“Whoa! Saga, bro, are you on drugs again?”
Not at all, dear reader that is usually concerned with me doing bad stuff! I speak sincerely: I believe Final Fantasy XIV can look at Destiny and learn a couple of things. Yes, an established and traditional fantasy MMO RPG can take a couple of notes from a science-fiction I-am-but-don’t-wanna-admit-I-am-a-MMO FPS.
CASE A: Surprise (hidden) stuff in daily missions
Destiny has the “Daily Heroic Story Mission” which asks you to replay one of the main story missions for marks and loot, but in a harder difficulty. Save for this little detail, the mission is generally exactly the same as the first time you did it. Except if you are curious enough you may just find a secret (and be rewarded for it).
The “Lost to Light” mission is about recovering a certain item from the Hive on the Moon and escaping afterwards. When it is the daily heroic, during your escape, you can go via a path that you would normally not go and find a teleporter (absent from the regular mode) that takes you to a completely different area to battle a horde of tough enemies. Should you defeat these under a certain time limit you earn an exotic weapon. The beauty? This is a secret – you can do the mission and never know you can do this alternate thing.
Another mission, “Paradox” uses the game’s first raid environment (the Vault of Glass) and tasks you with exploring a signal coming from its depths. But if it’s the daily heroic and you take very clever detours you can find three secret items that flesh out a bit of the game’s lore. There’s zero indication these paths even exist so you must only be curious – sometimes almost suicidal – to find them.
EXTRAPOLATE: How would this work in XIV?
XIV does not have a specific daily dungeon, and it couldn’t do a daily story mission instance, but instead rewards you with tomes for doing daily roulettes. The highest level one, the Expert Roulette, cycles between the two current highest level dungeons and gives extra tomes for it; these dungeons do not change in any way from their normal incarnations… well, because they are only accessible when you’re already at the level cap. How could XIV take something from Destiny?
For starters XIV could do a Daily Heroic Dungeon – could even be a Weekly Heroic Dungeon – chosen by the devs from the huge pool of dungeons the game has (including those from 2.0). Also why not utilize the game’s “synchronizing” technique to “up” the dungeon to hard difficulty levels? Making the roulette an activity for end-game players with extra rewards would make it interesting – perhaps throw an extra minion/mount to be the proverbial carrot.
Let’s play with this idea:
- Weekly Extreme Dungeon.
- Minimum ilevel requirement is about 10 points below what one could get with current tomes.
- Dungeon’s enemies scaled up to become challenging, bosses may have new abilities.
- Low chance to drop special mount/minion.
- Reward for completion: 90 current tomes.
- Reward for run: 10 current tomes (to at least give something in case you have done it but want to help a friend).
- Some may hold new paths and exclusive rewards (like gear for glamour).
How about Neverreap Weekly Extreme? Besides the increase in damage and enemy hit points, we could play further:
- Nunyenunc (first boss) generates two clones, one with 20% HP and the other with 80% HP; feathers stay on the ground and explode after a few seconds; players take aoe damage whenever they’re not inside the clones’ bubble.
- Canu Vanu (second boss) can generate a totem that cannot be picked up or it explodes so it must be allowed to be brought to life; poison multiple targets; smaller purple pools, but there’s now two or three.
- Waukkeon (final boss) has tornadoes from phase one; water adds do pulsing AoE damage; boss does his push twice in a row; a new tornado in final phase that doesn’t make you go up in the air, but rather blows you out of the stage.
- Secret boss: once Waukkeon is opened, go back to the beginning of the water area, stand on the first rock for a while and it’ll propel itself upwards (above the cave that separates that zone from the second boss’ arena). Up there you’ll find a new boss (perhaps Vanu Vanu related) that when killed will have a chance to drop a minion/mount or a piece of gear for glamour (say a Vanu-themed feathery helmet). This method of finding it would be a secret, so players would theorize where could this secret boss be.
I just made all of this up on the fly – just imagine what could the devs come up if they had considered this a feature of the game? And this is not where it ends; there’s a couple of other ideas in Destiny that could sort of make sense in XIV – some are not even new to Destiny. It may sound insane but it’s also fun to come up with these scenarios. Have fun theorizing, friends!