Should I Stay With Papalymo or Leave? (FFXIV)

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Papalymo is one of the earliest characters we’re introduced to as burgeoning Warriors of Light. At a crucial point in XIV’s Heavensward expansion, we’re given a choice to stay with him or leave – but what does this decision actually impact?

Let me offer a spoiler-free answer first:

This decision has no impact on the story beyond this point. All it changes is a very brief scene that immediately follows the decision.

If you’re at this point in the story anxiously Googling now, don’t worry – just do what feels right for your character.

Now let’s look into a bit more detail on this.



Note: Spoilers for Final Fantasy XIV and the Heavensward expansion follow. You’ve been warned!



You might have recently hit a very dramatic point in the Heavensward story.

You might be regretting a certain decision and wondering if there’s anything you could have done differently.

Well, I have good news and bad news.

Papalymo closeup cutscene screenshot / FFXIV
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The good news is the decision was never really yours to make.

Regardless of whether you choose to stay by Papalymo’s side or leave him to his fate, the outcome is the same.

The bad news is… well, I guess that’s kind of the bad news too.

No matter what you do, Papalymo still dies.


Why Does Papalymo Sacrifice Himself?

Towards the end of the Heavensward patch content, the plot starts moving pretty heavily towards setting up for Stormblood.

Part of this is the plot by an extremist faction of the Ala Mhigan resistance, led by the mysterious Griffin.

The Griffin is revealed to be none other than Ilberd Feare, who astute players will recognize as a former ally of Alphinaud’s.

Ilberd Feare closeup cutscene screenshot / FFXIV
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Ilberd was a captain of the Crystal Braves, the Grand Company that turned against the Scions of the Seventh Dawn and framed them for the attempted murder of the Sultana of Ul’dah.

Ilberd is essentially an extremist looking to liberate his homeland of Ala Mhigo at any cost.

This fanaticism leads him to summon a Primal with the eyes of Nidhogg’s power, promising to bring a creature of unrivalled destruction into the world.

Ilberd sacrifices himself, summoning Shinryu in the process.

Papalymo steps up as a former student of Louisoix, repeating the same spell his master cast to seal Bahamut at the fabled battle of Carteneau.

If you’re unfamiliar with that particular chunk of lore, it was basically the triggering event for the cataclysm that transformed Final Fantasy XIV’s legacy version into A Realm Reborn.

A giant primal escaped containment, and Louisoix gave his life to save the world.

Papalymo is echoing what his master did way back then.

Before Papalymo casts the spell to contain Shinryu, he requests that everyone boards an airship and flees to safety.

'What will you do?' Papalymo Question in FFXIV
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Your character can then choose to stay or leave as he requests.

As we’ve covered above, this doesn’t really change too much.

But I’ll go into what it does change below. You know, for convenience!


What Happens If I Choose To Stay With Papalymo?

If you try to stay with Papalymo, he simply won’t let you.

Unfortunately there’s no way around it – he dies casting this spell, and this decision is really just to add flavor to your character.

Are you going to trust your friend to do what needs to be done, or fight against it?

If you choose to stay, Papalymo will simply use his magic to blast you to safety, and that’ll be that.


What Happens If I Leave Papalymo?

If you make the decision to leave, you’ll simply give Papalymo a sad look and a nod before running to the airship and safety.

There is no impact on the story beyond this scene alone.

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