The thing I did here that I regret is that I had marathon sessions through, rather than taking more time to better absorb all the amazing the MSQ actually delivers. This is entirely due to the absolutely stupid queue lengths near peak times. Logging on at 10am means instant queues. Logging on in the evening is a 4hr queue. (Side note, this means that our guild is pretty much meaningless right now.)
I don’t plan on any spoilers here, though I suppose there may be a slip up here and there. I played through as a White Mage.
I mentioned this in my prior FF14 post, in that Endwalker is simply more FF14. You will get dungeons at the required levels, you will get trials at the required levels. You’ll have 6 zones to explore. You get “free” gear at 89, and piles of non-jewelry while leveling. The are maybe a dozen combat quests all the way through, though there are some solo duties to get through. Mechanically, there are no surprises here, which is frigging amazing.
I’ve yet to poke around with the Sage or Reaper. I don’t know how popular they are going to be long term; I certainly do see a bunch of reapers in my group content. None of my trials ever had a Sage, though as a healer that’s not really indicative. I will say that there is a substantial amount of content that requires massive healing output, which really plays to the WHM strengths. Also, Warriors are apparently immortal now. The fights do not necessarily add crazy new mechanics, but do require much more visual awareness of the boss rather than simply avoiding the fire. Most bosses have multiple tells that allow you to avoid major damage, some effects which will stack and probably cause wipes.
The art and music are the best FF has ever been. I don’t know what type of drugs they give the art team, but each environment is distinct and feels meaningful. The last 2 zones in particular are just spectacular to see.
The story… well you’ve read more than enough on it from multiple sources. I enjoyed it thoroughly, for multiple reasons. It’s a rare event where a story is able to both open and close threads that were spun nearly a decade ago. And the big bad here follows in the themes of Final Fantasy through and through. This is clearly a capstone story, as the end of the last zone until the credits is just chocked full of call backs and closure. I’m sure I’ll have some things to nit pick eventually but for now it’s about absorbing what was there. I don’t think it’s possible to enjoy this story without having played at least Shadowbringers, which is a hell of a time investment for anyone coming into FF14 cold.
I guess the real question here is “was it fun?” Without reservation. And technically, I’ve just dipped my toe in the ocean of content that’s here. Best of luck with those queues.