Letter from the Devs Vol. 9

Hello everyone, it's Ichikawa, producer of FINAL FANTASY VII THE FIRST SOLDIER, back again with another installment of Letter from the Devs. How is everyone enjoying season 4 so far? In this 9th volume of Letter from the Devs, I'm going to be covering info on the update that will go live on 10/3. There is a lot to get through, including the long-awaited chocobo time trials, major adjustments to styles, and additional features for the Variant Mode, so let's jump right in.

Chocobo Time Trials

The chocobo time trials we talked about in the latest livestream are being added in the next update.

How to Play

When you jump on a chocobo during a match, checkered-flag icons will appear on the mini-map. Head to one of these locations and pass through the white moogle gate situated there to begin a time trial. *You must pass through the side with the moogle facing you to start the time trial.

Once the time trial begins, 10 checkpoints will appear on the map and you will have 30 seconds to pass through them all to successfully clear the trial.

*If you dismount your chocobo, the time trial will end. *You can also take on time trials using the chocobo of a friend. *Clearing a time trial will not count for candidates hitching a ride on the back of a chocobo—only the candidate directing the chocobo will clear the trial.

Useful Tips

The number of stars (★) located at the starting point indicates the difficulty of the time trial. Details for each of the difficulty levels are as follows: Difficulty ★: These are basic courses that can be cleared with a standard chocobo. Difficulty ★★: These are difficult courses that require the use of chocobos with higher jumping stats to clear them. Difficulty ★★★: These are difficult courses that require the use of chocobos with higher speed stats to clear them. A total of 18 courses—9 for the Midgar (Undercity) map and 9 for the Midgar (Plateside) map—will be added, so prep your prize chocobo and take on the time trials! The two new titles shown below are being added with this feature. The conditions to get them are by no means easy, but those who are able to obtain them can truly call themselves a chocobo master!

Chocobo Time Trial Challenges

To celebrate the addition of the chocobo time trials, limited time challenges, which offer rewards such as Gilgamesh Special Shinra Pack Tickets, will be available. See the in-game Challenges screen once they go live for details.


10/3/2022 (Mon.) 07:00 - 10/12/2022 (Wed.) 01:59 UTC *Matches available until 10/12/2022 (Wed.) 00:59 UTC

Style Updates

We know that each of you have your own favorite styles, but when we evaluate overall style usage, we can see bias towards certain styles and abilities. In this update, rather than adjusting popular styles, we are going to make improvements to styles that see less usage and implement new features to bring these styles into their own to achieve a greater overall balance. We hope that you'll use this opportunity to try out styles that you might not usually use. ■General - Target lock for melee attacks now displays even when holding a gun. - In line with the above, when you tap the melee attack button, you will immediately move in to melee attack a locked-on target. - The time you are restricted from performing actions after getting up from a dodge roll has been slightly reduced. ■Warrior - The style trait "Fearless Charge" now activates even when holding a gun. - The time you are restricted from performing actions after the third stage in a melee combo has been slightly reduced. - The "Countershield" skill has been changed to "Critical Ending". ▼Critical Ending Effect Increases the chance for a critical hit for the last attack in a melee combo. (Critical-hit chance Lv. 1: 40% → Lv. 2: 70% → Lv. 3: 100%) ■Sorcerer - The "Reinvigorate" skill has been changed to "Staggering Touch". ▼Staggering Touch Effect Grants you the ability to stagger enemy candidates with attack materia. (Stagger gauge fill amount Lv. 1: 100% → Lv. 2: 110% → Lv. 3: 120%) ■Monk - The "Manawall" ability has been changed to "Chakra Manawall". - The "Chakra Field" ability has been changed to "Vigor". - A recovery speed up effect has been added to the "Awakened Strength" skill. ▼Chakra Manawall Effects Creates a defensive field in front of you that removes poison and recovers HP for candidates within the field. *The size of the defensive field is 1.5x the size of the original Manawall field. ▼Vigor Effects Nullifies blow-away attacks, reduces damage taken, and increases the effect of automatic recovery for the "Inner Strength" trait for a short amount of time. (Damage reduction amount Lv. 1: 25% → Lv. 2: 30% → Lv. 3: 35%) ▼New Effect of Awakened Strength Increases the automatic recovery speed for the Inner Strength trait. (Recovery speed increase Lv. 1: 14% → Lv. 2: 28% → Lv. 3: 42%) ■Ranger - The "Control" ability has been changed to "Scout" ▼Scout Effects Grants you the ability to call on a slug-ray that will scout the area in front of you for up to a distance of 80m and apply a marker on any enemy it locates, after which it will explode inflicting damage. ■Ninja - The time you are restricted from performing actions after the third stage in a melee combo has been slightly reduced. - The "Escapist" skill has been changed to "Poison Shuriken". ▼Poison Shuriken Effect Applies poison with the attack in the third stage of a melee combo. (Poison duration Lv. 1: 4 seconds → Lv. 2: 5 seconds → Lv. 3: 6 seconds) ■Dragoon - The "Aerial Wall" skill has been changed to "Urgency". ▼Urgency Effect Reduces ability cooldown time when you inflict damage with a melee attack. (Cooldown time reduction Lv. 1: 6% → Lv. 2: 7% → Lv. 3: 8%) Cooldown time reduction is greatly increased when damage is from a divebomb attack. (Reduction for divebomb attack Lv. 1: 45% → Lv. 2: 50% → Lv. 3: 55%) ■Machinist - Damage for the skill "Shooting Gadget" has been increased. (Damage Lv. 1: 7 → Lv. 2: 10 → Lv. 3: 13) - Time required before healing activates for the "Healing Gadget" skill has been reduced (3 seconds → 0.5 seconds). ■Trickster - Player copies created with the ability "Decoy Card" can no longer shoot when blind. - Cooldown time for the ability "Marking Card" has been reduced (150 seconds → 90 seconds). - Body visual effects when using the ability "Marking Card" have been removed. - The time you are restricted from performing actions after having warped using the ability "Marking Card" has been reduced.

Customizable Controller Button Configuration

We apologize to candidates using controllers for the long wait, but we have now added the ability to customize button configuration for your controller.

*If two or more actions are assigned to the same button, there are cases where one of the actions will be prioritized. *Certain buttons cannot be customized. *In accordance with the implementation of this feature, we have combined the machinist's Air Gadget attack with the button for the chocobo kick and bike spin attack.

Variant Mode Update

After the update for 10/3 goes live, Cloud mimic materia will become available in the current Variant Mode. Mimic materia has a chance to appear in supply drops. Mimic Cloud has been strengthened specifically for Variant Mode. ▼Mimic Cloud (Variant Mode) - Melee attack power and attack speed greatly increased. - Resistance against enemy attacks added. - Ability to dash midair added. - Constant HP recovery added. To keep a balance as a result of the above, the following adjustments will be applied to the variant team. ▼Variant Team Balance Adjustments - Increased HP recovery amount for skill that recovers HP when an enemy candidate is defeated. - Legendary Hero HP increased. - Bomb HP increased. - Slug-Ray HP decreased.

Other Balance Adjustments

- Shot interval for the gil toss machine gun increased (only when you hold 200 or more gil). - When tornado lands on an enemy, 0 will be displayed to indicate that a hit landed but no damage was inflicted. - Content update for season 4 has also been reflected in the settings for item appearance in private matches. - Small measure to improve lag that sometimes occurs when first firing has been added. - MP requirement for teleport reduced to 1.

Error Corrections

- Player copies sometimes shoot when falling. - Bullet firing position for player copies is sometimes bugged.

This brings us to the end of Letter from the Devs Vol.9. I hope that you all have lots of fun dashing around on your chocobos to complete the time trials. Also, I'm confident that the changes to the styles will spark new style selection trends, so have fun testing out the updated abilities and skills! Finally, as October is just around the corner, we're going to start seeing Halloween decorations spring up. We're planning to add a little spooky spin on matches in FF7FS, so make sure to check the notices regularly for updates! Until next time!