Final Fantasy XIV Rebirthing Its Realm In August

By Nathan Grayson on May 24th, 2013 at 4:00 pm.

None of the things in this screen make any physical sense.

Final Fantasy’s naming scheme broke down the moment Square decided to make a second one, but that was only the beginning. Now we’re having a second go at a realm that’s a distant relative of a different realm that wasn’t supposed to be reborn 43845952 installments ago. The series has taken a long, strange road to get to this exceedingly confusing point, and the first version of Final Fantasy XIV was one of its lowest dips. To its credit, Square Enix quickly came to understand that after nobody bought it, and they’ve been hard at work on a complete revamp ever since. But were they able to salvage FFXIV’s best bits (a hyper-flexible class system, lavish story scenes, lovably fluffy horse birds) and reforge them into a sharp, sleek modern MMO? Sounds like we’ll finally (XXXVII Delta: Advent Crystal Cerberus Thunder Core) find out in August.

Looks like there won’t be any short supply of gawk-worthy eye candy, and the horse bird cavalry rides again. Also, there’ll apparently be some kind of scantily clad cat girl hot spring scene. Because Final Fantasy, I guess. That aside, this really does look like a place I’d love to obsessively explore. Towering megastructures and floating diddly bobs give the whole world this ethereal, larger-than-life feel, but each individual location seems to carry its own sense of identity. Here’s hoping it’s not just a see-through set that hits the ground with a hollow thud if you give it a little push – you know, like it was last time.

All will be revealed on August 27th, but we won’t be going in entirely blind. A Realm Reborn’s third beta phase will begin sometime next month, and it should be quite illuminating if nothing else. Have any of you participated in the other two portions?

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26 Comments »

  1. Bhazor says:

    Final Fantasy: Somehow still profitable.

    • UmmonTL says:

      Is it?

      • Moraven says:

        FF 11 (The MMO) was their most profitable game. FF13 still sold 6.6m copies. FF13-2 sold like 3.3m copies. Not sure how profitable it was since I imagine FF13 has had the highest production cost for the non MMO games.

        I think they took the risk in taking down FF14 and re-developing it despite the costs since they figure if they can make a semi decent game, their fans will come and they will make a profit on it in the long run.

  2. honky mcgee says:

    And just in time for the release of the GTX 780…how convenient. Something tells me this game is going to need quite a few pony’s to pull this cart full of code.

    • Flopper says:

      The PC version and the PS3 version have the same graphic quality. Somehow I think a 6 year old card will run this game.

      • JimmyWild says:

        I think they learned their lesson after FFXI. In FFXI the graphics were all held back by the PS2 capabilities. This time, with FFXIV, it’ll run on PS3 and lower end PC cards while people with the high end PCs wont suffer. After my time in beta i think it’s a very pretty game. And it’s fun to. :)

    • Astroman says:

      The graphics don’t look very sophisticated.

      Tiled textures, uniform lighting, basic shadows, basic atmospherics… it’s just well made using current gen tech. I’d say it’s worth getting that card for Hawken though.

      • nearly says:

        it at least has the decency to look a little bit worse when it puts the Playstation 3 logo at the bottom right corner.

  3. Aysir says:

    The beta’s been promising so far. A lot better than the first attempt – and enough there to make it stand out above the general muck of MMO’s littering the PC battlefield. The only question mark is the decision to stay with subs. Does any MMO apart from WOW still operate with just subs? seems like a barmy idea to stick with it. I can’t say I’m still not tempted, even with that caveat though.

    • aepervius says:

      The more important question for me , is are they still using that crappy escrow system where you have to use a third party, register there, and if you do not have transaction need to pay that 3rd aprty site.

      You know, instead of using CC like every MMO.

    • SwENSkE says:

      Does any MMO apart from WOW still operate with just subs?

      Sure, EVE Online for example. And it does pretty well.

  4. Famout says:

    As someone who is a part of the beta (no idea what the NDA covers to be honest) I will say while I have issues with how some of the skills work, I will say it is a vast improvement over the old. The grapics are drastically better without (pointlessly) melting a PC, it is much easier to grind, the FATE system is great for sudden fun, and across the board at the very least it is a working MMO, rather then something that is quite broken.

    Personally, what won me over was not the game, but how they treated me. A year free after it was launched, and a permanent discount/custom mounts for having played it during the awkward teen years? That earned a lot of good will from me.

    • Bhazor says:

      “Much easier to grind”

      A ringing endorsement if ever I heard one.

      • Famout says:

        Can’t tell if sarcastic….. But they have the normal methods like quests and getting into party’s for monster slaying, but also they carried over the levequest system from the old XIV letting you slay monsters for bonus EXP and loot rather then just mindless killing.

  5. Sigh says:

    I have no interest in this game (or really any Final Fantasy after I played VII when I was ~16), but that article-opening screenshot is quite evocative.

    I really love those stylized windmills, they look like something out of Settlers 7 filtered through an interesting fantasy lens. Too bad they shoved them into an MMO.

  6. RedViv says:

    I doubt that the game design can ever match up with how pretty it looks and sounds.

  7. Death Saved says:

    Is it me or did they avoid showing the crystals and anything with serious lighting on the PS3 version?

    Also i pity everyone who is gonna buy it on PS3 and then re buy it on PS4.

  8. MobileAssaultDuck says:

    An adventure into my head while reading the headline.

    “…Rebirthing…”

    “To rebirth something, wouldn’t they have to put it back in?”

    *pictures stillborn fetus being put back in*

    *pictures stillborn fetus coming back out again*

    *pictures stillborn fetus getting on a chocobo and riding away to the chocobo theme*

    Yep.

  9. Geewhizbatman says:

    Well that doesn’t make any sense. Why was that Lalafell gal on the beach not wearing an ity-bity bikini too? Because apparently that’s the only swimwear available to women across all lands. I need lore explaining how they managed to invent the coverage that seems to have eluded all other races!

    But seriously, I doubt I’d be able to get into this. I can’t quite seem to see where it is any different than any other MMO out on the market. It looks pretty standard mechanic wise. It’s artstyle has been adopted by much better MMOs like Tera. Which just leaves lore–which I guess is a big enough draw because FF(future absurd number) still seems to happen but I can’t really understand it since it has just gotten so bloated and strange to me at this point that basing a whole MMO off of lore that you would need to have followed through the ages seems like an odd move. And it certainly can’t be sexy, oddly armored ladies because Scarlet Blade is a thing now. But hey–I’m willing to keep an open mind if they suddenly start pushing their genre shattering, or even tweaking, mechanics.

  10. RProxyOnly says:

    One of the squeenix guys said that a remake of FF7 would kill the franchise, however I feel it’s the contrary. The FF games have become so bastardised and repetitive that I feel that a remake is the only thing that can SAVE it.

    FF holds absolutely no enjoyment for me any longer.. the only thing that would get me interested again is the remake of an old favourite.. but it would have to be exact, no additions and no omissions.

    • tyren says:

      The fact that they keep making sequels to the worst game in the series (besides release-state XIV) doesn’t really help.

      Sure, I’ve heard the newer XIII games are better than the first one. But who wants to slog through an entire game so they can understand what’s going on in two good sequels?

    • hitnrun says:

      “but it would have to be exact, no additions and no omissions.”

      Good luck with that. I understand they did some decent ports (albeit with gratuitous anime cutscenes and load times) of their SNES era titles to the Playstation over a decade ago, and from what I understand the Chrono Trigger port to the DS fits the bill (albeit with some bonus dungeon that wouldn’t go amiss here).

      But I think it’s more likely that the game would get the Final Fantasy Tactics treatment, which got a PSP (and now cellphone) port that replaced the (admittedly stilted) original text with this horribly verbose and pretentious word mine that reads like it was written by a 14 year old with Asperger’s and the mother of all Elizabethan playwright obsessions.

      Oh, and they changed EVERY single proper noun – name of person, place, and thing – in this most expansive legendarium the company has ever published, out of some misbegotten marriage between aforementioned Shakespearean fetish and a sock-sniffing “TECHNICALLY IN JAPANESE YOU GUYS” pointless re-phoneticization of the original English spellings.

      • tyren says:

        The GBA version of FF6 got a much better translation, though.

        For example, Vicks from the opening cutscene was changed to actually be Biggs like it was supposed to be.

        He’s standing next to a guy named Wedge and some translator somewhere STILL utterly failed to notice the Star Wars reference, I mean what the hell. That’s 90′s translation for you, I guess.

  11. strangeloup says:

    I really, really wanted to like FFXII, their first bash at an MMO. The setting and atmosphere were interesting, but it seemed to take every opportunity to go out of its way to make it a gigantic pain in the arse to play, from an utterly bizarre control scheme to having to run about like a headless chicken in the city doing fetch quests because a starting character couldn’t walk out the gate without getting murdered by the first baddie.

    Then again, this was years ago, and the game is still going, so I’ve no idea how it plays nowadays; it must be fairly popular though as I saw a new expansion turn up just recently. I hold out some hope for FFXII going free-to-play when FFXIV relaunches properly, or soon after.

  12. hitnrun says:

    I don’t mean to bash Square fans – at least not for such a harmless reason as this – but their insistence on sucking out and enjoying every theoretical smidgeon of pleasure from these two mediocre MMOs and their lament that it’s some sort of cosmic injustice that FFXIV will go unappreciated if/when Square ever releases a version of the game that is an actual unremarkable MMO “just because” of the game’s earlier incarnation as a pile of code and unplayable internet joke…is, on the whole, on of the saddest things I’ve seen across the Internets.

    Most MMOs don’t even get a *first* chance. Those that do have a half-life of approximately 7 seconds. The internet fucks and chucks these titles without remorse. The idea of one “going back to the drawing board” and “fixing its mistakes” in return for a second chance is literally, laugh-out-loud funny, at least if you’re describing the idea out loud to someone else familiar with MMOs.