Final Fantasy XIV ends its simultaneous logouts

A little under two weeks ago, Final Fantasy XIV announced that the game would log everyone off of the servers once per day. Players were up in arms almost immediately about the measure, emphatically stating that it would have no effect and would punish those trying to play the game. As of today, the developers have announced that the measure will no longer be in place, with the developers continuing to monitor the situation and making sure it doesn’t become necessary again.

So why the change? Well, because it worked; people are logging on and off normally and queue times are moving appropriately, thus removing the previous reason to kick people off of the server. The previous post addressed the original reasons behind the measures, but as queue times on even the most populated servers seem to have been reduced significantly, it looks like it’s back to normal operations in Eorzea once again.

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14 Comments on "Final Fantasy XIV ends its simultaneous logouts"

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Duane Kinney

Praise Hydalen!

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kanbe

Hey maybe now I can finally play. I’ve had horrible timing with this and it’s just kept me away from the game for now. I don’t want to deal with getting on only to he forcibly logged out:D

bereman99
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bereman99

Kind of funny that this solution, which was of the “we need an immediate fix for this issue and this is simplest and quickest to implement with an overall very low impact on players” (really, the amount of time spent logged off for this is less than the maintenance time it would have taken to implement and patch in a more permanent solution) actually worked…

And people still aren’t happy.

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Dread Quixadhal

You know… back in 2004, Everquest II launched with a game system that required you remain online and AFK. Their market system’s first incarnation forced you to sit in your inn room and leave your market board interface open in order for anyone to buy anything from you.

As a result, there was no AFK logout system, and still isn’t to this day. How did they, 13 years ago, avoid congestion of servers? Simple… they made every zone in the game instance itself when the number of players in it got too high.

There’s really no excuse for ANY online game to have this problem. It was solved over a decade ago.

bereman99
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bereman99

I hear tech solutions are one size fits all. Confirm/deny?

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Dread Quixadhal

I bet if you ask the majority of MMO players which they’d prefer… being slightly inconvenienced by having to manually switch instances to group up with their friends, or sitting in a login queue for hours… most would probably decide that instancing break their immersion LESS than not being able to play. :)

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Greaterdivinity

Stupid, backwards, measures to address issues that shouldn’t exist in modern MMO’s. Squeenix needs a proper solution to this issue, not this kind of band-aid nonsense.

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Rheem Octuris

I don’t understand why they don’t just have a permanent 15 minute AFK logout like everyone else.

bereman99
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bereman99

They generally don’t need one except during times of heavy player concurrency, like the times around expansion launches.

But as others have noted, they currently have one implemented that some players were circumventing, and SE just chose the simplest and quickest solution (a useful choice when the solution is needed asap and not in a week or two) which overall impacted players for a fairly brief amount of time (less time than it takes for them to do a maintenance to patch the game).

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Dominick Critelli

The AFK logout is 30 minutes, but the problem is that because the way the game manages kicking. Basically, when you’re AFK too long the game executes an invisible logout command…problem is, commands are disabled when characters are doing certain things. In a vendor, at the FC Chest, talking to a retainer, etc. Basically anything that removes your ability to move, and “locks” you in place, is considered an active menu. The end result is that you can AFK at these spots indefinitely, and the game will only attempt to issue the command once every 30 minutes.

You can actually see it happen, too. If you’re AFK for too long in a menu and you hit that 30 minute mark, you’ll get a red text prompt across the screen for a moment that says “That Command cannot be used right now.”

When the game launched and the congested servers had multi-hour queues, this led to most people logging in in the morning and AFKing at a safe spot all day, which just made the queues worse because in the system’s eye, there weren’t enough people logging off to make room for new people, even though the people who were idling weren’t actually doing anything. Couple that with the DDOS, which led Square to reduce the volume of players the system let in at a time, and the queues became massive at primetime. Easily three to four hours to get in if you weren’t already.

As such, you couldn’t really blame people for wanting to bypass the system, especially since people with less than stellar internet were still regularly getting error 90k’d at random, so it was either AFK to cheat the system, or potentially not play the game they paid for for weeks, since they wouldn’t be able to log in when they were actually able to be at their console or computer; and even doing this wasn’t a guarantee the server wouldn’t just arbitrarily decide to kick them off and they’d be out of the game the entire evening. Still, the forced auto-logouts put a stop to the problem, so anyone who is still trying to afk up until now was just being a bit of a dick.

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Rheem Octuris

In that case they need to close active windows at the 29 minute mark to fix this. Or something. It seems silly that the devs would let their own game get in the way of disconnecting people. Booting them should be done from the server, not the client.

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Dominick Critelli

Yeah I dunno what to say there, the tech behind XIV has always been weird. Most of the issues I chalk up to the way the game has to focus on Playstation support, but in this issue I find it hard to imagine that the way the menus are configured has to do with the fact the game is on a console.

This issue has been in since 2.0 though so it’s unlikely we’ll ever see a fix. I’m guessing they don’t fix it because the issue is rooted deep in the game’s backend (Aside from these post-expansion launch weeks, the game doesn’t have any autokick and allows you to remain online indefinitely), but you’d ultimately have to ask the team about that.

Either way the queues issue is fixed now, so it’s a moot point.

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Tanek

Looks like they do have an AFK timer, people were just getting around it.

From the previous MOP post on the issue:

Some players have been bypassing this by logging in, starting a craft or opening a dialogue window, and then walking away; it prevents the AFK timer from logging your character off while also ensuring that you bypass the queues.

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Rheem Octuris

Except I couldn’t join my friends server because its too full.

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