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    Final Fantasy XIV to temporarily suspend advertising, Starter & Complete Edition sales due to ongoing player congestion

    Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker recently released with player congestion leading to various issues with the game. After the early access launch two weeks ago, the game still has issues pertaining to congestion such as long queue times and log-in errors. As a result, some drastic measures have to be taken in order help mitigate the ongoing problem. New Free Trial registrations, advertising, Starter Edition and Complete Edition sales for Final Fantasy XIV will be temporarily suspended. Producer/director Naoki Yoshida shared the following message:

    Hello, this is Naoki Yoshida, Producer & Director of FINAL FANTASY XIV.

    We apologize for the ongoing congestion that has been occurring since Early Access and the official launch of Endwalker. It’s been nearly two weeks since the start of Early Access and players are still experiencing substantial congestion when logging into the game. As we have new content set to release in upcoming patches, I’d like to provide you with several updates on our plans to address these issues.

    ■ Additional Game Time Compensation

    We are aware that the long waiting times to log into the game are preventing players from playing, and for this, we sincerely apologize. In response to this, we recently granted 7 days of game time, but now we will also be granting an additional 14 days.

    This will apply to all players (including those with multiple accounts) who own the full version of the game and have an active subscription as of Tuesday, December 21, at 12:00 a.m. (PST), which is the scheduled release date for Patch 6.01. Further details regarding eligibility will be announced separately.

    ■ Suspending Delivery of Package Versions and Temporary Suspension of Digital Version Sales

    Players are currently experiencing extremely long wait times due to the dense concentration of play hours which far exceed our server capacity, especially during the peak times, and so we have decided to temporarily suspend the sale and delivery of FINAL FANTASY XIV Starter Edition and Complete Edition. Additionally, although those with an active subscription are prioritized to log in, Free Trial players are unable to log in outside of late night and early morning hours, and so we will also temporarily suspend new registrations for the Free Trial.

    These temporary suspensions will be phased in over the next few days as we work with our retail partners. We will be coordinating with them as swiftly as possible, but please bear in mind that this will be a gradual process.

    We will also be suspending all new advertisements. However, it will not be possible to suspend some of the advertisements due to the nature of how they were set up. We appreciate your patience and understanding regarding this matter.

    Expansion packs and Collector’s Edition digital upgrades will continue to be available for existing players so that they may upgrade as needed.

    To those who have been invited by their friends and family who have been considering joining, as well as our retail partners, we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, and ask for your understanding and cooperation in order to reduce congestion. We will continue to monitor the situation as we consider the timing around resuming sales.

    ■ Error 2002 While Waiting in Login Queues

    In regards to Error 2002 that occurs during login queues, outside of causes related to unstable connections, we have confirmed a bug. This bug was part of a login-related program created back in FFXIV version 1.0, and thanks to the reports and tests carried out by many of our players, we were able to identify the cause of the problem. We apologize for not being able to identify the issue on our end and thank you all for submitting detailed reports regarding this matter.

    Although the code for fixing this bug is already prepared, applying the fix will require patching the game client, which will be addressed in Patch 6.01, scheduled for Tuesday, December 21. As this issue occurs while waiting in the queue for a very long time, we considered releasing the patch ahead of schedule, but in the end decided to include it in Patch 6.01, as there is already a lot of new code in the pipeline for the patch and interrupting the process of verifying them may lead to other bugs. We apologize for the inconvenience and ask for your patience a bit longer.

    ■ Upcoming Patch Schedule

    Due to the high levels of congestion, we are aware that there has been a lot of discussion in the community about the release of Pandæmonium: Asphodelos (Savage) in Patch 6.05, scheduled for Tuesday, January 4, 2022. Regarding this, as long as there are no major issues, we plan to release the patch as scheduled.

    We understand that there are concerns about World First races and first week progression, but Patch 6.05 will add a number of new elements, such as the addition of a new Allagan tomestone, new crafting recipes, as well as the new treasure hunt dungeon, the Excitatron 6000.

    Many players are looking forward to content aside from high-end duties, and furthermore, considering the balance of the rewards and item levels from said content, we cannot withhold only Pandæmonium: Asphodelos (Savage), and rebalancing these would delay the patch release by several weeks and would affect Patch 6.1 and beyond.

    We regret to say this in the midst of major congestion, but as mentioned earlier, unless there are major issues, we plan to release the patch as scheduled. We ask for your understanding and cooperation regarding this matter.

    ■ Updates Regarding the Addition of a New Logical Data Center and Worlds

    Since July 2021, in order to accommodate the significant increase in the number of new players, we have been working towards building a new logical data center and adding new Worlds. However, due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have not been able to make any additions due to suspension of semiconductor production at manufacturing factories, decrease in production quantities, as well as a shortage of raw materials. Although we are investing much more money than usual, our attempts to alleviate the ongoing congestion situation are being delayed due to the physical shortage of server equipment.

    With the help of IT equipment vendors from all around the world, we are slowly beginning to receive information about delivery dates and figures. Considering the high specification requirements for FFXIV servers, along with the fact that adding a single logical data center requires hundreds of servers, we invariably need much more time, but we are starting to see some progress. In line with this, the Server and Infrastructure teams are working together to plan for new additions, and we hope to be able to provide some sort of roadmap by the end of January 2022.

    We are considering adding servers to each region, especially plans for a large-scale addition in North America and Europe, and will be looking at the number of servers, infrastructure construction time, power issues, and server rack situation to see if we should do this sequentially or in one big push. Either way, the plan is to introduce a large number of additions, which we intend to carry out quickly and safely with as minimal inconvenience to our players as possible, and we will follow up regarding this matter as we progress.

    ■ Inquiries about Errors Triggered by Specific Payments

    Since the release of Endwalker, we have received a large number of inquiries from players who have been unable to play the game due to errors which occur during payment or code registration.

    After reviewing the details of these inquiries, we found that the accounts involved are being accessed from the same environment as those used by a group of people who are believed to be providing suspicious services. As a result, these accounts were determined to be using suspicious services that temporarily access user accounts to log in and make payments or create accounts on their behalf, and were blocked from payment and code registrations as a part of fraud prevention.

    Such suspicious services may have a history of theft or other fraudulent credit card activity, and we cannot do anything other than safeguard against such activity and cannot restore those accounts.

    As a reminder, we ask you to refrain from using such suspicious services, for your own good.

    We will continue to strive to provide our utmost support so that everyone around the world can play comfortably. We sincerely apologize for the inconveniences caused by the ongoing severe congestion. We appreciate your understanding and cooperation.

    Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker is available now for PS4, PS5 and Steam worldwide. Stay tuned at Final Weapon for the latest Japanese gaming news and updates!

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    Soul Kiwami
    Soul Kiwami
    Raul Ochoa, a.k.a. Soul Kiwami, is the Deputy Editor in Chief of Final Weapon. With a passion for the Japanese gaming industry, Raul is a huge fan of Nintendo Switch, PC hardware, JRPGs and fighting/action games. business email: [email protected]

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