Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood is the second expansion pack of Final Fantasy XIV, announced at the 2016 Fan Fest, being released for PC, Macintosh, and PlayStation 4. It was released on June 20, 2017. It officially marked the end of Final Fantasy XIV on PlayStation 3, with support for the platform being discontinued coinciding with the expansion's launch.
The expansion sees Adventurers heading to the Gyr Abania region in eastern Aldenard and beyond to the continent of Othard, liberating both the city-states of Ala Mhigo and Doma from the Garlean Empire.
Shortly after the events of the finale of the Heavensward expansion, the Warrior of Light and their comrades make way to the war torn region of Gyr Abania, home to the city state of Ala Mhigo, which is under the control of the Garlean Empire. After tragedy strikes in the wake of the Adventurer's efforts to help the Ala Mhigan resistance at the hand of the Imperial Viceroy Zenos yae Galvus, the Warrior of Light makes their way to the land of Orthard to the east to help liberate the Kingdom of Doma from the Empire. What follows is a quest that revolves around the liberation of both Ala Mhigo and Doma.
- The expansion automatically increases the level cap to 70 for all disciplines.
- New jobs Red Mage and Samurai.
- A revamped battle system that introduces the Job Gauge gameplay mechanic, which gives every job a unique gauge to eliminate the complexity of managing important buffs or to introduce more unique job elements. In addition, the cross-class system is removed from the game and replaced with a new Cross Role system. Lastly, certain stats have been reworked, replaced, or became exclusive to certain roles.
- New new vast zone areas that allow players to go swimming in bodies of water and support flying mounts.
- New locations: in Othard can be found the Ruby Sea, home to pirates and the Kojin beast tribe; Yanxia, home to the Garlean-occupied Doma; and the Azim Steppe, ancestral home of the Au Ra. The Fringes, The Peaks, and The Lochs make up Gyr Abania.
- Two new cities: Rhalgr's Reach in Gyr Abania, and Kugane in Hingashi.
- A new far eastern styled housing area, Shirogane, in Hingashi.
- Two new Beast Tribes, the Ananta, a serpentine tribe, and the Kojin, a tortoise-like tribe.
- New Primals, including the Ananta primal Lakshmi, Lady of Bliss, and the Kojin primal Susano, Lord of the Revel.
- A new high-end raid: Interdimensional Rift - Omega, the Bend of Time.
- A new 24-man raid series: Return to Ivalice, with a story written by Yasumi Matsuno.
- Expanded inventory space up to 140 slots.
Note that the below version updates also added features and adjustments to A Realm Reborn (2.x) or Heavensward (3.x) content.
The Legend Returns (4.1)Edit
Released on October 10, 2017, The Legend Returns was the first major patch released for the Stormblood expansions. The patch debuts The Return to Ivalice raid series with the The Royal City of Rabanastre 24-main raid. The Minstrel's Ballad: Shinryu's Domain was added as a new Extreme difficulty trial for players. The main scenario received its first continuation following the events of Ala Mhigo's liberation and the Drowned City of Skalla was added as a new main scenario Expert dungeon.
The Grand Companies' Adventurer Squadrons system was expanded to feature exploration of certain instanced dungeons as party members. A new introductory quest for the Hildibrand Manderville questline was implemented, as well as the Kojin beast-tribe quests. In addition, several new gear sets were added into the game through dungeons and recipes. Lastly, the new housing area of Shirogane also now allowed for players to purchase housing and apartments in the facility and the housing relocation feature was added into the game.
The new high end challenge known as the Unending Coil of Bahamut will be added into the game in patch 4.12. It will serve as the introduction for the newest tier of end-game raiding known as "(Ultimate)", which is meant for only the most determined and experienced players.
While not a change within the game itself, the Mogstation online store lifted the one "Adventuring Record" limit per character restriction, so players are now allowed to purchase multiple records to level up multiple jobs to level 60.
- The literal name of the expansion in Japanese is Guren no Kaihō-sha (紅蓮の解放者?), which translates to "Liberators of the Crimson Lotus". However, the term Kaihō-sha (解放者?) is meant to be read as Riberēta (リベレータ?) in accordance with the furigana provided.
- As with his Batman/James Bond teases for Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward, director Naoki Yoshida wore a Scarlet Witch shirt to the announcement event to tease a new upcoming class. Scarlet Witch is a synonym for Red Mage. At another event he wore a Spider-Man shirt to tease a different class, which was a much more obscure connection - namely the similar spelling between film director Sam Raimi, who directed the 2000s Spider-Man trilogy, and Samurai.