Final Fantasy XIV has surpassed 24 million registered players, and has become the most profitable Final Fantasy game.
Siliconera reports Director and Producer Naoki Yoshida revealed this during a media tour for the upcoming Endwalker expansion. The game reached over 22 million registered players worldwide in April 2021- meaning a 2 million player increase in six months. Once again, the total registered players would also include those who are playing the game’s free trial.
Yoshida stated that they are making efforts to handle the increased player base size. Previous efforts have included redefining congested servers as “standard,” and 30 minute in-activity log-outs.
Yoshida wanted to specifically avoid a “I beat Raubahn Extreme” experience as Stormblood experienced. Raids can be categorized by difficulty such as Hard and Extreme. On Stormblood‘s launch, servers were so unstable that talking to the NPC Raubahn (needed to progress the main story) caused players to be kicked from the game. Those who succeed joked they beat the Extreme difficulty “trial” of talking to him.
The game being the most profitable should also not come as much as a surprise. As an MMO with an ongoing subscription, players would generate a continual income for Square Enix; and can further buy cosmetic items, emotes, furniture, and mounts with real money (along with progress boosters). Prior years’ Seasonal items are only available from the premium shop after the event concludes.
Final Fantasy XIV has recently seen a surge in interest; being all attributed to one man despite other factors. The game recently broke its Steam concurrent players record with over 47,000; after World of Warcraft streamer Asmongold tried the game. As the game has a free trial, combined with the rising popularity of the game, other streamers sought to play it; creating a cycle.
Another factor is the alleged waning popularity of World of Warcraft. Activision Blizzard’s Q1 2021 financial report revealed that monthly active users in Blizzard Entertainment games had fallen to 27 million that fiscal quarter; a 29% drop over three years. These figures of course include games other than World of Warcraft.
Nonetheless, the poor reception to the latest expansion (Shadowlands) is further exacerbated by past controversies with Blizzard Entertainment, and the ongoing sexual harassment and discrimination lawsuit. You can find our latest coverage here.
MMO Population- utilizing API tools, Reddit, and other resources to calculate player and active player numbers- proposed that Final Fantasy XIV has an estimated 2.49 million active players in June of this year. That would be 30,000 more than their estimation for World of Warcraft (assuming both figures are accurate).
The recent flood of players saw Final Fantasy XIV briefly having to contend with the Western servers being full, and had to implement a waiting list for the digital Complete Edition. Despite this, Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida asked players not to restrain themselves to ease the servers. Among the recent new faces is Hironobu Sakaguchi, the creator of the Final Fantasy series.
A second wave of new players may come, as Hololive English vtuber IRyS confirmed the group has been given permission to stream the game (preventing copyright strikes). Other details, such as which members will be streaming and when, was not revealed at this time.
Final Fantasy XIV is available for Windows PC, Mac (via the SE Store, and Steam), PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and still planned for Xbox One. In case you missed it, you can find our Shadowbringers expansion review here (we can’t recommend it enough!)
The Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker expansion launches November 23rd. In case you missed it, we covered all the changes coming with patch 6.0 when Endwalker launches.
Image: Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker official website