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Final Fantasy XI: Chains of Promathia Media Tour
Final Fantasy XI: Chains of Promathia Media Tour
by Robert Bogdanowicz - 01/22/05
The Darker Side of Vana'diel Tour Gallery


The Darker Side of Vana'diel
A Lesson Learned
Square-Enix wasted no time in demonstrating the sheer power of some of the new bosses in Chains of Promathia. After some initial bumps and a brief overview, we were thrust into a chilling “Burning Circle” battle with none other than fabled Final Fantasy monster Diabolos. Purists will be happy to see that he has been faithfully re-created almost exactly as designed for FFVIII; what they won’t be happy about is his wrath. Diabolos is a master of dreams, and throughout the tough contest we were put asleep while Diabolos continued to pummel us with his magic and brute force. After suffering some heavy losses, we escaped from the dream-master’s world and were brought to yet again do battle…
 
A Dragon's Wrath
We were whisked from the dark, gothic dream world of Diabolos to a much more unassuming location: surrounding us was rock and moss, and silence filled the air. No sooner could I catch my breath until a cut-scene began and we were introduced to several new characters – which seemed to be in quite a rush. This particular samurai rushed out into the open fields of our unknown location to greet the mightiest dragon of them all, Bahamut! After a brief interchange, we were once again thrust into battle against the formidable Earth Dragon! Much like our experience with Diabolos, we were greeted with heavy casualties and a long, fierce battle. After it was all over (and I lay dead on the ground), we were once again sent to experience another of Promathia’s new locales.
 
Hello, Huge Notorious Monster
Thinking the battling was over for now, we all stopped to rest in our new location: the dusty, sandy cliffs of Attohwa Chasm. Our first hint that something big was about to happen was the apparent transformation our characters had all undergone – previously we were outfitted with L40 characters and equipment (corresponding with the level cap for many of the Promathia missions) but now we were all L60 in full artifact armor. Of course, Square pulled no stops and introduced us head-on to Tiamat, cousin of Bahamut. These kinds of notorious monsters usually take full alliances of the highest levels to defeat – and even then, the battle can last hours! Of course, Tiamat made quick work of our motley crew of twelve. Death was indeed abundant.
 
Tropical Paradise
Perhaps the Square-Enix tour guides could sense our depression after such a crushing defeat – so what better way to cheer us up than teleport us to a tropical island? Bibiki Bay remains one of the most popular zones in Promathia simply because it is available upon installation; players need not complete certain missions to gain access. It also features some of the lushest graphics in the game; beautifully rendered palm trees tower next to the patches of thick, green grass that is dispersed throughout the sandy beach. The dark rock crags hide various plant life and vermin; thankfully we were still sporting our shiny artifact armor so nothing bothered us during our stay. After taking in some breathtaking scenery, it was time again to do battle. Hopefully we’d make a better showing than we did with Tiamat!
 
The Plot Thickens
Once again we were treated to an intense cut-scene and thrust into battle with three Mithra assailants. Thinking this would be easier than the previous battles (we were quite confident after fighting three different dragons) we hurried to engage our foes. One by one, these “Trackers” cut us down with their incredible weapon skills. I staggered – cut down in less than a minute by a cat! This battle was certainly nothing to scoff at!
 
Conclusion
At the close of our tour, Square-Enix brought us to San d’Oria for a quick treat – the dazzling holiday display that is featured in every main city of Vana’diel! After admiring the wonderful array of lights, we were then given our very own “Dream hats”, which resembled a very familiar hat of a certain someone! These were introduced last week in-game to the applause of players across the servers.

Chains of Promathia offers more than new items and zones for players to explore – it adds a whole new epic saga to the world of Vana’diel, and players who have completed the original missions or even the Zilart will find a great many challenges within. My advice? Don’t bother Tiamat.



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©2001-2005 SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.
Title Design by Yoshitaka Amano.
FINAL FANTASY and Vana'diel are registered trademarks of Square Enix Co., Ltd.




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