The Skye’s The Limit

A Final Fantasy XIV Travelogue

Today’s Grimoire Entry

Note: Today’s entry will contain spoilers!

Mon Grimoire Prefiere

Mon dieu, where do I begin? It has been so long, since I have had the time to tell of mes aventures. I have scarcely had a chance to breathe!

After le désastre with The Scions, which saw our little band of heroes destroyed by a surprise raid. One thing led to another, and I found myself leading a group of aventuriers into the Garleans’ Castrum Centri, only to face off against their most deadly weapon!

Even bringing down the Castrum Meridianum, though, didn’t bring an end to the excitement. From there, I have been traveling, from Thanalan to Coerthas to Mor Dhona, bringing justice where I can. Sometimes, this meant traveling to places long-forgotten like Tam-Tara Deepcroft and The Stone Vigil. Others, it meant that I would be aiding The Sylphs with Ramuh, or quelling Titan Leviathan atop the high seas.

Castrum Meridianum, in Final Fantasy XIV

But… those are not the aventures that meant the most to me. Non!

Those special memories came from a few dear friends, whom I had met… and disappeared from along the way.

One such group, I learned about in Thanalan, many moons ago. I met a Mi’qote girl named Nashu in the lichyard, standing before a grave for un homme named Hildibrand… Hildibrand Manderville. She called herself an Investigator, who was visiting a fallen friend. But duty waits for no detective, and I was enlisted as her assistant. She was very persuasive, and refused to take “Non” for an answer! We quickly rushed to Southern Thanalan to look into the case of suspiciously dapper zombies!

Traveling to the deserts, we laid eyes upon them. The undead, in petticoats and finery, posing… and doing nothing else! Talk about déroutant! Sending the zombies back to the grave saw a mysterious figure appear on the cliff above… a brilliant, muscular beast of a man who called himself… Zombibrand?

Zombibrand, er, Hildibrand Manderville in Final Fantasy XIV

It took some minutes to set in, but… that was no zombie. In fact, I knew this gentleman! This was Hildibrand! That Hildibrand! We had crossed paths years before, before la calamité! At the time, I was but a young woman, still not ready for the road… but I admired his attempts to save Eorzea from Dalamud. And I laughed at his silliness and inability to read the room, even at the most inappropriate of times. He had hoped to save Eorzea from Dalamud in some way, which I was not privy to. His efforts had failed, though, and he was thought to be gone forever.

But here he was! Posing like the goofball he always was!

But something was… different. He seemed to have lost his memories in the meantime… but… apparently, Nashu had the solution to the problem. It involved bombs.

Nashu Mhakaraka poses with two bombs in Final Fantasy XIV

I won’t go into the details, but a few explosions later, Hildibrand was back, and ready to investigate his next case. And investigate, he did.

Somehow, I found myself a part of these lovably quirky crime stoppers, solving the mysteries of stolen artifacts, phantom thieves, and one particularly handsy octopus  that felt like they were pulled from the pages of a comic book! HIldibrand and Nashu were stalwart allies in all of it, their bumbling actions proving to be both adorable and funny, as we somehow began to pull in more friends with each case. Inspector Briarden, Ellie from the Mythril Eye newspaper, some giant homme named Greg, and even Monsieur Manderville, himself!

Skye Grandeterre, a Duskwight Elezen, poses with Hildibrand Manderville and company in Final Fantasy XIV

Alors, it was not meant to last. Before I knew it, our final case in Eorzea had been solved; Its ending was satisfying, and Monsieur Hildibrand was blasting off to new cases in far-off lands… literally!

I miss them dearly, but I know that we shall cross paths once again.

I found another group of friends shortly afterwards in Mor Dhona, in the glimmering crystal fields not far from Revenant’s Toll. There, I found the Church of Saint Coinach, as well as monsieur Cid! They had discovered the entryway to a massive crystal tower, though it was heavily guarded by ancient Allagan technology. But first, they needed Aethersand and crystals… I traveled the world, scouring the strongholds of the beast people, from the Sahagins to the Ixal, to find the purest of elemental crystals, and the finest of aethersand.

Skye Grandeterre, a Duskwight Elezen, poses the Scions in the Rising Stones in Final Fantasy XIV

Along the way, I old amies, like Biggs and Wedge, helped and joined our cause… but none can stand up to one plucky observer who had been watching my hunt for reagents. G’raha Tia was a brash, charming Mi’quote, whose knowledge of ancient Allag was second to none. He was there from the moment we began our foray into the great tower, to its very conclusion… and what a journey it was.

The Labyrinth of the Ancients and the Syrcus Tower were marveilleux monuments to what the Allagans were capable of, but far too big to explore alone. Instead, it was a team of us… twenty-four, to be exact, who paved the way, destroying les horreurs that lived within. Massive monstres, from the brutal Amon, to the king of Behemoths, himself, stood to stop us. At the top waited the first king of Allag, Xande, alive and thirsting for power. Upon his demise, though, a rift in the universe opened, as a booming voice echoed forth. “The pact made with Allag shall not be broken,” she bellowed, “the portal shall open and chaos shall spill forth upon the world!”

G'raha Tia stands in the Syrcus Tower in Final Fantasy XIV

We had no choice… we had to save the world. Er… again. Our band of aventuriers ventured into the vortex, to the World of Darkness, where the great Cloud of Darkness awaited to destroy us. She fought valiantly, bringing the raw force of death and chaos upon us. The battle lasted for what felt like years, as blows were traded and spells threatened to tear the world we stood in asunder. By the end, she screamed in agony as she dissipated into nothingness. She was not ready to fade away quietly. As the portal to our world began to close, we rushed forth, barely making it back.

The celebrations did not last long, though. G’raha Tia knew that the Syrcus Tower would need to be sealed, to prevent another calamity from approaching the world. He staked off alone, but we were able to catch him as the doors began to close. With a teary farewell, we said our goodbyes, as the doors to Syrcus Tower closed once more. I miss him dearly, and I hope that the fates allow us to cross paths once more, one day.

Since then, I have been keeping a low profile, taking on the occasional job for the Scions, while honing my craft as a Weaver, and slowly rising to become the official Artisan of the Gillionway Trading Company. It’s a more quiet life, but one that is welcome after traveling a dangerous world for so long.

Skye Grandeterre, a Duskwight Elezen, poses at the Gillionway Trade Company's house in Final Fantasy XIV

I will resume my travels one day soon… but for the moment, I have taken some time to enjoy the smaller things.


Today’s Blog Post

Apologies for not updating this space for a while! Things have been… complicated as of late, and I’ve been spending more time playing Final Fantasy XIV, and making Skye’s adventures than I have been writing about them. It’s been a form of therapy for me, helping me to just… calm down and slow down a bit.

That said, it’s also been a very, very busy time for in-game happenings! I’ve cleared the main scenario for the base A Realm Reborn, which has put me square in the middle of what many have called “Patch Quest Hell.” This is a cute term to describe the series of quests that were released in patches from December 2013 through May 2015. This period saw one hundred quests, which would create a bridge from the aftermath of the main game to the events of Heavensward. It’s often treated with a well-earned disdain from a lot of fans, due to the sheer amount of running around and straight-up inanity that takes place in a lot of quests, along with a general lack of urgency overall.

To be honest, I didn’t mind this section! I should note that several of the quests do feel like a waste at points – when you have a requirement that states “sniff the chocobo”, you know you’re in a bad place. Still, the lore is well written, and the new Primal fights are among the best up to that point.

That’s to say nothing of the side quests, like the always delightful Manderville adventures, the adrenaline-fueled Syrcus Tower raid, and the mysterious Coils of Bahamut.

Basically, the patch quests take their well deserved lumps, but there’s still plenty to adore, as this period basically laid the groundwork for a lot of features that have since become beloved mainstays within the game.

While I’m glad this period is coming to an and, I still have a few fond memories that will linger for some time to come. Thankfully, with the coming of Patch 5.3, it appears that the team will be truncating this section a bit, which should hopefully make the whole experience less… taxing, I should say? Maybe not send players to Coerthas for tea leaves?

But anyway! Until next time, Ciao!

Skye Grandeterre is a Duskwight Elezen character played by Samantha Ferreira. She currently resides on the Zalera server on the Crystal Data Center.

Previous installments of this column can be found via its main hub.

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