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Letter from the Producer, XXXV (08/30/2012)Follow

#1 Aug 30 2012 at 5:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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See the 35th letter from the producer.

http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/threads/53080

Letter from the Producer, XXXV (08/30/2012)
Hello again to all you FFXIVers out there, and to all of you looking forward to FINAL FANTASY XIV: A Realm Reborn. Are you ready for Letter from the Producer #35? We have some important information concerning the alpha test for A Realm Reborn, as well as the grand finale for the current version of FFXIV, so this is gonna be a long one. Make sure you’ve got some time on your hands so you can sit back, get comfy, and enjoy!

The insanity of gamescom 2012 has come to an end, and the FINAL FANTASY 25th Anniversary event begins tomorrow. FFXIV will be there with a live stage event, showing off some of our dev materials, as well as the costumes and weapons used in filming the current version’s commercial way back in 2010!

We’ll also be running the demo we first released at gamescom...but that’s nothing new, right? So naturally we’ll have some fresh info ready for you as well. Whether you’re there in person, or watching it live on whatever media you have available, don’t miss the on-stage event!

For our English, German, and French-speaking fans, we plan to subtitle the event and release it on the FINAL FANTASY XIV Channel in the following days. We’ll do our best to have this available as soon as possible for those who missed the event on the day.

Speaking of showing videos, some of you have been wondering why we haven’t officially released the footage of the demo we ran at gamescom. The answer to that is simple: it still looks like an ordinary MMO. Sure, our current players have been bowled over by the differences between the original version and A Realm Reborn. However, for those discerning MMO fans who haven’t played the original version, A Realm Reborn in its current state merely looks like your everyday MMO...just with better graphics. Yes, we expected fans to upload their own videos of the gamescom demo, but I think that at this point in the dev cycle, this is a more exciting way for people to be a part of the whole process.

The alpha test has yet to begin, and the beta is still a bit further down the track. This time around, we want to make sure we’re fully satisfied with the content before sending it out into the big, wide world. Beta won’t start until I’m 100% happy things are ready for that stage, and we won’t go live with the final version until after we’ve had the chance to consider and implement feedback from the beta.

I know it’s turning into a long wait for you guys, but rest assured we aren’t wasting a single second of this time. Our team is aiming to create a top-notch MMO, as well as a top-notch FINAL FANTASY title, and is working at their absolute fullest capacity on the rebirth of the realm of Eorzea. We are extremely grateful for your continuing patience. (Really, really grateful!)

And as we’re still pouring all of our energy into development, I’m sorry to say that we won’t suddenly be putting up walkthroughs for every in-game area or making a bunch of introductory gameplay videos—but we will get to each of these in time.

For starters, we plan to release a trailer that is put together with in-game footage and focuses mainly on battle. And don’t forget that Tokyo Game Show is coming up soon!

Well, my little intro here has gone on long enough, so let’s move on to our two main topics.

Alpha Test for FINAL FANTASY XIV: A Realm Reborn

Since we’re almost ready for the alpha test for A Realm Reborn, we want to start recruiting players of the current version to assist us as alpha testers. Rather than looking at the actual gameplay, we’ll be asking players to cooperate with the dev team in things like server stress tests, as well as testing other fundamental mechanics of the game. You will be required to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement), and the experience will be a far cry from playing the finished product. Available characters, classes, levels, and game content itself will be limited, and testers are accepted strictly on a volunteer basis. Keep those details in mind when you sign up.

The alpha test will be broken up into four phases, each of which will consist of multiple cycles of “test and tweak.” While we have no intention of shutting out our overseas players, the alpha test will initially be restricted to Japanese residents only until we reach Phase 2 or so.

The reason being that with our entire dev ream stationed here in Japan, we would be unable to swiftly respond to unexpected server crashes or other critical issues if we left the alpha test servers running 24/7. Once we’ve confirmed that the servers are sufficiently stable, we’ll open the alpha test to players outside of Japan.

Think of the alpha test up until Phase 2 as a preparation period that allows us to put in place the structure necessary to test and receive feedback on a global scale—that being our ultimate goal. Recruitment for alpha testers, on the other hand, will take place simultaneously in all regions, so if you think you’re up to the task we’d love to have you on board!

We’ll be putting up a tester recruitment site, and further details of the alpha test will be found there.

Grand Finale for the Current Version of FINAL FANTASY XIV

The grand finale is right around the corner, as the Seventh Umbral Era descends on Eorzea. A final save maintenance for current version character data is scheduled for November 1, 2012, followed by all Worlds coming down on November 11, 2012 at 0:00am (PST) / 8:00am (GMT). Then at 2:00am (PST) / 10:00am (GMT), also on November 11, we’re planning to run a live Letter from the Producer.

The event of all the Worlds coming down signifies the curtain closing on the current story of FFXIV. Your character data will be preserved with the final save maintenance on November 1, and transferred to A Realm Reborn. (The only change to your data will be the coordinates where your character appears after logging in.)

The plan is to completely shut down the current version after that point, although that may change depending on how you guys respond to a little poll we have.

Basically, what we want to know is, do you want to keep playing the current version even after we bring all the Worlds down?

We can bring the servers back up after a few days, and you’ll be able to keep playing the game just like normal...but your final save data will remain unchanged.

Only the character data saved during the November 1 maintenance will be carried over to A Realm Reborn. The devs will also be focusing on the new version, and there will be no more patches or bug fixes for the current version after this point. But it seems a real shame to take away a venue where players can get together as a community. If we brought the servers back online, you would, however, need to ignore the inevitable story contradictions. Considering these factors, players that have an active subscription as of September 30, 2012, would play for free.

FINAL FANTASY XIV is as much yours as it is ours, and we’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject.

Keep an eye on the coming FINAL FANTASY Anniversary Event, TGS, the alpha test, and the non-stop, we-break-for-no-one journey towards FINAL FANTASY XIV: A Realm Reborn!

See you next letter, or on the forums!
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#2 Aug 30 2012 at 6:21 AM Rating: Decent
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World ends November 1st!

Just in time for the Holiday Game Season, perfect. More time for other games while we wait.
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#3 Aug 30 2012 at 8:00 AM Rating: Decent
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Interesting that they would be willing to restart the old servers just to give people a chance to play... Though I think I would pass.
#4 Aug 30 2012 at 9:23 AM Rating: Good
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rfolkker wrote:
Interesting that they would be willing to restart the old servers just to give people a chance to play... Though I think I would pass.


If there's even a decent amount of yes votes that makes everyone who were negative about FFXIV hypocrites lol -- They wouldn't restart the server unless an overwhelming amount of people say "keep it on!" and people love to throw around XIV has a "very low sub count" and "no one cares for it."

It's definitely time to let it go offline so they can focus on the relaunch.
#5 Aug 30 2012 at 9:30 AM Rating: Good
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If my character data isn't saved past November 1st, I don't care if they put the servers back on, I'd rather just keep them down until the relaunch.

No reason to play for nothing, you know? I'm glad we have a lot of time remaining. I have time to finish my in-game achievements.
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#6 Aug 30 2012 at 9:40 AM Rating: Good
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I don't see what the point would be of keeping the old game alive, especially since it's not going anywhere after reborn launches. I guess it's nice they are putting up a poll... But I don't think they really expect anyone to want to stay in a game that is never going anywhere.

As far as their comments that it just looks like any average mmo - I really beg to differ. The interface looks like an average mmo, but the game looks like Final Fantasy. That's what I wanted two years ago, and I can't believe that it's actually going to happen now. It's about bloody time, and REALLY good work, SE!

November can't come soon enough.
#7 Aug 30 2012 at 9:41 AM Rating: Decent
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I think they are just offering it to stay in touch and keep social, though I doubt many people play 14 in the current form for fun, without progress.

That's an interesting thought though... I want an MMO that's fun not because I'm gaining gear and exp, but because it's fun by itself. It's very telling in that way...
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#8 Aug 30 2012 at 9:56 AM Rating: Good
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Yoshida wrote:
[Final Fantasy XIV] still looks like an ordinary MMO... for those discerning MMO fans who haven’t played the original version, A Realm Reborn in its current state merely looks like your everyday MMO...just with better graphics.


So you guys will be adding lots of enhancements to the old formula, then, right...?
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#9 Aug 30 2012 at 10:16 AM Rating: Good
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KaneKitty wrote:
Yoshida wrote:
[Final Fantasy XIV] still looks like an ordinary MMO... for those discerning MMO fans who haven’t played the original version, A Realm Reborn in its current state merely looks like your everyday MMO...just with better graphics.


So you guys will be adding lots of enhancements to the old formula, then, right...?


I imagine that's what they were getting at. I'm surprised he predicted the reaction ahead of time.
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#10 Aug 30 2012 at 10:45 AM Rating: Good
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Naoki Yoshida wrote:
The alpha test has yet to begin, and the beta is still a bit further down the track. This time around, we want to make sure we’re fully satisfied with the content before sending it out into the big, wide world. Beta won’t start until I’m 100% happy things are ready for that stage, and we won’t go live with the final version until after we’ve had the chance to consider and implement feedback from the beta.


This confirms to me that they rushed the original version. I wonder what the game would have been if Tanaka had been given more time?

Edited, Aug 30th 2012 12:46pm by kainsilv
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#11 Aug 30 2012 at 10:46 AM Rating: Decent
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kainsilv wrote:
Naoki Yoshida wrote:
The alpha test has yet to begin, and the beta is still a bit further down the track. This time around, we want to make sure we’re fully satisfied with the content before sending it out into the big, wide world. Beta won’t start until I’m 100% happy things are ready for that stage, and we won’t go live with the final version until after we’ve had the chance to consider and implement feedback from the beta.


This confirms to me that they rushed the original version. I wonder what the game would have been if Tanaka had been given more time?

Edited, Aug 30th 2012 12:46pm by kainsilv


Even worse?
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http://ffxi.allakhazam.com/story.html?story=18309
Quote:
Like Final Fantasy XI, the game specs will be extremely high for the time, but in about 5 years, an average machine can run it on max settings with little to no issues. Tanaka also expressed interest in making a benchmark program available.

FilthMcNasty wrote:
I endorse this thread.
#12 Aug 30 2012 at 12:08 PM Rating: Excellent
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kainsilv wrote:
Naoki Yoshida wrote:
The alpha test has yet to begin, and the beta is still a bit further down the track. This time around, we want to make sure we’re fully satisfied with the content before sending it out into the big, wide world. Beta won’t start until I’m 100% happy things are ready for that stage, and we won’t go live with the final version until after we’ve had the chance to consider and implement feedback from the beta.


This confirms to me that they rushed the original version. I wonder what the game would have been if Tanaka had been given more time?

Edited, Aug 30th 2012 12:46pm by kainsilv


installing and playing the original version confirmed that for me.
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#13 Aug 30 2012 at 12:09 PM Rating: Decent
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kainsilv wrote:
Naoki Yoshida wrote:
The alpha test has yet to begin, and the beta is still a bit further down the track. This time around, we want to make sure we’re fully satisfied with the content before sending it out into the big, wide world. Beta won’t start until I’m 100% happy things are ready for that stage, and we won’t go live with the final version until after we’ve had the chance to consider and implement feedback from the beta.


This confirms to me that they rushed the original version. I wonder what the game would have been if Tanaka had been given more time?

Edited, Aug 30th 2012 12:46pm by kainsilv


Wait.. you're just getting this confirmation now?

Yoshi-P said this plainly in nearly every interview since he became producer. And no delay would have changed Tanaka's mind, given that they made hardly any feedback-based changes in Beta.
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#14 Aug 30 2012 at 1:23 PM Rating: Default
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Yadayadayada pointless information we already knew, come on yoshi throws us something new and floodish like for once.

P.S: I am really interesting in what they will put on those videos to make it look "Not like every MMO"
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#15 Aug 30 2012 at 5:24 PM Rating: Excellent
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honestly... I like this guy, I just hope he dosen't work himself to death.
#16 Aug 30 2012 at 6:32 PM Rating: Excellent
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Devildawgs wrote:
honestly... I like this guy, I just hope he dosen't work himself to death.



I know in some of his photos his decline is noticeable...at times I fear for his health.
#17 Aug 31 2012 at 1:34 AM Rating: Default
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Let's put on our emo hats, hold hands, and light him a candle while humming the FFVII "Aerith dies" melody.
#18 Aug 31 2012 at 10:27 AM Rating: Decent
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Ostia wrote:
Yadayadayada pointless information we already knew, come on yoshi throws us something new and floodish like for once.

P.S: I am really interesting in what they will put on those videos to make it look "Not like every MMO"



he kinda already answered that: most MMO trailers are CG or boring terrain flybys. SWTOR started breaking the mold with their weekly (sorta) class videos that used professionally edited ingame footage. am guessing Yoshi seems savvy enough to know that a terrain flyby with some cute lalafells waving at a goobue or something isn't going to cut it this time.


idk, yoshi and gamescom footage startin to convince me...
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#19 Aug 31 2012 at 5:16 PM Rating: Good
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I'm a little confused ..... i have legacy status on my account but i stopped paying/playing this July, does that mean that my account wont be transferred over or just that my character will be saved and transferred over from the last time i logged in ?
#20 Sep 02 2012 at 12:26 PM Rating: Decent
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Llester wrote:
Ostia wrote:
Yadayadayada pointless information we already knew, come on yoshi throws us something new and floodish like for once.

P.S: I am really interesting in what they will put on those videos to make it look "Not like every MMO"



he kinda already answered that: most MMO trailers are CG or boring terrain flybys. SWTOR started breaking the mold with their weekly (sorta) class videos that used professionally edited ingame footage. am guessing Yoshi seems savvy enough to know that a terrain flyby with some cute lalafells waving at a goobue or something isn't going to cut it this time.


idk, yoshi and gamescom footage startin to convince me...


He was not talking about CGI Trailer, for that would be moronic, since they themselves did that already..... Or have you not seen the CGI trailer for ARR ?

He was talking about gameplay, if you look at the gameplay footage, it loos generic, the only thing different is limit break, and we have only seen the same one, meteor.... you would think they would show a different one already.
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#21 Sep 02 2012 at 1:48 PM Rating: Good
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RedF3nix wrote:
I'm a little confused ..... i have legacy status on my account but i stopped paying/playing this July, does that mean that my account wont be transferred over or just that my character will be saved and transferred over from the last time i logged in ?


It will, just at a lower priority.
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