Is FF14 Worth It? Find Out Here.

Is FF14 Worth it
Do people really still want to slay this poor guy?

Failed Game That Made a Comeback

In 2013, FFXIV was re-released to the world, free of many of the issues its failed first iteration had in 2010. In 2018, FFXIV is probably the most-played cross-platform MMORPG in history. Will it still be a game worth playing in 2019?

New expansion confirmed for Summer 2019

Is that not any more reason to hop on and play? The beginning of an expansion is a chance to start on even footing with other players as you all race to the level cap, final raids, and dungeons. An expansion also likely shows that a game is not dead, and that enough interest is available to warrant an investment.

FFXIV Shadowbringers comes Summer 2019.

Why should you pay a subscription fee?

Just in case fishing is at the top of your priority list.

Well let’s be real, nobody wants to pay more money for anything if they have to. FFXIV, like its chief-competitor World Of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth, works on a monthly-pay system. You have to buy the game and expansions (although as newer expansions are released the older expansions tend to be bundled off at a significantly-reduced price alongside original game in a neat package).

There are other MMORPG options, some that do not require a purchase to install the game, or have an initial cost but no subscription fees.

You can build a pretty comfy home here.

But through experience I have found that paying for an MMORPG, though it may be more (probably around 0.50 USD a day) on top of paying for the full game tends to make the game better. The free-to-play (F2P) options tend to have a trend of being extremely grindy, requiring huge amounts of time to get the rather lackluster endgame. FFXIV does not have this problem, it has an excellent end game that has been designed with an “easy to play, difficult to master” philosophy.

Grab some friends and go raiding!

Oh, and did I mention that FFXIV is developed by Square Enix? Square Enix seems to be determined to create one of the most satisfying MMORPG experiences around by constantly updating their game to keep their players busy and happy. That of course can only be realistically done on the scale of FFXIV with a subscription fee.

At least for now.

What about the plot?

 In normal Final Fantasy fashion, the plot of FFXIV is quite complex. You’d be hard pressed to find the plot of any given FFXIV novel making the New York Times’ Best Sellers list. Of course, inclusion into that list, or any other academic or societal mold doesn’t relegate it from being a good story.

You can get married in this game by the way.

In fact, Final Fantasy XIV is quite impressive considering your character is thrust into a world essentially made from scratch (well, with the help of years of Final Fantasy story building elements packed in). It’s a new story in FFXIV; as with many other Final Fantasy titles, FFXIV stands alone.

If you’re worried about having to have played a Final Fantasy title beforehand in order to enjoy FFXIV’s plot, you don’t have to be. Just be ready to be the hero of a brand-new adventure in a meticulously crafted world and keep your eyes and ears open to the ride.

What about the gameplay?

 In any game, gameplay is one of the cornerstones of a player’s enjoyment. In an MMORPG, repetition is usually the theme. Constantly keeping up with quests, defeating the same enemies over and over again for the hope of certain loots or reputation gains, and of course leveling up are all big parts of the MMORPG experience and FFXIV is no stranger to this.

It’s a pretty common move for any company trying to get a leg-up on their competitors to try and eliminate or streamline certain things to make the game more enjoyable.

Always somewhere to go in Final Fantasy XIV.

Grinding has always been a point of contention in all MMORPG’s. The base argument usually comes down to the casual players against the hardcore player base. How much time should one invest in their given MMORPG’s to have fun?

FFXIV does a good job juggling the game both for casual players and hardcore players. There is simply so much to do.

The game keeps it easy to track the main quest line by having it always front and center in the top left of the UI.

You don’t have to do it to level up. You can just do all the side quests and learn little intricate details about the world as you let yourself sink into the game. Or you can just run through them like a madman on a mission for time efficiency’s sake. You could even just go around making money so you can play the many mini-games in the Manderville Gold Saucer. Build a house so all your friends and free company members can have a place to call home.

FFXIV is not just about the end game. You don’t have to be a weathered ol’ veteran of every raid since the games launch to enjoy this MMORPG. This quality is something I believe truly sets FFXIV above all others.

What about the PvP?

Ah. Player-vs-Player content. The ultimate duel across computer screens. FFXIV’s PvP is okay. If PvP is the most essential thing for a perspective player, then FFXIV is most definitely not the answer.

Call your banners and go to war.

Gear is irrelevant in PvP, which is fair for players who do not play as much. It all comes down to skill and teamwork.

The development team tries to keep it fresh by adding new modes regularly, and yes there is a ranked PvP system. However, in its current state PvP is just many of the things on the side that you can do. PvE seems to be the premier focus of the game.

What about the PvE?

Screw fighting. Let's just appreciate the scenery.

PvE in FFXIV is defined best by how many different PvE activities there are. From rare mobs to Fates, and dungeons to raids, there truly is a plethora of different PvE content to choose from. In fact, I would even say it’s a little overwhelming for a newcomer. Fear not, because you can tackle the game in any way you wish.

There really can be a small library written about the number of things to do in PvE alongside the narrative and cutscenes.

FFXIV shines as a game that can kind of be played efficiently as a solo player. Despite it being the second most played MMORPG in the world, it's very possible to get lost on your own in a less busy zone without seeing another soul.

 If you want to get rough and rowdy (depending on your definition) you can hop into a dungeon or raid queue from anywhere or go hang out in the centers of the main cities.
My personal favorite time sink in the game is the Palace of the Dead dungeon. It’s an ever changing, procedurally generated dungeon. Each run in this dungeon is always different from the last.

What I think anyone who plays this game will notice is that, no matter how trivial or small, every single quest or action partaken in this game has a large amount of backstory. FFXIV’s desire to immerse their players in the game is evident

What about the Combat?

Don’t mess up your rotation! You might get messed up yourself, especially if you’re not watching where you are stepping.

Combat in FFXIV is somewhat slower paced compared to its primary rival, World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth. Specifically, the global-cooldowns are longer. Attacks in general take a bit longer to churn out.

The game almost seems to want to take its time.

Of course, later in the game, when there are many different abilities to fire off in a certain order to achieve the best results, the longer cast times and cooldowns are welcome.

What it seems to boil down to is more planning and careful execution rather than having constant split-second events in a fight to worry about.

What about the Graphics?

It’s pretty easy to get stuck looking at the pretty graphics on the character select screen.

If you happened to be ignoring every single image I’ve been posting alongside this article. I’ll throw a few more at you here. Pay attention if you haven’t.

The color palette in this game is simple, yet… so complex.

The graphics in this game are fantastic. Despite being over six years old now, FFXIV has aged quite well and only the highest gaming rigs could hope to play it on 4K resolution.

I mean yeah this bugger is creepy as hell, but look at that detail. Look at it!

Lower-spec machines can handle the game pretty well too, if 4K resolution on max graphics isn’t a requirement for you. It isn’t for me. I’m still amazed by the amount of details in this game, and find something new to admire about the graphics nearly every time I login on my budget rig.

What about the Community?

FFXIV players tend to be warmer than players of other popular online titles.

Well, as the ESRB has warned us, online experiences may vary. Mine has been pretty refreshing. Veteran players are incentivized to help out newbie characters who are signified by the fresh green leaf next to their name.

People tend to be very courteous and helpful. I remember a few occasions where strangers would come up to my character and trade me useful items with no catch.

 It’s a community without a doubt, a group of people who enjoy getting lost in the FFXIV world and are always down to help others get lost in it as well. As someone with a competitive, esports gaming background, the lack of toxicity and salt in this game is truly, truly a treat.

What about the End Game?

So, you want to know about the raids? Well, I think it’s safe to say based on my interactions with others, some people solely play the game for the end game raiding, and other avoid it like the plague.

Storytelling in FFXIV is up to the golden standard set by previous Final Fantasy titles.

The most hardcore iteration of the end game raiding on Savage mode. Personally, I enjoy how in FFXIV the group is spawned right in front of the boss rather than being forced to go through trash mobs every time.

Overall, the end game is enjoyable, but not especially difficult. Maybe this comes from the viability of nearly every job in the game, or maybe it’s the game designer’s choice to have a lax system. But in comparison to World Of Warcraft, it definitely feels less pressing, challenging and rewarding. Despite that, the boss fights are ripe with narrative weight and so much musical excellence that it has me excited to play.

The lack of trash at the end game and higher focus on boss fights makes the game more enjoyable for me at least. I can’t remember the last time I was excited to get through all the trash mobs just to fight a boss. Granted, the majority of FFXIV does have trash mobs in the way of the bosses like any other MMORPG, but still the absence trash mobs in the end game is a welcome addition.

So... will I like it?

A rather subjective question, especially for FFXIV. If you like First-Person-Shooters (FPS) does that mean you’ll like every FPS? Probably not. If you like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, there’s no guarantee you’ll like playing Destiny 2. Or if you enjoy the ever popular battle-royale genre, liking Playerunknown’s: Battleground does not guarantee you’ll love Fortnite.

The Square Enix team does not mess around when it comes to immersion.

So, do you like MMORPG’s? No? Then you probably won’t like FFXIV. It is an MMORPG after all.

Do you like the Final Fantasy series? Then you might like FFXIV, you might not like it. The typical Final Fantasy game boasts an impressive single-player role-playing experience, and just like FFXIV, a stellar soundtrack and story. While music and writing will ultimately come down to consumer-preference, FFXIV most definitely stays true to the Final Fantasy formula and is worth giving a try as a Final Fantasy fan.

Even if you’re not a Final Fantasy fan, or an MMORPG fan, you should give FFXIV a try. It’s completely free to play until level 35 albeit with some social restrictions. Perhaps the inspiring and scenic symphonies will lull you to it as you chase down quests in beautifully designed environments. Maybe they won’t. But it’s definitely worth a try.

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An East coast native, Paul seeks warmth from cold winters near the heat of his overheating budget desktop while he feeds relentlessly in game.
Gamer Since: 2000
Currently Playing: Fate/Grand Order
Top 3 Favorite Games:Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, Dark Souls 3
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Spuunt 1 week 1 day ago

That being said, FF XIV is balls out amazing and if anyone disagrees we can have us a little tussle.

Spuunt's picture

Spuunt 1 week 1 day ago

Good article Paul. That was a very deep explanation of the game and honestly, it was a better review than most of the major outlets put out. I look forward to seeing you improve your writing and can't wait to see what you put out next.

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