On Dark Knights and vertical progressions

I just read a funny comment on the Final Fantasy XIV Facebook page, where they posted images of the stuff coming in Heavensward – someone was saying that Chocobos don’t fly (in response to the first revealed flying mount being a Black Chocobo). Elsewhere, on forums and social networks I see people rage that the new announced job, Dark Knight (DRK), is a tank instead of a DPS. Oh boy.

Just last week I wrote a post about accepting those that don’t agree with XIV getting a cash shop. If they unsub/rage it is their choice and not much we can do about it. Respecting opinions and all that. In the same vein, we should accept those that are not familiar with Chocobo’s flying history, and those that want DRK to not be a tanking machine. Let me be the first to tell you: boy, is it hard.

But we miss a very important point.

Sure, I could go about explaining how Final Fantasy IV had Black Chocobos that were the only ones that could fly (and only land on forests… fun little trivia), crucial for a section where the airship was useless – Twelve damn you, damned magnetic cave! Or you could start debating how DRK has been a DPS in every other Final Fantasy under the sun… despite wearing heavy armor and sometimes taking on a role more like a debuffer. Or the fact that in old-school SNES era FFs (from which XIV takes most of its inspiration) tanking is pretty much a non-issue.

Black Chocobos didn’t fly in VII! DRK was a DPS in XI! BLM’s Fire should do more damage to ice foes! MNKs should be shirtlessBut we still miss a very important point: This isn’t XI. Or IV.  This is XIV.

Check this couple of quotes from Koji Fox, lead translator and lore guy, from a Gamerscape interview:

Final Fantasy is about borrowing, taking things other Final Fantasies did and adjusting it and making it your own.

So they want to borrow from it, and of course they know Final Fantasy XII has its story, and they don’t want to take that story and put it into XIV, because it’s not XIV, it’s XII, but they want to draw on that imagery and those connections.

This is a new Final Fantasy, borrows themes and things from other games, but doesn’t necessarily have to copy/paste them. If Yoshi-P et al decides he wants to try something new with DRK and make his abilities revolve around tanking… why not? It could end up being a very fun tank class*!

*I keep imagining the Death Knights from WoW. Never played one, but I understood they were a powerful tank class that worked with buffs, debuffs and syphoning the live out of enemies. Perhaps DRK is going to be similar? Syphoning isn’t too far fetched for a job that has a history with taking his own HP to attack.


While I’m at it, allow me to vent a bit of frustration.

XIV is a theme park MMO and a vertical progression oriented MMO. I’ll let you guys read the Google search of those terms in case you don’t know what they are. It befuddles me when people complain that XIV is the way it is – did they not read anything before buying the game? Did they truly come to XIV expecting it to be “XI with prettier graphics“? It gets on my nerves when someone in my “raid group” isn’t particularly inclined to run T9 because “even if they get the weapon it won’t be useful in a few weeks then the next patch comes“. Really? I guess they are still expecting XIV to become XI eventually, alas… I have to agree with the following tweet.

I’m not saying vertical progression is inherently better than the horizontal one… but if you buy a vertical MMO expecting a horizontal one… well…




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