Final Fantasy 14 director Naoki Yoshida still wants you to have fun playing the game, even with the newly added AFK kick feature.
The MMO has had an incredibly good time: it destroyed its number of simultaneous players on Steam and even somehow managed to sell the digital copies. Even the traditional World of Warcraft player, Asmongold, jumped on the bandwagon, which probably helped a bit in the rise of the game.
While it’s been fantastic to see Final Fantasy 14 flourish, it also means that server queues are an absolute nightmare right now. Some free trial players have found that they are not allowed to enter, which they understand causes some people to get a little frustrated.
Square Enix has tried to ease the congestion a bit by releasing a patch earlier this week that removes anyone from the server that has been idling for more than 30 minutes. It means there are often bustling areas like Limsa Lominsa it becomes noticeably quieter, with fewer players idling or dancing while eating a bite or going for a walk in the real world.
Anyone who has spent a few hours in the game will know how much these dense areas have become the feel and community of the game, and it’s something Yoshida is also aware of. In a message to the players this morning, the director said he knows how important these interactions are for overall experience and immersion.
"I've played many MMOs myself, so I know how watching other players go through meals physically and mentally prepares you for challenging dungeons later, and how a spontaneous dance performance can brighten everyone's day." he wrote. "These are ways to play and are part of the fun of MMORPGs.
"So I want you to know that while I am deeply grateful to be considered, activities like the above are also part of the game and you don't have to show so much restraint that you stop having fun."
We’d like to share another brief message from producer and director Naoki Yoshida, which includes information on higher login limits for European data centers and related emergency maintenance. Read: https://t.co/o7UcCPgmYp pic.twitter.com/4Fdi4NIuCjJuly 22, 2021
Yoshida went on to tell players to "enjoy FF14 in your own way" and to "show our new players how alive their world is." He also addressed the difficulties that the AFK timer brings to high-level fishermen, saying that "it is clear that it is well connected" while trying to wait for the big catches. It seems like the general message is that it’s okay to do fun things like dance or play music, but be respectful of those who want to come in and play as well.
It’s not the first time Final Fantasy 14 has an AFK kick feature; the Stormblood launch was also implemented. Square eventually went further and enacted a daily stitch across the entire server due to people trying to evade the stitch using macros or timers. He sucked a little.
It’s nice to see Yoshida trying to tackle the problem, while being incredibly aware of how his own game culture works. It’s always been a key part of the success of Final Fantasy 14 and it’s easy to see why the community respects it so much. Just look at the way he talks about World of Warcraft, easily his biggest competitor. I have to love the boy.