Final Fantasy XVI was released in June 2023 to much acclaim, which led to the greenlighting of DLC content. There had already been patch updates that added some new stuff, but nothing on the level of an expansion. By purchasing the Expansion Pass, FF16 players will gain access to two expansions. First on the docket is Echoes of the Fallen, a smaller-scale DLC that offers a new dungeon, additional story, and new combat encounters. It can also be purchased standalone. What’s in this DLC? How does it compare to other contemporary DLCs? Is it worth my time and money? All of these questions and more will be answered in our Final Fantasy XVI: Echoes of the Fallen Review!
Echoes of the Fallen ~ FFXVI’s “Lost Chapter”
The DLC is easy enough to start as long as you’ve met some requirements. If you are a diligent enough player, one that has done all of the sidequests (or even a chunk of them) and has beaten the game, you should have zero issues just starting the quest after loading your save. Just talk to Charon and follow the pop-ups, and you’re golden. For those who haven’t engaged with much side content or have not beaten the game, here are the requirements to start Echoes of the Fallen:
- The new quest will become available after unlocking Origin as a destination on the world map and completing the quests “Where There’s a Will” and “Priceless.”
- Necessary steps to complete the quest “Priceless.”
- Complete the side quest “Cut from the Cloth.”
- Complete the side quest “Phoenix, Heal Thyself.”
- Complete the side quest “Where there’s a Will.”
- Reach the main scenario quest “Back to their Origin.
- Necessary steps to complete the quest “Priceless.”
- After completing these steps and talking to Jill, the quest “Priceless” can be accepted in Clive’s Hideaway.
To me, this DLC chapter nearly perfectly echoes a regular chapter from the main game. You start in the hub, get some info on a new and mysterious topic, venture forth, do some light travel, spend a little over an hour in a dungeon, fight a boss, and then get the final scenes wrapping up that story arc. If you have already played through Final Fantasy XVI, then this formula will be quite familiar. This DLC will meet your expectations if you look at it as a Lost Chapter to the main game. I should add, that I do find the setup and cutscenes to not be as on par with the main story. They are more reminiscent of the higher-quality sidequest cutscenes. They don’t look bad or anything but nothing scene-direction-wise will stir you nearly as much as some of the story content in the main game.
The Mystery of the ‘Dusk Crystals’
The DLC starts with Charon informing Clive of some new market goods that have been spreading around like crazy, Dusk Crystals. These chunks of rock do indeed allow their user to conjure magic, something more people desire as Clive and Company destroy the Mothercrystals. However, Dusk Crystals pale in comparison to the real deal. These borderline knock-off crystals crumble and disintegrate after a couple of uses. This isn’t a huge problem, but it poses too many unknown factors to our heroes…
After this intro, you’re sent to tail some dirty merchants in hopes of finding out the supplier of the Dusk Crystals. This section is more or less just fighting and following quest markers. This eventually leads you to a Fallen structure, where the meat of the DLC takes place.
Remnants of the Fallen
Some of my favorite dungeons in the base game were the Fallen areas. So, Echoes of the Fallen does not disappoint in this regard. You get treated to some awesome views as you battle through this dungeon. The minibosses are of good quality as well. Who can complain about another decently fun dungeon?
Another neat thing about this DLC is that there are lore nuggets expanding on more of what the Fallen have done. All this artificial Mothercrytal business links back to the themes of the game and provides damning evidence against Ultima’s beliefs. The flames of hope can indeed grow strong enough to fell a god, as it’s been dangerously close before.
Omega is a legendary boss in the Final Fantasy series. He has been decimating players and providing an awesome fight since Final Fantasy V. So it’s no surprise that FFXVI would want to incorporate Omega.
This fight may not be the tightly cinematic Eikon fights, but it is arguably one of the most fun bosses in the game. Think of it like a mix of a prominent Notorious Mark mixed with a boss battle like Odin/Barnabas. It’s a spectacular joyride of a fight with many phases that test the player in a multitude of ways. I shall be replaying this boss fight.
As DLC, How Does It Stack Up?
This isn’t a free update; it’s a PAID DLC. Standalone, it’s $9.99, and as a bundle with the yet-to-be-released DLC, it’s $24.99. That’s not particularly steep but is the content on offer worth that price? What would be the sweet spot?
Is It Worth Your Hard-Earned Gil?
I do think Echoes of the Fallen is a good DLC that further enriches the base game. You get an awesome boss fight, some interesting lore, and some extra battles to overcome within a standard FFXVI dungeon. This is around 3 hours of content. I did indeed buy it, but I’m not sure that it’s worth nearly $10. The base game is $70 standard, and this DLC is most CERTAINLY NOT 1/7 of this game’s content. This makes me wish companies would have weirder pricing. $10 feels rounded up. I’m not even necessarily saying that games always have to be priced to match their content and length because that would require favoring certain aspects of games. It’s not quite that black and white. I do think a small sale would make this DLC entirely worth it. $5 could even be considered a steal.
Another issue I take with the pricing is the Expansion Pass bundle. It’s $25. And I don’t have that much of a clue what The Rising Tide will contain. Is it worth $15 (to be fair this will probably not be the real price, as passes usually are discounted compared to buying the expansions separately)? Devs have said that it will be more substantial than Echoes of the Fallen. If that’s the case, then I do believe that it will be worth it. However, I do think a round $20 for the Expansion Pass would be a more satisfying purchase. I mean, Xenoblade as a series is right over there on the Switch being the king of Expansion Pass price-to-content ratios.
Does It Deserve Your Precious and Limited Time?
If you already beat FFXVI, then I’d say Echoes of the Fallen is worth your time. I mean, it IS only like 3 hours. If you enjoy FFXVI and want a little more to play right now, then it’s definitely worth your time.
However, if you’re more lukewarm on FFXVI, I’d recommend waiting for a possible sale. I don’t think this first DLC is integral in any way. If you could take or leave more of the same style of content, then you can just wait on this. I’d also wait to see if The Rising Tide is game-changing. Might as well play DLC 1 if DLC 2 is amazing.
How Does It Compare to Other DLC?
I hear a lot of points of contention lobbed toward DLC. Especially paid DLC that is derivative. I’d say Echoes of the Fallen falls in this category. The story is nice but negligible. The quests and dungeon are solid but formulaic. The only standout is the awesome Omega fight. However, I mostly enjoyed my time, and it was over in just a few hours. I cannot say the same for some other DLC, but I can draw up some decent comparisons.
Being Positive first, I’d say Echoes of the Fallen is almost as solid as Kingdom Hearts III: ReMind and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s DLC. These others are way more content-rich than Echoes of the Fallen, which docks some points. However, the thing FFXVI and these other games share is that their DLC feels like an additional chapter tacked onto the game. In terms of both plot and proportional content. I have also seen many complaints about these DLCs.
A DLC model that I appreciate in a sense but doesn’t jive with actual execution is high-level content. Most high-level play does not interest me in most games. I don’t even usually engage in super bosses. FFXIV and Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin have content that I would love to finish but will probably never check out due to a lack of interest. Echoes of the Fallen doesn’t fall in that category, which I’m thankful for.
Quest Complete: Verdict Decided