Mike Salbato
Final Fantasy XIV Hits 14 Million Players, Next Patch Detailed
09.04.18 - 8:27 PM

Last week, Final Fantasy XIV began celebrating its 5th anniversary of its relaunch in 2013. This brought with it a host of celebratory measures, not the least of which was a 14-hour live broadcast that hosted the latest Letter From the Producer Live, various special guests, events, and more.

Final Fantasy XIV 5th Anniversary Logo

Anniversary Celebrations

In-game, once again the people of Eorzea mark the occasion with "The Rising," an event that marks the anniversary of a catastrophe and rebirth of the world. For those unfamiliar, when producer Naoki Yoshida and team dismantled and retooled the game, the game lore actually involved a similar retooling that involved Bahamut destroying and reshaping the land... a clever way to tie real life to game lore. In any case, The Rising runs until September 17th, and for the first time, features two legs of quests: One for level 15 and above adventurers, and one for level 30 and above. Learn more on the official site!

Coinciding with these celebrations, Square Enix announced that Final Fantasy XIV has reached a new milestone in registered players, surpassing 14 million registered players (this does include free trials, but it's an impressive number regardless). Speaking on the game's history and growth, Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida had this to say:

"Although the original FINAL FANTASY XIV failed to meet expectations, through the support of people in the media, the companies we have worked with, and of course our dedicated players, we were able to launch A Realm Reborn in 2013. FFXIV was indeed reborn, and over the course of these past five years, it has grown to become the title that we all know and love today. I cannot thank you enough.

We in the development and operations teams have been working at full capacity ever since the launch of A Realm Reborn, and while we have made our share of missteps along the way, the Warriors of Light continue to spur us onward.

There are many new gaming experiences and epic tales that we wish to share with you all. We will be working harder than ever to expand the world of FFXIV, where players form lasting bonds with one another through their adventures.

FINAL FANTASY XIV is the result of everyone’s passion and commitment, including all of you Warriors of Light, and I hope you will continue to support us as we build this world together."

Artist Yoshiteru Tsujino created this lovely celebratory image for the milestone:

Final Fantasy XIV 5th Anniversary Commemorative Illustration

Patch 4.4: Prelude in Violet

This month's Live Letter was the second look at Patch 4.4, which also brought with it a release date: September 18th. Sadly, the trailer was not ready yet, but that is coming sometime this week. The highlights for additional patch content are a new GATE event for the Gold Saucer, which features even more jumping puzzles, which continue to prove popular since their introduction last year. One long-awaited housing addition is that of mannequins, which will allow you to, well, dress up a mannequin and display gear sets as you please in your house.

Final Fantasy XIV Mannequin Screenshot

Patch 4.4 will also include the usual assortment of updates with new battles and dungeons. A new trial/boss fight with Suzaku (below, left) joins another new dungeon type being added The Lost Canals of Uznair, complete with a roulette wheel of potential challenges (below, right).

Final Fantasy XIV Suzaku Screenshot Final Fantasy XIV Lost Canals of Uznair Screenshot

Two new dungeons will debut, with a Hard version of one of Heavensward's prettiest dungeons, Saint Mocianne's Arboretum (first pic below), and the all-new dungeon positioned between Othard and the empire capital of Garlemald, The Burn (second and third images below):

Final Fantasy XIV Saint Mocianne's Arboretum (Hard) Screenshot

Final Fantasy XIV The Burn Screenshot

Final Fantasy XIV The Burn Screenshot

Rounding out battle content will be the final leg of the Omega raid series, with Alphascape. The first two parts were based on Final Fantasy V and VI bosses, respectively, and with the reveal of a golden Chaos of Final Fantasy I fame, could Alphascape be entirely FFI-based, or will there be surprises? We'll find out soon.

And, finally, as always, Prelude in Violet will continue adding to the main story as our heroes find themselves in a new area that presumably is going to tie into the next expansion... but we'll see. And while I still think Gyr Abania needs a bit of a reconstruction fund at this point, a new level of Doman Reconstruction will open up, and allow players to once again make donations to help the Doman people rebuild their Enclave, which seems to include a school this time:

Final Fantasy XIV Doman Reconstruction Screenshot

That promised trailer could drop at any time, so be on the lookout for that! We'll bring it to you here, and it will be viewable on the Prelude in Violet special site once available. Again, Patch 4.4 will debut on September 18th. In the meantime, why not check out even more new screenshots in our gallery?


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