Posted By Shaun K. about 9 months, 2 weeks ago
There is probably little point in recounting the full details surrounding the truly dreadful failure that has been to-date Final Fantasy XIV. Likely as not, we all know the story by now: despite previous success with the long running and still popular MMO Final Fantasy XI, Square Enix dropped the ball in pretty much every way imaginable in the lead up to XIV‘s release two years ago as of this Sept 30. Which in turn ultimately produced one of the single most disastrous launches for a big-budget MMO in the history of a subset of gaming already justly infamous for its poor launches. Things where so bad in the early days of the game that many legitimately wondered if Square Enix would be, despite all the money they had poured into the title, forced to simply cut their losses and outright pull the plug on the entire game. And while it never quite reached that point, FFXIV has continued to undergo major revisions while simultaneously work has proceeded on a planned full relaunch for the game.
Currently set to arrive on PC sometime in the early months of 2013, and also meant to coincide with the release of the game’s long delayed PS3 version, the relaunch has been dubbed Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn by Square Enix. Among the changes that will be incorporated into this revamped version of FFXIV is a new graphics engine, a completely redone server system, and a dramatically altered (and hopefully improved) user interface. Also being added to XIV in the Reborn relaunch are redesigned maps for the majority of the in-game world, more gameplay variations and content including 1v1 and large scale PvP, and new playable sexes previously unavailable for certain races (like male Miqo’te and female Highlanders and Roegadyn).
Which all sounds good in theory at least but its going to take more than just promises to win back players in the aftermath of XIV‘s nightmare launch. Personally, I think it is fairly vital that A Realm Reborn includes some variation of a two week/one month/up-to-a-specific-level trial when it goes live if the people at Square Enix are really serious about getting people to try their game again. In lieu of that however, a trailer actually composed of entirely of in-game footage of the new engine in action, in contrast to the essentially cinematics-only trailers SE has released for A Realm Reborn to date, is certainly a step in the right direction . And indeed, that is exactly what Square Enix has done with the just-released Limit Break Trailer below:
Not too shabby looking; not too shabby looking at all. Still, good looks alone a great game does not make, but it is a start if nothing else. And who knows, perhaps five years from now when Final Fantasy XIV has become the most successful MMORPG of all time, supplementing even WoW, we will all look back on the game’s early days of woe with amusement and laughter. It could happen; it is not very likely, but it could happen. Time will tell. Stay tuned to Blistered Thumbs for continuing coverage of all things Final Fantasy and Square Enix and be sure to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.