One of the beautiful things about Final Fantasy 14 is you never know who you’re going to meet in-game. A quick trip to the Market Board or handing in a quest to a specific NPC can often be derailed when you spot something interesting happening nearby. A cluster of people in one place, a well-timed shout about an event, or the sound of a Bard playing music is enough to pique my curiosity and veer off-tangent to take a look.
Darian Hart is a player who often draws a crowd — pun intended — as players gather around her while she gets creative and draws (see, told you it was a pun) different Warrior of Light characters live on Twitch. Darian first started playing FF14 with the launch of A Realm Reborn in 2013 and began streaming around 2018-19. Though it began as a hobby alongside Darian’s full-time job, her streaming career de ella blossomed when she lost her job due to the pandemic.
“I’ve loved art for as long as I remember, and incorporating it within the realm of FF14, a game I absolutely adore, it was just a major bonus,” Darian tells me. “One of my old friends recommended that I give it a try, and so I did. Ideas came swirling in, and all I wanted to do was keep creating! I also encouraged a lot of other artists to give it a whirl if they wanted to. I never would have imagined all the new faces and friends I’ve met through this platform, just by drawing their characters and having fun. Learning about characters, backgrounds, and hearing all sorts of stories is literally all the fuel I need to continue bringing forth new ideas and fun! I definitely have to say that the community and friends I’ve met along the way are the biggest source of my happiness. Every person is special in their own unique way.”
Alongside her artwork, Darian is also known for her raid content and is among the first to jump into brand new Savage tiers. After finishing a tier, Darian juggles her streams of her between teaching others about Savage and Extreme content during the week, then focuses on art streams for the weekend. Raiding is arguably the hardest content to master in FF14, but Darian helps newbies to learn the basics and overcome their fear of taking part.
“The old saying ‘patience is a virtue’ is incredibly accurate,” Darian says. “Some of the best players out there don’t get to where they are without practice. This is why I say stay open-minded, and refrain from jumping to conclusions, or in other words, worry about potential failure. The truth is, you’re gonna wipe to new mechanics at times. It’s a given, and Savage raiding is all about the ‘improvise, adapt, overcome’ mentality. You need patience, not only with yourself but with the entire party you raid with.
“In the end, you won’t know for certain how exactly you’ll feel about raiding until you give it a try. Savage raiders tend to ingrain things down to muscle memory, and as soon as you develop it by grinding against the wall – you’ll be far more seasoned! Every experience when it comes to savage raiding is completely different. Your experiences are unique, and you will never know what’ll happen until you gather the confidence to put yourself out there and try. I’ve taught a lot of high-end content to people who have lacked said confidence, and they did incredibly well. It’s also so important to consider the right raiding atmosphere for you. Do what’s in your comfort zone when you first start. Find a chill, open-armed environment accepting and respectful of your first time in.”
Darian is very active in both the FF14 and streaming community. As well as becoming a part of Team Aethernet and Team XIVtuber on Twitch, she also founded Team Drifter, a group of streamers who focus on providing FF14 content to help other players and spread positivity. The team includes the likes of llamatodd, rinkarigani, angelusdemonus, rookuri, xyros, paopukomi, selene_dionne, stephofanime, davegrecoart, and tori_talks.
“We’re called Drifters because we’re always drifting in life from one place to the next, but it doesn’t matter where we’re going or what we’re doing as long as we’re together,” Darian explains. “This reflects us not only in our real daily lives, but it also affects us in the digital realm – especially in this day and age. We focus on including and helping the community in a variety of different aspects: teaching, mentoring, coaching, endgame, helping clear people through content, or even just being a source of positive entertainment! Inclusivity, and running an open-armed community is one of the best ways to remain warm and welcoming to the digital world around us.”
She’s also used her platform to raise funds for multiple charities, collaborated with many other creators, hosted in-game film events for music videos, has been sponsored by Square Enix to play various titles, and also created Carpool Jokeyokey, a podcast where she speaks to other content creators about their work and accomplishments. In short, she’s one busy
“Carpool Jokeyokey is an episode-based series that is inspired by James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke. This show is where Darian will bring in a different FF14 Creator each time and talk about their work, accomplishments, what they do, and share it with the audience in an entertaining manner. It’s an opportunity for exposure, bringing the community together, and spreading positive vibes to help get names out there.
“We literally sit in the amazing Regalia Car, and I superimpose creators to sit alongside me! We also have a fun segment in there featuring my mods and Xyros, a fellow FF14tuber – called ‘McYoshi P’s.’ It’s a drive-through full of fun and chaos, where black mages eat free.”
With Data Center Travel soon to be added to the game in Patch 1.8, Darian is looking forward to drifting over to new worlds and making new friends. With even more servers to travel to, there will be more players to meet and sketch and more content creators to play with.
Darian currently has plans to create a new music video featuring the Drifter Community for LunarCon. If you want to check out Darian’s streams from her or see what new other projects she’s working on, you can follow her from her on Twitch and Twitter.
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