In the wake of Final Fantasy XIV's failed launch, many players are open to joining new linkshells.
While we patiently wait for Square Enix to add meat to Final Fantasy XIV, why not grab the bull by the horns and revamp your own in-game experience?
I’m talking about linkshells. Final Fantasy XIV may (currently) be a solo-centric game, but roaming Eorzea is much more fun when there are other adventurers to keep you company. If you’ve been suffering from the lonely linkshell blues, now is the perfect time to do something about it. There may never be a better time.
In the absence of content, a little fellowship can go a long ways. And there are many, many players out there who are the lone survivors in linkshells that had big plans just a few months ago. If you want to join a new linkshell, these players will be happy to invite you. If you want to recruit for your linkshell, these players are ripe for recruiting.
Discuss this in the ZAM forums!
Or you can do what I did – combine efforts with a few of these linkshells to create an entirely new group of intrepid, active players.
Seriously, building a linkshell has never been easier. I actively recruited for my social linkshell during my six years of Final Fantasy XI. Getting new players was easy, but prying people away from their existing linkshells was always tough. Now, things are different. I’ve never found people so willing to change linkshells as they are right now – and that includes me.
If there’s a silver lining to the botched launch of Final Fantasy XIV, then this might be it. Those who remain in Eorzea have persevered through the disastrous launch of an empty game. Build a linkshell with the players in Eorzea today, and you’ve got yourself a group that will probably stick around for a very long time.
Unfortunately, the fact that people are so willing to move around right now is a reflection of how poorly this game was launched. Scores of linkshells from Final Fantasy XI had big dreams for Final Fantasy XIV. The delay in the Playstation 3 version was the first disappointment for friends who had planned on playing together. Then launch day came, followed by a forgettable first month in which players ran for the exits.
Many of us who kept playing were suddenly without our in-game allies. The thing we knew we could count on – our linkshells – were gone.
My social linkshell, Imperial, was among the Final Fantasy XI linkshells that failed to succeed in Eorzea. In the ZAM forums, I’ve read numerous accounts from others who endured similar losses in their groups. In game, I chatted with a player whose linkshell had more than 70 members, but the vast majority of them are gone.
After spending most of my day in Eorzea alone, I finally thought to myself, “Why not try to connect with others?” I logged into my ZAM server forum and found a couple of posts from people who were seeking linkshells. I sent each of them /tells, and asked if they would be interested in joining my group. The two players each had small groups of friends who wanted to stick together. In a matter of minutes, the conversation turned from “would you like to join my linkshell?” to “why don’t we all start a new linkshell together?”
That night, the linkshell Divine Might was born.
We’re still fairly small in the grand scheme of things. We’re close to handing out our 20th pearl. But on Monday night, at 9:45 p.m. PST, we had 13 of 16 members logged in. Those are numbers you can build on.
I must also give props to Square Enix. In Final Fantasy XIV, your name always appears in the membership list of any linkshell you carry. You can also read the chat logs of any linkshell you don't have equipped. This means you never need to toss out your old social linkshell, which is good in case you're worried about old friends returning to the game weeks or months down the road.
Had the launch of Final Fantasy XIV fared better, then more players would have stayed and far fewer linkshells would have failed. Joining a new group or creating a new linkshell isn’t always easy. Saying goodbye to your old social can be difficult, even if you're talking to an empty linkshell. It’s the thought that matters. You had big plans, and those plans never had a chance to pan out.
That said, what’s done is done. From the ashes of failed linkshells have come the survivors of Eorzea. They have played through this game’s darkest hour, and they have endured despite the loss of their in-game friends.
And now, they need new homes.