Final Fantasy 14 producer Naoki Yoshida has revealed details about the MMORPG’s upcoming expansion, Endwalker, in a Q&A post on the PlayStation Blog. Yoshida spoke about Endwalker’s story, the new Sage job, and music. Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker was announced a couple of weeks ago for PC, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.
Talking about wrapping up the Hydaelyn and Zodiark storyline that Final Fantasy 14 had kicked off with A Realm Reborn back in 2013, Yoshida talks about what it’s like to finally bring that story arc to an end.
“Since the time of A Realm Reborn, the idea of the “Hydaelyn and Zodiark saga” already existed and was what we were working off of when creating the story,” said Yoshida. “Being able to tell this story to its conclusion required Final Fantasy XIV to succeed as an MMORPG, and we were far from being able to declare the ongoing story as the Hydaelyn and Zodiark saga even at the time of Heavensward’s release.”
According to Yoshida, the original plans to bring the story to an end revolved around the game’s 6.0 or 7.0 expansions, but the success of Stormblood and especially Shadowbringers inspired the team to avoid dragging things out. For reference, Endwalker will be the game’s 6.0 release.
“Back then, I felt 6.0 or 7.0 would be a good time to wrap things up, but with the excitement we saw with Shadowbringers being even higher than our expectations, I decided we shouldn’t draw the story out awkwardly, and continue the wave of excitement by concluding the story with Endwalker.”
Even in the Q&A, Yoshida has abstained from talking about what would come next for the Warrior of Light and their friends after the end of the storyline in Endwalker.
The Sage Job
Yoshida spoke about the team’s inspiration for the new Sage job, which will be a new healing job introduced in Endwalker. Unlike other jobs in Final Fantasy 14, Sage doesn’t really have a historic background with the franchise. A lot of the challenge came from differentiating Sage from the other three healing jobs already in the game.
“Rather than utilizing something that already exists in the Final Fantasy universe, I asked for brand-new job ideas from the team-that is when someone proposed the idea of a job that didn’t use weapons that were held in the character’s hands but were instead controlled magically,” said Yoshida. “It was from that base idea that we moved forward in creating the Sage job.”
While staying largely quiet about Endwalker’s new music, Yoshida did mention that the Endwalker teaser’s music was meant to be a teaser for the music itself as well. It was composed by Final Fantasy 14’s composer Masayoshi Soken alongside Naoki Yoshida.
“From a musical perspective, the song in the teaser trailer is merely a teaser from Masayoshi Soken and myself,” said Yoshida. “How it will fully take shape is something to look forward to in the full trailer. That will be the first time we will get a true glimpse of what kind of sound Soken is aiming for in Endwalker…”
This hints that Endwalker’s general music will likely have a darker, grungier feel to it than Final Fantasy 14 has had so far. Shadowbringer’s music, being critically acclaimed itself, had a large variety of different songs in different genres, ranging from pop to heavy metal and lo-fi.
Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker doesn’t yet have a concrete release date, but is scheduled for Fall 2021. It will be available on PC, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5.