Final Fantasy XIV PC Gets Two Release Dates

The first steps players take into the world of Eorzea will be wide ones, as Square Enix reveals two September release dates for Final Fantasy XIV on the PC; one for the normal edition, and an earlier one for the lavish collector's edition.

That's right, Final Fantasy XIV for the PC is coming out on September 22 in collector's edition form, and again on September 30 as a standard edition release. Why the discrepancy? Because Square Enix is smart.

Most MMO games these days offer early access in some form or another, and Final Fantasy XIV is no different. Fans that purchase the collector's edition will score a free week of game play. Unlike other MMOs, which make players download the entire game client online in order to participate, Final Fantasy XIV gives its early access players an actual disc. Good on them!

While an eight day head start is more than enough to justify the extra $25 for the collector's edition in many fans' eyes, Square Enix has loaded up the $75 box with exclusive goodies. Here's what's inside:

In-Game Item – Collector's Edition preorders will include a reward code to receive an exclusive in-game item, the Onion Helm.*

Early Access– Play 8 days prior to the release of the Windows PC Standard Edition (timing of access subject to initial server capacity).

Behind the Scenes DVD – Get an insider look at the making of FINAL FANTASY XIV, with exclusive video content, interviews and more in this special documentary DVD.

Security Token – A FINAL FANTASY XIV–branded Security Token for use with your regular password.

Travel Journal – Record your travels in this beautifully bound journal filled with pages of never-before-seen concept art.

Right of Passage – Redeem a voucher to receive your fully-personalized Right of Passage Certificate, each stamped with a unique serial number.

Amano Cover – Special PC Collector's Edition illustration by renowned artist Yoshitaka Amano.

That's a rather nice deal. Plus, everyone who buys either version will of course receive one free month of play, before having to pony up the lower-than-average $12.99 a month subscription fee.

And in case this wasn't enough good news, the beta test for Final Fantasy XIV is scheduled to begin early next month, and next month starts *checks watch* tomorrow.

Both versions of Final Fantasy XIV for the PC are now available for preorder at most major retailers.