Joining our Community to Celebrate All Things Dragon Age!

We are blown away that all of you celebrate Dragon Age Day every year and appreciate everyone that does. Dragon Age Day launched unofficially by fans, for fans, in the Fall of 2018 by Teresa “ImaSithDuh” M, with a small team of founders also including Angela Mitchell, Savvy B., and Alistair SM James, as well as former participants Ghil Dirthalen and Andrastini. We really appreciate the team behind Dragon Age Day for bringing us all together while supporting inclusivity and accessibility with a contribution to Able Gamers charity in the process! 

This day belongs to you, our awesome community. In that spirit, we want to celebrate with you as fellow fans while spotlighting your unique and imaginative contributions to a world we all love. All-day we’ll be showcasing your amazing original creations on social, dropping new Dragon Age™ merch on Dark Horse Direct, Gaming Heads, and the BioWare Gear Store, as well as giving away plenty of gift cards. Tag your posts on Twitter using #BioWareGiveaway for a chance to win. Apex Legends™ has also gotten in on the fun with a Dragon Age themed Highland Ravager Weapon Charm available to EA Play members to claim anytime between December 2, 2021, and January 4, 2022. 

Additionally, the Dragon Age Day team will be hosting events including charity rewards on sale from Dragon Age fan artists, 24+ hours of Twitch Livestreams all day today, writing, art & meme prompts and challenges, and videos spotlighting personal insights from the Dragon Age fan community (this year’s question: “Who is your favorite Dragon Age Companion/Character, and Why?). You can also view the full list of activities here.

We are continuously amazed by the passionate, diverse, inspiring, and creative community that has come together to join us in the land of Thedas. We are humbled by the ways in which you have expanded and celebrated the world of Dragon Age. From captivating fan fiction, beautiful character art, and cutting-edge cosplay to themed weddings, birthdays, tattoos, and even baby names, the world of Thedas has extended beyond the games and is now its own living breathing place embodied by all of you. We can not thank you all enough for your continued support and love for the franchise. It is what inspires us each and every day to continue to build new worlds, characters, and stories for you to explore. 

Speaking of building new worlds and stories for you to explore, we want to let you all know that we’re still hard at work on building the next single-player-focused experience for Dragon Age. We’re excited for next year when we can talk more about what we’re working on. Until then, we’ll leave you with two new short stories from the world of Dragon Age!

-The Dragon Age Team

*CONDITIONS, LIMITATIONS AND EXCLUSIONS APPLY. SEE https://tos.ea.com/legalapp/eaplay/US/en/PC/ FOR DETAILS.

This Week At Bungie – 12/02/2021

GAME2GIVE 2021

Posed and Ready for Endwalker

Greetings, everyone! This is Zhexos from the Community team!

Have you been keeping up with the Endwalker countdown illustrations?
Seeing those wonderful illustrations really hits home that the expansion is near!

With the help of the Screenshot Alliance, everyone in the QA team, and the Community team, I'd like to share a number of updates that will be added to the Group Pose feature!

▼ New frames and stickers will be added.

JP20211130_s_01.jpg

Here's a brief rundown of what'll be added!
- A new frame featuring musical staves
- Job icons for sage and reaper
- Washi tape styled after Kugane/Doma/Crystarium/Eulmore/Bozja
- All sorts of adorable stickers, including minion-themed doodles

It'll be great to have all these new additions since we're all going to be taking so many screenshots during Endwalker!

▼ Group Pose will be available during Performance mode.

JP20211130_s_02.jpg

Using Group Pose while Performance mode is enabled was not originally planned for, so after numerous investigations and thorough checking, it'll be here as an official feature starting Patch 6.0!

Not to mention it'll remember and replay the last Performance action you used! Amazing!

JP20211130_s_03.jpg

Even if you find Performance mode a bit intimidating, you can take wonderful screenshots that make you seem like Eorzea's next big musician!

▼ NPCs that accompany you in certain quests introduced with Patch 6.0 can be set as targets.

JP20211130_s_04.jpg

We announced this feature in the latest Letter from the Producer LIVE.
Just think of all the screenshots you could take!

It'd be a shame to go through the main scenario without knowing you can use Group Pose during these sequences, so be sure to tell your friends!

▼ Actions exclusive to transformation and role-playing sequences will be replayable.

It'd be quicker to just see what I mean, so take a look at the following!

JP20211130_s_05.gif

JP20211130_s_06.gif

JP20211130_s_07.gif

That's right, you can now take screenshots of your favourite characters in their best moments! Adding this feature during a new expansion release is just such impeccable timing!

And that concludes the sneak peek!

Group Pose is a wonderful feature that makes it easier to take the screenshots you've always wanted! I hope you'll make the best of it during Endwalker's release, as you capture your moments of triumph and memories with fellow Warriors of Light.

To wrap things up, here's a screenshot we took while playing around with the updates described in this sneak peek!

JP20211130_s_08.jpg

See you all in game!

Zhexos
- Community team

This Week At Bungie – 11/24/2021

Legacy of the Sith Story Livestream Recap

Our Legacy of the Sith Story Livestream was jam-packed with information! If you were unable to watch–or if you want a recap of everything we showed–we have you covered! Read on for a breakdown of what we showed, including links to everything so you can watch what you missed.

Our Livestream pre-show started with a pre-recorded interview of Enuka Okuma, the voice of Tau Idair, hosted by Charles Boyd and Eric Musco!

To celebrate the upcoming launch of the new SWTOR expansion, Legacy of the Sith, use the code LotsofTau on this page to get your own Tau Idair Stronghold decoration. Don’t wait too long, as this code can only be used for a limited time.

The Livestream, hosted by Community Manager Jackie Ko and Creative Director Charles Boyd, started with more insight into the new expansion’s story, including a presentation of the new locations you will explore. From the underwater facilities of Manaan to the ruined Sith fortress on Elom to the R-4 Anomaly (coming early 2022). We also learned more about returning characters and some new ones who will team up with you in your fight.

We are happy to reveal the official key art for Star Wars: The Old Republic: Legacy of the Sith.

We closed the Story Livestream with a guest appearance from Keith Kanneg, our Lead Producer, to introduce one last surprise!

Game Update 7.0, “Legacy of the Sith,” launches free to all subscribers on December 14th, 2021! Keep an eye on our social platforms and website for more Legacy of the Sith updates at www.swtor.com/LegacyoftheSith.

This Week At Bungie – 11/18/2021

Lyrical Journey: Endwalker

Hello everyone, this is Voltenyne from the Community team!

Over the past few weeks, we revisited the lyrics for the theme songs of each expansion as we prepare ourselves for Endwalker. In this final blog of our lyrical journey, we present to you the lyrics of "Endwalker - Footfalls!"

To clarify, there are two versions of "Endwalker."
"Endwalker" is the version of the song that focuses on the new melody composed for Endwalker. "Endwalker - Footfalls" is the full version of the song that was used in the full trailer.

Both versions of the main theme will be made available on Wednesday, November 17 as a 7-inch vinyl single (along with a download code for the MP3 version) so be sure to check it out!

Before we move on, here's a comment from Lead Story Designer Natsuko Ishikawa, who proposed the original lyrics!


******

As hinted by the inclusion of "Footfalls" in the title, this song traces our steps and is a key in gaining a better understanding of the tracks in Endwalker. Combine its melody with the various tracks you'll hear throughout your adventures, and perhaps you'll discover the true form of each song.

I hope your journey to uncover the truth will be an enjoyable one till the very end.

Natsuko Ishikawa, Lead Story Designer


******

FINAL FANTASY XIV: ENDWALKER Full Trailer

Endwalker - Footfalls

Heart of ember, autumntide
Cooling swiftly, bleeding light
Smold'ring softly, biding time
Marching forward, left behind

Fire as shadows clash
Forgotten footfalls engraved in ash
Fire will be repaid
'Fore our echoes begin to fade

Fade away... Fade away...

Heart of ember, autumntide
Burning brightly, hot and white
Kindred severed neverwhere
Sorrow's silence, we needn't bear

Stories sown along the way
Tales of loss and fire and faith

Dys an sohm in [Our slumber disturbed]
Rohs an kyn ala na [All my brothers wake]
Mah morn [Death comes]
Dys an sohm in [Our slumber disturbed]
Sahl djahs afah an [Vengeance will be ours]

Storm of blood, born from blood, of our fallen brothers
Thunder stilled, oaths fulfilled, now we yearn for freedom

Born in blood (still we forge ahead), stained in red (unto tomorrow)
Bound by love (so we forge ahead), purpose fed (unto tomorrow, bring us tomorrow)
Courage thrives (ever forge ahead), hand in hand (unto tomorrow, welcome tomorrow)
Souls aligned (that we forge ahead), forge ahead (yeah, we forge ahead, yeah, we forge ahead)
Forward

Our song of hope, she dances on the wind higher, oh higher
E'er our vows endure, and remain forever strong
Standing tall in the dark do we carry on

On wings of hope, you rise up through the night higher, oh higher
Carrying our song, cradled fast within your arms
That its chorus might ring for all

One brings shadow, one brings light
Two-toned echoes tumbling through time
Tumbling down to the never

Every step we take
Echoes in our wake
Winding 'round our fate
To forge ahead

Should we lose our way
Tire of all this pain
We won't be afraid
To forge ahead

Fearless hearts ablaze
(When the world comes crumbling down)
No more time to waste
(Know I'll be there)
No, it's not too late
(Though our fleeting moment has gone)
To forge ahead
(You're not--you're not alone YEAH)

As we ride again
(As you turn your eyes to the stars)
To another end
(Oh, I'll be there)
Where it all begins
(With my chorus guiding you)
Forge ahead
(Forge ahead)

******

Thanks for joining me for this final step in our lyrical journey!
If you missed our journeys from previous weeks, be sure to check them out below!
A Realm Reborn
Heavensward
Stormblood
Shadowbringers

Now we're fully prepared to experience Endwalker!
See you on the moon!

Voltenyne
- Community team

This Week At Bungie – 11/11/2021

Human After All

In this post, I want to briefly discuss my own personal journey of building my confidence as an engineer and as an undergrad student who had the privilege to intern at Bungie this past summer.

Destiny 2 Hotfix 3.3.1.3

Happy N7 Day 2021!

Join us as we celebrate all things Mass Effect

It’s been nearly fourteen years since Commander Shepard first boarded the Normandy. Fourteen years since the opening of a huge new universe for players to explore. Fourteen years since “Ashley or Kaidan?” (But if you ask longtime BioWare vets Mac Walters and Mike Gamble, they choose neither, opting instead for Garrus and Liara respectively. Can you blame them?)

Fourteen years can seem like ages, but it can also seem like barely the blink of an eye. That’s one of the reasons we celebrate N7 Day: to pause and take stock; to take a moment to appreciate all things Mass Effect. And there’s a lot to appreciate! So this year, we’d like to invite you to join us on a Mako ride down memory lane as we look at Mass Effect’s past and present, celebrate the wonderful community that makes it so special (that’s you!), and invite you to join us in the celebration with some special N7 Day surprises below.

A DAY FOR LOOKING BACK

The thing about Mass Effect is that it can be a different game for different people. So much of the series is about the personal decisions each player makes, and how that affects the events that happen later. That is, of course, by design — because that’s what we love about RPGs ourselves! 

Take Mac for example, who’s worked on the whole series and was most recently the Project Director for Mass Effect Legendary Edition. “It’s about freedom to choose,” he says. “My character. My story. My playstyle. And, naturally, dealing with all the consequences from those choices.”

And Mike, who’s been on the franchise for over a decade and is now Project Director for the next Mass Effect game, feels similarly…though he’s more about that #renegade life. “What I love most about RPGs,” he says, “is to be as morally abhorrent as possible. I want to see how the game reacts to that!”

That focus on personal choice and branching narrative has been a touchstone of the series since the beginning. Well, OK, maybe not the very beginning. In the earliest days of production, Mac says, “there was just the barest idea of what it would be. We knew we wanted a grand space opera with inspiration from ‘80s dystopian sci-fi films. The rest was a blank slate.”

But the key elements of player choice and character development quickly became a crucial part of the game — and then of three more games, loads of expansions, and a huge remaster, over fourteen exciting years. From the first game’s debut in 2007 through to the release of Mass Effect: Andromeda 10 years later, we’ve watched the Mass Effect universe grow from games into novels, comics, statues — even board games. And just this year we returned to the Normandy for a refreshed version of the original trilogy, in the form of Mass Effect Legendary Edition. With massively updated graphics, key control adjustments, important changes to game balance, and a ton of other improvements, the Legendary Edition brought the original trilogy to a whole new generation of players. And the response has been amazing! We’ve been so happy to hear how much these revitalized editions have meant to you, from first-time players to returning veterans.  

A DAY FOR LOOKING AROUND

On N7 Day, we celebrate all things Mass Effect — and most importantly, we celebrate you, the fans. This universe wouldn’t be much without you to explore it. You’ve shared with us your love for the series through art, fan fiction, cosplay, and countless other gestures of appreciation that make us feel so grateful, in turn, to have you as fans. So as a token of thanks, we’ll be sharing some of your creations and your celebrations today and in the coming days.

On top of that, we’ve got some other fun stuff lined up for you today. Like…

  • Steam Stickers! If you’re a Steam user, you may have already noticed the brand-new Mass Effect Stickers available in the Steam store.
  • Sales! You’ll also find Mass Effect Legendary Edition on sale for a special N7 Day price on Steam, Origin, and the Microsoft Store — but only for a limited time, so get on it.*  
  • Cosplay! Not only do we have brand-new cosplay guides to help you craft the perfect costume, we also enlisted renowned creator Soylent Cosplay to develop a how-to video to walk you step-by-step through one of her legendary Mass Effect costumes.
  • Contest! Share your best Mass Effect art and get a chance to score sweet loot. Just post on Twitter using the hashtag #BioWareGiveaway for your chance to win.
  • GIFs! While you weren’t looking, we created a page on Giphy specifically for Mass Effect GIFs. Now the crew of the Normandy can help you say what mere words cannot.  
  • Gear! It wouldn’t be N7 Day without some swanky new accessories. Hit up our own Gear Store for replicas, prints, and apparel; the Dark Horse store for amazing prints; Graph MKT for slick street wear; PowerA for custom controllers, NZXT for the perfect N7 PC case accessory, and Idea Planet for your very own Citadel.
  • More Social Stuff! Want to share your love for Mass Effect with the world? Try out our new Squadmate AR lens on Facebook and Instagram
    • To find the lens:
      • Visit the @masseffect profile.
      • Tap the ‘Effects” icon (the three stars), and open the lens
      • Make sure to use the hashtags #n7day, #N7DayCelebration, #MassEffect, and/or #N7DayArt wherever you post so we can see your contributions!”

We’ve also been super-interested to learn what kind of choices you’ve been making in your own adventures while playing the Legendary Edition. A few months ago we shared some statistics and learned that “Kaidan or Ashley” wasn’t an easy decision for you all either so maybe Mac and Mike were onto something with their choices; 60% of you chose Ashley, while 40% chose Kaidan. For something that makes such an impact through the next two games, that’s a surprisingly close split. We also learned that Garrus was the most likely to survive the Suicide Mission — but Mordin was the least likely. And he thought you cared!

For this year’s celebration, we dove even deeper into how you navigated the branching pathways of the series, and we learned some interesting new details. For example, most of you elected to save the Council at the end of the first game — but at 69% to 31%, it wasn’t exactly a foregone conclusion. We also learned that as beloved as Garrus has been through the years, a surprising 15% of you didn’t recruit him to your team at all! Perhaps less surprisingly, you folks were not fans of Ambassador Udina; given the option to select the first human Councilor, he finished a distant third…behind “no choice.” Ouch. 

The results are fascinating across the board, so take a look at the whole lineup:

AND A DAY FOR LOOKING FORWARD

N7 Day has also often been a chance to talk about the future, both for Mass Effect and for the games industry as a whole. This year, looking forward is even more valuable, as we celebrate another N7 Day during a global pandemic that impacts pretty much everything about the industry and the people in it.

“I can’t wait to answer fans’ questions in person!” Mac says. “Whether it’s panels, or signings, or BioWare Base…it’s always fun to just be in the room with the fans and let them ask whatever they want.”

“Meeting franchise fans is always cool,” agrees Mike, “and it’s good to see how the games have impacted people’s lives. Personally though, I miss the cosplay. I remember at San Diego Comic Con a number of years back, how many groups of Mass Effect cosplayers there were. I want to see that continue. And hopefully, we can create new characters that everyone will love and continue the tradition.”

We are, of course, hard at work on the next adventure in the Mass Effect universe. Until then, please accept our most humble thanks to you for accompanying us on this journey. We know we couldn’t do it without you — on N7 Day, or any other day. 

**OFFERS MAY VARY OR CHANGE. SEE RETAILER SITE FOR DETAILS.

Lyrical Journey: Shadowbringers

Hello everyone, this is Voltenyne from the Community team!

It's the fourth week of our lyrical journey through the theme songs of each expansion as we prepare ourselves for Endwalker.

This time, we present the lyrics for "Shadowbringers" and "Tomorrow and Tomorrow" from our third expansion, Shadowbringers!


******

FINAL FANTASY XIV: SHADOWBRINGERS Full Trailer

Shadowbringers

For whom weeps the storm,
Her tears on our skin
The days of our years gone,
Our souls soaked in sin
These memories ache with the weight of tomorrow

Who fights?
Who flies?
Who falls?

One brings shadow, one brings light
Two-toned echoes tumbling through time
Threescore wasted, ten cast aside
Four-fold knowing, no end in sight
One brings shadow, one brings light
One dark future no one survives
On their shadows, away we fly

The road that we walk
Is lost in the flood
Here proud angels bathe in
Their wages of blood
At this, the world's end, do we cast off tomorrow

One brings shadow, one brings light
To this riddle all souls are tied
Brief our moments, brazen and bright
Forged in fury, tempered in ice
Hindmost devils, early to rise
Sing come twilight, sleep when they die
Heaven's banquet leavened with lies
Sating honor, envy, and pride
One brings shadow, one brings light
Run from the light

Authors of our fates
Orchestrate our fall from grace
Poorest players on the stage
Our defiance drives us straight to the edge
A reflection in the glass
Recollections of our past
Swift as darkness, cold as ash
Far beyond this dream of paradise lost
 
Home
Riding home
Dying hope
Hold onto hope... Ohhh...
Home
Riding home
Home, riding home
Hope, finding hope... Ohhh...

One brings shadow, one brings light
One more chapter we've yet to write
Want for nothing, nothing denied
Wand'ring ended, futures aligned
One brings shadow, one brings light
One brings shadow, one brings light
You are the light

We fall
We fall
We fall
We fall unto the end

One world's end

Our world's end

Our end

We won't end

I am shadow, I am the light


******

FINAL FANTASY XIV - Tomorrow and Tomorrow

Tomorrow and Tomorrow

For whom weeps the storm
Her tears on our skin
The days of our years gone
Our souls soaked in sin
These memories ache with the weight of tomorrow

Who fights?
Who flies?
Who falls?

Stand tall, my friend
May all of the dark lost inside you find light again
In time tumbling, turning we seek amends
Eternal winds to the land descend
Our journey will never end

From those who've fallen to those who rise
A prayer to keep us ever by your side
An undying promise that we just might
Carry on in a song

Pray don't forget us, your bygone kin
With one world's end does a new begin
And should our souls scatter unto the wind
Still we shall live on

Stand tall, my friend
May all of the dark deep inside you find light again
This time, tumbling, turning we make amends
Eternal winds from the land ascend
Here to lift us that we won't end


******

Thanks for joining me in this week's lyrical journey!
If you missed our journeys from previous weeks, be sure to check them out below!
A Realm Reborn
Heavensward
Stormblood

See you again next week!

Voltenyne
- Community team

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week at Bungie – 11/04/2021

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week at Bungie – 11/04/2021

Lyrical Journey: Stormblood

Hello everyone, this is Voltenyne from the Community team!

Continuing from the past few weeks, it's time for another lyrical journey through the theme songs of each expansion as we prepare ourselves for Endwalker.

This week, we present the lyrics of "Stormblood" and "Revolutions" from our second expansion, Stormblood!

******

FINAL FANTASY XIV: Stormblood Trailer

Stormblood

Storm of blood
Born from blood
Of our fallen brothers

Borne upon our hands
Cradled in our arms
Swelling in our hearts

Raise your weary head
Heed the call to arms
Ringing in your heart

Loyalty!
Unity!
Liberty!


******

FINAL FANTASY XIV - Revolutions

Revolutions

Sing a song of dawn
Dawn, the day reborn
Breathe deep of the dawn before the storm

This hearth
This home
Wrested forth from tired fingers
Bathed in blood
And sealed in stone

Souls scarred
Twelevefold
Beckoned by the bells of vengeance
Spirits bold

A lover lost
A family torn
A solemn pyre raised to rouse the slumb'ring heavens

Fire in your eyes and
Fire in your hearts
Steeled as you sound the horns of war

Yet know the cost
for who shall mourn
When light is quenched that another might burn brighter?

Let not the rays
Of justice blind
E'er trust in grace and she shall guide

Soft is the breeze that can set a petal free
And yet 'tis the storm that doth see the petal soar
High o'er the trees in the throes of liberty
'Til unstirring skies consign her to memory

One kingdom's fall is another kingdom's freedom
One sovereign's war is another sovereign's peace
One mother's pride is another mother's sorrow
their tears both soak the land that they love

Two lives
Two swords
Given in to shadowed whispers
Wicked words

Pray tell me true─
Doth louder toll
A rivals' cry
Or the oaths that spur her onward?

Your time is come
A choice bestown
Tonight, for bygone sins atone
This night, you need not walk alone


******

Thanks for joining me in this week's lyrical journey!
If you missed our journeys from previous weeks, be sure to check them out below!
A Realm Reborn
Heavensward

See you again next week!

Voltenyne
- Community team

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week At Bungie – 10/28/2021

Categories
Bungie Slide

Destiny 2 Hotfix 3.3.1.2

Lyrical Journey: Heavensward

Hello everyone, this is Voltenyne from the Community team!

Last week, we set off on a lyrical journey through the theme songs of each expansion as we prepare ourselves for Endwalker.

The journey continues this week with the lyrics of "Heavensward" and "Dragonsong" from our first expansion, Heavensward!

******

FINAL FANTASY XIV: Heavensward Trailer

* Note that this video contains A Realm Reborn main scenario spoilers.

Heavensward

Beneath the gazing stars
Vales deep and forests dark
Betrayed by loyal hands, Her wrath stirred

Bound fast unto our fate
One path, one burden great
Yet ever do our aching souls point Heavensward
Ever rings out our song
Yes, ever do our aching souls march Heavensward
As they've done for so long

To their trespass
We are Witness
Here to pass this
Final sentence

No forgiveness
No deliverance
Only Justice
Only Vengeance

Wills unbending
Faith unending
Stone defending
Now our steel shall sing

Guide us, O mighty Fury
Guide us to victory!

Dys An Sohm In (Our slumber disturbed,)
Rohs An Kyn Ala na (All my brothers wake.)
Mah Morn Na-ah-ah-ahrr (The saviors must perish.)
Sahl Djahs Afah An (Vengeance will be ours.)
Eorzea!

******

FINAL FANTASY XIV - Dragonsong

Dragonsong

Children of the land do you hear
Echoes of truths that once rang clear
Two souls intertwined
One true love they did find
Bringing land and heavens near

But flames that burned full bright soon fell dark
Memories dimmed by shadowed hearts
In the waxing gloom
Did wane the lovers' moon
Watching as their worlds drift apart.

One soul's cry
A passion welling within
Sacrifice
A final plea to her kin

Yet this bond of hope
By treachery was broke
Scattering her words to the wind

Swelling overlong
Seas of blood are a song
And death an afterthought
To those who fight for naught

A throne lying empty
A reign incomplete
Alone for eternity
A pain without cease

Children of the land answer this
Why must you turn to empty bliss
Tell me why break trust
Why turn the past to dust
Seeking solace in the abyss

Tell me why create
A circle none can break
Why must you let go
The life you were bestowed
This I fear I'll never know
Never know...

******

Thanks for joining me in this week's lyrical journey!

If you missed our journey from last week, be sure to check it out below!
A Realm Reborn

See you again next week!

Voltenyne
- Community team

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week At Bungie – 10/21/2021

Jiggle, jiggle, jiggle! The Dragon Quest X Collab Returns!

Greetings, everyone! This is Zhexos from the Community team.

Did you hear the news? The Dragon Quest X collaboration event is returning on Tuesday, 19 October 2021 at 8:00 (GMT) / 9:00 (BST)!

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Event Period
From Tuesday, 19 October 2021 at 8:00 (GMT) / 9:00 (BST)
to Thursday, 11 November 2021 at 14:59 (GMT)

How to Participate
Speak with Havak Alvak in Ul'dah - Steps of Nald (X:12.1 Y:8.2) to begin.

Event Items

Headgear: Thug's Mug
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First, we have the Thug's Mug, worn by various characters in the Dragon Quest series, this iconic yellow headgear is dyeable!

Headgear: King Slime Crown
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Next, check out the King Slime Crown that jiggles!

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See the jiggle!? No? Alright, let's go with a goo-d ol' gif!

JP20211018_05.gif

Jiggle, jiggle, jiggle!

Minion: Wind-up Brickman
JP20211018_06.bmp

What's this!? The brickman gets up and looks as if it wants to join the party!

Finally, we have the wind-up brickman! This cute minion would be a wonderful companion to accompany you on your adventures.

Perhaps with the right angle and location, you could take a screenshot that looks like it came straight from Dragon Quest!

---

In addition to these event items, the event quest itself is full of sights to see, and I'm sure it'll bring about lots of laughter and surprises!

If you've already completed the quests before and would like to play through them again, you can use the Seasonal Event Replay feature!

See you all in game!

Zhexos
- Community team

------------------------------

Visit the special site.

Lyrical Journey: A Realm Reborn

Hello everyone, this is Voltenyne from the Community team!

We're only about a month away from the release of our much-awaited expansion, Endwalker!

In Endwalker, the current tale of our adventures, which has been unfolding since A Realm Reborn, will be heading into its finale. As such, we invite you to join us each week in this lyrical journey through the theme songs of each expansion as we prepare ourselves for Endwalker!

Without further ado, let's begin our lyrical journey with "Answers" from A Realm Reborn!

FINAL FANTASY XIV "A New Beginning"

* Note that this video features an edited version of the song. You can listen to the full version in our official soundtrack.

Answers

I close my eyes, tell us why must we suffer
Release your hands, for your will drags us under
My legs grow tired, tell us where must we wander
How can we carry on if redemption's beyond us?

To all of my children in whom Life flows abundant
To all of my children to whom Death hath passed his judgement
The soul yearns for honor, and the flesh the hereafter
Look to those who walked before to lead those who walk after

Shining is the Land's light of justice
Ever flows the Land's well of purpose
Walk free, walk free, walk free, believe...
The Land is alive, so believe...

Suffer (Feel) Promise (Think) Witness (Teach) Reason
(Hear) Follow (Feel) Wander (Think) Stumble (Teach) Listen
(Speak) Honor (Speak) Value (Tell) Whisper (Tell) Mention
(Hope) Ponder (Hope) Warrant (Wish) Cherish (Wish) Welcome
(Roam) Witness (Roam) Listen (Roam) Suffer (Roam) Sanction
(Sleep) Weather (Sleep) Wander (Sleep) Answer
Sleep on

Now open your eyes while our plight is repeated
Still deaf to our cries, lost in hope we lie defeated
Our souls have been torn, and our bodies forsaken
Bearing sins of the past, for our future is taken

War born of strife, these trials persuade us not
(Feel what? Learn what?)
Words without sound, these lies betray our thoughts
Mired by a plague of doubt, the Land, she mourns

(See what? Hear what?)
Judgement binds all we hold to a memory of scorn
Tell us why, given Life, we are meant to die, helpless in our cries?

Witness (Feel) Suffer (Think) Borrow (Teach) Reason
(Hear) Follow (Feel) Stumble (Think) Wander (Teach) Listen
(Blink) Whisper (Blink) Shoulder (Blink) Ponder (Blink) Weather
(Hear) Answer (Look) Answer (Think) Answer together

Thy Life is a riddle, to bear rapture and sorrow
To listen, to suffer, to entrust unto tomorrow
In one fleeting moment, from the Land doth life flow
Yet in one fleeting moment, for anew it doth grow
In the same fleeting moment
Thou must live
Die
And know

-----

Thanks for joining me in this week's lyrical journey!

See you again next week!

Voltenyne
- Community team

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week At Bungie – 10/14/2021

Categories
Bungie Slide

Destiny 2 Update 3.3.1

FFXIV Backstage Investigators (No. 7): Lead Technical Artist Tatsuya Okahisa

Hello everyone, this is Miyamiya from the Promotional team!

FFXIV Backstage Investigators is a blog series that share behind-the-scenes stories from the team members who work on all aspects of FFXIV.

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The subject of our seventh interview is...

Lead Technical Artist Tatsuya Okahisa!

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▲ A screenshot from Mr. Okahisa of a look-alike based on his personal character.

Since I knew next to nothing about technical artists, my investigation began from learning what they do!

******

Miyamiya: In general, technical artists seem like the intermediary between artists* and engineers, who also create tools for artists to use. What does your team do when it comes to FFXIV?

* In this article, we use the term "artists" to collectively refer to the teams that handle 3D modelling, animation, effects, cutscenes, and other design data.

Okahisa: In FFXIV, the primary job of a technical artist is to support and improve the production process for artists. We create tools and put features in place to help them mass-produce high-quality assets.

As an example, there are currently eight playable races in FFXIV, or fifteen variations of playable characters when you count male and female separately and include male Viera. When we create a piece of equipment, we have to create a different variation for each type of playable character. That's where technical artists come in.

Our team created a tool to automatically modify equipment to match each race and successfully automated the basic parts of the process that are always handled the same way. The tool was implemented around 2013, and we've continued to work on it as features change or new races are added.

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↓ Press a button and wait a few tens of seconds...

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▲ The tool automatically modified the equipment from male Hyur to male Roegadyn.
From here, the artists put on the finishing touches to turn it into the final quality we see in-game.

We help artists by taking mechanical tasks like that and simplifying them as much as possible. As we work on those sorts of tasks, we learn more about how the art data is designed, and that knowledge helps us to come up with new in-game features or provide support when something in the game doesn't look the way it was intended.

We may not seem all that different from programmers; however, in addition to our broad knowledge of programming, we also have insight on how the artists create their data and the inner mechanisms of development tools, which I believe to be our specialty.

Miyamiya: That tool is almost magical!

It sounds like the assistance provided by your team is instrumental in creating the wide variety of playable races and equipment we all enjoy.

How did you become a technical artist?

Okahisa: I was a new graduate when I joined Square Enix as a technical artist.

I had originally studied for the computer graphics and film industry, and as a student I interned at a company specialising in live action. Since it was for live action, the things that we made were all visually stunning, but the actual work was continually dull and tedious. When I began improving our workflow, I found it to be fascinating, and upon looking into it some more, I learned about technical artists and began aspiring to become one.

At the time, technical artists were still a new career field and very few companies were looking to hire them. Under such circumstances, I found a recruitment listing for newly graduated technical artists by the department which eventually would become Square Enix's Creative Business Unit III.

Although I wasn't particular about working in the game industry, the job description sounded like I could do what I had wanted to do, so I applied and was hired for the job. I was assigned to the FFXIV team right before the release of A Realm Reborn, and I remember being taken aback by the hectic atmosphere of the workplace. (laughs)

Miyamiya: What incredible timing to join the company!

Of all the things you've worked on since joining in A Realm Reborn, is there anything that stood out to you as particularly memorable?

Okahisa: In terms of something players would be familiar with, adding underwater actions in Stormblood was particularly memorable for me.

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▲ The FFXIV experience was further expanded with the addition of flying in Heavensward and swimming/diving in Stormblood.

During the process of adding underwater actions, I handled designing schemes for artists.

For example, some of my suggestions to the programming and artist teams included a scheme for synchronising the swimming animation with the splashing water effect, and how the diving and swimming animations might be best blended together.

The hardest part of that process was adjusting the characters' point of reference above water.
Characters in FFXIV have something called a "point of reference," which allow us to use the same animations across characters with different physiques.

When the characters are standing on the ground, their feet are the point of reference.
In the water, however, the distance from the characters' feet to the surface of the water caused Lalafell to look like they were sinking, while Roegadyn appeared to be floating a bit higher than they should.

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▲ As you can see, when the characters' feet are the point of reference, the Lalafell and Roegadyn's bodies are uneven with the water's surface.

To resolve this, I had to ask a huge favour of the programmers to make a procedure which quickly changes the characters' point of reference to their chest as soon as they enter the water.

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Miyamiya: It's enlightening to learn about these backend procedures for new features! Do you have any mottos when working on these kinds of things?

Okahisa: I actually have several.
"Design things that can be maintained over time."
"Don't use a feature outside of its intended scope."
"Avoid conflicting implementations."
Those are just some of the ideas that I try to keep in mind.

Because FFXIV is an online game with periodic updates, you can't just create something then forget about it once it's complete. Designing an intricate feature means spending more development cost on adjustments when it's affected by a later update, which could make us miss a deadline. In situations when we could technically make a feature more intricate if we tried, it's important to draw a line based on the fact that it needs to be maintained moving forward.

Another thing is how we have no idea what sort of updates there may be in the future, so I believe making predictions and implementing things ahead of time is unrealistic. Instead, I try to make implementations that don't conflict with anything else at that moment in time.

An example from FFXIV would be when we designed the blowgun mini-game.

We needed to know when the player hit the enemy character in the head, and for this we could've used the target that was already placed in its head, which we'll call Target A. However, Target A was not something that was specifically designed for the blowgun mini-game. The reason why I avoided reusing Target A was because enemies with multiple heads (like Cerberus) or no head (like Ozma) don't have a Target A assigned to them. If we ever decided to use enemies like that in a future version of the blowgun mini-game, we might run into some issues. In the end, to meet the needs of the mini-game, we created a Target B that could be freely altered in size and position.

These kinds of conflicts usually aren't obvious during implementation, and we often only realise there's a problem when we try to expand upon an existing system. So when we implement new things, I try to make sure that we aren't using features and tools in ways they weren't intended for.

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▲ The blowgun mini-game first appeared in the Stormblood main scenario and involved shooting Garlean soldiers.

Other than that, I try to create controlled environments where errors are unlikely to occur, design features that can be easily relearned even if you forget.

Miyamiya: Seeing as you handle these underlying components, I can understand why you have so many mottos to keep yourself aware. Under such circumstances, is there anything about FFXIV that stands out to you as a technical artist?

Okahisa: Online games are developed and operated over a long period of time, and that requires us to handle a colossal amount of data. While that can be a daunting task, it can also be appealing for someone like me who finds it fulfilling to optimise workflow and eliminate errors.

Additionally, our long-term operations make it easy for us to plan new things we want to do, which is also part of the appeal.

Miyamiya: Based on how you consider the hard parts of the job to be part of the appeal, I can tell you have a challenging spirit towards what you do.

Next, I'd like to ask our usual question about your tools of the trade! Is there anything you simply can't work without, carry everywhere with you, or find useful?

Okahisa: That would be the text editing program, Hidemaru Editor.

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When coming up with new features, I use a lot of different programs to research my previous projects; however, Hidemaru is the one I use the most frequently. One of the things I like about it is the grep command, although it's not unique to Hidemaru.

In FFXIV, there's a colossal amount of animation and character data, and when we're adding a new feature, we have to make sure it won't conflict with any existing data. If there's anything that will be affected, we have to make adjustments, which means we have to find all the data files that would be affected.

By using the grep command, I can enter a particular pattern of characters, and it'll instantly search through certain file types or folders to find all the instances where that pattern appears. Checking every single file myself would be a never-ending task, so it's extremely helpful for me as a technical artist. (laughs)

Miyamiya: Sounds like it's an absolute necessity for you and your team, since you handle a colossal amount of data files!

Finally, do you have any parting words for our readers?

Okahisa: Thank you for playing FFXIV.

Seeing your comments on videos and social media are a huge source of motivation and an enjoyable part of my daily life. The development team is finishing up the upcoming Endwalker expansion, so I hope you'll wait for us just a while longer.

As for our team of technical artists, we'll continue giving it our all to deliver new experiences and high-quality assets to you, so thank you for your continued support!

******

How did you enjoy our interview with Lead Technical Artist Tatsuya Okahisa?

Thanks to the support provided by him and many others, we are able to enjoy a wide variety of things in the world of FFXIV in a seamless and natural manner!

See you next time!

Previous Editions of FFXIV Backstage Investigators
(No. 1): Main Scenario Writer Banri Oda
(No. 2): Lead Level Designer Arata Takahashi
(No. 3): Web Director Hiroyuki Takachi
(No. 4): Lead UI Artist Yoichi Seki
(No. 5): Character Concept Artist Hiroyuki Nagamine
(No. 6): Community Planner Takeshi Kato

Miyamiya
- Promotional team

Categories
Bungie Slide

This Week At Bungie – 10/07/2021