Alphinaud stands on the bridge of a ship

Image: Square Enix

This week will mark the Early Access release of Dawntrail, Final Fantasy XIV’s latest expansion, which means that those who pre-ordered it will be diving into the new tropical location of Tural. Everyone else will have to wait till July 2, but even they have things to look forward to this week thanks to the massive 7.0 patch. Square Enix just released the preliminary patch notes and the headlining feature is the long-running MMO’s first major graphical update, but quality-of-life fixes like a change to obnoxious stealth missions make this a treasure trove of welcome tweaks to the game.

Patch 7.0 will go live on June 28 at around 2 a.m. PDT, but you’ll be able to download it ahead of time sometime on June 26 or June 27 depending on your platform (check our full guide here). Of course for owners of the new expansion, the inclusion of Dawntrail’s new quests, jobs, and continent is the big draw, but this massive patch brings a lot of new features for all players. The standout is the graphical update to the game, which has been a long time coming for the decade-old MMO. While character models and certain weapons, gear, and environments will get the update, you might not see drastic changes across all of Eorzea. That’s because the graphical update will apply to Dawntrail content first, with other parts of the game getting texture upgrades later down the line. So you might not see prettier trees while running old content but your Viera will look much better.

On the topic of looking good, you will now be able to dye gear with two colors! There are also new hairstyles to play with in the graphical update. And if you’re thinking you might want to change up your character’s look in more significant ways at some point, don’t miss out on the new quest “Bottled Fantasy” in Uldah that is being added with 7.0. This will be available to all players who have finished the “The Scions of the Seventh Dawn” main quest from A Realm Reborn and grant a free Fantasia, which can be used to change your race at any time. If you want to try out playing as a female Hrothgar, pick this quest up ASAP.

Square Enix

A small quality-of-life change for players still completing Endwalker is a reduction in the number of Aether Currents in that expansion’s maps, which you previously needed to find all 10 of in a given area before you could fly there. We don’t know the new number but anybody who has met the new requirement will immediately unlock the ability to fly in each area. And for those exploring Dawntrail (now or when the full release drops), an absolutely incredible new setting will let you hide nearby players when close to quest-related NPCs. That means no more trying to click through hordes of players crowding that one guy you need to click to move forward.

Finally, Square Enix has implemented a change to the annoying stealth missions expansions tend to have. These are missions that require you to follow an NPC and stay out of sight as well as a certain distance away from them. The distance and sight line are not indicated in any real way, which led to players constantly having to start these frustrating missions over. Patch 7.0 changes this by adding indicators for sight line and distance.

There are a lot more small bug fixes and tweaks to the many systems of Final Fantasy XIV in patch 7.0. If you want to go through them all you can read the full patch notes here.


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