Originally planned to come out later this month, Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker, the Square Enix MMORPG’s biggest expansion to-date, will instead arrive a few weeks later on December 7. That’s because director Naoki Yoshida and the rest of the development team want to launch the new content without breaking the game.
Yoshida, a 17-year veteran of Square Enix, wrote in the announcement that this is the first time he’s ever postponed anything that already had a release date, but that it was necessary given how ambitious Endwalker is.
“[W]e remained firmly resolved to adjust down to the smallest nuances and ensure our writing covers even the finest points of the vast and intricate story that has spanned these past 11 years since the original FFXIV to ensure that everyone can fully enjoy their adventure in Endwalker,” he wrote. “Unfortunately, the consequence of this was that we ended up in a situation where we cut into the time required for final quality assurance checks due to this time spent on additional improvements.”
The FFXIV director continued:
At this rate, there was a bigger risk of us reaching the release date without ensuring “stability” as one form of quality, and for that reason, I have decided to postpone the release at this time. As we also anticipate large amounts of congestion across all game Worlds, I felt that even in this respect it wouldn’t be right for us to release the expansion while lacking adequate ‘stability.’ I am truly sorry.
It’s an incredibly minor delay, but Yoshida was deeply apologetic regardless, even appearing to get teary-eyed during a livestream breaking the news.
Square Enix also previewed more of what’s coming in Endwalker and the game’s subsequent patches in the latest multi-hour Live Letter. Here’s the new schedule of upcoming content:
- December 3 - Patch 6.0 and Endwalker Early Access go live.
- December 7 - Endwalker officially launches.
- December 21 - Patch 6.01 and a new Pandaemonium raid go live.
- January 4 - Patch 6.05 releases alongside new gear, Allagan Tomestones, and the savage version of the Pandaemonium raid.
Yoshida also revealed new Viera hairstyles, changes to resource gathering and crafting, and an overhauled spearfishing mini-game. Players will not have to actually time their stabs to harpoon fish. Plus more role quests are on the way.
FFXIV originally came out in 2010 and was a complete disaster. Square Enix kept at it though and three years later launched a rebooted version of the game called A Realm Reborn. Dozens of patches and three major expansions later, the game has become the company’s most profitable Final Fantasy ever. Endwalker is the culmination of that decade plus journey. I think fans can wait a few extra weeks for it.