Final Fantasy XIV is a massively multiplayer role-playing game (MMORPG) that sends players on a deep journey through the world of Hydaelyn and beyond.
Initially launched in 2010, Final Fantasy XIV's original version - "Version 1.0" - received extensive criticism and negative player reviews. However, the game gained a new life under Naoki Yoshida, who directed a complete rebuild of the game to address the problems the title faced. "Version 1.0" of FFXIV shut down in November 2012, and "Version 2.0" released almost a year later in August 2013. Since the new version's launch, Final Fantasy XIV has become a global favorite and a market titan.
Business Model: Free Trial, Retail + Subscription
Free Trial: Final Fantasy XIV's free trial offers the ability to reach level 60 in all combat classes offered by the base game ("A Realm Reborn") and the first expansion ("Heavensward"), plus level 60 in all crafting and gathering classes. Players are restricted from some messaging channels, and cannot use the auction house or retainer system. This offers hundreds of hours of content with no cost or commitment.
Retail + Subscription: For players looking to go beyond the free trial, the Final Fantasy XIV Complete Edition includes all current expansions beyond Heavensward, and costs about $60 USD (the approximate price of a new PC or console title). Subscriptions are also required to play the game in addition to this purchase; they run from $12.99 to $14.99 USD per 30-day period.
Microtransactions: Yes (Cosmetic, Level/Content Skip)
Races: Hyur, Miqo'te, Elezen, Lalafell, Roegadyn. Expansion races include Au Ra (Heavensward), Viera (Shadowbringers), and Hrothgar (Shadowbringers).
Jobs: Classes and jobs are divided into four categories: Disciple of War, Disciple of Magic, Disciple of the Hand, and Disciple of the Land. Starting War or Magic disciplines are called classes, which become Jobs at level 30. They fall into three archetypes: Tank, Healer, and DPS. Other Jobs exist that are later unlocked through gameplay and expansions.
- Disciple of War: Gladiator → Paladin, Marauder → Warrior, Lancer → Dragoon, Pugilist → Monk, Rogue → Ninja, Archer → Bard; Dark Knight, Machinist (Heavensward); Samurai (Stormblood); Gunbreaker, Dancer (Shadowbringers); Reaper (Endwalker)
- Disciple of Magic: Thaumaturge → Black Mage, Arcanist → Summoner / Scholar, Conjurer → White Mage; Astrologian (Heavensward); Red Mage (Stormblood); Sage (Endwalker)
- Disciple of the Hand: Carpenter, Blacksmith, Armorer, Alchemist, Culinarian, Leatherworker, Goldsmith, Weaver
- Disciple of the Land: Botanist, Miner, Fisher
Expansions: Since A Realm Reborn ("Version 2.0" or "the base game"), four expansions have been released with a fifth announced in July 2023. Each expansion includes new jobs and regions, along with an expansive storyline, beast tribes, and other additional activities and features (some of which have been integrated into the base game experience).
- Heavensward: Adds Au Ra race; Dark Knight, Machinist, Astrologian jobs; Ishgard and surrounding regions.
- Stormblood: Adds Samurai and Red Mage jobs; Gyr Abania, Othard, and Hingashi regions.
- Shadowbringers: Adds Gunbreaker and Dancer jobs; the World of the First region.
- Endwalker: Adds Reaper and Sage jobs; Thavnair and Garlemald regions.
- Dawntrail: Announced in July 2023; will explore the New World region. New jobs yet unknown.
Near Endless Content: Featuring a massive major storyline plus thousands of sidequests, Final Fantasy XIV doesn't quit at quests. The game includes a plethora of activities, including dungeons, raids, collections, mini-games, chocobo raising (and racing), crafting, gathering, personal and company housing, faction PvP with seasonal rankings, and much more.