I wrote almost a month ago that Final Fantasy 14 was my first MMO which I hesitate to suggest. Playing it takes a tremendous amount of time— at least a few hundred hours — and although I love it, I was worried that others might eventually find the long journey boring and unsatisfactory. But those doubts are gone after defeating Shadowbringers, the new extension of Final Fantasy 14.
Shadowbringers is the Avengers: Endgame of Final Fantasy 14, an emotionally compelling conclusion that builds on six years of character development, narrative, and world-building to create an ambitious, dimension-spreading plot grounded in its main character relationships.
Paint it black
If you’re not familiar with the story of Final Fantasy 14, it’s hard to describe the idea of the Shadowbringers without spoiling all that comes before. With three updates and hundreds of hours of tale under her belt, Final Fantasy 14’s universe is so complicated and nuanced you ought to be able to graduate in its past. It’s overwhelming to newcomers— especially since the first part of the overarching story of Final Fantasy 14 is a slow burn — but as a lifetime player I love how vibrant and expansive the universe and its characters have become.
The implication is that Hydaelyn’s planet, after the events of Stormblood, is on the precipice of an apocalyptic war waged by the wicked Ascians, eternal creatures who want to see the earth thrown into anarchy as a way of reviving their ancient deity. The Ascians intend to spark an explosion in an alternative dimension that will spill through Hydaelyn itself to help tip the first domino.
But unlike Hydaelyn, where I constantly fight the dark forces in ocean of game, The First has the opposite problem: A century ago chaos has been vanquished, giving rise to an explosion of primordial illumination that has almost washed out the entire planet and created an army of supernatural creatures named Sin Eaters. To save The First, I will swap sides and become the Warrior of Darkness, a journey that examines the forces of light and darkness beyond just whether they are good or evil.