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It’s very rare for Square Enix to nerf a wild raid boss soon after release. Their tuning is usually extremely accurate and always fair, but it looks like they may have missed the mark for the final boss of Pandemonium Abyssos: The Eighth Circle (Savage). Since launch, the boss Hephaistos has been an unexpected roadblock for many static groups, as the DPS requirement to meet his fury hours is quite strict for those looking to clear early in the tier. Fortunately, the burden has been lifted by a small margin in Patch 6.21.
Related: How to unlock Pandaemonium: Abyssos raids in Final Fantasy XIV
Hephaistos has seen about a percent nerf to his total health pool in both phases of the match. According to the patch notes, this change is to account for the developers underestimating their own test team’s prowess in combat.
The boss’s DPS check had been tailored to the test team’s DPS output. The goal was to make the final boss of Pandemonium Abyssos harder than Pandemonium Asphodelos: The Fourth Circle (Savage). This led to the testing team spending a significant amount of time working on the balance of the game. They managed to get extremely good at the meeting, enough to push numbers that a typical learning party would struggle to achieve in week one. To account for this, the developers have brought the game in line with their initial balance projections with the Patch 6.21 update.
The tighter controls didn’t stop some groups from persevering, but it didn’t leave much room for error either. Much of the combat can also force downtime, depending on raid composition and mechanics that involve separating the party to opposite sides of the arena. Many players took to Reddit to voice their frustrations, saying that this particular match had one of the tightest DPS checks in recent memory. Some groups went so far as to ban underperforming jobs, a struggle that Patch 6.21 also resolved. This nerf is the first time a wild fight has been adjusted in quite some time. Here’s hoping it allows more groups to push through to defeat it.