Don’t be fooled by the title above – I’m still not anywhere near close to being done with all the job quests for Stormblood. No, what this post is referencing is the fact that come Shadowbringers, job quests as we’ve known them will become a thing of the past.
I’m a bit torn on how I feel about this…
Job Quests of the Past
When ARR launched, each job got a quest every 5 levels. These quests served several purposes – to introduce the player to the lore of the world, to understand their job’s place in this lore, to earn sparkly new skills, and eventually, to earn the first set of artifact gear. I remember looking forward to hitting 45, and then 50, just to be able to unlock these quests and get my gear.
In Heavensward, we saw job quests every 2 levels. These quests further expanded on understanding your job’s lore, or sometimes introduced key NPCs and side story lines. They also gave important skills that you really needed for your rotation.
In Stormblood, we started to see the idea of job quests diminish. Unlike HW, where we got quests every 2 levels, jobs only got 5 quests in total. The quests no longer gave out important skills along the way — only the final level 70 quest had anything of note, giving both a skill and a coffer of artifact gear.
That didn’t mean the quality of the stories lessened in any way. I feel that the writing was still just as consistent even if the rewards were not. But not rewarding skills led me to skip the quests completely while leveling, since I could just spam my way through Alliance Roulette, which always capped at level 60 at the most.
I’m not sure if the team just noticed that players didn’t do their job quests as much in HW, which meant they were missing important skills they need to get things done. So, instead, they just handed out the skills while leveling to make sure everyone had what they needed while leveling.
That’s just a guess.
Job Quests in Shadowbringers
That brings us to the place we’re in now – Shadowbringers has done away with job quests while leveling from 70-80, aside from the final level 80 job quest. Instead, we’re getting a series of role quests.
It seems that a lot of things in FFXIV are shifting away from the job mindset to the role mindset. We saw this with Dancer, which became a physical ranged DPS rather than a healer because the team identified that role had a lack of jobs to choose from compared to other roles.
These role quests will allow you to better understand the story of the Warrior of Darkness and his companions from the First that we met earlier in the MSQ. While you can run all of the quests, you’re only required to run one set to complete the MSQ.
On one hand, being a story-oriented player, I’m a little sad to see job quests vanish. I’m glad that we’re getting something to take its place, however, rather than just completely remove the concept.
On the other hand, even I’m guilty of not having finished the job quests from Stormblood. So, even if I do enjoy them when I do them, they’ve languished on my goals list for a very long time.
There are just so many jobs now with so many quests – especially if you start adding up all the crafting and gathering. It gets a little overwhelming to keep up with if you fall behind in any way!
Keeping that in mind, I can only imagine the man hours and time that goes into writing and scripting and implementing job quests for every single job in the game – and then seeing new jobs being added each expansion as we have. From a development standpoint, I wonder if job quests became something that just wasn’t feasible to maintain as the number of jobs continue to rise.
This makes sense, then, that the team save the time spent on individual job quests and tell the more important and focused story through role quests. Sure, we’ll lose out on individual stories like the Dark Knight level 50 quest… or maybe a more focused approach will actually increase the quality of the quests we do get.
I’m quite curious about what they’re going to do with leveling crafters and gatherers now, too. I wonder if maybe the leve quest system has also been reconsidered – I’m kinda hoping so. Grinding leves for crafting was never my idea of a good time.