Square-Enix is gearing up for Final Fantasy XIV’s big reboot, and they’re hoping that the addition of one of Final Fantasy’s most iconic creations into XIV will be enough to entice old school FF fans into giving Square’s MMO another chance.
I’ll admit it: when Final Fantasy XIV’s original launch ended up being a massive train wreck, I was one of the many people making jokes at Square-Enix’s expense. The schadenfreude derived from mocking FFXIV arguably provided more entertainment than actually playing the game itself, but it seems like the days of using FFXIV as a punchline might be over. Square-Enix is relaunching the game with the brand new “Realm Reborn” subtitle, and interviews with the game’s new director seem to suggest that Square might actually succeed in turn XIV into a genuinely good game.
Square’s latest step in the right direction was announced this morning, when Square revealed that FF6’s iconic Magitek Armor “mecha” will be available in FFXIV as a ride-able mount. FFXIV’s Magitek Armor is a faithful recreation of Yoshitaka Amano’s original design.
It’s a fan service-y, pandering addition for sure, but it’s a cool feature nonetheless. Final Fantasy 6 is still my favorite game in the series: I still have my complete, boxed copy that I originally bought almost 20 (!) years ago when I was in the third grade, and I still play through it again every few years (the battery save still works, surprisingly.)
I haven’t liked most of the recent Final Fantasies, so it’s hard for me to be optimistic about the series’ future, but everything I’ve heard so far in regards to A Realm Reborn seems to suggest that the game is on the right track. While I’ll miss having such an easy target to make fun of, I’m genuinely interested in actually playing FFXIV now. A Realm Reborn is currently in closed beta testing, but the game is expected to officially re-launch on PC and finally make its debut on PS3 sometime later this year.
Source: Final Fantasy XIV official blog