What are Criterion Dungeons in Final Fantasy XIV? Answered

Rule 1: Try not to die.

Image via Square Enix

Final Fantasy XIV is looking to experiment with a new form of content with Patch 6.2: Buried Memory. For the first time ever, players will be introduced to Variant Dungeons. This is a form of casual content that can be entered with one to four players and adjusts in difficulty based on party size. These dungeons have branching paths based on choices made by the party. But Square Enix is going further by adding Criterion Dungeons, which are high-difficulty versions of Variant Dungeons with some major restrictions and additional mechanics to spice things up.

Criterion Dungeons in Final Fantasy XIV, explained

Criterion Dungeons are fixed at four players and have fixed restrictions to one tank, one healer, and two DPS. Parties of fewer than four players are supplemented via matching. They are visually similar to Variant Dungeons, but have a different structure and much more intense enemy strength. Routes also become predetermined, and the NPCs that accompany players in the Variant Dungeon version are not present.

There are two forms of difficulty progression for Criterion Dungeons. The “Another Path” version is considered the Extreme difficulty. Players can also tackle the Savage difficulty, which is the hardest version of the content. The Savage difficulty adds additional challenges.

Defeated enemies in the Another Path difficulty do not respawn if the party wipes. Players also cannot be revived by others. Because normal methods of resurrection are prohibited, each player is granted a limited number of revival actions.

Savage difficulty of Criterion Dungeons do not have a matching system. Reviving is also entirely prohibited, meaning if someone dies halfway through the dungeon the rest of the party must continue with only three people. If the party wipes, all enemies also respawn. Additionally, enemies become much stronger if not defeated within a certain time limit.

Related: What are Variant Dungeons in Final Fantasy XIV? Answered

Criterion Dungeons launch in late August

Players will be able to access Criterion Dungeons in late August with the release of Patch 6.2: Buried Memory. There will only be one at launch in the form of The Sil’dihn Subterrane, but more are planned for the near future.