The rebirth of Final Fantasy XIV is live, and you can read all about it in our A Realm Reborn review.
Since relaunching last week players have been struggling to login to Final Fantasy XIV’s servers. The reason for the lack of server space is that the game’s producer and director, Naoki Yoshida, expected far fewer players. He cites the failure of the game’s first launch as reasoning for this.
Severe server restrictions were implemented to deal with the capacity problems. “The fact that we had to implement these restrictions,” writes Yoshida, “is a direct result of my inaccurate sales and login estimates, and as producer, I must accept complete responsibility for this misstep.”
In an open blog post, Yoshida explains that “On the night following the announcement of our plans to temporarily limit sales of the download version, A Realm Reborn recorded upwards of 218,000 concurrent connections. This is in spite of the fact that the peak login times for separate regions around the world arrive at differing intervals. We estimate that without time zone differences, the total number of concurrent connections would number anywhere from 300,000 to 350,000.
“As many of you know, this is the second launch for FINAL FANTASY XIV─something unprecedented in the MMORPG market. Considering the outcome of our first launch, our sales estimates for this one were decidedly conservative, as we believed that there would be a more gradual rise in users over the opening weeks and months.
“Instead, to our pleasant surprise, we experienced tremendous support from a great number of players who were eager to get into the game from day one. To ensure that these players, once logged in, were able to play in a stable environment, we were required to implement login restrictions which kept server population near maximum capacity without exceeding those numbers.
“The fact that we had to implement these restrictions is a direct result of my inaccurate sales and login estimates, and as producer, I must accept complete responsibility for this misstep. Each and every player who has been affected has my deepest apologies.”
Currently, servers are still seeing restrictions in place. Each server is only able to stably support 5,000 players, if Square Enix see a server approaching that many concurrent users then they lock it down. These restrictions are in place now more than ever because, while servers can support 5,000 players, that estimate “is based on those characters being somewhat distributed over all the in-game areas (zones).
“At the game’s start, however, while everyone is still at a low level, the majority of players are concentrated in the three city-states and surrounding areas. This can not only lead to a lack of enemies to slay (preventing quest progression), but also see area servers overloaded, and ultimately lead to crashes.”
Until players have begun to level up and disperse throughout the game those restrictions will stay in place.
Yoshida says that they’ve acquired a load of new servers and are currently prepping them to be made public and accessible. We’ll see how well the server problems are reduced over the next week.