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See: Final Fantasy XIV

Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV’s Heavensward has a release date

I’m going to be totally honest and say that I expected more revelations for PAX East for Final Fantasy XIV. Yes, I realize that at face value that may, in fact, be the dumbest possible thing I have ever said since we now know the release date will be June 23rd, and that’s kind of a big deal. But the release date was so… expected, you know? It was a reveal, but it was a known unknown and an obvious reveal to include.

Perhaps I’m just being a bit more contrary because it also means that for the first time in Final Fantasy XIV‘s history since the reboot, we actually have a dead period. Not a completely pointless period, obviously, and enough time to get your main fully kitted-out in upgraded Poetics gear and the like, but it’s still a gap. We’re expecting the last patch to drop at the end of March, and it’s going to be all over then but sifting through the pieces.

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One Shots: The face of doom

What would you do if you went up against a giant face intent on bringing forth your personal doom? I don’t know about you, but I would finally use a wizard’s staff for its clear purpose as an oversized Q-Tip and make sure that the boss’ nasal passages were cleared out. Then we would become the best of friends and would never speak of the incident again.

Reader Wolfyseyes may have gone a different way with this confrontation from Final Fantasy XIV. “During the madness of fighting the Cloud of Darkness, I managed to snag a main tank position as well as this screenshot from the fight,” he said.” Not the cleanest shot I’ve ever snagged, but certainly one of the more thematic.”

We’ve got giant heads, great pictures, and a new surprise for you after the break!

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Final Fantasy XIV’s Heavensward launches on June 23

The expansion releases on June 23rd, early access begins on June 19th, and pre-orders open up on March 16th.Since the original launch of Final Fantasy XIV, the city of Ishgard has waited, inaccessible, present, a long shadow over the entire game. When Heavensward releases, players will finally get to access the city and fly into the lands beyond.

As for what we’ll find there… well, that was the focus of the media presentation I got to take part in on Friday at this year’s PAX East. And as someone eagerly anticipating the expansion, I now feel suitably informed.

While the presentation included a lot of information that will be familiar to those avidly following the various fan festivals, there were still new pieces of information and new visuals on display. I also had a chance to speak with producer and director Naoki Yoshida regarding the expansion and what comes next for Eorzea, from the features available at launch to those planned for slightly down the road.

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Wisdom of Nym: Gold Saucer impressions in Final Fantasy XIV

After a madcap week, I got to come home to the Gold Saucer. Traveling to Seattle on short notice was a mixture of the good and the bad, and I was certainly happy to be back home, but I was all the happier when I had Final Fantasy XIV‘s den of gambling-but-not-really to look forward to upon arrival. What could be better?

Well, a system that was actually ready to account for the vast influx of people who wanted to take part in the minigames would have been a good idea, but let’s not get crazy, hmm?

Thematically, the Gold Saucer comes at a highly inappropriate time, since Eorzea is kind of tearing itself apart at the seams while people gamble ceaselessly. But it’s also something that’s both fun and almost infinitely expandable, a feature that will fit well into the game after the initial rush has worn off. So let’s take a look at the Saucer, the many games therein, and how everything shakes down on the average.

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Final Fantasy XIV has over 4 million registered accounts

“Fledgling adventurers continue to arrive in Eorzea in droves,” says Square, “and we are pleased to announce that the realm is now home to four million registered accounts.” According to Square, that number represents global registered accounts and does not include trial accounts.

To celebrate, Final Fantasy XIV is hosting a free login campaign that starts Friday, February 27th, at 3:00 a.m. EST and runs through Monday, March 9th, at 4:00 a.m. EST. You’ll need to have previously purchased and registered your copy of A Realm Reborn and have an inactive account to be eligible. Alternatively there’s a 14-day Steam demo.

The four million figure represents a healthy increase from the 2.5 million reported by Square in December, 2014.

[Source: Lodestone; thanks Kev and Wratts!]

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Global Chat: Business model first, game construction second

Welcome back to Global Chat, the column where we reach out and give props to interesting and well-written articles from the MMO blogosphere. Today we’re going to kick off with a positive piece about Crowfall, as Kill Ten Rats’ Ravious is particularly pleased with the decision to announce its business model up front.

“One of my favorite devs, Jeff Strain, wrote way back in 2007 some of the most important words for MMO creators,” Ravious posted. “He said, ‘Decide on your business model first, and then build your game around it.’ So simple.”

Was this a good move for Crowfall? Read the rest of this week’s entries and then debate it in the comments!

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Wisdom of Nym: Continuing new in Final Fantasy XIV

All right. The end of last week’s column did not, in fact, finish starting new in Final Fantasy XIV. It brought you up to the point where you could no longer really be considered starting, but there’s so much more to do. So while I could leave it there, I think we should at least learn how to unlock Jobs before the expansion.

So let’s keep rolling on, assuming that you’ve been progressing along in the main story to unlock the other two “intro” dungeons. These three dungeons are all a bit on the tedious and tutorial side, but they at least unlock your low-level roulette (immensely valuable) and start you down the road to understanding the game’s dungeon mechanics. It’s a game of easy enemies and hard bosses, and the next leg of the journey demonstrates exactly how much emphasis is placed upon the boss battles.

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Final Fantasy XIV’s gold saucer patch is live

In its bid to prove that it’s got wacky in spades, Final Fantasy XIV has launched the much-anticipated 2.51 patch, an unassuming name for an update that inserts an entire amusement park into the MMORPG.

Insider the newly installed Manderville Gold Saucer, the denizens of Eorzea can participate in chocobo races, the Triple Triad card game, the Cactpot casino games and lottery, and multiple “GATE” minigames. Expect new outfits, titles, recipes, and quests gallore.

We’ve included the gallery below.

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The Stream Team: Final Fantasying

Final Fantasy XIV is a game about Chocobos, crystals, and cat people as far as the eye can see. Join MassivelyOP’s Mike Foster tonight as he runs some hard modes and prays to the RNG gods for even one piece of loot he can roll on (and lose to a Scholar).

The action starts at 7:00 p.m. EST.

What: Final Fantasy XIV
Who: Mike Foster
When: 7:00 p.m. EST on Friday, February 20th, 2015

Enjoy the show!

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Final Fantasy XIV unveils more about the Gold Saucer

Final Fantasy XIV patch 2.51 is expected to drop on February 24th, and it’s bringing the long-awaited Manderville Gold Saucer as its main attraction. A recent live letter from producer and director Naoki Yoshida explained several of the Gold Saucer mechanics and events in depths, including Chocobo Racing and the Triple Triad card game. And now there’s an official translation, so if you were desperate for more information regarding the den of iniquity, now you have it right at your fingertips.

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MOBAs dominate Raptr’s January rankings as WoW playtime falls

According to a Raptr press release posted today, MOBA League of Legends dominated the service’s January rankings with just under 20% of total playtime share. World of Warcraft held onto second place with not quite 11% of total playtime share, but it “lost 5.28% of play time in January compared to December.”

DOTA 2, SMITE, and Hearthstone scored well; Diablo III, in particular, saw its playtime rise 77.27% percent month-over-month, likely a result of the 2.12 patch.

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Wisdom of Nym: Starting new in Final Fantasy XIV

Starting out fresh in Final Fantasy XIV can be pretty intimidating, I freely admit. I find it all old hat at this point, but I’m coming at the game as someone who has leveled every single available class to 50. It would be more surprising if I were still starting out and wondering when I can get my first mount or when I’m allowed to completely ignore the story and just craft forever if that’s more my speed.

The answer to both is largely level 20, for the record.

Let’s assume, then, that you’re starting the game new for the first time. Once you’ve made your character (and your birthdate and starting deity have minimal effect upon your character, so don’t sweat them) and watched the far-too-long opening cutscene, you’re dropped into a quick series of tutorial quests. What do you do from there, where do you go, and how do you make the most out of your time in Final Fantasy XIV when we’re on the cusp of the game’s first expansion?

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One Shots: A new hope

Welcome back to One Shots, Massively OP’s weekly salute to excellent and interesting player screenshots! It feels good to be in our new home and able to post larger pics.

When we sounded the evacuation alarm from Massively, I forgot to rescue the remainder player screenshots from our One Shots email account. Fortunately, our EIC Bree was of a much more sound mind and grabbed them for me so that we could bring them over to the new site with the continuation of this column.

Our very first screenshot here is from longtime reader Dirty Klingon, who snapped this pic in Final Fantasy XIV: “My bro is a 1337 pro top d4wg, and when I play he runs me through dungeons. During one such dungeon run, I caught a duo-selfie with him, which he absolutely hates.”

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