Interview Final Fantasy XIV: Esprit Macro Dance Troupe
If you’ve played Final Fantasy 14 before, you’re probably familiar with the concept of the macro system – automated commands you can create to trigger various actions with the push of a button. You will also be hard pressed not to have noticed the many, numerous Dance emotes available, as you will often encounter players boogeying everywhere from city streets to races in the middle of dungeons. But have you ever heard of Macro Dance? This combines the use of the macro system with various emotes and work actions to create a choreographed dance-like performance.
âThe work of Macro Dance itself requires us to listen to the same song over and over again about 50 times or more,â says Ahro’zi Zhimsa, the founder of macro dance troupe Esprit. âWe use the in-game vanilla macro system and time all of our emoticons and work actions at certain points in the song.
âI’ve seen a lot of people say we’re using third-party software and that would definitely make it easier! But no, this is a time consuming and time consuming macro write. Adjusting schedules to be fair can take anywhere from two hours to several weeks. Also, FF14 macros only have 15 lines in a single macro, so I would say we use an average of six to eight macros per song, but there are some that use a lot more!
Ahro is a pro of the Macro Dance community in Final Fantasy 14. He has been practicing macro dance for almost two years and has been part of more than one troupe, most notable being Tech Step, a famous Macro Dance group that s ‘was dissolved earlier in the year.
Several Tech Step alumni have come together to form Esprit, the spiritual successor to Tech Step, and they are already back in action to wow crowds across Eorzea. This new troop was only formed last month and includes a mix of veterans and fresh-faced members, with the intention of using their platform to share their passion with the community and teach others the joys of macro dance.
âIt’s a community and a resource for the entire dance community, and I hope to make it a place where everyone feels welcome and at home,â says Ahro. âA place where all of these creative and amazing people can come together to create whatever their imaginations can come up with. It’s my passion to teach people how to do what we do and to allow everyone to focus only on the performance side, while my team and I take care of the technical and logistical side.
âWorking within the limits of the game like we do can be a double-edged sword as you just have to make do with the tools the game gives you, but it’s also a great way to make performance accessible to everyone. horizons. of life. We have members of Spirit who would be totally incapable of doing something like this in real life, and we have others who come from all kinds of dance, theater, and performance fields who like to have it like. outlet. It was like something a lot of people needed when the pandemic hit and suddenly everyone was stuck inside. I think everyone needs a creative outlet, and our community does. ”
To celebrate the in-game marriage of Rich Campbell and Booba Campbell, Esprit performed at The Rich Kids FC house in Midgardormr and I was fortunate to secure a front row seat. I’m no stranger to Macro Dance – loved Tech Step’s creative performances – and although I knew the show would be unforgettable, I’ve always been blown away by the attention to detail. Esprit not only successfully continued Tech Step’s legacy of amazing performance, but also raised the bar.
Esprit shares a preset playlist with the audience before the show starts, so you need to mute in-game sounds and music to fully enjoy each show. The panic! at the Disco and Paramore mashup Full of Ignorance was the first song to play, and it’s all too easy to admire the hard work and precision in what the troupe do. In a flash in the middle of the song, the performer donned the bright orange outfit of a convict to sell the phrase “Well, condemn me to another life,” before instantly resuming her previous costume and continuing on. routine.
It’s little details like this that make the whole show memorable for all the right reasons. Members of the feline troupe performing Everyone Wants to Be a Cat in fur-lined costumes, the astrological globe used for Fly Me to the Moon, and the perfect timing of the most impactful and showy work actions with the crescendo of songs to convey the feeling behind the lyrics. And, of course, it’s hard not to be impressed with the actors’ impeccable timing with the choreography throughout the performance, especially when they all dance in sync with each other as well as with each song.
The diverse mix of song choices means you can see a range of different dance routines, encompassing upbeat solos, touching duets, and funnier tracks like I Won’t Say I’m In Love by Disney’s Hercules. I love the latter so seeing it performed on stage was my favorite part of the show. The cast were dressed in appropriate classic Greek attire, with the person playing Megara wearing a purple gown, while the Fates were in white. The choreography featured a few hilarious little moments of emoticons to line up with the lyrics. It was a pleasure to watch and the diverse tracklist testifies to the different personalities that make up the Esprit troupe.
âI love the creative aspect of it, allowing people to express themselves in whole new ways in their favorite game,â said Ahro. âIt’s so cool to see different types of personalities writing songs. Two people could write the same song, and the vibes could be completely different due to the writing styles and I think that’s amazing. As much as the dances are the real draw, I really love the community aspect built around them and how everyone wants to work together to make something great.
âIt blew me away how positive everyone is towards us. They really love what we do and that only motivates me more to go further and better. It’s crazy that this silly little niche thing that we do for fun has an emotional connection to other FF14 players. It really makes all the work worth it.
Being able to meet amazing people and watch their performances is always a pleasure, but there was something very special about the Esprit show being on the eve of Endwalker’s maintenance. At the end of the performance, and with everyone well aware that the hours until maintenance were passing quickly, Ahro started tossing some hilarious tunes on the playlist and encouraged everyone to go on the dance floor and together we celebrated the impending launch of Endwalker.
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