Video Game: Final Fantasy XIV

From the flames of Destruction, A new Beginning rises...
"War born of strife, these trials persuade us not. (Feel what? Learn what?)
Words without sound, these lies betray our thoughts.
Mired by a plague of doubt, the Land, she mourns. (See what? Hear what?)
Judgement binds all we hold to a memory of scorn.
Tell us why, given Life, we are meant to die, helpless in our cries?"
— Lyrics from "Answers"

Final Fantasy XIV is the fourteenth game in the groin-grabbingly popular Final Fantasy series. It is an MMORPG, similar to Final Fantasy XI, and was timed exclusively to the PC in its first release, and was a simultaneous PC & PS3 release in its second iteration (see below). In both its 2010 and 2013 releases, it had both a Standard and a Collector's Edition, whose buyers were able to start the game 8 days early (in the 1.0 CE's case), get exclusive in-game items, a themed journal (in 1.0) or an artbook (2.0), and some other bells and whistles.

The game is set in the Eorzea region of the planet Hydaelyn. Before the start of the game, the Steam Punk Garlean Empire had set to use their overwhelming military force to attempt to conquer Eorzea, starting with the city-state of Ala Mhigo. The remaining four city-states- Limsa Lominsa, Ul'dah, Gridania and Ishgard- militarized to meet this threat, but before another shot was fired the Garleans mysteriously halted their advance, leaving the city-states with a large armed force and nothing to really fight against. The cities thus banded together in an uneasy peace, forming the Adventurers' Guild to employ these new mercenaries and investigate the secrets behind the Empire's sudden invasion and retreat.

The game was initially met with mixed-to-bad reactions from players and reviewers alike, citing numerous glitches and bugs, poorly implemented features and an unbalanced in-game economy as the game's main problems. Square Enix responded by apologizing for the state of the game, and replaced several key members of the development team. The new development team has greatly overhauled the game, addressing many of its original flaws.

The new version, called Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, brought about sweeping changes by rebuilding the world and engine from the ground up. Set five years after the climax of the original game, the world has entered the "Seventh Umbral Era": a period of decline brought about by the fall of the lesser moon Dalamud and the ensuing rampage of the ancient Primal Bahamut. The people of Eorzea have survived thanks to the "Warriors of Light", but for some reason no-one can remember exactly how they were saved or who the Warriors even are. With the aid of the three Grand Companies and the enigmatic "Scions of the Seventh Dawn", a new generation of adventurers must rise to take on this brave new world, fighting not only the rallying beastman hordes and the looming Garlean Empire, but a dark sect of masked sorcerers whose origins may be deeply rooted in Hydaelyn's history.

A PlayStation 3 version, originally scheduled for a March 2011 release and initially put on indefinite hold, was finally released alongside the Realm Reborn client in August 2013. An Xbox 360 version was also in development, but has been canceled after they failed to come to an agreement with Xbox Live and Microsoft. The PlayStation 4 version was announced in E3 2013 and was released in April 2014. A Play Station Vita version has also been confirmed, along with a smartphone app called Libra Eorzea that will allow you to manage aspects of your character offline. Talks are still ongoing with Microsoft and there is potential for an Xbox One version.note 

The hype for A Realm Reborn was severely underestimated by Square-Enix, who were forced to pull the digital copy of the game after their servers choked from the sheer influx of new players attempting to log in. After improving the capacity of their servers, they began to ease back the restrictions and gave everyone one week of free play as way of apology. Even to this day, many servers remain character-creation-locked during their "prime-time" hours, in an attempt to keep server populations relatively even, due to the sheer number of new people still joining the game.

The first major expansion to the game, Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward, is set for June 23rd (initially stated for a Spring 2015 release, but was delayed in order to polish the content), sending players off to the formerly closed off country of Ishgard, home of the Dragoons, as well as the lands of Ishgard's long-time draconic opponent, Dravania, and the story shall detail the fierce war between humanity and dragonkind that has been raging in Eorzea's north for centuries. The expansion will include flying mounts (much like those in World of Warcraft) as well as the introduction of a new playable race known as the Au Ra (of which the ninja Yugiri is a part of) and three new classes that start at level 30 as full jobs, the classic Dark Knight, stargazing Astrologians, and gun and machine-wielding Machinists.

Archives of cutscenes from the first version of the game exist on Youtube (such as this one), and much of the text is preserved on various wikis; none of it may be found any longer in game. An excellent video with a condensed summary of 1.0's lore may be found here.


This game provides examples of:


What the kupo do you think you're doing?!