Four main story quests. That’s my minimum goal every day in FFXIV if I’m to stay on track to be done with Stormblood by the end of August. 122 quests is a whole lot to process as a whole, but four at a time? That’s pretty doable.
As I said previously, the general lack of enthusiasm among FFXIV vets when mentioning Stormblood is hard to ignore, even though I do try hard to give it a fair shot. Honestly, so far it hasn’t been too bad. It’s starting to shape up as a liberation narrative involving two countries dominated by the same empire, and I’m down with that. It’s definitely in line with a lot of Final Fantasy stories from past games.
The story does give us a key enemy that’s so sneering and condescending that I have to refrain from punching the screen whenever he appears. I don’t hate this guy from the perspective of the in-game universe — I loathe him for myself. Japan’s had a lot of experience creating these kinds of oh-so-superior beings who weigh maybe 125 pounds but have some sort of supernatural power and lord it over everyone, and it’s not my favorite facet of that country’s pop culture.
The Scions, for the most part, aren’t impressing me this time around. I like New Lalafell Sage, as she puts Alfie in his place and is a likable enough person, and Tataru is really growing on me as a favorite. But I’d love to go on some quests without the Twins boring things up around me. It’s like this is a babysitting simulator that someone passed off as an MMORPG.
FFXIV doesn’t often give me dialogue choices, but if I ever get one when Alfie asks me a question, I choose the “…” option and imagine glaring at him with undisguised loathing.
But as I said, the story has my attention. I’ve just gotten to JapanLand, which is a huge tonal shift from ArabiaLand. It’s kind of garish and a little TOO perfect the way that FFXIV does its architecture. I guess now I can understand how this expansion gave us a Samurai class!