After a bit of a delay, we've finally got a brand new Live Letter from Final Fantasy 14 director Naoki Yoshida and the dev team on the next patch to hit the game. Premiering on Twitch earlier today, Yoshida announced that one unexpected addition for Patch 5.3 would be the expansion of the free trial version of the game.
When Patch 5.3 launches for Final Fantasy 14 on August 11, it'll expand the free trial version of the game to include the entire Heavensward expansion. You'll now be able to play right up to Patch 3.56, which comfortably includes the full Heavensward story, before the prelude to the Stormblood expansion begins.
On top of this, players who own the base version of Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn will also have access to the Heavensward expansion up to the same spot. Both the free trial and the base version of the game will have a new level cap of 60, and will also have access to the Dark Mage, Astrologian, and Machinist Jobs.
One previously-announced change that'll be implemented in Patch 5.3 is the ability to fly around areas in the base game. Flying wasn't something that was available until the Heavensward expansion, but you'll now be able to take your Flying Mounts and zip around areas from A Realm Reborn with ease.
Yoshida and company also showed off a sneak peek of The Puppet's Bunker, the new Alliance Raid that'll be launching as part of Patch 5.3 for Shadowbringers. This is the second Raid in the Nier Automata crossover event, and we could see Yoshida showcasing a small area that looked like a mechanical boss arena.
Final Fantasy 14 Patch 5.3, called Reflections in Crystal, launches for both PC and PS4 on August 11. This Patch was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Yoshida has said he expects the upcoming Patch, 5.4, to get back into the usual release cycle of two-three months from now.