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Final Fantasy XIV is wrong to limit how long we can earn XP

Final Fantasy XIV is wrong to limit how long we can earn XP

Reports have surfaced that Final Fantasy XIV, Square Enix’s upcoming MMO, will limit the amount of time players can earn XP in the game. A fatigue/stamina system is apparently in place, meaning that after 15 hours of play – per week – those grinding away will no longer be able to earn any experience whatsoever.

This move has apparently been made to ensure those with more time on their hands can’t take advantage of the situation, and that those who have less time can still enjoy the game. It would be foolish to discount the fact that MMO gamers are often criticised in the media for playing their chosen games too long as a factor in this decision, even if it isn’t mentioned by Nobuaki Komoto, director of FFXIV.

I understand there are those that take it too far; those who will simply sit and play the things for days on end with little in the way of breaks. I’m aware that’s not particularly healthy behaviour. But why are the creators of an MMO stigmatising their own intended audience in such a way?

I have had weekends where I’ve played a game pretty much constantly throughout – Red Dead Redemption and Dragon Age: Origins have taken up entire Saturdays and Sundays, while the famous case of Mass Effect 2 taking up 42 hours over a 72-hour period is one I will never forget. Why am I not lumped in with the ‘friendless psycho killers who let their babies starve to death’ like the MMO community is?

Why do these games not limit how long I can effectively play them for? If Mass Effect 2 had decided to stop letting me mine because I’d played it for more than 15 hours that week – instead forcing me to practice with a sniper rifle (not my weapon of choice, fact fans) I would be irate, to say the least.

If it was a game I was paying a monthly subscription for, though. Wow. I can’t tell you how pissed off I’d be. If a gamer pays a one-off fee, they should be allowed to do what they want with their game and play it for however long they want. But if one is paying a monthly fee for a game and they want to grind the hell out of one class for 168 hours a week then they should bloody well be allowed to.

People are fallible. People make mistakes. People play games for too long – an unhealthy amount of time. But of the however many million people playing World Of Warcraft, how many of them manage to lead real lives? How many of them manage to not kill fellow players in real life? How many of them have jobs, and families, and friends and everything else you would expect? I’d guess quite a lot.

I can understand the want – the need – to limit progress to keep Final Fantasy XIV appealing to newcomers and those with less time on their hands. But to punish people for playing a game a lot – an MMO, of all things, which is a genre known for being little more than a timesink – isn’t something I agree with at all. I think it’s a dumb move, and I honestly think it’s the kind of decision that could bite Square Enix in the backside if they don’t re-think or rectify the situation.

Yes, players can change classes and continue their levelling, but a lot of people I know – those invested heavily in MMOs – never bothered with extra characters, or classes. No, they wanted to focus on their avatar – they wanted to focus on the skills they wanted to earn, and not have to switch things about every eight-to-fifteen hours.

It’s not particularly the thinking or reasoning behind it I don’t like, more the actual fact that there are limits being imposed on players in a world where they should be free of most, if not all, restrictions.

There’s every chance this could be something dropped, or modified from the game’s current beta – nothing is set in stone as of yet. It could even be a mis-translation, for all I know (my Japanese: not up to scratch). Hopefully it won’t end up as it seems, because this could be the wrong decision to make, and it could kill off any chance FFXIV has of success.

[via FFXIVcore]

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  • dante

    you right on the money.imagine there was a lock on dragon quest,pokemon,fallout or any of the games i own. i wouldnt even buy the game then. well, i cant play for hours like i use to anyway (gym seems to be more of a prority now).and,finally, new games tend to give me a bad case of motion sickness for the first few days.for certain games the motion sickness does not go away, like uncharted 1 and red dead redemeption. i had to play those games on my bed and with lots of asprin.

  • thehardware

    SE might as well pull the plug on this right now.

    BAD iDEA:
    Reason: I can only play 15 hours a week…..This is still an MMO right? (massive multi-player online) me and all my friends who played FFIX have different work schedules, some have kids, so now we have to synch 15 hours of our week……not happening!!!

    This is also a gil sellers dream.

    (people cant play for long, cant waste time looking for “insert sword name here” so why not just buy it…then get back to leveling.

    remember you can still obtain items + gil even after your fatigue is capped, so gil sellers dont have to stop playing just cause you do.

    SE you will lose customers (1 for sure) if you do not remove this nonsense

  • patrick

    I think its a great idea but it would make more sense if the fatigue also affected drop rates.
    Then at least those of us with lives, jobs etc might be able to kill some notorious monsters or get some farming for craft items done.
    The 23 hour a day players can fill up their days by going on allakhazam and looking every single detail about the game/quest/weapon/sub job/tactic up so next time they log in they can pretend that they are some sort of FF god.

  • while i think this is a good idea, i also thinks way to strick

  • You would be right in theory, if the system was like you described, but it isn’t.
    The system is much more complex than how many (you included, I’m afraid) paint it. There’s actually no hard cap to how much you can level a week, because fatigue “recharges” while doing other things, even before the end of the week is reached.

    I would advise you to read this explanation on how it actually works:

    Expecially this part is quite off-base.

    “Yes, players can change classes and continue their levelling, but a lot of people I know – those invested heavily in MMOs – never bothered with extra characters, or classes. No, they wanted to focus on their avatar – they wanted to focus on the skills they wanted to earn, and not have to switch things about every eight-to-fifteen hours.”

    Final Fantasy XIV doesn’t work like that. You don’t need an extra character to play every class, you can play all classes on your character.
    Also, people that “invest heavily” on their character, the ones focused on getting the most out of their avatar, will NEVER level a single class, exactly like in Final Fantasy XI. Why?

    Simply because exactly like in FFXI a character without a subjob (or even an array of situational subjobs) was seriously gimped, in Final Fantasy XIV a character without one or more additional jobs over his main will have lower stats, lower resistances, lower HPs and MPs, and will lack utility skills to be competitive in a group. It will be a liability to his peers and ultimately shunned by the community regardless of the fatigue system.

    The whole main selling point of Final Fantasy XIV is the armoury system, with the ability to mix and match skills between different classes in order to create a character tailored to one’s fighting style. If one wants to play a single class and nothing else, Final Fantasy XIV simply isn’t the game for him, regardless of fatigue.

    If one is willing to play two or more classes, then the Fatigue system won’t bother him.

  • Craig

    Yes, bad bad idea, SE (A company that has been making FF games for 20 years) has absolutely no idea what it’s doing!

    Anyway enough of the lies, the solution is simple, don’t like it? DON’T PLAY IT! Quit moaning. They did it partly for the newcomers but also because FFXI got ridiculous by having kids who were 12 years old and thought they were the shiznit cause they had a level 75 (and alter 80 or 85) character in a few weeks. If you’ve played FFXI then you’d know there were MASS complaints that the game was overwhelmed with noobs who were at end-game level, thus, the fatugue system takes care of that.

    As for the gilseller heaven part, you might have wanted to wait for the game to come out before complaining about this. Now the game is out it is clear that gilselling will not be the issue of old, purely because once you’re fatigued from leveling then EVERYONE will be and is levelling crafts, thus you make it yourself, thus no-one will buy anything. Couple that with the fact there is no Auction House will make it immensely difficult for gilsellers to start up.