I've been delaying any blogging until the update because the only thing I had to blog about was shit I had done and shit I was looking forward to. I'm sure that is of interest to some folks (for the record, other people's lists have interested me), but I was struggling to come up with anything of substance, so after a couple of tries I said to hell with it and decided to wait.
SE released the one-sheet for the update while I was at work, some things jumped out at me and some I didn't catch til later on messageboards. Of this stuff perhaps the most important thing to note was the possible nerfing of hate spells used by both NIN and RDM tanks. To tank effectively on either of these jobs, one cycles through the spells Sleep, Bind, Blind, Dispel and Stun (if /DRK). A mega nerf here would essentially disable either of these jobs to compete with PLD as tanks. Now one could argue why the hell any of those spells have enmity spikes to begin with, but I think the real reason SE even bothered to fix the mistakes they made long ago is for one reason and that's because they want us to sub Scholar on our mage jobs. This means Accession and Manifestation on the above spells and with hate set the way it was could mean death for the caster. Personally I think that is bullshit, as a BLM who has been in end game crowd control for over a year I can honetly say if mobs fuck you up from your Sleepga spells it's generally your own gimp ass fault. At any rate, I understand SE's logic, and the hope was they would not nerf the shit out of these spells.
One of the other things that caught my eye was the new Synergy Goldsmithing crafts. I haven't seen a lot of chatter about this, but my head fucking hurts just doing the math. You see there are eight rings named after the HQ Elemental Staves and a bunch of earrings with elemental based names. Could this mean we are getting elemental specific rings and earrings now, as if inventory issues weren't already batshit out of control?! Think about this from a BLM point of view, BLMS use seven of the eight elements in everyday use (light being the exception, but even there a good BLM will be prepared for healing), now that's seven times four for a total of 28. Motherfuckers! All I can say is I hope this stuff is shit or SE is gonna get a big angry FUCK YOU roar from me (not that they care). One of the other Synergy things that caught my eye was a Nashmau Earring, which presumably will teleport us to Nashmau. That's a big fucking win for Einherjar, I hate running there every Tuesday and Saturday, on foot, by boat and by coat are so inefficient (coat is great, but people always wait around for 20+ minutes gathering a party to warp, which means you may as well run your ass there), an instant warp that I can use at my leisure will be a godsend.
Other things that I was looking forward to were how we could obtain Water V and Stone V, what the hell Aisha: Ichi was all about, what new mobs were added in the CoP zones and what were Abyssea and the Walk of Echoes. Those last two got special one-sheets and both sounded as confounding as Synergy.
The Update Arrives!...Fuck.
So after HOURS of waiting on maintenance (during which time I cleaned my apartment, did four loads of laundry and watched a movie) we were finally able to get in game. One of the first things almost everyone was doing involved getting to level 76. This had very easy requirements, five Kindred's Seals and three Merit Points, most people had the first requirement, but many were (and probably still are) getting the second requirement. Three merit points isn't much, but it is 30k XP and not too many people were expecting merits as a requirement. I know many friends and reader's of this blog had been spending them in the preceding weeks as SE was mum on how merits would be dealt with. I fortunately got sick on Sunday so rather than close out my third merit (I had 2.6 merits) and upgrade Elemental Magic I turned the game off and went to bed. This left me with needing 4k on merits, 1k on NIN and 3k on BLM. On NIN it came easy, two campaigns and I had the 4k for my last merit (and for the record Campaign appears to be broken, in a good way, I didn't do much in those fights and got far more XP than I was expecting). BLM was a bit rougher, but both jobs are sitting at 76 now.
While working on BLM I got an invite from Sief to check out Abyssea. What can I say about this...it was damn fun, good soundtrack (I really liked the fight music) and the only bad thing about it I could find was the time constraints (who the fuck can say why SE added constraints, but it is what it is). The NQ mobs were fairly easy and even in a group of ten we were getting at least 80 XP a mob. No one was quite sure what we were doing, but one of our group noticed with each group of mobs there was a ???, upon clicking this it would tell you to trade an item to it. These items seemed to drop off the mobs around it, and amongst the Mandies (who aren't that big by the way) we popped our first NM. This little bastard was infinitely harder than the NQs around him (I don't recall his name atm), he spammed the shit out of enfeebles and all of them came together, paralyze, silence, blind, disease, and poison (maybe more, I was out of range most of the time). Nasty little shit, took us about 10 minutes to kill him, but our reward was 650 XP each and a Thew Bomblet (STR +2 and Attack +10 int he ammo slot for a few jobs). Abyssea looks like it will be loads of fun, it's a Dynamis like event and something Obsidian could very easily transition into doing one or twice a week. So I finished that up around 2AM and needed a little under 1k to level BLM, which I did in Campaign.
Some things that came to light while I was standing around waiting on campaigns made me a sad panda. The first was the cost of the new spells, Stone V 123k, Water V 135k (the WHM spells were just as bad). At that rate the V tier and IV -ga tier (assuming we get this) will cost an insane 2M or so, very disheartening. The other thing was SE did indeed nerf the shit out of the enmity spells, they are totally worthless now. For most things, at least for me, this won't matter much, but it's gonna hurt our Ultima tanking as we relied heavily on our RDMs to cover our PLDs in that fight. Also kinda makes my Fire Set useless as any dragon I fight will be a struggle to hold hate with voke and my NIN Enfeeble spells, not impossible, but it would be foolish to go into these fights without PLD tanks now.
For BLM, something that came to light was Aspir draining more MP than they previously had (I'd guess 25% more, give or take), which was a rejoice to many a mage, but sadly that is listed as a known issue by SE today and as such SE's "fix" will probably go too far the other way and they'll end up nerfing the the damn spell. Ah well, was nice while it lasted.
For NIN, SE did us a solid (while shitting on NINs for everything else) by adding a shadow counter. My only issue here is that it's kind of hard to see, not sure if it's because I'm color blind or if SE was being lazy and didn't add enough defining color tone to it. At any rate, it's a welcome addition, unlike our new spell. We found out what Aisha: Ichi was and it has every NIN in the game scratching their head, it's an Attack Down enfeeble. Since NIN's primary duty as a tank is to AVOID damage with our shadows I can't imagine a real need or want for this spell. Hopefully they add a Defense Down spell in one of the updates. And here's hoping they also finish out our motherfucking Ichi tier, I mean Dokumori: Ni and Jubaku: Ni have been in the dats and used by mobs for how fucking long now? And not to mention it's stupid to have Tonko: Ni, but not Monomi: Ni.
Overall, I have mixed feelings about this update, Abyseea was a lot of fun and I think I would have been able to deal with the most of the nonsense, but the nerf to RDM really hurts. It wasn't necessary and it changes a lot within the tanking community, instead of having multiple options for tanks, we basically have one and in my opinion, that is not the way to go. Time will tell, and there is hope on the horizon with Flash and Cure IV in our future, but the next three months are gonna be kinda rough...