Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn's time has come. After the game's temporary closure starting at the end of last year, the servers go back up starting August 27 for both PC and PlayStation 3 players. Final stages of the closed beta begin in June and there's likely to be an open beta somewhere in-between then and the launch. It has been a long process to get from the original Final Fantasy XIV to here, but we're almost there.
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida offered the following thoughts to mark the announcement:
It gives me great pleasure to announce the release date of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. It has been a long road from the game’s inception to the beta, but thanks to your fervent support and invaluable feedback, the world of Eorzea will soon complete its journey of rebirth. We have endeavoured to make the game affordable so that adventurers will be able to experience the vibrant world of Eorzea. We have also prepared a collector's edition version of the game, which includes a veritable assortment of premium items.
The new adventure begins on 27th August, 2013. I hope to see you all then!
Regarding the Collector's Edition, there will be three different versions available at three different prices: A PlayStation 3 version, a PC retail version, and a PC digital version. The digital version will include all of the assorted in-game bonuses, but not the outstanding out-of-game loot. Since we're already on that subject, here's what's included in A Realm Reborn's CE:
- Collector’s box designed by Yoshitaka Amano, legendary Final Fantasy artist
- 80-page “Art of Eorzea” hardcover art book featuring never-before-seen concept art
- “The Waning of the Sixth Sun,” a special bonus video disc that takes a cinematic look at the events that led up to the realm being reborn
- “Sounds of Eorzea” album that features musical scores by renowned Final Fantasy series composers
- Five collectable character art cards
- A Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn-branded security token to secure user accounts
- In-game bonus items: Helm of Light, Baby Behemoth Minion, Coeurl Mount and Behemoth Barding
As far as prices go, the PS3 Collector's Edition will cost $79.99, the PC $69.99 and the digital $49.99. That's compared to the standard pricing of $39.99 and $29.99 for PlayStation 3 and PC respectively.
Don't forget those preorder bonuses either. You can preorder now on the Final Fantasy XIV website:
- Early Access: Access the game servers ahead of the official launch. Get your head start and make your mark in the realm of Eorzea!
- Cait Sith Doll Minion: On sabbatical from Shinra Inc. and looking for adventure, Cait Sith will join your party as a non-combat pet.
- Mog Cap: Show your love of Final Fantasy and strut around the world of Eorzea in this Moogle themed hat. Kupo!
Oof! There's so many details to burn through. Previous owners of Final Fantasy XIV will be pleased to know that they can download A Realm Reborn without purchasing a new copy of the game. If you've got the Collector's Edition, all new in-game items from the CE will be provided to you via in-game mail. However, in order be a part of the preorder exclusive early access program, you'll have to have completed the Legacy Campaign.
Now the final detail. Yes, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn will have subscriptions -- it's not some cheap-o free-to-play from overseas and it's not a once solid MMO grasping for money. "Monthly subscriptions for the game will start at £7.69/€10.99/$12.99." Take it or leave it, subscriptions are still my preferred method of running an MMO.
Okay, now that that's all out of the way, have a soothing tour of Eorzea on me. Hopefully it will be a positive when you're considering whether or not to give Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn a second (or first) chance.