Tuesday, October 25, 2016

FFXIV's Haunted House

As part of the All Saint's Wake (Halloween) event this year, FFXIV added an interesting small piece of content: a haunted house.

It's essentially a non-combat dungeon for four people join of any class or level. (Well, I think you need to be level 15 to participate in the event.) SE reused one of the spookier dungeons, Haukke Manor. But instead of the normal mobs, they have patrolling monsters. You have to sneak behind them. The party has a combined sanity meter. If a patrol spots you, they turn you into a pumpkin and reduce the group's sanity by a bit.

The group has to complete 3 challenges before time runs out (30 minutes) or they lose all their sanity. The challenges are random, and selected from a pool. They are fairly simple, and mostly an excuse to send the players searching around the manor. One challenge is that four rooms in the manor have magical circles, and each player has to stand in a circle. Another challenge requires you to collect 15 cookies from the different rooms. A third challenge has chests in all the rooms, with most chests trapped. But there are clues which point you to the correct room, and the party has to work together to call out clues and cover the floors.

It's a relatively simple piece of content, but it's fun. It's a nice change of pace from a combat dungeon. It's also an interesting feature to have the group split up to cover different areas of the manor. Reusing Haukke Manor is clever, as it's a nice callback to a "spooky" dungeon, and very thematically appropriate.

The only loot is the event currency, and if you run the haunted house three times, you'll get enough to buy all the new items. The pacing of the dungeon is also very well done. Ten minutes per challenge, and 100 sanity is enough to make the end a bit tense, especially with new people, but isn't excessively challenging. Though one of my runs finished with 6/100 sanity, and that was a little nerve-racking.

All in all, I think the Haunted House in FFXIV is an excellent and innovative piece of content. I think the community reaction has been quite positive as well. It will be interesting to see in what direction the dev team takes these ideas.

No comments:

Post a Comment