It’s been well over a year since Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn restored fan faith in the ailing MMO. The relaunch fixed systems, overhauled the graphics engine, completely revamped entire areas and introduced a much more compelling storyline to the core game.
Now, the first major expansion for the game, Final Fantasy XIV Heavensward has been released. It follows the massive patch with brought with it the Manderville Gold Saucer, where players could spend FFXIV Gil and play tons of fun, interesting mini games. Heavensward is bigger than the last patch though, it’s an entire new expansion, and in case you have any doubts about just how much content is packed into the game, FFXIV director and producer, Naoki Yoshida had this to say when discussing the team’s goals for Heavensward.
“Of course there are specific elements that we have incorporated into the expansion that will be attractive to the new players and the players who have stopped, but with that being said, we consider this a new installment in the Final Fantasy franchise. That is how big the volume of the content that is included is, as well as you being introduced to new elements such as jobs or character growth elements,” said Yoshida.
Yoshida added that the team wants gamers to look at Heavensward as a whole new RPG that has just been released. It’s a philosophy that has permeated the team’s level design, game design and every facet of the expansion’s production. Also available is the impressive Final Fantasy XIV Heavensward Collector’s Edition, which includes the full game, a dragon mount figurine, collector’s box, art book, bonus content disc and in-game content: a griffin mount, Baron helm and a wind-up Kain.
For those hoping to hold out till FFXIV Heavensward goes free to play in a manner to the recently announced Elder Scrolls Online Tamriel Unlimited edition, Yoshida says that’s not going to happen, and unlike most developers, it’s hard to disbelieve him.
“No, we do not feel that we are being influenced by that kind of model shift. Especially with an MMORPG, it is a kind of a game as a service, where we are kind of almost in the service industry,” he said.
It’s worth noting that since its relaunch, FFXIV has performed extremely well for a paid MMO, and the publisher announced that it had 4 million registered players worldwide playing the game. Those numbers might seem insignificant next to the massive figures World of Warcraft enjoys, but the truth is that very, very few other subscription-based MMO’s can match them.
The release of Heavensward also marks the end of the storyline for A Realm Reborn, with the final quest, Before the Dawn wrapping things up with Patch 2.55. Players will indeed need to finish this quest before gaining access to the mass of content Heavensward promises. Dozens and dozens of new main quests and side story quests have been added, as well as raids, a new flying mount, single-rider airships and new land-masses and areas to explore. If you need some cheap FFXIV Gil to aid you on your travels, buy from EpicToon.com!