With Endwalker finally out, the main story of Final Fantasy XIV finally ends. The launch has brought back some old players, as well as attracted new ones. That has had the effect of doubling the game’s population. Everybody wants to see the exciting conclusion of the story that’s been going for years. However, it led to some problems, even if it’s something to celebrate. Players couldn’t start farming for FFXIV Gil nor play the game due to server congestion.
Though the devs and the players expected this, the sheer number of players still managed to overload and overwork the servers. It led to the usual server lag and login queues. Time gets wasted just getting to log in to the game, and that’s a no-no for any game that requires a subscription. Many players couldn’t play the game, raid, or farm FF14 Gil for what they need to level up the new jobs. Well okay, for that last one, it’s an option to buy FFXIV Gil, though it can lead to some consequences.
By the way, this happened ahead of the launch of the expansion, just during the early access period. If it’s already this bad on early access, what about when the expansion is out? How big will the concurrent player population be?
It’s a good thing the devs thought ahead and gave away a week of free game time. Sure, it’s a small consolation, but they’re working on expanding server capacity. More than that, a post by the director apologizes and explains various things, such as why some errors happen. They also offered the servers’ off-peak times so players can hopefully avoid the too-long queues.
For some possible reasons why this happened, consider the average player population. It fluctuates at some points, but mainly hovers at around 40k players. Some players stopped playing FF to play other games for a while, with the intention to come back once an interesting update drops. Then there are the new players who ended up making FFXIV accounts by their friends’ insistence or their own curiosity.
Due to the game’s age, it has amassed a huge number of players, whether they’re new, waiting to come back, or quit entirely. It should be no surprise that when this expansion gets released, there’s going to be a deluge of returning players. Then again, it just goes to show how loved this game is, even by those who dropped it for a time.
Compensations for Lost Time
As mentioned above, anyone who has the full paid game and an active subscription gets 7 days of game time for free. That’s more than most other games that might not give anything or just give small pittances. More than that, if further problems arise due to server congestion, they’re prepared to give out more game time to all players.
It’s good news for players, because who wants to waste their subscription waiting hours on end in queues? While it may not be as long as a week, it would certainly feel that way for anyone who gets caught in one. Besides, the game rarely ever saw these kinds of numbers of concurrent FF14 accounts logged on (barring other past major events).
Somehow, everybody expected it, but it seems that the measures taken weren’t enough. It could be that while they predicted there will be a surge of players, they misjudged the size of it. Not to say that it’s the players’ fault either, just an unfortunate miscalculation. It’s a hassle for everyone, from the players to the developers themselves.
How to Avoid the Long Queues
Follow the suggestion and play on off-peak hours, as long as schedules permit it. The Home World Transfer service was slated to be available at this time, but it closed due to the sheer volume of server load. Most likely, there were no servers to move to, as all of them were pushed to capacity. It’ll be up soon and be an option to avoid the queues.
It’s also an option to give it a week or two for the players to calm down. Once you’ve purchased the game, it’s not going to go away, so you can play it later anyways. The expansion will be there whether you play right now or later. Of course, playing later will leave you vulnerable to getting spoiled, which may (or may not) be a big deal to you.
The conclusion to the game’s more than a decade-long journey marks the end of an era. However, it’s not just the end yet! There are still mysteries to solve and adventures to go on in Eorzea (and possibly beyond). That’s enough reason to continue playing and enjoying the FFXIV mounts and other things from the FFXIV store.
Have fun and enjoy Endwalker and FFXIV!