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  1. #41
    I trusted Zet and this is what happened
    Eleven owes me $40 bucks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Takiwaki View Post
    Sure, why do you think 3.0 is in june 2015?
    I said 2015, technically I would expect February-March 2015 for the reasons Rocl mentioned.

  2. #42

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocl View Post
    As I recall he mentioned 3.0 being about a year (year and a half?) after launch. My memory is fuzzy. Thinking there won't be a patch in September (2.4) is kinda silly.

    March (3) + 3 months (what they've been doing between patches so far) = 6 (June) = 2.3

    June (6) + 3 = September (9) 2.4
    September would be a year after launch, if they wanted they could easily drop 3.0 there if they were good on time.

  3. #43
    The Once and Future Wamoura
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    Here's the reason they won't:
    2.2 adds Coil, Turn 9
    2.3 adds CT, boring
    2.4 adds Coil, Turn 10+

    If you're skipping 2.4 you're ending the game on Crystal Tower. That's stupid.

    Unless they pull some fuckery and go back on alternating Coil/Tower since they've said 3.0 adds shit for the next dungeon AFTER Coil.

  4. #44

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocl View Post
    Here's the reason they won't:
    2.2 adds Coil, Turn 9
    2.3 adds CT, boring
    2.4 adds Coil, Turn 10+

    If you're skipping 2.4 you're ending the game on Crystal Tower. That's stupid.
    3.0 will have all new content? that will replace coil... This was said by yoshi also. How exactly is it skipping or ending the game?

  5. #45
    The Once and Future Wamoura
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    what

  6. #46
    The Once and Future Wamoura
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    The Binding Coil of Bahamut is NOT ending in this patch. If there is no 2.4 there is no ending to the Binding Coil. Our fight w/ Bahamut has been rumoured/hinted at being in Turn 10(+?). We will not have Turn 10 in 2.2 and there is no reason currently to expect a coil expansion in 2.3.

  7. #47
    The Once and Future Wamoura
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    You 'end' 2.0 and 'begin' 3.0; I don't know why that's hard to understand. It's skipping because it's highly unlikely all of Coil will be resolved this patch. If it is, then holy shit this game.

  8. #48
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    Reinheart's translation is of the Game Watch article which was apparently a significantly more thorough transcription of the original interview. The Dengeki one seems to have left out a lot of unimportant things along with a few of some significance. I can have a go at it, I guess, shouldn't be too bad as most of the stuff will be copy/paste from the Dengeki one.

  9. #49

    Quote Originally Posted by Slycer View Post
    Reinheart's translation is of the Game Watch article which was apparently a significantly more thorough transcription of the original interview. The Dengeki one seems to have left out a lot of unimportant things along with a few of some significance. I can have a go at it, I guess, shouldn't be too bad as most of the stuff will be copy/paste from the Dengeki one.
    Awesome thanks.

  10. #50
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    Why would they release Coil 10+ in 2.4 then an expansion 3 months later with new end-game content? I'm kinda expecting weak CT shit in 2.5 and then 3.0. But 2.5 would be ages off...

  11. #51
    YOU BLACK, MIDNIGHT, EVIL MOTHERFUCKERS!!! BLACK MAGIC, DARKNESS!!! YOU RAW, DARKNESS!!! YOU, FUCKING, DELIRIOUS MOTHERFUCKER!
    You were cold as ice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocl View Post
    Here's the reason they won't:
    2.2 adds Coil, Turn 9
    2.3 adds CT, boring
    2.4 adds Coil, Turn 10+

    If you're skipping 2.4 you're ending the game on Crystal Tower. That's stupid.

    Unless they pull some fuckery and go back on alternating Coil/Tower since they've said 3.0 adds shit for the next dungeon AFTER Coil.
    I can see why you think the expansion will be released next year, however I'm guessing it will drop in December/January. Specifically after 2.45. It's fairly hopeful IMO to believe that Coil will end by September with one final turn before the expansion hits in "December". It may as well be some grand labyrinth to a "final" show down with Bahamut. I also coincide this guess with primals soon to come, they being Ramuh and Shiva (also probably in that exact order).

    Assuming June 2015 would also mean an expansion coming almost 1 year and 8 months after Vanilla. In comparison RoZ was released about a year and a month after vanilla XI. Then again, Yoshi-P also stated in Live Letter V (Question #40) that he would like to release an expansion pack within 2 years of launch. So both times fall within that time table. One thing that can be agreed upon is that patches will pursue after 2.4 for sure. Rocl's outlook would peg the end of the 2.X series at around 2.8 or 2.85, which is also very reasonable.

    Though I personally don't want to believe an expansion would take almost two years, it's a tough pill to swallow, being level 50 for that long. Guess we'll see as time moves forward.

  12. #52
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    I thought they confirmed there was going to be three tiers of both CT and Coil? I would have to do a lot of digging to confirm/deny that but that would mean 2.x would most likely end on 2.5 with the last patch just being the final tier of CT. Then again, they probably just said that for Coil and I'm making shit up. This also could have been when they had plans for CT to be part of launch and not three months later.

  13. #53
    D. Ring
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    3 for coil, more than 3 for tower.

    Edit: Ah yes, this is why I'm was under the impression of 3 for coil. From some of the quest chatter for coil after you're done with Turn-5 (nothing spoilery).
    Two more like fragments of Dalamud pierced the earth when the lesser moon fell. One we have seen. If we can but find the other two...

  14. #54
    YOU BLACK, MIDNIGHT, EVIL MOTHERFUCKERS!!! BLACK MAGIC, DARKNESS!!! YOU RAW, DARKNESS!!! YOU, FUCKING, DELIRIOUS MOTHERFUCKER!
    You were cold as ice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Falisa View Post
    I thought they confirmed there was going to be three tiers of both CT and Coil? I would have to do a lot of digging to confirm/deny that but that would mean 2.x would most likely end on 2.5 with the last patch just being the final tier of CT. Then again, they probably just said that for Coil and I'm making shit up. This also could have been when they had plans for CT to be part of launch and not three months later.
    Regardless of whatever the deal is with Coil, we now know that Crystal Tower will keep going well into the next expansion pack.

  15. #55
    I trusted Zet and this is what happened
    Eleven owes me $40 bucks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raldo View Post
    3 for coil, more than 3 for tower.

    Edit: Ah yes, this is why I'm was under the impression of 3 for coil. From some of the quest chatter for coil after you're done with Turn-5 (nothing spoilery).
    That sounds like once you complete the three, something else will take place... maybe a separate dungeon?

  16. #56
    YOU BLACK, MIDNIGHT, EVIL MOTHERFUCKERS!!! BLACK MAGIC, DARKNESS!!! YOU RAW, DARKNESS!!! YOU, FUCKING, DELIRIOUS MOTHERFUCKER!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raldo View Post
    3 for coil, more than 3 for tower.

    Edit: Ah yes, this is why I'm was under the impression of 3 for coil. From some of the quest chatter for coil after you're done with Turn-5 (nothing spoilery).
    That definitely is more in line with coil being completed at 2.4 (September). May also explain why there is no Turn 10 (yet).

  17. #57
    YOU BLACK, MIDNIGHT, EVIL MOTHERFUCKERS!!! BLACK MAGIC, DARKNESS!!! YOU RAW, DARKNESS!!! YOU, FUCKING, DELIRIOUS MOTHERFUCKER!
    You were cold as ice.

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    This is interesting:

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoshi-P to Gamewatch
    GW: How far out are you scoping for this development?

    Y: I am looking up till the expansion which I’m calling 3.0. The name of dungeons, amount of dungeons, and the end contents that’s coming after Great Labyrinth of Bahamut, the theme is already decided and we started the level designing. I’m thinking about 2 years. Right now the overall development has accomplished as planned for 2.0’s completion, so I’m telling them that they need to put in what they can. Instead of making everything for 2.3, decide on their own if they can release it earlier. Frontline is also being worked on a lot, I’m planning to talk about the progress on the 21st’s Letter Live. Might feel like “when did they have time to make this?” (laugh). for 3.0 we already have the new towns mockup done, we’re working into the details, we already decided on the amount of fields and the theme as well, some of the arts are already done and ready to go into building mockups.
    Even more interesting is the ending of the translation (credit to Reinhart):
    Quote Originally Posted by Yoshi-P to Gamewatch
    GW: For you the ultimate role model is WOW.

    Y: I don’t think I’m developing a NextGen MMO. I think it’s ok to have this as the last for this era, to develop a next gen MMO we don’t feel a sense of danger, we went through the process to flip the tables from what happened with previous FFXIV. So even if we wanted to make a MMO that no one has ever seen, we can’t (laugh). What I decided on was a game where Japanese players can feel at ease to play, while it being the last MMORPG for this era, there isn’t much players in Japan playing Wow, so first I wanted goal is to reach WOW. I want to continue without giving up. We can work on NextGen once we catch up, it’s not too late then, or it could be that when we’re working on FFXIV ARR it became NetGen. We have plans for stuff that WOW didn’t even challenge, and by going after the FF style it will become something different. We have lots of stuff put into 3.0, and we’re working towards the last of 2.x series so please look forward to it.


    GW: Thank you very much.
    Now I'm even more convinced that 2.X will end at 2.45. I'm also guessing now that 2.45 will be a prepratory patch for 3.0. Is enough speculation for a day, I guess, lol.

    Edit: This may also be a translation error, as it doesn't make mention of the starting point of Yoshi-P's perceived development plan that eventually reaches about 2 years. He could have meant since the start of 2.0 (August 2013), or he could have meant the start of 2.0's development cycle (September/October 2012 for alpha). If he means it's from 2.0 launch, then 3.0 lands in Summer 2015, if he meant since Alpha 2.0 then 3.0 lands in Winter 2014.

  18. #58
    D. Ring
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaslo View Post
    That sounds like once you complete the three, something else will take place... maybe a separate dungeon?
    I cut the quote a bit short, but it basically says "If we can find all three, maybe we'll finally understand what happened to Grandfather and the Calamity" (referring to Louisoix's disappearance and everyone's memory loss about the whole event). I suspect that the end of the 3rd Coil update will simply provide closure on that part of the story, rather than unlock anything new.

  19. #59
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    Combined translation of GW and Dengeki interview. New stuff from GW is in blue. There were a couple minor contradictions also, but nothing significant.


    Is this your first time coming to GDC?

    Yoshida: No, I've had been participating in the GDC workshops for eight years, but I stopped the last couple of years once we started working on A Realm Reborn. This year is my first time in about three years.

    It's good to come to GDC once in a while just to develop our skills further. There are so many people who are serious about making games in the world, not just in Japan, and it's good to see them talking frankly about their successes and failures. That's one of the parts that really surprised me at first, but we're all gathered here so that we can make better games.

    Are any other staff members from A Realm Reborn coming to GDC?

    Yoshida: No, just me (laughs). Hopefully by next year we can have a whole FFXIV panel discussion at GDC. With this game we've gotten a variety of experiences with production, sound, graphics, programming, task management which we can talk about. We're also going to be launching in China soon so we want to talk about the results from that as well. We had a sudden request from GDC to participate, and it would have been an honor, but it was tough to fit in with our schedule. Since we've only just launched, I didn't want to lead any sessions at this year's GDC.

    The PS4 version beta test began on February 22. Can you tell us what the players' reactions were like?

    Yoshida: We had a substantial number of downloads of the PS4 version. We haven't publicized the number so I can't say specifically... but one of the main concerns that came up in moving to full HD was people saying that the UI was small and hard to see - this really surprised us, especially Minagawa (laughs). We had a lot of feedback to make it the same size as on the PS3. It's actually the same size as the PC version, but it may be a difficult transition when moving from the PS3 version. Because of that, with the next beta test phase that starts April 4, we'll have a UI appearance which is more in line with the PS3 version. Of course, it'll also be possible to change the UI resolution to match the PC version. However, since the characters become blurred when you simply expand it, we'll have separate resources for it. Similarly for the cross hot bar, it's implemented separately.

    So you're changing the whole UI of the PS4 version instead of making individual modifications?

    Yoshida: We set it up so that it's easy to see everything at once. You can also adjust things individually... you'll get a better idea of this in the Beta phase 2. The full version of the game has already gone master, though, so support will have to be added in the release day patch.


    If you play the PC version, it would be strange to revert back to the size of the UI in the PS3 version.

    Yoshida: Yeah, it's a completely different look. We've been developing the PS4 version with the idea of console gameplay in mind, but the UI can also be reduced if you choose to.

    Is that because you're expecting a lot of players to transition from the PS3 version?

    Yoshida: No, not particularly. We're expecting a lot of new customers to start playing. With the Share function, I was watching with Minagawa and a couple others on a huge monitor in one of the development areas, and it was fun to see new users starting out with quests. (laughs)

    In the quest where you pick up items for the first time in Limsa while heading towards the Aetheryte, they went right past another quest and came back to activate it after they finished (laughs). I guess they were just trying to do things in order from the task list. They were doing the quests one at a time instead of signing up for a few at once. I guess I understand how they were thinking, but we don't want to number the quests or put glowing guide lines. We think the Share feature will be something that really helps players get into the game in early stages, and it also motivated us to see the new players' enjoyment.


    I know the PS4 version can be played like the PC version, but do you also plan to support gaming device key assignment like Logitech G13 and G600?

    Yoshida: It'll depend on the manufacturer. Some products which require special drivers may not work correctly because of the PS4 specifications. If the peripherals manufacturer is making peripherals which are supported by SCE, they will work.

    On the software side for A Realm Reborn, you may lack support for particular gaming devices.

    Yoshida: If a button press is recognized, you'll be able to set a macro or other function to that button by using the key bindings in the game. There could be problems if drivers change though, since there isn't full support for that yet. The PS4 just launched, though, so there could be support for in the future.

    -----

    (in Dengeki:) I'd like to ask you a bit about the current service for A Realm Reborn. To maintain the game's success moving forward, are there certain parts that you're concerned about?

    [[idk wtf, but the GW version has a completely different question with the same answer]]
    (in Game Watch:) In your talk tomorrow, you're going to condense three years of experience into an hour - what important points are you going to go over?

    Yoshida:The most important thing to me is that we are honest and upfront in describing the current situation and to keep up with the promises we make.

    (Dengeki): I think we were able to make good on our biggest commitment to players when we finally launched the game.

    (Game Watch): Because we weren't able to make good on our promises on releasing the PS3 version at the same time as dealing with the issues of the PC version, we had to postpone the sales for PS3, but we're glad we finally were able to make good on that commitment.

    That said, A Realm Reborn is just getting started. We had concerns about whether the game would be able to survive the waves of subscription with the montly fee since not many MMORPGs have done so successfully in the past few years, and we're relieved that we got through it. However, there are plenty of other more popular games, we want to continue to expand our market share globally. Part of it is that we're still lacking on content, so the planned additions to the game will be addressing this. We can't just sit back and celebrate.

    When we first started talking about A Realm Reborn, you had mentioned that you'd be looking to respond globally to reactions, so aside from those in Japan, how have the reactions from North American players been?

    Yoshida: There's not much difference in the feedback we receive from Japanese and North American users. I think a lot of players in Japan are just getting used to A Realm Reborn, but in North America a lot of players draw comparisons to previous experiences with World of Warcraft.

    (Dengeki:) A Realm Reborn has familiar aspects to WoW.

    (GW:) So North American players are constantly drawing comparisons with World of Warcraft?

    Yoshida: Absolutely. People who are familiar with WoW will recognize a lot of the systems in A Realm Reborn, but there are many players in Japan who are not familiar with them and may question their implementation. That's one of the differences that we see between North American and Japanese players.

    However, we have about a half and half split for people who are happy with the current degree of difficulty and people who think it's too difficult. The difficulty of WoW has dropped considerably, but the people who loved the time when WoW was difficult are the people who like the difficulty in A Realm Reborn.

    As far as the montly billing goes, with the introduction of F2P models, people are becoming more pragmatic and they're only willing to pay for the things that they want to use. What that means to monthly billing is that there are players who would rather pay based on the amount of time they play in a particular month, after they've played. There used to be no debate about this, since monthly billing was the only standard for MMORPGs, but now F2P is a consideration. We see this desire for players who would rather buy items especially in North America.

    Is deferred payment a possibility?

    Yoshida: It would be difficult since you may get people who don't pay (laughs). We already have a small risk by accepting credit cards, but that would be even more risky. Since we want to avoid that, we have other payment methods like through Steam and game time cards.

    With a shifting momentum towards North American users, especially with the PS4 version, do you expect any change in the way game resources are distributed between North America and Japan in the future?

    Yoshida: Outside of continuing to provide game updates I can't really think of any specific example of different needs - did you have something in mind?

    Well, seasonal events would be a good example. For example, you have a Doll Festival event, but this differs in each region... would you ever add something like a St. Patrick's Day event for America?

    Yoshida: Well the game is developed in Japan, so we do want to pay homage to our home nation, but it's not like we have a mindset where we say "that has nothing to do with our country." For example, we're also having events for Easter, Halloween, etc., and we'd like to keep doing that as much as possible with our global operation. There are things like Independence Day in the United States which don't quite match up with France, so we support them by moving the day around or making the events longer. For some things like Chinese New Year, we deviate from the timing entirely.

    There's more of an emphasis in Japan discussions on the difficulty of the content, but we'll have the "Echo" buff applied globally. Actually, this isn't really so much of a difference between Japan and abroad, but more a difference between hardcore gamers, MMO gamers, and casual gamers, so we don't want to change our resources around based on market share. Even the items from the patch that have a casual focus are still applied globally.


    The alpha test of the Chinese version has recently started. Have there been any advance reviews from users?

    Yoshida: Shanda Games is responsible for the PR of the China services, so please check with them for reactions.

    By the way, based on the number of planned users, what's your goal for the total global number of concurrent connections?

    Yoshida: Since Shanda Games is operating the Chinese version, it's hard to say, but they have different goals thatn we have compared to Japan. However, we shouldn't just be talking about the number of simultaneous connections.

    In South Korea and China, F2P online games have been gaining a lot of momentum, and many users are only playing for the free period. We are taking this seriously, but it's one reason why the number of simultaneous connections may not be a measure of the success of the game, but it's important to see how many subscriptions are maintained after a year. We've seen situations like with "Blade & Soul" where they expand all at once and then stop, so it's important to continue to look at the situation.

    Once the PS4 edition is released, there will be a lot of players who don't know the history of the game very well - are you expecting any different responses between old and new users?

    Yoshida: For players from the original FFXIV who already have all jobs and classes capped, it's easy to say they want more content. In A Realm Reborn, it's harder to level up since in the original FFXIV it was a lot easier to be power leveled by a farming party. For players who start new, there's a lot to do before you start collecting Philosophy and Mythology, Darklight equipment, check out Crystal Tower, work on Relic... but for players from the original FFXIV they were basically in full relic from the start (laughs). In patch 2.2, there will be more challenging content that these players have been waiting for.


    Do you think it's good to have two different billing systems for a MMORPG (F2P and subscription)?

    Yoshida: I don't think F2P is necessarily a bad thing, it's just one option. Talking about MMORPGs in general, there were a number of MMORPGs that launched around 2005, and almost all of them were subscription based - well-known ones like "Warhammer Online," "Lord of the Rings," "Age of Conan," "RIFT," and "Star Wars Old Republic." Just "Guild Wars 2" was different in this regard. The thought was that this would guarantee profit from the start, and the development team wanted to depend on a stable number of users and a stable income.

    With the F2P model, employment is unstable, since what you sell in one month doesn't necessarily predict the next month's profits. This makes developers uneasy and makes it hard to create a roadmap for the game. It's important that content is provided reliably over time, and you need a development team and a steady income to do that.

    To have stable sales for a MMORPG, you have to keep development going. After all, you need to keep providing content with updates and people need to be entertained by that content to want to keep playing. With a F2P game, though, you're not getting money from the content, but just from selling items. So then to make a lot of content you have to make a lot of items, which isn't necessarily linked to the players' enjoyment of the game.

    Rather than having 100% content update, then, you'd have to dedicate, say, 30% of that to items created to make money. Then it goes back to the ultimate question of why are we making the game in the first place.

    The development of a MMORPG requires an incredible investment. It takes a lot of money raised from investors, and if you don't get the number of users you planned for at the start of your subscription service, the investors might immediately go into panic mode trying to figure out how to increase profit. These games might be forced to go F2P so that they can use the revenue to return the money to their investors.

    There are many users now who don't like the idea of being bound to a game for a long time. I feel that way myself, so that I can stop at any point. I think this model works well for these kind of games where you play for a long time overall but only play a little at a time. These aren't MMOs, but F2P works well for games like "World of Tanks" and "League of Legends."

    If there are particular elements which are strongly customizable, F2P works well for those cases so that players can pay to instantly expand their experience. I think that's why the choice was made for those types of games. It's important that the business model for the game is selected based on the kind of experience that you want to provide.

    In the slides I'm presenting tomorrow, I'll have one titled "F2P vs. Subscription" and then the next slide will have a big X through it - it's not that these are "vs.," there are advantages and disadvantages to each. The game experience, whether or not it's fun, is what matters most. If the players find the game entertaining, they'll keep paying; if it's boring, they obviously won't be playing regardless of your business model.

    I had some interviews with the North American media today where we discussed why A Realm Reborn was one of the few successful subscription based games. It's not that a subscription-based model is necessarily inferior, it's just a design choice you have to make, and be willing to make a change proactively if the environment changes. For a game to change from subscription to F2P, it could be a positive change as long as the change is based on the users' needs rather than trying to turn an unprofitable game around. If there's an impression that I'm determined to stick to a subscription service, that's a mistake.

    Do you have a response to the example users you gave in the US who are interested in buying items?

    Yoshida: We can offer things that will increase the ARPU [[Average Revenue Per User]] without affecting game balance

    It seems that a lot of users are interested in sales of Fantasia (the item to change your character model), so how about that?

    Yoshida: We're going to be talking about that in the LIVE producer letter on the 21st. Also, we're planning to introduce the ability to purchase an additional service which increases the number of available retainers. It'll be even more valuable with the additional retainer systems available with the patch which will make retainers more useful than ever. The first two are initially free, so there will be a charge starting with the third. Please wait for an official announcement regarding the exact fee.

    -----

    There's been quite a bit of information published about patch 2.2 already - what's been most popular with the players?

    Yoshida: The ability to change the looks of your equipment to match your favorite style. Earlier, we hadn't given details about whether this would work with blue name equipment, but we talked about that in the letter I published the other day. Allagan equipment has a blue name and can be changed. Also, we only briefly touched on it, but another hot topic are the Zodiac Weapons.

    What the heck is a Zodiac Weapon?

    Yoshida: To describe it simply, it's an upgraded Relic weapon, it'll be pretty tough. However, rather than just being hard content, there will be rare drops involved, so the system to upgrade it will take a considerable amount of time.

    [[This question was missing from GW and the answer above flowed into the answer below]] Even though it will be time-consuming, is this the kind of thing that you plan for everyone to be able to possess if they work at it?

    Yoshida: Well, there won't be anything holding you back from it.... That said, the strengthening will happen in steps and it won't end with patch 2.2 This will continue with 2.2, 2.25, and 2.3. It's planned in a way that not many people will have finished the elements from the 2.2 patch by the time 2.25 is available. The appearance will also change in the end, it's a system we referred to as "Excalibur" a while back. In the final form, you'll also be able to personally tweak the parameters.

    Right now, the highest level weapons can only be obtained by completing the Binding Coil of Bahamut, with another type that was obtained by accumulating tokens. This will be a third type of weapon that gets developed over a long period of time.

    I feel like items that correspond to Allagan Tomestones of Philosophy will basically be a waste after this patch. How are you dealing with that?

    Yoshida: After the patch, you won't obtain Philosophy anywhere - it will be replaced with Mythology. There will be a NPC available which allows you to exchange currency at a predetermined rate.

    What will happen to Darklight equipment which you were able to obtain for Philosophy?

    Yoshida: It will be changed to a normal dungeon drop. It will drop in the dungeons which are added to the high level roulette. Instanced dungeons will have equipment at level 70, Crystal Tower will be level 80, and Turns 1-5 of Bahamut Coil as well as mythology gear will be level 90.

    I think some players in Japan get the impression that the level cap is going up as the item level increases, but an increase in item level is primarily a way to grow the player's main job. When we raise the level cap with an expansion we'll be adding a number of field areas and about eight new dungeons that will lead to overall character growth.

    Increasing the item level is just one direction, though, we also need to increase the breadth of items available at each level, which we plan to address in the future.

    By the way, what will be the item level for Soldiery equipment?

    Yoshida: (grins) I don't want to say too much before the live letter on the 21st. (laughs)


    About how much content do you have in mind?

    Yoshida: We have about two years' worth of content planned. We've actually been working on the design for 3.0 for a long time now. We've already come up with dungeon names and the number of dungeons, as well as the theme and the name of the new top tier dungeon which will be like the next rendition of the Binding Coil of Bahamut. We've also come up with the look of the city area, as well as the number and theme of the field areas to be added.

    However, if we look closer on the development schedule, things are more up in the air. For example, we haven't yet finalized the content for patch 2.3 because 2.3 is still in development and we want to have some level of improvization available to us so that we can add things based on requests.

    So you're already hard at work on content planned for a few years out.

    Yoshida: Yes, we'll continue to working hard on it until we get told to cut back on our development costs.

    -----

    Let's end on a note about content. It feels like a lot of content has been heaped into A Realm Reborn so far. On the other hand, back in February, I was speaking with the president of Sony Online Entertainment and he said his opinion is that content-driven MMORPGs are unsustainable. On Facebook, your chairman Wada responded from the opposite perspective. What are you thoughts on this opinion?

    Yoshida: It's been funny watching those two bicker... they have a lot to say. There's a lot of things to take into account, though, and I think both extremes are incorrect. Not everything is content-driven, and I think there's a place for both F2P and subscription.

    I get that his comment is coming from a perspective where he's trying to support EverQuest Next, but does that mean he's not really confident with the amount of content in that game? I think they placed a lot of emphasis on the physics, which makes it really challenging to develop. For example, if you look at a game like Knack, it becomes really difficult to balance.


    Also, even though it's said that it may be impossible, "WoW" is one example of a successful content-driven MMORPG. I think the success of WoW can be attributed to Blizzard having a future path planned and not giving up. WoW is in its ninth year and is still adding lots of monster content and other content that doesn't need to be cleared. It's on a scale now where you can play with any number of people and have your own goals.

    It wasn't that way from the start, either. The balance was a mess and with the initial level 30 cap PvP was all there was to do. I was wondering what Blizzard was doing at the time and I wound up canceling my account after two months, but they didn't give up.

    Once the Blizzard staff started focusing on the gamers and listening to their player feedback, things changed for them. TV commercials started appearing, and the game even became popular in the United Kingdom, which was not traditionally a successful area for MMORPGs. They put amazing effort into the title from the ground up.

    In tomorrow's presentation, I'll have a bit of satire with a Roegadyn named WOW and a Lalafell named Realm Reborn, but that's really the kind of comparisons that get drawn with the media. When you used to compare WoW and EverQuest, there was a lot of initial feedback about poor balance or lack of things to do in WoW, but they continued to add content and refined their approach over time.

    I think the original FFXIV was certainly a failure. But even while we were working on A Realm Reborn, we didn't neglect to continue adding content to the old FFXIV. Actually, the number of users we have now is three times as many as there were when the old FFXIV started charging. If we continued to update the content in ways that users find interesting, we were able to maintain subscriptions, although some of that might have been due to some expected value at the release of A Realm Reborn.

    With WoW, there's a demonstrated example of a game which continued to add content and was hugely successful. It might be unreasonable to think that we'll be another WoW, but we'll continue to strive towards that goal.

    So WoW is still one of your role models for A Realm Reborn.

    Yoshida: That's right. We aren't making a fully next generation MMORPG with A Realm Reborn. We want our users to get used to the MMORPGs at the end of this generation first. Also, with A Realm Reborn, we had the tough task to move from the old FFXIV to the new one. There has never been a MMORPG in a situation like that before.

    We've also decided to aim towards being more inclusive of Japanese users who haven't really experienced MMORPGs yet and may give up upon starting in WoW.

    We may start adding next generation elements as we continue to expand the game. Of course, we are also planning challenges that WoW isn't doing. And also, there's that certain FF quality which you won't find in WoW. As we move towards 3.0, we still have a lot of changes to look forward to for the end of the patch 2.X series.

  20. #60
    Can you spare some gil?
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    Blue on grey wwwwwhhhyyyyyyy. -_- time to change themes.

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