the presence of a primal in Doma could well just be rumors started by the Empire who have sensed that they’re losing ground in their quest to bring imperialism to the rest of the world. There’s been a conspicuous amount of silence from fake Zenos, and we know even less about the machinations of real Zenos. Espionage has long been the strong suit of the Garleans, so we wouldn’t put this past them.
FFXIV Patch 4.4 – The Imperials Collaborate with the Ascians?
There’s a telling portion of the trailer from 1:05 which has a very sinister Imperial voice noting that the Populares have been dealt with. From what we know of Garlemald and its factions so far, the Populares is a group within Garlean politics who believe in forging peaceful relationships with the empire’s neighbors instead of brutally subjugating them.
Most of the Populares that we are aware of are not Garlean in heritage; Asahi sas Brutus is of Doman blood and is a notable member of the faction (though his true colors may have revealed otherwise). As Alphinaud happens upon a camp of what we assume are dead Populares, it’s made clear that they have not died a natural death, nor a death at the hands of Garlean magitek. Their empty eyes and milky irises speak to something a little more sinister; considering that Alphinaud has been hot on the trail of some Ascians, it’s possible that the Empire has decided to strike a deal with the devil in quashing political dissent.
FFXIV Patch 4.4 Guide: New Dungeons and Fights
As with every major patch out there, Patch 4.4 looks to deliver on some awe-inspiring new bosses for us to throw ourselves headfirst at. In particular, the following duties have been announced:
- Saint Mocianne’s Arboretum (Hard): It’s time to visit this flora-infested duty once more in the wake of some spooky little plantlings catching the attention of those living in Idyllshire. Investigating what’s got these korpokkur all hopped up looks to be our next task, and we doubt it’s going to be easy.
- The Burn: This is an entirely new duty which is being introduced with Patch 4.4 and involves an exploration of what looks like the area that Alphinaud was unceremoniously dumped in. The abuse of aether has ruined the area beyond repair, and deadly creatures lie in wait for unsuspecting adventurers.
There’s also the fact of the newest auspice to contend with – Suzaku, the phoenix. Much like Byakko before her, Suzaku looks to succumb to the violence inside her and we’re probably going to have to take her down in order to prevent cosmic destruction from occurring. Well, we’ve already taken down a couple of the other auspices so how hard can this be?
FFXIV Patch 4.4 Guide: Other Updates
On top of additional enemies and shady Garlean plots, there have been a bunch of other changes to be implemented with Patch 4.4 that will benefit all players, not just those who are at the end-game stage. For those who have unlocked Doman Restoration, it looks like the next stage of that is well underway – the construction of what looks like a place of learning is featured on the patch’s site.
For the aforementioned group of players who aren’t quite at that stage yet, don’t fret! You can still enjoy items like mannequins (perfect for testing out glamors), and estate tags. If you’re running a pub out of your Free Company estate, then you’ll now be able to let everyone in the village know. Furthermore, marrying your soulmate in the game has never been more appealing. Those who have already had a Ceremony of Eternal Bonding can renew their vows, and those looking to marry now have a wider variety of chapel decorations and ceremony options to choose from.
There’s clearly plenty to do in this latest patch that’s about to hit FFXIV. It looks like Patch 4.4 is due to bless all servers on September 18, which really isn’t that far away. We can’t wait to see what’s in store in the next installment of the Stormblood adventure. Looking forward to unraveling the Zenos mystery or just hoping that the patch brings new glamors? Let us know in the comments section below!