To become more casual-friendly, FFXIV redesigns guildleves

When Final Fantasy XIV first launched, it gained notoriety as a very party-centric and grind-heavy game that demanded all-nighters for even slight progress to be made.

No more, says the new producer Naoki Yoshida, who said guildleves will be redesigned to accommodate a more casual playstyle.

“We will reposition guildleves as content catering to solo adventurers, which can be enjoyed repeatedly and with minimal time investment and fuss,” Mr. Yoshida said in this month’s new producer’s letter. This suggests that the restrictive lockdown timers might also be removed entirely.

With the change of guildleves and other casual-friendly content planned for Patch 1.18, Mr. Yoshida reveals an epiphany Square Enix has had with their current and prospective FFXIV subscribers: Not everyone wants or can be hardcore.

“Mind you, that’s not to say that the entire game should be casual. Rather, there should be elements that can be enjoyed in a lighthearted way, for example, after coming home tired from work or school, with mobile phone or refreshing beverage in hand,” said the insuppressibly frank producer.

Starting Patch 1.18, these time-starved gamers can explore Eorzea in short bursts. Here’s a summary of what Mr. Yoshida has planned for casual soloers:

  • Guildleves accessed from guild counters and aetherytes
  • Possible increase in guild marks rewards
  • Skill points as new reward for guildleves and side quests
  • Scaling rewards (think better FFXIV Gil and SP) based on how fast a guildleve is complete
  • Revision of demanding levequests that “would send adventurers scrambling over long distances.”
  • Introduction of auto-attack

So ET readers, do you like this new, more casual-friendly direction for FFXIV?