For what feels like an eternity, plenty of people have been singing the praises of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn to me. I’ve never played an MMO, but I’m a pretty big fan of some of the Final Fantasy subseries, specifically Final Fantasy X/X-2 and the Final Fantasy XIII trilogy. I have mixed feelings on just about everything else I’ve tried, including the Final Fantasy VII Remake, which, as entranced as I still am about the Honey Bee Inn sequence, I’ve really cooled on that game in a more granular sense. But the biggest blind spot I have in the series is the MMOs Final Fantasy XIV and Final Fantasy XI. But many of my friends are all about this game. Some might even say it’s all-consuming of their livelihood. I’ve had plenty of excuses to not join in, but Square-Enix is breaking down the barrier to entry more and more. And during this pandemic, perhaps a new Forever Game is in order? But no, I must remain vigilant. If I get caught up in Final Fantasy XIV, who will move the payloads in Overwatch?
Square-Enix’s latest shake up to bring in new players has been a free trial that is getting an update that will now allow players to make their way up to the Heavensward expansion, with a level cap increase from 35 to 60, and access to three previously blocked jobs: Dark Knight, Astrologian, and Machinist. On top of all of this, players will now be able to create a character in the Au Ra race.
The #FFXIV Free Trial is being expanded to include:
☑️ Level cap raised to 60
☑️ Heavensward (through Patch 3.56)
☑️ Dark Knight/Astrologian/Machinist
☑️ Au Ra
A Realm Reborn/Starter Edition owners are also being upgraded with the above! pic.twitter.com/1nGXFJjPpa
— FINAL FANTASY XIV (@FF_XIV_EN) July 22, 2020
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While the free trial is getting these updates, the main game has had a bit of a bump in the road with its major updates thanks to complications from the team working from home due to the coronavirus pandemic. The next big update is coming in the form of Patch 5.3, which was originally set to launch this month in a pre-covid world, will now be coming out in August, and will bring additions to the story, as well as more content based on the Nier franchise.
In an alternate universe where I was more than a casual Nier fan, perhaps all of the above would be enough to sway me. Typically, the thing that has been my go to excuse to not play Final Fantasy XIV has been the monthly subscription, but now that that’s been removed from the equation I need to come up with something else. I can’t say I don’t have time, because we’ve got nothing but right now if you’re responsibly quarantined. And despite Overwatch being my Forever Game right now, it’s not like that game is getting frequent updates as we wait for Overwatch 2. Perhaps, I simply do not want to, will have to suffice now?