With the Final Fantasy XIV Fanfest having just wrapped up in Japan and Patch 4.56 just having been released, it looks like things are in full swing for the arrival of Shadowbringers later on this year. Now that it's been confirmed that there are going to be two gender-locked races in this expansion, the community has been abuzz with questions about how all these features are going to play out. Director Naoki Yoshida has given some insight into how the FFXIV Shadowbringers new races are going to work, how the Trust System will play out, and more.
There's been some outcry around the announcement of the Hrothgar being able to only be men in Shadowbringers. With the Viera also being gender-locked, there's been a fair amount of critique from the fans now about the lack of gender options for the two new races. It's unsure at this stage whether FFXIV is going to introduce those options for players later on in the life cycle of the game (the way Mi'qote were implemented makes this a possibility), but that's just one of the many unanswered questions that the FFXIV Shadowbringers new races has posed.
Yoshida spoke to USGamer about the FFXIV Shadowbringers new races, as well as some of the core concepts behind the new expansion and what Square Enix's team wants to deliver. When asked about the community's reaction to the lack of gender options, Yoshida was quick to note that that the team had "no design references for the male version" of the Viera, appearing to suggest that one of the reasons why there were no rabbit men was because there were no existing assets from the original Final Fantasy XII to lean on.
The Trust System was another key feature of Shadowbringers that Yoshida emphasized during his interview. It sounds like players are going to be able to queue with NPCs in order to fill out dungeons via the duty finder, which would be especially useful when trying to fill out roles that are harder to come by at a pinch. The Trust System would enable players to "pick some NPCs to bring along" with them, and Yoshida hinted that some MSQ dungeons for Shadowbringers could have up to six NPCs used at a time.
From what we've seen so far and from Yoshida's insight points to the fact that the FFXIV Shadowbringers' new races are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what's in store for players. While it's lamentable that we may not get to see Viera men or Hrothgar women in the game at launch (just think about the missed glamor possibilities), the fact that Yoshida has indicated that the team is thinking carefully about community feedback seems to suggest that there's a non-zero chance of implementation at a later date. We'll keep our fingers crossed.