The Bozjan Southern Front is an ambitious large-scale encounter that will be implemented in Final Fantasy XIV’s next update, Patch 5.35.
It is a large 72-player instance somewhat similar to The Forbidden Land, Eureka. In this zone, players will work together with the Bozjan Resistance and join them in their fight against the Garlean Empire’s IVth Imperial Legion.
Players will need to be a level 71 Disciple of War or Magic in order to participate in this instance. As there will be no deep dungeons like The Palace of the Dead or Heaven-on-High for Shadowbringers, the Bozjan Southern Front will be an excellent way for players to level combat classes from level 71 onward.
Participation in the Southern Front will mostly center around battles and skirmishes against the IVth Legion. Two types of events will make up the bulk of what players can expect to do in the Southern Front: Skirmishes and Critical Encounters. These battles are scaled to be as difficult as dungeon or raid bosses, and layers will earn “mettle” for participating in them. Mettle seems to work like Grand Company seals and can be exchanged for items or turned in to raise players’ Resistance rank. The Bozjan Resistance’s front line will slowly advance as players’ Resistance ranks rise.
Once the front line has advanced sufficiently, the Bozjan Resistance will storm Castrum Lacus Litore. Although director Naoki Yoshida has implied that Critical Encounters will only begin after special conditions are fulfilled, it’s unknown whether Skirmishes will require similar conditions or if they will spawn semi-randomly, like FATEs. Furthermore, there is no way of obtaining mettle outside of Skirmishes and Critical Encounters. While anyone can join a Skirmish, Critical Engagements are more selective.
Players in a Southern Front instance will receive a pop-up notification similar to the Duty Finder when a Critical Encounter is about to begin. They will then need to request deployment and wait for the event to begin. Only 24 to 28 players can engage in a Critical Encounter, so participation is first-come, first-serve.
If there are more requests than there is availability, participants will instead be randomly selected. However, players can gain priority by contributing to initiating a Critical Encounter, or by purchasing and using items to boost their priority. Additionally, players may be pulled into a one-on-one follow up encounter after a Critical Encounter. Playing well during the Encounter will lead to better chances of being selected for a one-on-one.
The one-on-one battles will be similar to solo Duties, but more difficult—a terrifying prospect. Even healers will have a chance of being chosen. The Bozjan Southern Front will have special actions that players will need to utilize effectively during these one-on-ones in order to survive.
The Southern Front will also provide materials that players will need to upgrade their Resistance Weapons. However, as those materials can also be acquired outside of the Front, participation isn’t necessary.
Next: 5 Things We Wish We Knew Before Starting Final Fantasy: XIV
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