Final Fantasy XIV’s Naoki Yoshida addresses the ‘staggering and unexpected’ player population explosion and asks for patience

    
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Feelings felt

Everyone’s eager to play Final Fantasy XIV’s new expansion, and that’s why the servers are full. You know, despite the fact that the expansion in question isn’t releasing until November and it’s currently July. Producer and director Naoki Yoshida has reached out to the FFXIV community explaining the limitations that the team is working around at the moment when it comes to server capacity while apologizing for the impact that the game’s surge in popularity is having on logging in.

The short version is that the developers are very aware of the influx of players, but plans for new servers and potential server upgrades are currently hamstrung by the global shortage of computer supplies and the realities of traveling and working around the world while also dealing with the worldwide pandemic. Patience is asked for as the team does its best to facilitate the unexpected population growth, with the AFK timer added in the most recent patch hopefully aiding in the goal of reducing congestion. The letter won’t address long login times by itself, but hopefully the explanations and apologies will at least mollify fans irritated at the wait.

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Ben Stone

To be fair, if you haven’t played FFXIV before it will take from now until November to get through the gross compulsory ARR storyline.

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David Goodman

I think the more important discussion to have is how to make the players feel welcome and have a good experience.

In my time playing, I have had nothing but great dungeon and instance runs — In 80 levels and throughout all of the main story quest up until (estimate) mid-Shadowbringers, I have had exactly ONE trial group that broke up after one wipe, every other group has been at worst, neutral, and at best, talkative and friendly.

And that’s probably the best and biggest difference from WoW that the game has.

That and fat chocobos. Love me the horse-birds.

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styopa

WoW Refugee Camps, perhaps?
I’d be curious to see demographic data on the influx: what races are they playing, what classes are they settling into for their first long climb?

I have to admit, Yoshi is the one dev that comments publicly that I really feel in my bones that he sincerely cares about the players and their experiences. I’m sure there are a lot of other devs at other games that do to, mind you, but generally they tend to be filtered/fenced by the talking heads and corporate marketing wonks.
He seems to have the privilege to both be in a position of unassailable authority AND care…that’s rare.

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Danny Smith

I’ve noticed the wowfugees are leaning heavily to Hyur and Hrothgar Marauder, Thuamaturge and Archer whereas most FF series fans i know lean to Lancer, Conjurer or Arcanist. No doubt because they know that Dragoon, White Mage and Summoner aesthetic is waiting for them.

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cursedseishi

Or because Series fans know in the MMO it’s either be ‘The Floor Tank’, or the ‘Ones Who Raises them’!

And I say that as someone who is totally not a Dragoon Main at all, and has definitely not used Elusive Jump one too many times and suffered as a result of it…

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Danny Smith

Yeah i prefer Res Mage. Someones got to make sure those alliance raids finish after all!

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Bryan Correll

“And suddenly, Yoshi felt just like a hot chick on Tinder…..”

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Jeremy Barnes

I appreciate that he didn’t do the “It’s a DDOS attack” silliness we see a lot of devs do..all these random IPs are trying to connect to us and when they can’t…they just keep trying! DDOS!!

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Ruby Lancer

Mostly because what we’ve been dealing with wasn’t that. Its not that people can’t connect to the game, its more that the number of people playing the game, especially at prime time, has reached a critical mass where the servers are locking themselves down to new characters and causing queue times at a point in a game cycle where you wouldn’t normally be seeing such.

All this has, in turn, made people a bit irate that they’re having to wait in a queue to log into a game that is, by all rights, hitting a content lull.

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Jeremy Barnes

ok, that’s nice, but I’m poking fun at all the games that have a bunch of players trying to access their game and confuse it for a DDOS attack.

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Ben Stone

Its quite easy to arrange DDOS attacks though, so I wouldn’t even put it past Corporate espionage for existing MMOs or other MMOs in development to be arranging against newly released games.

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Jeremy Barnes

Sigh, yes, it’s likely there are DDOS attacks.

It’s unlikely that the game is suffering downtime, server outages, etc, etc because of them.

It would take a massive, massive DDOS attack for modern data centers to not be able to deal with it with minimal noticeable effects.

So while I’m sure you have a very good understanding of what it takes to arrange a DDOS attack on that level, I have my doubts that level of attack is occurring.

The much more likely scenarios are the developer misunderstands and would like for DDOS attacks to be the reason over the “there’s just a lot of people trying to access the game that we can’t handle” or the 3rd party data center sees a massive spike of traffic from random IPs causing problems/repeatedly connecting after disconnect and doesn’t understand MMOs so says it’s a DDOS attack to the developers.

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uplinknetwork

None of the big developer studios are releasing numbers on player population. On the internet anyone can say anything. How do we as players know for sure there is a huge explosion of players? There are other games that have recently claimed that the game populations have blown up. I think its another $$$ trick.

Game are dying faster than they are being born.

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Danny Smith

Because the servers are literally full and you can’t make new characters, they even stopped selling the game because theres simply no room left.

Kind of hard to be a “$$$ trick” when you actually tell people they can’t give you their money.

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Toy Clown

Adding to what Danny Smith replied, they also aren’t allowing free trial players to queue with the servers being full, giving queue status to subscription players only. Yoshi-P released news that they were able to upgrade US servers and were in the process of adding EU ones to help raise the caps, but the pandemic caused delays. They’re also adding an Oceanic region soon.

So yeah… the game population is exploding, felt by everyone currently playing the game.

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Jeremy Barnes

Get the help you need.

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Rndomuser

How do we as players know for sure there is a huge explosion of players?

Game are dying faster than they are being born.

Poor trolling attempt, 0/10.

servers.PNG
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Bruno Brito

I think its another $$$ trick.

Coming from an RMT shill, that’s fucking rich.

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Nathan Aldana

sure, you keep telling yourself that while we guys in the game watch limsa have a few hundreds sprouts running about all night.

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Utakata

You almost sound like one of those Senators who think the the pandemic is just a hoax…

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Danny Smith

What happens when the giant of a genre starts a catastrophic user freefall and other companies aren’t prepared nor expecting the influx.

Personally i’m glad the afk thing is in. Seeing the erp baiting “slutglamour” afkers that famously run alt accounts afk at the limsa aethyrite all day every day like Goldshire Inn Cumbrains just taking up slots from sprouts that just want to play the game for the first time always rubbed me the wrong way.

Like, Blamung exists for that yknow?

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Jeremy Barnes

I will miss the dancing lalas always being present in limsa on Malboro. It was nice to know they were always there 24 hours a day.

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Rndomuser

Seeing the erp baiting “slutglamour” afkers that famously run alt accounts afk at the limsa aethyrite all day every day

I loved seeing those, it made the game feel more “Massively” for me (even if they were AFK), and also gave me idea for my own glam combos.

As for “people taking up spots” – Square Enix should’ve started by temporarily banning each and every player in game who did nothing except following popular streamer in game for hours, starting with lvl80 players, regardless if streamers themselves want that or not. I’ve seen dozens of them doing that, much more than few people who AFK at Limsa.

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David Goodman

I’m neutral on it; I liked the glamour / posers and dances, but i also like not having a 100+ deep queue.

And the new players are making even my DPS queues pretty fast :)

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Greaterdivinity

I’ve enjoyed all the “Suffering from Success” jokes. YoshiP “playing” (because I don’t think he’s “playing” anything actually) the long game and coming up Millhouse.

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Eliandal

My only problem is.. patience.. wearing thin? We were told to have patience a couple of years ago with the original housing .. uproar.. and well – THAT certainly isn’t going to get better with Asmongold and crew jumping on board ;P

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Nathan Aldana

as he points out in the post, theyve been trying to get more server blades, but as with basically all other electronics on earth, theres kinda a semiconductor shortage.

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Schmidt.Capela

The housing issue isn’t about hardware capacity, but rather a design choice, though. The devs want good houses to be scarce, the stuff you envy other players for having.

Which, incidentally, is part of the reason I don’t play FFXIV despite loving much of what the game does. I don’t want to compete with other players for housing, so unless they implement apartments (i.e., fully instanced and unlimited housing) with every desirable amenity of the best houses, such as gardening and chocobo raising, then I will keep seeing the game’s housing as a negative rather than a positive.