Final Fantasy 14 Launches Two-Week Free Trials

By Alice O'Connor on August 1st, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

Hey, it's one of those bird things which seem to be the centre of the Final Fantasy universes!

Final Fantasy 14 is pretty good since rebooting under the subtitle A Realm Reborn, They tell me. It’s got quests, They say, and monsters and numbers and treasure and all that MMORPG stuff, and colours too. Something like that, anyway. But I don’t know, and if you don’t know either, perhaps we can all find out together. See, Square Enix are launching fourteen-day trials, ooh, any second now.

If you want in, trials have opened this very minute so you can download the installer and start questing. Terms and conditions, of course, apply.

Trial accounts face restrictions including a level cap of 20, only eight character slots, fewer chat options, no trading, being limited to only joining parties not forming them, and more. It’s a combination of limits intended to thwart gold farmers and to make frustrate players just enough to want to give Square Enix money for more. You’ll also need to create a new account if you’ve played the beta or had a bash at the trial before, as it’s intended only for new-new players.

Two weeks and level 20 won’t show you what the end-game looks like, but should broadly introduce its main systems and give a feel for it. To turn trials into subscriptions, Squeenix today also launched a ‘recruit a friend‘ campaign, offering shiny things if subscribers get a chum to join up. I imagine this means yer pals will bug you to sign up saying you’ll love it, you’ll really love it, oh, you’ll be best Fantasy friends forever, so they can get to ride a special bird.

If you find moving pictures exciting, here, a trailer about the update released a few weeks ago:

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24 Comments »

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  1. rpsKman says:

    Big download, here I come. Haven’t touched these things since FF12.

  2. Awesomeclaw says:

    This kept me entertained for the month of game time I bought last time it was on sale but I sensed it becoming kind of grindy after that and stopped (although I also had the problem that most of my guildmates were at the endgame content and I was less than halfway there by the end of the month). It’s got quite a lot going on and it’s certainly not bad, so it’s worth checking out.

    • Philomelle says:

      I wouldn’t call it grindy because you do get numerous options for how to proceed. Between new dungeons every other quest, the hunting logs, Guildleves and the main questline, you will have piles upon piles of EXP without ever needing to do the same thing repeatedly.

      It is slow-paced though, especially if you seek to do gathering and crafting on the side. Those parts can take some time if you don’t funnel your Leve allowances into them, with Mining being the only time when I did feel like I was grinding.

      • Xerophyte says:

        It’s a diku mmo. It’s a pretty damned good diku mmo, with final fantasy music, a excellent little crafting minigame and an eye for approachability — but this is a genre that involves a lot of running around clicking on people and being asked to fetch their slippers (or at least murder their aunt who stole their slippers) in order to have a bar go up so a number goes up that lets you fetch larger slippers (and murder larger aunts) so you can have more bars go up and aaaaahhhh it never ends make it stop.

        I like the genre and I like FF14, but I will give it “grindy” as a valid negative response one might have.

        • Vin_Howard says:

          I really wish MMORPG’s would get past this “lev for the sake of leving in a new area” and “getting gear for the sake of getting gear with slightly better stats” thing already. What I really like about the MMORPG is that instead of that, it deploys a “revolutionary” system of “Here’s a game world. Have fun.” No lev restrictions (game is more gear [which don’t have lev restrictions] and the game is more skill centered), no class restrictions (you have free access to all the classes at all times), and a good variety of ways to play the game. The main goal is quite literally just to have fun doing what YOU want to do.

          • Xerophyte says:

            The main goal in real-life is to have fun doing the things we want to do, at least for most of us fortunate enough to be able to read frivolous website comments with some regularity. It turns out that the thing we do for fun when given our druthers is play video games in which we have massively less freedom to do anything we want than we do in reality.

            This is not somehow a bad thing. Freedom is healthy in reality but dreadfully, achingly dull. Games are fortunately not about freedom. Games are about constraint, about reducing choices down to a bare handful of (one hopes) meaningful ones, limiting our experience of their world to a few simple rules that we can grasp and explore. Some of those choices are sublime, some are banal. Do you move the rook or the pawn? Do you burn the kittens or donate them to lonely orphans? Do you shoot the man with your gun or with your other gun?

            Games also aren’t about unlimited creativity. We already have unlimited creativity, but creating something meaningful is a dull chore that we’d rather avoid. Minecraft is widely held to be one of the more creative games of recent years. It offers considerably less freedom to create things than, say, Blender does, which is why people don’t find it a chore. Anyone can make things in Minecraft, because Minecraft constrains creativity and boils creativity down to the point where anyone can make things.

            So it goes for MMOs, and RPGs in general: they work because they start small and offer a system so simple that anyone (more or less) can play them. Players progress from simplicity to mastery and the game world is built to reflect that which is why they’re fun (for many of us, anyhow) to explore. Eve is widely held to be permissive to the point of serious confusion but it doesn’t drop players on Jita with a few billion credits and all the ships in the game; that would be frustrating. Final Fantasy 14 doesn’t give you all jobs at 50 and tell players to go do anything, because if they went and did something they would find that they were crap at it and then go play some other game that did a better job of explaining itself.

            To summarize my meandering argument as pretentiously as I can: we didn’t enjoy the sandbox when we were children because we could do whatever we wanted. We enjoyed the sandbox because the only thing we had in the sandbox was sand, and sand was something we could grasp.

            Fake edit: Y’know, RPS really should make the comment field wider if they want to nest the damned thing to this degree. Someone might want to pontificate on the nature of freedom for 4 and a bit paragraphs and that might seem a bit cramped as is…

          • effervescent says:

            It seems you’re kind of talking about The Secret World.
            One time buy, subscription free. But you should watch some gameplay first.

  3. Sakkura says:

    A week ago, a free trial event was announced for Wildstar. Maybe this is in response? Or maybe it’s just a sign that gamers are beginning to trickle back from their summer vacations and the MMO publishers are eager to sink their teeth into new prey.

  4. int says:

    Huh. Apparently I can’t activate the trial on my account, maybe because I played the beta?

    I get this:
    “Square Enix accounts that have already registered for a FINAL FANTASY XIV service account are not eligible for a free trial.

    Please log in using a Square Enix account that has not registered a FINAL FANTASY XIV service account.”

    • Premium User Badge

      J. Cosmo Cohen says:

      That’s disappointing. I was in the beta too, although I barely played — bad timing or something I can’t recall. Anyway, I guess I’ll keep hoping it goes free-to-play someday, or at least cut the monthly sub.

    • Alice O'Connor says:

      I don’t want to suggest for a second that you cheat the nice people at Square Enix, but you could create a new account.

  5. Antorus says:

    THAT BEARD THO

  6. Karmik says:

    I can’t log in, even straight after resetting my my password…aaargghhh!!

  7. Wolvaroo says:

    I’ve been enjoying it for over a year now. If anyone has any questions or wants a friend invite or help in-game let me know.

  8. trjp says:

    So I register for a new account because it says my old one (for the original FF MMO) is ‘ineligible’ – no confirmation email – so I register AGAIN – no confirmation email – AGAIN (different email) – confirmation email received.

    “The download may take a new minutes”

    11Gb

    Off out with the dogs then!

    • trjp says:

      Dogs walked – still lots of downloading to do

      Maybe I’ll try that Royal Quest thing on Steam that everyone is enraged about ;0

      • rpsKman says:

        In the time it took them to make that game twice, they could have made a proper Final Fantasy for PC. It looks gorgeous, seems like there are tons of areas, features and stuff. But I don’t care about any of it. ;_;

  9. RPSDwarf says:

    I’m recruiting players for the EU version under the “Recruit a Friend program”. Send me an e-mail address and I’ll invite you to try the game.

  10. iv says:

    Suggestion! Could you not link directly to an exe file? I always click on those on my Mac and end up disappointed.

  11. DelrueOfDetroit says:

    I played this for maybe two months until I realized how much bloody grinding I had ahead of me. MMOs aren’t for me.

    Still seemed really cool. It’s hard to take the little guys seriously when they talk like babies.

  12. 7vincent7black7 says:

    Two things are driving me up a wall and nearly driving me insane after 5 minutes…the background music, and lack of voice acting whatsoever. They complement each other in making me feel claustrophobic in an ocean of nothing but dramatic instrumental music, and no talking whatsoever. And there is no one to text chat with at all. No one is chatting in the chat boxes.

    • Wolvaroo says:

      Most of the game’s voice acting got cut in the transition from 1.0 to 2.0, but most of the main story line is still voiced.

      As for people not chatting much in open world, I find that is usually the norm. With FC chat and up to 7 Linkshells going on most players can barely keep up with all their chats as is.