Final Fantasy XIV has truly suffered from success recently. Square Enix literally halted sales due to server congestion from too many people wanting to play the game. The meme’d out free trial that let you play up to level 60 had to be put on hold. And it was near-impossible to log in during launch week for Endwalker.
Things have begun to calm down, though, so, director and producer Naoki Yoshida has provided a detailed update on the status of server expansion and when folks can start buying the game and trying the free trial again. You can read the official blog post on The Lodestone, but we’ll summarize the most important details here.
FFXIV Game Sales Resume
FFXIV will be available for purchase again starting on January 25 at 12 a.m. PT. However, Yoshida-san mentioned that if the game is hit with high levels of server congestion, the team will consider halting sales again. While he acknowledged that there is still a lot of traffic during peak times, the opening of the Oceania Data Center and overall concurrent player counts calming down should help.
Things are less definitive when it comes to the free trial. For now, Square Enix wants to monitor the server situation as sales start again before reinstating the free trial.
Data Center Travel System
The Data Center travel system was intended to launch alongside Endwalker, but adding another layer of cross-server traffic with a new system could have been disastrous. Because of the anticipated server traffic followed by ongoing server problems, it was put on hold.
However, the Data Center travel system is now planned to go live with a patch 6.1x update. While it’s not a definitive date, we can estimate it being sometime in the late Spring or early Summer this year based on previous patch cycles. Keep in mind that this means it’ll come after Patch 6.1, for which we don’t have a date yet.
Data Center Travel Restrictions
The system is designed to let players visit Worlds (or servers) from other Data Centers. FFXIV lets you visit Worlds within your own Data Center, but soon, you’ll be able to link up with more players. There are still some limitations to this system, however. Traveling to another Data Center must be done on the character select screen before you log in. And you will only be able to visit the different Data Centers within your region — cross-region Data Center travel is still being considered.
The same restrictions on a few in-game features from the World visits still apply. You also cannot use Free Company chat or Cross-world Linkshells due to technical limitations.
Opening the Oceania Data Center
The planned Oceania Data Center is set to open up on January 25. This will help serve players in Australia, New Zealand, and the various Polynesian and Micronesian regions with better network performance. This also means a brand-new set of five servers, which can help alleviate congestion on current existing servers. There will be no transfer fee for players who want to move to servers on the Oceania Data Center.
World Transfer Service Returns
The Home World transfer service is set to return on January 26 following the resuming of game sales and launch of the Oceania Data Center. It is another feature that was put on hold due to server congestion. This lets you move your characters to a different Home World permanently, and the service will be reinstated for all players on all Data Centers.
Expansion of Servers and Data Centers
You get a Data Center, you get a Data Center, everyone gets a Data Center!
For North America, a new Data Center with four new Worlds is planned for August this year. Four additional Worlds will be added in the Spring or Summer of 2023.
For Europe, two new Worlds will be added for both of the region’s current Data Centers (four Worlds in total) in July this year. A new Data Center is planned for Summer 2023 and it will house eight new Worlds.
Japan is getting a new Data Center in July this year, but its Worlds are being reconfigured, as well. Currently, the region has three Data Centers — one with 10 Worlds and two with 11 Worlds. When the new Data Center goes live, each one will house eight Worlds. The number of Worlds remains unchanged, but this will help create space by giving each Data Center more room to breathe and effectively increasing capacity by 50,000 players.
Hey now, we have plenty of other coverage of the critically acclaimed MMORPG. If you’re working on endgame content, be sure to use the FFXIV endgame gear guide we put together. We also have the drop on Job changes you can expect with Patch 6.08. And if you’re working through the new raids, consider using our Pandaemonium Savage guides written by my colleague Mike Williams, the guides god.