Lore Train: Going Into The Maelstrom

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Hydaelyn is a planet rich with history. Some of it has been preserved and passed down through the ages as tales of legend, while some of its oldest secrets are still being discovered today.

With patch 2.2 we’ll see the primal Leviathan, be introduced to characters from the faraway lands of Othard, and gain access to areas previously sealed off to the world. There is knowledge that we already know of these creatures or locations and we’re going to delve into that information to make sure you know everything there is to know as we get ready to go Through the Maelstrom.

Leviathan

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Leviathan, the Lord of the Whirl and primal to the Sahagin beast tribe, was one of the first summoned to Eorzea in the year 1562 of the Sixth Astral Era, but Limsa Lominsa’s infamous band of mercenaries, the Company of Heroes, kept he and Titan at bay despite catastrophic losses to their ranks. After the Calamity, however, the Kobold and Sahagin tribes pushed back against the Maelstrom’s defenses and, like Titan, Leviathan has finally been summoned anew with strength enough to challenge the ever-growing Grand Companies of Eorzea. What will we learn about the beast tribe and their seemingly-tempered pirate loyalists, the Serpent Reavers? And will there be any mention of the last great sea serpent to be seen in Lominsan waters?

It is said that the patron deity of Limsa Lominsa, Llymlaen, the Navigator, goddess of wind and watcher of the seas, created a giant sea serpent known as Thalaos to flood the primordial dry and give way to life. To prevent the complete submersion of the world, this creature was bound to the island Swallowtail Roam with the warning that were it ever freed, the world would drown. It is this legend from which arose the Lominsan battle-cry, “Till Sea Swallows All.”

While first journeying to Limsa Lominsa, adventurers of Version 1.0 bore witness via the Echo to a large sea serpent that was at the time mistaken for Leviathan by many players. Further Echoes in this introductory story arc (which we assume also took place in 1562) revolved around the mysterious appearance of island, rumored to be the selfsame Swallowtail Roam. Had the Thalaos returned? And might we hear any mention of the “treasure” rumored to be stolen from the serpent’s protection after the island appeared?

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The Calamity unearthed an enormous serpentine skeleton in Upper La Noscea that now also bears the name of Thalaos. Could it be that the chapter of the great sea serpent was ended by the advent of Dalamud? Or was this simply another case of the mistaken identification of the natural as supernatural by those who hold mythology dear, as Eorzeans are won’t to do? Or, could this creature still be out there?

Yugiri and Othard

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Quite possibly one of the biggest reveals for Patch 2.2 is the introduction of the character Yugiri who hails from the city of Doma which is located on the eastern continent of Othard. She and her country-men have fled their war-torn home, currently under Garlean rule, in order to seek refuge. While there has been much speculation as to Yugiri’s race, the truth is that we don’t know. She could be of a rabbit-like race such as FFXII’s “Viera,” of some other race previously introduced in the Final Fantasy series, or possibly of a new race altogether. What we do know is not of Yugiri, herself, but of her home continent of Othard.

The patch preview implies that Doma is currently under Garlean rule, but we know that not every city in Othard had been conquered in the Garlean campaigns. As part of our research leading up the Rise and Fall of the White Raven, we learned that a few cities on far eastern shores held out against the Empire and Garlemald didn’t feel that they were enough of a threat to claim them. Will we learn how this plays into Doma’s fate? Or will we be given any more in-game item flavor text that drops subtle hints about the continent, as does the Tiger Cod and Dark Sleeper, which tell of tiger-inhabited jungles and Lalafellin princes?

The Amdapori civilization

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Players that have taken it upon themselves to restore the relic weapons of old may already have some familiarity of the Amdapori. Adventurers are tasked to travel to Amdapor Keep, ruins of a great fortress hidden by the elementals in order to prevent future generations from uncovering the ancient magicks which ultimately led to the downfall of the civilization. In Patch 2.2, however, we will be exploring the lost city itself. What do we know about Amdapor’s Fall?

The Fifth Umbral Era was that of ice, otherwise known as the Age of Endless Frost. Eorzean ancestors are credited with ending this era of hardship 3,000 years ago by discovering (or perhaps rediscovering) the art of magick as a means of surviving the cold and barren wastes. As the ice receded and the Fifth Astral Era flourished, magick was no longer necessary for survival, but there was no going back. The aetherial arts became the source of power, glory, and wealth. Nations prospered to untold heights as the development of new spells and magickal techniques became their central focus, but also their addiction of convenience and a vice of vanity.

The magickal arts originally had one major limitation: mages could only cast spells utilizing the aether within their own body. However, a talented and competitive magi fascinated by destructive spells, Shatotto, discovered a way to circumvent this limitation and draw aether from the land itself to power her spells, and thus was Black Magic born. Fearful that the practice was becoming unbalanced as the aetherial art of ruin swept Eorzea, the civilization of Amdapor developed new techniques for succor and brought about the rise of White Magic. With balance restored, the civilizations continued to flourish, but the growing contempt between nations eventually caused this peace to collapse, and the War of the Magi began.

Cities bought to bear the most powerful spells against one another. The magickal arts allowed even the hopelessly outnumbered city of Nym to hold their ground against invaders such as the Amdapori, though the nation eventually collapsed after the outbreak of a mysterious illness. The war yet raged on until the land was drained of its aether by destruction and succor alike. Legend states that this enraged the elementals, and that their collective fury was made manifest is the Elemental if Nihlity, Oha-sok, with whom the elementals wailed in anguish until the land was torn asunder and the skies rained until all was submerged, including Amdapor. This ushered in the Sixth Umbral Era nearly 1,600 years ago, and the ruins of Amdapor have been hidden by the elementals ever since, fearing that history would not repeat itself should the magicks be resurrected. But the wards of old have weakened…

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Soon, we’ll be able to further dive into the mysteries that surround this civilization’s downfall. We know that inside we will run into Wamouras and zombified Goobbues; rotting seedkin and enormous vilekin thrive in the ruins above, but new and terrifying voidsent lurk below. More importantly however, we will come face to face with Diabolos, a classic monster from the Final Fantasy series who is known for his drain spells and abilities that deal damage based on the target’s HP. In Final Fantasy XI, Diabolos created the dream world of Dynamis.

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It’s known that the Amdapori wielded powerful forbidden magicks which could alter the very fabric of existence and weaken the border between realms. Is it coincidence that Diabolos is found within the ruins of this ancient civilization? Or did he perhaps have a hand in its downfall?

The Illuminati 

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“The knowledge that the Illuminati posses rivals even that of the Sharlayans.”
-Swynbroes

The Illuminati are a group of Goblin Scholars presently dead set on recovering an arcane recipe stolen by the goblin entrepreneur, Brayflox, and they will reduce her home to rubble if that’s what it takes to keep their secrets. If the goblin lass were at a loss for how to deal with a dragon infestation of Brayflox’s Longstop, before, you can bet she’s going to need all the help she can get, now. But what do we know about the Illuminati?

We know that Master Mutamix was once a member of this group, but came to odds with their secretive ways. Seeing the degree to which the outside world could benefit from the knowledge of Materia melding, he forsook his place within their organization and fled to Thanalan to begin teaching adventurers his art. If the Illuminati were the ones to being about the advent of stonyshine (or, as we call it, materia), one can only wonder what the recipe in Brayflox’s hands could be and how it could shake the very foundations of Eorzea! Is it military? Industrial? Or is it simply for a great tasting goblin cheese that doesn’t smell like the chocobo dung-covered boot of a dapper zombie gentleman?

Halatali

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Beneath the mesa of Thanalan is a labyrinth of caverns that was originally a holy place for the first Lalafell to arrive in Eorzea. Over time, sections of it were transformed by the Pugilists’ Guild into a sprawling network of training pits, holding cells, and animal pens in an effort to accommodate the popularity of the Bloodsands. After the Calamity, Halatali was abandoned, and the creatures being held within were left to fend for themselves. Some survived and broke free of their cages, such as the Hydra, while others were not as fortunate. The tunnels became overrun with the escaped creatures and tormented spirits of those that perished.

Five years after the Calamity, adventurers were entreated to enter Halatali at their own risk to clear the caverns of danger and, should circumstance provide opportunity, plunder. Order has since been restored, but the training pits are more dangerous than ever. Will adventurers fare as well against challenges designed solely to test their mettle?

 

Gilgamesh

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What we know of Gilgamesh… isn’t actually from Final Fantasy XIV. Gilgamesh has appeared in multiple Final Fantasy titles over the years as a dimension hopping, self-proclaimed master swordsman and weapons collector who has been known to wield a variety of rare and powerful arms on his never-ending search for the legendary sword, Excalibur. While primarily a collector of swords, his trademark weapon is a naginata, or halberd, and it would appear that Gilgamesh has found one worthy of his skills whilst traveling Eorzea, as he wields non other than the Bradamante, the weapon of Nael van Darnus named for skilled warrior maiden slain by his own hand.

Gilgamesh has appeared as both friend and foe in his many franchise appearances and is often accompanied by his partner, Enkdiu, who has taken several forms while always retaining a green color. Many people have questioned the significance of the green chicken that accompanies Gilgamesh in previews of Patch 2.2, but there’s a good chance that this mystery chicken is none other than Enkidu.

Gilgamesh’s tendency to break the fourth wall will likely be a source of further hilarity when he comes face to face with everyone’s favorite inspector, as we know that Gilgamesh will be part of the Hildibrand questline. Adventurers will also be able to confront him in a battle accompanied by what many consider to be his theme song, “Battle on the Big Bridge”. Why players are fighting Gilgamesh? This has has yet to be seen, but current speculation is that it may have something to do with either relic weapon upgrades or vanity gear.