We be dancin'

Stormblood Live Letter Hype

Yesterday’s Live Letter was absolutely amazing. Even if you didn’t like it or didn’t get enough, four hours of dev information is respectable. Now that I’m rested and a bit more calm, time to talk about my opinions on what we’ve learned.

Additional Actions

Since 1.0 players would have to level other classes if they wanted to use different abilities. With 2.0 they made things a bit more specific and tied them to class restrictions. No more casting Fire magic on your Lancer, for instance. They kept this system in 3.0 but are now finally getting rid of it! Now we’ll have “Role Actions” and I can understand why people freak out about this. The initial thought was that we’ll lose some of the important cross class skills given the groupings. As in, BRD/MCH would no longer have Invigorate. Thankfully they thought ahead and gave every group their much needed skills under Role Actions.

Role Actions: Tank

  • Rough Tooltips – Tank
    • Rampart: Reduces damage taken by 20% for 20s. Recast 90s.
    • Low Blow: Stuns target for 5s. Recast 25s.
    • Provoke: Places yourself at the top of target enmity list. Recast 40s.
    • Convalescence: Increases healing received by 20% for 20s. Recast 120s.
    • Anticipation: ???
    • Reprisal: Reduces target’s damage dealt by 10% for 5s. Recast 60s.
    • Awareness: Nullifies chance of taking critical damage for 15s. Recast 120s.
    • Interject: Silences target for 1s. Recast 30s.
    • Ultimatum: Radial (5y) provoke around self. Recast 90s.
    • Shirk: Directs 80% of enmity generated to target for 15s. Recast 120s.

As someone who considers a tank to be her secondary… I suppose tertiary now… these are pretty awesome! “Interject” is here to replace the silence we’re losing from Spirits Within. Ultimatum is going to be amazing for those times when your DPS can’t pick a dang target. Then we have Shirk, which is like NIN’s old Shadewalker. That’s gonna be super handy for tank swaps I bet! Finally, the rest seems pretty standard, unified tanking abilities. Picking and choosing might even be a rough task here. Why can’t we have them all? xD

Role Actions: Healer

  • Rough Tooltips – Healer
    • Cleric Stance: Increases damage dealt by 5% for 15s. Recast 90s.
    • Break: Unaspected magical damage that applies 40% Heavy for 20s. Potency 50.
    • Protect: Increases physical and magical DEF of all party members near target for 30min.
    • Esuna: Removes a single detrimental effect from target.
    • Lucid Dream: Halves enmity and refreshes MP for 21s. Potency 80. Recast 120s.
    • Swiftcast: Next spell is cast immediately. Duration 10s. Recast 60s.
    • Eye for an Eye: Creates a barrier on target with 20% chance to reduce attacker’s damage dealt by 10% for 20s. Recast 180s.
    • Affection: ???
    • Surecast: Next spell is cast without interruption. Duration 10s. Recast 30s.
    • Rescue: Pulls target party member towards you. Recast 150s.

Healer damage is being adjusted to focus around MND, and they’ve turned Cleric Stance into a damage buff instead. This might not be so great for the few healers capable of sitting on Cleric Stance in their raid before–but it’s a huge boon for everyone else. For instance, many times Nikki would be too worried about what might happen if she misclicked a stance swap. Now instead she can devote more time and focus to helping the raid deal damage and take the boss out. This can be pretty significant!

I’m worried about “Rescue” if only because it’ll be used to kill me… a lot. Please look forward to that when I start streaming I guess haha. A lot of these actions are from WHM I’ve noticed or some variation of the sort. With that in mind, I’m looking forward to what they’ll give WHM in exchange. Some WHMs I know are very worried about being called a “pure healer” in a clearly DPS meta or are bummed about not getting many neat things shown. Remember their statement right off the bat: none of this is set in stone and is due for final adjustments! DRK, MCH, and AST changed greatly from the release of HW until now thanks to our feedback.

Role Actions: Melee

  • Rough Tooltips – Melee
    • Second Wind: Instantly restores own HP. Potency 450. Recast 120s.
    • Arm’s Length: ???
    • Leg Sweep: Stuns target for 3s. Recast 40s.
    • Diversion: Reduces enmity generation for 15s. Recast 120s.
    • Invigorate: Instantly restores 400 TP. Recast 120s.
    • Bloodbath: Converts 25% of damage dealt into HP for 15s. Recast 90s.
    • Goad: Refreshes TP of target party member. Recast 180s.
    • Restraint/Feint: ???
    • Clutch: ???
    • True North: Removes positional requirements for 15s. Recast 150s.

I am both excited and fearful for these. To start, tanks everywhere will be excited for melee having Diversion. I’ll be hearing less of “God dammit Ryuh” and more “pop your damned quelling” instead. Invigorate being role shared means no more DRG trait to support it. However, in the above picture all TP requirements for normal combos are lowered. I’ll go into that a bit later. All melee get Goad which I’m sure Elyon (my raid melee buddy) and myself will come to appreciate–including True North for those moments when you HAVE to stack on a boss’s front or whatever.

Role Actions: Ranged

  • Rough Tooltips – Ranged
    • Second Wind: Instantly restores own HP. Potency 450. Recast 120s.
    • Foot Graze: Binds target for 12s. Recast 20s.
    • Leg Graze: Inflicts target with Heavy (40%) for 12s. Recast 20s.
    • Proton: Increases self and party movement speed for 30s. Recast 5s.
    • Invigorate: Instantly restores 400 TP. Recast 120s.
    • Tactician: Restores party TP.
    • Refresh: Restores party MP.
    • Head Graze: Deals an attack that silences target for 2s. Potency 100. Recast 25s.
    • Arm Graze: Stuns target for 2s. Recast 25s.
    • Palisade: Reduces physical damage received by target by 20% for 10s. Recast 150s.

Rejoice, ranged DPS! You get to keep Invigorate! There’s also plenty of crowd control abilities here designed to make the most of your renewed mobility now that MCH and BRD do not have a cast time to worry about. Pew pew to your heart’s content… as long as my TP is filled. 😉

Casters

Role Actions: Casters

  • Rough Tooltips – Caster
    • Addle: Reduces target’s INT and MND by 15% for 10s. Recast 120s.
    • Break: Unaspected magical damage that applies 40% Heavy for 20s. Potency 50.
    • Drain: Unaspected magical damage that converts damage dealt to HP. Potency 80.
    • Diversion: Reduces enmity generation for 15s. Recast 120s.
    • Lucid Dream: Halves enmity and refreshes MP for 21s. Potency 80. Recast 120s.
    • Swiftcast: Next spell is cast immediately. Duration 10s. Recast 60s.
    • Mana Shift: Transfers up to 20% max MP to target party member. Recast 150s.
    • Apocatastasis: Reduces magic damage received by target by 20% for 10s. Cannot cast on self. Recast 150s.
    • Surecast: Next spell is cast without interruption. Duration 10s. Recast 30s.
    • Erase: Remove DoTs from target party member. Cannot cast on self. Recast 90s.

Casters have a whole bunch of support type abilities in their role shared actions. I’m assuming from the influence of Red Mage now. This works out very well in favor of players who simply do their best in every aspect for their raid, but doesn’t do a whole lot for the types that want to kill the mob yesterday. Especially without Raging Strikes now.

General PvE Updates

To begin with, a huge one–Parry is gone forever! Woohoo! Replacing it is a stat called “Tenacity”. This increases your damage dealt and decreases your damage taken. While this is maybe not much better, we can use this more than additional moot parry rate. And bear in mind, we’re still able to parry attacks.

Next up… accuracy is gone! Again, just as a stat. It’s being replaced by “Direct Hit” which you can consider like a mini-crit that can trigger at the same time a critical hit does. Accuracy from the front is 100%, the flank is 110%, and rear (or casting) is 120%. Accuracy Down and Blind will impair this, and level difference will make a significant difference.

PIE has been demoted to a secondary attribute. Its racial gains will be split among the other primary stats. It will still have the same effect as it does now, but it’ll only be found on healer equipment. More than likely this means jobs that increased PIE before will have a different stat to give to the party now.

Tank damage will now again calculate based on STR–but as accessories are going to be role restricted they can’t equip STR accessories anymore. So all of those cleaves might do less damage than you’re hoping for–sorry. :'(

Job Actions: Red Mage

I’m honestly not much of a caster, but this does look neat! Building up the gauges with chain spell and even having a Chant du Cygne looking skill makes RDM extremely flashy. Here’s to hoping it’s as fun as it looks!

Job Actions: Dragoon

Let’s ignore the… awkward choice in rotation here, as that’s being thrown to the wind. Blood of the Dragon still gives us 15 seconds of blood active. The “vertical geirskogul” is Miracle Dive which seems to render the “Eye of the First Brood”. This eventually allows us to use new skills.

My big question here is in the combo itself. Our fourth hit shown in the video is Wheeling Thrust, and it extends Blood duration by 10s. Before it would extend it by 15s. The DRG immediately follows this fourth hit with a freaking FIFTH hit of Fang and Claw for an additional 10s duration. Does this mean we now lead our combos into five consecutive hits instead of four? Are they still randomized or do they start based on the combo chain? Does one always lead into the other or is there a random variable like in 3.0?

The DRG in the video then proceeds to Miracle Dive again, opening a red eye. This is followed with Geirskogul which doesn’t reduce Blood duration but instead turns the gauge and our aura red. In the red aura we can use Nidhogg’s Geirskogul among a few other new skills–none of which seem to reduce Blood duration.

SE mentioned that DRG’s rotation isn’t going to change much, but this just has to be some huge mistake. DRG operates on a particularly fine balance of keeping DoTs and buffs up and everything has its particular moment. This included Blood and Geirskogul management before, which has now completely changed. Then we now have a five step combo apparently which throws so much into wonk.

To top that off our combo skill TP cost has been reduced from 70-60-60-60 to 60-50-50-50-50. This seems to be balanced with Invigorate now being role shared (so no way to increase its effect) but I’m very excited about keeping my TP around for longer. Especially thanks to raiding with a SCH and AST who love seeing me squirm…

Job Actions: Dark Knight

From what they show us, some skills are used to build up a blood gauge leading to probably even stronger skills. It all looks incredibly edgelord to me and that’s the whole appeal of DRK so please enjoy!

Job Actions: Bard

We’re already super excited over at my house thanks to Bard no longer having a casting time. Sure that’s probably boring for some who got used to it or appreciated the challenge, but woohoo mobility! Then they have a flute and new arrows it seems? Maybe they’ll be able to play some sweet music while they try to dry my tears as my TP drains away into a piddly pool of nothing.

Job Actions: Scholar

So… the SCH seems to just have their fairy link to someone and focuses entirely on damage. This isn’t very different from what my raid leader, Aud, does now! Oookay he kind of heals a little but between Nikki and his fairy he doesn’t need to most of the time. So yay more damage potential!

Job Actions: Ninja

The new “ninki” gauge gives them a pretty good benefit for their quick attack speed. I don’t know a whole lot about NIN but here’s to hoping they do something about Mudras!

Job Actions: Machinist

The flamethrower is super neat–and exploding turrets and all. I joked around a bit with some friends earlier that MCH should have an adjustment to tell your party members every single Wildfire damage dealt using Microsoft Sam. Even if it’s lower than the previous. Just seems to be a common trait among MCHs I’ve grouped with. 😵

Job Actions: Warrior

Literally all I hear from Ryan is “CLEAVES! ALL THE CLEAVES! INFINICLEAVE!” so he’s super happy about WAR in 4.0! I hope managing its resources won’t be too difficult in exchange for glowing red eyes and entering a literal Cleave City.

Job Actions: Summoner

IS THAT FUCKING BAHAMUT?!

Job Actions: White Mage

They don’t seem to get a whole lot of flashy things. Their UI bar is just some lily petals. Their spells seem almost entirely geared towards healing capacity. We know many of their core skills are now role shared actions and we know they get Stone IV, so hopes for their damage capacity still exist. It’s kind of difficult to be too critical about it, it seems, given how little we actually learned of WHM this time around. I’m definitely hoping they find a way to define WHM more clearly that won’t have it shuffled to the bottom of raid wanted posters, though.

Job Actions: Black Mage

Triple swift cast, teleporting to one’s ley lines, and permanent enochian–all seem to be the glorious screams of joy from BLMs I know. Losing the invincibility of Manawall is unfortunate, but it just means BLMs will learn to position themselves a bit more efficiently. Which, given ley lines are an AoE magnet… I’m sorry. :'( AoE Thunder and such sounds super awesome though. I can’t wait to witness the power of this job in the hands of the scariest BLM I know–Chamoflex!

Job Actions: Astrologian

Nikki kinda freaked out a bit with AST’s UI change. Being able to see what card you’ve got held and its potency is an amazing thing–especially when she references a chart to remember. There’s a bunch of other shiny stuff too that looks neat, but now she can really make sure my TP gauge suffers with those high potency Arrows. Ugh whyyyy?! 😭

Job Actions: Monk

Monk apparently gets some raid-wide buffs with their Fists or something… we’ll know more later. The really neat thing we’ve seen is they have an ability now that, while active, makes all WSs done by your party members give you a chakra point. This can mean for an awesome surge of Forbidden Chakra during a heavy burst phase that will make MNK damage even more ridiculous. And having some hefty utility means they might actually get invites now–woohoo!

Job Actions: Samurai

AAAAAHHHHHH!!!! I can’t stop screaming about Samurai, sorry. Let’s start.

So the first aspect of Samurai is “Iai” which is generated by “Sen”. We acquire “Sen” through our different combos. Our starter skill is called Hakaze which deals 150 potency.

The first combo is Hakaze into Yukikaze. Yukikaze deals 350 potency of damage and applies a 10% slashing debuff to the target for 30 seconds. It also generates “Sen of Snow” for us. The second combo is Hakaze into Jinpu. Jinpu deals 290 potency of damage and gives us a 10% damage buff for 30 seconds. This then leads into Gekko, dealing 400 potency and activating “Sen of the Moon”. The third combo is Hakaze into Shifu. Shifu deals 290 potency of damage and give us a 10% attack speed buff for 30 seconds. This leads into Kasha, dealing 420 potency and activating “Sen of the Flower”.

The “Sen” cannot be activated multiple times and it behooves us anyway to keep our buffs/debuffs up. So the ideal is to use the different combos to maintain everything and push Sen out as much as we can. There are multiple different abilities unlocked on a varying number of Sen but right now we’re only aware of two of them. There’s “Tenka Goken” which consumes 2 Sen to deliver a 8y range conal AoE of 360 potency that drops on multiple enemies similar to Holy. Then there’s “Midare Setsugekka” which consumes 3 Sen for a 720 potency single target strike.

The second aspect of Samurai is “Hissatsuken” which are dramatic finishers that consume “Kenki”. Kenki is generated by 5 per weapon skill, with combo finishers granting 10 if done from the right positional. Yukikaze has no positional requirement, Gekko is from the rear, Kasha is from the Flank. Kenki stores up to 100 at maximum and seems to not drain any over time. All of the Hissatsuken abilities only cost Kenki and are oGCD, allowing for a pretty significant burst.

“Hissatsuken: Kyuten” consumes 25 Kenki for a 150 potency attack to all surrounding enemies. “Hissatsuken: Shinten” consumes 25 Kenki for a 300 potency attack to the target. There’s a whole lot uncovered thus far but we can assume right now that Samurai is going to be a right powerhouse in terms of damage potential if done right. I’m concerned if they’ll have any utility though–as that’s what held MNK back in 3.x!

Job Actions: Paladin

Finally, we have Paladin. It seems to have gained a lot more damage potential–but also has that super awesome wings of light conal defensive cooldown. Of all the jobs that have become anime “AF”, I’d say Paladin probably takes the cake here. I’m excited to play it and even more excited to watch my raid’s MT see how far he can push this job beyond its limits!

Happy adventuring~

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