It’s been an interesting couple of weeks for me in FFXIV. As the last major task to round out my initial run of gear set galleries for Shadowbringers, I’ve been working pretty steadily on Dragoon. As far back as A Realm Reborn, I’ve nearly always leveled Dragoon close to last (if not last) during each expansion—for years, the class has never really clicked with me. But with Stormblood, that started to change. While I still leveled it last then, I liked a lot about its more streamlined gameplay. Just a few months later, I was leveling it in Shadowbringers, and I’ve come to enjoy it in a way I never thought possible back in the ARR days, when it was by far my least favorite class.
In the process of putting together gearsets, I’ve also had an opportunity to experiment with a lot of hairstyles, since I try to find one that works well with the large number of circlets and headbands that drop from the dungeons in the new expansion. I’ve been on the lookout for a new style for Alahra since sometime in Stormblood, as while she’s become synonymous in my head with Minfilia’s look, I wanted to at least have some other options for glamour flexibility and the like. The most recent gallery finally gave me what I was looking for, and for the time being, at least, Alahra has a new hairstyle! Her new haircut seems to work much better with armor than her usual one, and so I wanted to take the opportunity to work with the new Dragoon Artifact set a bit, since I liked it much more than I thought I would.
Glamour Components (Requirements: DRG 80, Female)
Weapon: Weathered Trishula
Head: Reading Glasses (Ul Brown)
Body: Weathered Pteroslaver Mail
Hands: Doman Steel Gauntlets of Maiming (Currant Purple)
Legs: Light Steel Subligar (Currant Purple)
Feet: Ishgardian Thighboots (Dark Purple)
My favorite part of the Pteroslaver set is absolutely the body piece, which features something new in the world of FFXIV glamour: flexible tail armor! While there are a handful of pieces that “replace” the tail with a separate model that behaves like one (such as Dragoon’s Heavensward Artifact set), this is the first time we’ve seen tail armor that accompanies the tail, rather than replacing it in terms of the actual model. It tracks to the tail’s movement as well, and while I’m not sure if this is new tech for the game, it seems like it might have some application for tail clipping modifications in the future, which is a lovely possibility.
So, I wanted to make the Pteroslaver Mail the center of my glamour. From there, I wanted to avoid using the rest of the set, since it’s a bit too spiky for my tastes. The helmet was the first thing to go, of course, easily replaced with Alahra’s standard glasses. The Ishgardian Thighboots were an easy pick, too, since they’re my favorite pair available at the moment, and they have gold buttons that mix well with the gold accents of the armor. Taking a nod from one of my earliest Dragoon glamours, I went with the Light Steel Subligar for the first time in awhile (though I started out with the Valentione Skirt, which didn’t seem to blend well enough). After that, in lieu of the spiky gauntlets, I swapped in the Doman Steel ones, which have appropriate gold accents and can be dyed to match the armor closely enough that it’s hard to notice the difference in shade.
I’m not sure yet how much I’ll be playing Dragoon in Shadowbringers, though, so I don’t know how much I’ll actually be using this glamour. I’m trying to figure out what melee DPS I want to focus on this expansion, but that depends a lot on what the 5.1 redesign for Ninja looks and feels like. Naturally, I’d like to go back to Alahra’s canon main job, but things have changed enough for her in character following Shadowbringers that it might be time for more than just a change of hairstyle! Of all the melee, I think Dragoon feels the best right now in terms of gameplay, but for the time being at least, I won’t be committing heavily to it in favor of sticking with Dark Knight, I think. I’ll make a more dedicated decision after 5.1, I imagine.