Final Fantasy XIV Online Roadmap Outlines Game’s Next Five Patches
The latest Letter From The Producer Live broadcast streamed over the weekend, with director-producer Naoki Yoshida announcing Square Enix's intention to support the game for the next decade.
First things first: the game's much-loved, much-missed Free Trial is back. Square Enix pulled access to the Free Trial in December last year. Server traffic hit an all-time high following the launch of the Endwalker expansion last year, and Square Enix was forced into taking the remarkable step of deactivating the Trial and disabling new sales of the game itself while the influx subsided.
Honestly, when was the last time you've ever heard a publisher pull its game from sale because it was too popular? Because people liked the game too much and it didn't have the infrastructure to serve them all? When was the last time you heard about an MMO so popular its servers were stuck at capacity? Wild.
Anyway, the Free Trial is once again available and you can grab it from the official Final Fantasy XIV online website. With the blast of Endwalker‘s popularity now in the rearview mirror, FFXIV now looks to the future.
During the Letter broadcast, Final Fantasy XIV outlined its content roadmap from five forthcoming patches, covering Patch 6.1 through to Patch 6.5. This includes an update to the Trust system, which currently lets players undertake dungeons with a party of NPC's. Trust will be expanded to cover elements of the game's story mode, in the hope it will allow players to move through the campaign at their own pace.
Also changing: lower-level dungeons from the game's first expansion A Realm Reborn. These dungeons will be overhauled in an effort to make them friendlier to new players. This speaks to the massive uptick in new players since the pandemic began. With so many new people, onboarding is more important than ever and Square is taking steps to fix that.
So what does the roadmap look like? See below for everything Square Enix has coming down the line:
Patch 6.1 Series
- New Main Scenario Questline – Patch 6.1 – 6.5
- “Somehow Further Hildibrand Adventures” – Patch 6.1 – 6.5
- “Tataru's Grand Endeavor” Sidequest Series – Patch 6.1 – 6.5
- Myths of the Realm #1 (Alliance Raid)
- Crystalline Conflict (New PvP)
- Arkasodara Tribe Quests and Dailies
- Dragonsong's Reprise (New Ultimate Duty)
- Ultima's Bane (Unreal)
- Trust Support for A Realm Reborn (Patch 2.0) Main Scenario Dungeons
- New Calling Card-Style UI (Name TBD)
- New Hairstyles for Hrothgar
- Empyreum (Ishgard Housing)
- Custom Deliveries: Ameliance
- Plus New Trials and Other Assorted Updates…
Patch 6.2 Series
- Trust Support for A Realm Reborn 2.X Main Scenario Dungeons
- Trust Support for 2-3 Heavensward™ Main Scenario Dungeons
- New Weapon Enhancements
- New “Criterion” Dungeon with Variable Difficulty (for 1–4 Players)
- “Island Sanctuary” Debuts
- Plus Pandæmonium, Faux Hollows, Other Trials, and More…
Patch 6.3 Series
- Trust system for Remaining Heavensward Main Scenario Dungeons
- Deep Dungeon Series #3
- Ultimate Duty #5
- Island Sanctuary Updates
- Plus Myths of the Realm, Faux Hollows, Other Trials, and More…
Patch 6.4 and Patch 6.5 Series
- Trust system for Stormblood™ Main Scenario Dungeons
- “Criterion” Dungeons #2 & #3
- Additional Area for Island Sanctuary
- Plus the Conclusion to Pandæmonium, Further Myths of the Realm, Faux Hollows, Other Trials, and More
- More Plans for Patches 6.4 and 6.5 are Being Made as we Speak!
It's worth nothing that none of these patches have a clear release date yet. This is a statement of intent. It's a signal that FFXIV sees the wave of new players arriving every day and is thinking about its new player experience. All of these announcements follow the Oceania region's new Materia data centre coming online last month.
If you missed the Final Fantasy XIV roadmap broadcast, you can see the full archived stream over on Twitch.