When Final Fantasy XIV’s 5.35 patch arrived this week, the hardcore XIV players on the Massively OP team had very mixed reactions. One triumphed in the guild land rush; one did not. I don’t like seeing our writers – or any MMO players -that glum. It burns me up that a game as huge as popular and rich as FFXIV is still making huge unforced errors like letting housing land rushes happen.
And it is an unforced error. As I am fond of arguing, the first land rush I ever saw was in Ultima Online over two decades ago. It was stupid. It was unnecessary. It caused actual in-game wars and ragequits. And over time, the five-person team over at Broadsword learned from the game’s many lessons; the last housing land to open up in the game was set up with a combination auction and lottery that allowed people to bid on the housing plots. Nobody had to get up at the crack of dawn for a land rush, botters and scripters didn’t grab everything before you could blink, poorer players still had a chance at property, and as a bonus, it even worked as a gold sink!
It seems bizarre to me that it’s 2020 and a “big five” MMORPG is not doing what a tiny antique pulled off years ago. Surely Square-Enix has sufficient resources to fix this problem.
Isn’t it time to put an end to land rushes in MMORPGs? What would you prefer studios do when new housing or land or property opens in the game?