During the Live Letter from the Producer last week, Square Enix announced that Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker was delayed. The expansion was originally planned to launch on November 23, but has now been pushed back two weeks to December 7. The early access period was also pushed back; instead of November 19, it will now be starting on December 3.
According to FFXIV creative director and producer Naoki Yoshida, the team simply needed more time to finish fine-tuning and reviewing the story content for what’s going to be the biggest expansion yet.
“It was precisely because Endwalker concludes the first major saga that I felt our team needed to push ourselves to the ‘limits’ that I envisioned,” said Yoshida in the announcement post. “As a result, we remained firmly resolved to adjust down to the smallest nuances and ensure our writing covers even the finest points of the vast and intricate story that has spanned these past 11 years since the original FFXIV to ensure that everyone can fully enjoy their adventure in Endwalker. Unfortunately, the consequence of this was that we ended up in a situation where we cut into the time required for final quality assurance checks due to this time spent on additional improvements.”
If you had taken November 19 to 23 off in order to prepare for a marathon Endwalker play session, this news is undoubtedly disappointing. If you play other games, you might also be unhappy at the new traffic jam: Endwalker is now launching a day before Halo Infinite. At the end of the day, it’s better for us players to have a complete and refined experience that works, especially since it will wrap up the story that’s been told since the launch of A Realm Reborn back in 2013.
For me, I’m actually happy that I have more time to prepare.
We’re soon launching a new FFXIV vertical, The Linkshell, here at Fanbyte, and this gives us more time to work out all the kinks. But on a personal level, I’ve also been working hard to make sure I’m ready for the next phase of FFXIV. A few months ago, I told myself it was finally the time to complete that bucket list I’ve had for some time now. And I’ve been taking that to heart.
Seriously, there are whole sections of FFXIV I’d only barely engaged with. I wrote about starting on the long grind for the Relic weapons, and I’m honestly still hip deep in that. The step of the A Realm Reborn Relics that requires you to kill numerous specific enemies, FATES, and dungeons to complete the books? That took forever and I’m gritting my teeth over the idea of doing it again for another job.
For the Shadowbringers Relics, I had to unlock Bozja Southern Front, which I hadn’t done before. Or heading into Eureka again for the Stormblood Relics. The relic grinds never really go away, so there’s no rush. But man, I want all my glowing weapons! Speaking of glowing weapons, I’ve also gotten back into Deep Dungeon. I had played Palace of the Dead a few times here and there, but never really committed to the mode in a major way. In the run up to Endwalker though, since I was aiming for the Relic weapons, I figured I might as well gather the aetherpool weapons, as well.
I’ve been slowly leveling my chosen jobs in the Disciples of the Land and Hand — Blacksmith, Armorer, Leatherworker, Carpenter, Culinarian, Miner, and Botanist. And I’ve been doing it the old fashioned way, actually crafting items from materials I gathered. The problem here is that inventory is finite and trying to level up that many crafting jobs fills it up pretty quickly, so I turned to the Ishgard Restoration and Diadem to speed up the process considerably.
What about the ongoing Moogle Event? You have an additional two weeks to complete that, too! I wanted to try the fast grinding method, but that required me to level up my Blue Mage, another job I’d started and left behind. Of course, in the time it’s taken me to do that, there aren’t many teams of Blue Mages tackling The Binding Coil of Bahamut anymore for the quick riches. Perhaps I’ll do the grind for my Inferno Jacket the hard way.
The truth is I’ve probably put entirely too much upon my meager plate. I heard the metaphorical dinner bell with someone saying “all you can eat” and I’ve filled my plate and myself to bursting. I doubt I’ll finish everything on my list, even with the extra two weeks I’ve gained from this delay. I’m reasonably sure the Relic weapon grind will continue in Endwalker.
There’s just so much to FFXIV that unless you fully give yourself over to it, it’s really hard to explore the breadth of what’s available. That’s why I love MMOs, and what Square Enix has crafted here in particular. I’ve been playing for years and it’s my literal job to write about FFXIV, but I’m still just scratching the surface. I imagine there are new players who are still working their way through the main scenario quest, let alone sifting through everything else the game has to offer.
The delay is slightly disappointing, but I also know you have your own backlog of content to work through. Unless you’re this person, but that’s Atlas balancing the world on his back compared to the rest of us.