final fantasy xiv

Play Final Fantasy XIV
Official Site: Final Fantasy XIV
Studio: Square Enix
Launch Date: September 30, 2010; relaunched August 27, 2013
Genre: Fantasy Hybrid Themepark
Business Model: Subscription (Cash Shop)
Platform: PC, PS3, PS4

Massively OP Podcast Episode 48: Blade & Soul runner

The big news this week is Blade & Soul’s long-awaited western release, and you can bet that Bree and Justin are going to be talking about jiggle physics, wuxia movement, and awesome character creators on today’s show. Does this mark the beginning of a promising 2016?

It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.

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Wisdom of Nym: Potential jobs for the next Final Fantasy XIV expansion

We’re going to be hearing about the next expansion to Final Fantasy XIV in… several months, actually. We’re in no kind of rush here. But I promised last week that we’d be continuing on the speculation train this time around, and even if I hadn’t promised it, I would still be eager to do so. I like speculation about this sort of thing, and the fact is that we have a wide-open field of things to speculate upon for the next expansion vis-a-vis jobs.

I see three likely possibilities for the next expansion, but I can’t list all of the possibilities for the next job. There are countless options. A quick glance at the history of the series reveals countless possible jobs, and that’s assuming that the next set of jobs is something entirely predictable rather than something totally out of left field, which it completely could be. We could get a job none of us have ever heard of, and it would make perfect sense.

So let’s talk about what I see as the most likely possibilities, and we’ll move forward from there.

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One Shots: The zen of jumping puzzles

Even my most casual acquaintance will always know two things about me: that I have more hair than is healthy for a human male and that I hate jumping puzzles to the core of my being. It’s probably a good thing that there are players like reader Matt, then, otherwise jumping puzzle designers would be out of a job and ostracized from society in less than a week.

“I love it when I find random things hidden in the world,” Matt writes. “I stumbled upon this Aetherblade headquarters and also a jumping puzzle (because I guess Aetherblade troops love to train their ability to jump?) in Gendarran Fields. It was by far the hardest jumping puzzle I had ever done in Guild Wars 2, I even raged logged out after an hour of dying, but I did complete it later that day.”

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Blade & Soul impressions from around the MMO blogosphere

It’s probably no surprise to anyone that Blade & Soul managed to rope in a lot of excited fans and curious casuals this past week. I mean, in the east it’s been a popular and successful hit, and in the west its release has been hoped for and anticipated for literally years at this point.

MMO bloggers are always on the front line of any charge into a new game release, especially with one boasting this high a profile. So I’ve been keeping track of some notable first impressions of Blade & Soul from around the blogosphere, with the end goal of sharing them with you.

So if you’re still on the fence even after reading our first impressions piece, then here are some additional perspectives, opinions, and recommendations from your fellow gamers!

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Massively Overthinking: The MMO dev brains we’d like to pick

This week’s Overthinking question comes to us from longtime Patron Roger.

“If you guys could magically open a connection to any dev team, which team would it be? I’ll assume this power includes their answering you as well.”

Sometimes we have this power already! More often than not, however, the devs are piloted by well-intentioned PR machines, and if there’s a question they don’t want to answer, they pretty much don’t have to, which is why so many MMO interviews are a waste of air and time and pixels.

I posed Roger’s question to our staff. Let’s say you have carte blanche to interrogate anyone or any team in the industry. Whom would you want to talk to, and what would you ask if you knew you could get a true and straight answer?
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Final Fantasy XIV won’t be localizing into Spanish or Portuguese

Spanish and Portuguese versions of the Final Fantasy XIV trial website had some players hoping that the game would be getting a full-blown localization treatment that would benefit Central and South American players.

Unfortunately for those hopes, Square Enix said that the effort is being limited to the website and not extended to the game itself:

We decided to localize the free trial website into Spanish and Portuguese in an effort to lower the barrier to entry for users in Latin America who may be interested in trying out the Final Fantasy XIV free trial. Localizing the website offers those users an easier way to learn about the story, world, game features, and gives them a clearer understanding on getting started in the game. We do not currently have any plans to localize the game into Spanish or Portuguese at this time.

Source: Gamer Escape

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Perfect Ten: Ten MMO tropes we don’t need in 2016 (but clearly aren’t going anywhere)

All right, we’ve had just about a month of 2016 now, and I’m writing this on my birthday. Odds are good that I’m going to be writing about MMOs for at least a little while longer now, probably through next week at least. So it would be really wonderful if all of the stuff I’m about to list could make like a tree and go away forever, erasing itself from the face of the Earth.

That will not happen, of course, because we’re about a month into the year and all of this has already happened. Again.

The odds of this year marking an improvement in the listed fields are basically nil. Nonetheless, I’m writing this list just the same, so that you all can hopefully nod in agreement, and perhaps next year we can be rid of all this nonsense. In all likelihood little to nothing is actually going to change in 2017, too, but at least if something does change, I can be happy I stood vaguely near something sort of shifting.

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Wisdom of Nym: The next stop on Final Fantasy XIV’s magical expansion tour

The next expansion for Final Fantasy XIV will be announced this year. We all know it. I suppose there’s a chance it won’t happen, that the fan festival isn’t going to contain any announcements of the sort, but only in the super-technical sense that it could happen rather than any realistic outcome. So another expansion is being revealed in nine-ish months, and that prompts the obvious question: Where are we going now?

This isn’t an idle question, either. The fact that the first expansion brought us to Ishgard meant that the entire story of the game went in a different direction than if we had gone elsewhere, focusing upon the known but somewhat intentionally vague Dragonsong War and making it the central point of the story. As we prepare for the next expansion, I can see three obvious areas that may lead us onward into the world, and each one brings with it certain assumptions and stories that we have yet to hear.

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FFXIV’s Yoshida remarks on the death of voice actress Sian Blake

Final Fantasy XIV Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida officially commented on the murder of actress Sian Blake, who voiced Yugiri Mistwalker in the game.

“Yesterday, I received unfortunate news from the agency of British voice talent Sian Blake confirming the passing of Sian and her two children,” Yoshida said. “Sian was a gifted actress, her masterful portrayal of Yugiri leaving a lasting impression amongst our fans. I had hoped she would be with us for many more performances to come. I am deeply saddened by this tragedy and offer to Sian and her children my sincerest prayers.”

The English localization team extended its condolences as well. Players have held vigils for Blake in the game over the past week, while the murder suspect, her boyfriend, awaits extradition from Ghana back to England.

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The Realm’s creator wants to remake this 20-year-old MMO

MMO veterans might be familiar with The Realm (also known as The Realm Online), which was one of the first class of graphical online RPGs. While it’s been trucking along since 1996, creator Stephen Nichols accused the current owners of letting The Realm lapse into “deep neglect” and wants to remake the game for modern sensibilities.

“2016 marks the 20-year anniversary of The Realm Online,” Nichols posted. “If you’re like me, you miss seeing the game thrive and grow as you know it can. I think it’s time for a remake of this internet classic with a fresh coat of paint and updated technology. Perhaps you agree. Yes, it’s time for a Realm remake, and I’m gonna make it happen.”

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Global Chat: Making gaming resolutions

Do you make New Year’s resolutions for gaming? I do and I’ve seen more than a few bloggers come out in early January to announce what they want to do with the year. Take for instance Telwyn, who has quite the laundry list of to-dos for 2016.

“Thinking back on my first impressions of Trove and also the time I’ve spent in EverQuest II recently, I really should give housing some attention this year,” Telwyn writes. “Rather than just plonking items down in my shadowknight’s house where there happens to be space, I want to take a play-session or two to actually decorate the Kromzek Keep I bought using the daily quest tokens. That place is enormous and could accommodate a more logical and artistic arrangement of all the various zone rewards I’ve accumulated.”

What are your resolutions? Hopefully one of them is to check out some of these great blog posts, which include a couple of first impressions piece, a look at a popular emulator, 2015 game awards, and more!

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Massively OP Podcast Episode 46: The high price of VR

Would Bree or Justin spend $600 on an Oculus Rift? Probably not in this universe, but it certainly won’t stop them from talking about this new VR platform and its implications for MMOs. Is virtual reality the future of the online RPG genre or merely a fad?

It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.

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Final Fantasy XIV releases full Heavensward soundtrack next month

Final Fantasy XIV’s soundtrack has been often cited as a favorite element of the MMO and has grown significantly since its initial 1.0 release. With the addition of last year’s Heavensward expansion, the score welcomed a host of new tracks into its library, and soon fans will be able to purchase and listen to it outside of the game.

On February 24th Square Enix will begin selling the Heavensward OST through its FFXIV soundtrack portal. The album will be sold on a blu-ray disc and contain over 60 tracks from the game’s 3.0 and 3.1 patches. If FFXIV’s other soundtrack blu-ray releases are any indication, owners will be able to easily extract MP3s from the disc for use.

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