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Final Fantasy XIV has relentlessly poured new material into its rich story, which means that they have included many villains, which can be classified as better or worse depending on the depth of their stories. But, of course, nothing contributes more to a good story than a compelling villain. Despite initial skepticism, Hermes has proven to be one of the best.
Many of the threats to the world in Final Fantasy XIV story can be traced back to one man: Hermes.
He’s a complex character who appears in various forms. Some consider him one of the evilest characters in the game, but is that true?
Hermes is a man who wants to do good but finds himself defeating his despair, leading to many mistakes.
It’s not easy to be Emmet Selch’s follow-up villain. I won’t lie if I said I was one of the skeptics who refused to believe Hermes would even live up to one of Final Fantasy’s best antiheroes of all time.
Still, I’ve empathized with his motivations after getting to know him through many flashback cutscenes. He’s not your insidious and bloody villain. Though I wouldn’t simplify matters and say he was misunderstood.
In this Hermes FFXIV guide, I’ll cover everything you need to know about Hermes and how to reach and defeat him in the Ktisis Hyperboreia duty.
During mobs: avoid getting cocky with pulls and keep your senses peeled for AoEs.
- Lyssa: The Icicall and Frigid Stomp mechanic can be deadly if not tackled properly.
- Ladon Lord: Pyric attacks get increasingly deadlier, so keep sight of his fiery attacks.
- Hermes: The man himself! Luckily for you, he introduces very few mechanics. Instead, he boosts Lyssa’s and Landon’s Aero attacks.
Hermes’ Origins: Ancient Manic Pixie Dream Boy
Hermes an Ancient, the guys who lived thousands of years before the modern story. He leads Elpis, a research facility atop lush floating islands. So, you can think of Hermes as Final Fantasy’s Newt Scamander.
Researchers at Elpis here test their creations and eventually submit them to observers to determine if they’re suitable to live on Etheirys.
The Ancients have a solid affinity for creation. Objectively, this allows them to do wondrous feats., The creation’s purpose is to find a way to benefit humankind. Once that duty is complete, they die to rejoin the Ethereal Sea.
Though some see this passing as a joyous moment, Hermes cannot stand it.
Hermes’ Scout: Meteion
Meteion is Hermes’ most prized creation. He brought her to life, intending to send her on a scout mission to explore the universe and discover the meaning of life. A task so complex that she can’t help failing, but that’s a lore session for another day.
Uno Reverse Card
When Meteion fails to bring a satisfactory answer to Hermes’ question, Hermes’ mind goes, “If creations are to be killed upon failure, what makes us Ancients different?”
And just like that, he decided to erase the memories of most Ancients who knew of the Final Days. Thus, he rose as Fandaniel.
The Rise of Fandaniel
Hermes cares so profoundly for creation that it spirals him into a deep depression. His mind slowly begins to unravel as he loses faith in life’s worth.
You know how, if a good movie ends badly, it ruins your entire experience? This is the ultimate Hermes viewpoint.
If all the effort and collective suffering put into achieving something doesn’t end as expected, it isn’t worth anything.
This identity crisis drives him from a dark robe emo teenager to a flamboyant black magic user and mutation fanatic.
Oh, and he wants to destroy the entire world. So what this means for you is: it’s time to put him down.
At level 87, you’ll unlock the quest “Caging the Messenger.” Completing this is a prerequisite to entering Ktisis Hyperboreia, the dungeon where you’ll find Hermes.
This quest can be found in Elpis, Misopses Euros at the following coordinates: X:31.7; Y:15.4.
First Section of Ktisis Hyperboreia
Be on the lookout for massive AOE attacks that spawn more ads.
Use your cooldowns appropriately and burn everything down.
Moveset and Counters
|Skull Dasher||Targets the tank for significant damage.|
Make sure you cool down and heal throughout the fight.
|Frostbite and Seek||Disappears and returns to deal damage.|
The boss will move to the center and cast Frostbite and Seek and seek before disappearing. Players will then have to use the footprints in the snow to determine where the boss is.
Move to the Snow Mound, where the footprints end, and avoid getting blasted by the attack as the boss returns.
|Icicall||Forms icicles around the platform.|
|Frigid Stomp||Deals group-wide AoE damage|
Icicall will form icicles around the platform. The boss will then cast Frigid Stomp, dealing group AoE damage and causing any icicles on the platform to shoot out in a specific pattern.
Players must move away from these areas to avoid getting hit.
|Heavy Smash||Targets a player for stack-up damage.|
Heavy smash will target a player for stack-up damage. The group must stand together to share the incoming damage.
The boss will repeat these mechanics until it falls.
Second Section of Ktisis Hyperboreia
The following section has some pretty big pulls if you choose to run wall to wall. Burn everything down as quickly as possible. And remember your cooldowns!
Boss: Ladon Lord
Moveset and Counters
|Scratch||Targets the tank for significant damage.|
Scratch will target the tank for significant damage, so make sure you pull down and heal as necessary.
|Inhale||Activates specific heads.|
|Pyric Breath||Unleashes a frontal attack from the glowing heads.|
Players must pay attention to which head begins to glow when the boss casts Inhale.
The boss will then jump into the center, face a random direction, and cast Pyric Breath.
Players must move away from the glowing head to avoid the incoming conal attack.
During the next Inhale, the boss will Inhale twice, and two of his heads will begin to glow in a specific order.
For the next Pyric Breath, payers will have to dodge the first head before moving to Dodge the second head.
|Pyric Spheres||Spawns exploding orbs around the platform.|
Pyric Spheres can form around the platform. These orbs will each explode in a cross pattern, and players must quickly determine where the safe spots have formed to avoid getting hit.
|Intimidation||Deals group-wide damage.|
Healers, be ready.
|Pyric Blast||Targets a player for stack-up damage.|
Pyric Blast will target a player for stack up, and the group will have to stand on them to share the incoming damage.
The boss will repeat these mechanics until it falls.
Third Section of Ktisis Hyperboreia
In the last section of the dungeon, players will jump from platform to platform fighting mobs up. Watch your feet and dodge those AOEs.
Final Boss: Hermes
|Trismegistos||Deals group-wide damage.|
Trismegistos will deal group-wide damage. Healers, be ready.
|Hermetica||Forms tiles on the platform’s outskirts.|
Hermetica will create large green tiles on the outer edges of the platform that will soon blast out directly in front of them. Players must move into the safe zones to avoid getting hit.
|True Tornado||Unleashes a tankbuster.|
True Tornado will hit the tank for significant damage, cool down, and heal as necessary.
|Meteor||Places proximity-based damage markers.|
|Double Hermetica||Spawns multiple tiles on the edges with no safe spots.|
Meteor will target the platform with multiple proximity-based damage markers.
Dodge between two markers at the edge or direct center to avoid excess damage.
Meteors will then appear on the platform. Three cracked and one whole.
While this is happening, the boss is casting Double Hermetica, forming towels that cover the entire platform with no available safe zone.
Players must use the Meteors to avoid each blast by hiding behind them. Cracked meteors will disintegrate after a hit, so use the whole meteor to ease and dodge both blasts.
|Double True Aero||Unleashes line attacks on players and the ground.|
Next, the boss will cast Double True Aero.
The first part of this attack will target all players with unavoidable line attacks. Spread these apart to avoid overlapping after the first hit.
The second set of lines will appear in the same areas, but these can and should be avoided.
|True Bravery||Buffs the boss’ damage.|
True Bravery is an interruptible cast that will buff the boss. Interrupt this to avoid excess damage.
|Quadruple Hermetica||Spawns four sets of tiles on the edges of the arena.|
Eventually, the boss will cast a Quadruple Hermetica, and four tiles will appear randomly around the platform. These will explode in the order that they spawn.
Players will have to pay close attention to the angle of each blast to avoid them appropriately.
|Double True Aero II||Unleashes circle attacks on players and the ground.|
Double True Aero II will target each player with circle attacks. Spread these to avoid overlapping damage.
Immediately after, another set of circle AOEs will form on the ground that players should avoid.
The following Double True Aero II will affect the tankbuster. After the initial hit, the tank must move out of the ground circle attack.
The boss will repeat these mechanics until it falls.
Strategy Against Hermes
Hermetica and Gates
Hermetica is Hermes’ deadliest move. So let’s dig into it a bit deeper.
Note that when he uses Hermetica, the type and number of gates that appear depends on whether Double or Quadruple has been used before.
Gates release a wide AoE throughout the arena, but their lines are invisible and must be visible visually.
If there are two sets of two gates around the arena, you can avoid them by standing in the middle.
If there are two sets of two gates, one on each side of the arena, you can stand in the corner next to one of the gates as they will hit the center.
If the double has been pre-started, you need to block the line of sight of each gate with an indestructible meteorite and rotate inside the arena when each gate is triggered.
Finally, if he pre-doubles, two sets of four gates will appear, one on each side of the arena.
Again, they will explode in the order they appear, so stand in the center and move toward the exploded gate.
Meteors and Other Moves
Hermes creates Meteors which appear four in each corner of the arena, each with an approach marker.
True Aero will cast an AoE line for the entire party, but make sure no one overlaps each other, as the damage will be more significant.
If you activate the double beforehand, the second line’s AoE will trigger immediately afterward, which can be avoided by dodging to the side.
True Aero II is a melee AoE on all party members, with a pinkish-purple circular AoE around you.
If you cast Quadruple beforehand, another AoE will trigger right after, but this can be avoided by running through it.
One more thing: Hermes can buff damage with True Bravery, which you can intercept with Interject or Head Graze.
Beating Lyssa will reward you with Lv. 542 Ktiseos Boots, Bracelet, Greaves, Mask, Petasos, Ring and Sabatons for your job.
After you beat Ladon, you’ll get Lv. 542 Ktiseos Bottoms, Choker, Earrings, Gloves, and Hose. Trousers/Skirt, and Vambraces for your job.
Upon defeating Hermes, you’ll earn the Caduceus minion, a Lv. 542 Blade, Cane, or Chakram, as well as a Coat.
Hermes FFXIV Guide: FAQs
Question: Wait, so who are Amon and Fandaniel?
Short Answer: Hermes.
Long, complicated answer: As he spirals into his more destructive self, Hermes shifts into his more destructive versions: Fandaniel and Amon.
Question: Where is Hermes in Final Fantasy XIV?
Answer: Hermes can be found in Elpis. You’ll get to face him during the Lv. 87 quest “Caging the Messenger.”
Question: How hard is it to get the Caduceus minion in Ktisis Hyperboreia?
Answer: The drop rate for the Caduceus minion is less than 1%. Suffice it to say, it’s a hard minion to get. I’ve done over 100 runs in Ktisis Hyperboreia and I still haven’t managed to get it. Fingers crossed for the next duty roulette!
I love Square Enix as much as the next guy, but let’s not fool ourselves: their villain design can be a hit or miss.
You could get a solid, iconic Sephiroth, which any gamer can recognize at first glance or a bland, forgettable antagonist like Final Fantasy XII’s Vayne Solidor.
Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker is the grand finale of a whole decade of hard work that brings to an excellent conclusion one of the fascinating stories ever written for a videogame. And Hermes is an incredibly compelling character and a well-written villain that adds to that perfect ending.