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Final Fantasy XI: Second Attempt

Squaresoft patches up its massively multiplayer console RPG, but it’s nothing to write home about

Those of you keeping up with the world's first massively multiplayer console RPG (that's Final Fantasy XI) will be interested to hear what shape the world's first massively multiplayer console RPG patch took. It's pretty boring, actually. Despite the cynical hopes of some, the patch did not take the form of a massive bug fix, instead focusing on gameplay tweaks to help balance out the persistent world of Vana D'iel. Squaresoft is to take down the PlayOnline servers for four hours to perform database maintenance and fix a couple of minor text interface bugs in the actual game code, but apart from that, we can't see anything to get too worried about. In fact, the ruthlessly efficient developer suspended new user registrations and account cancellations for the whole of yesterday to prevent difficulties resulting from additional server load - a bold move, and one that will doubtless annoy some of the citizens of Vana D'iel, but perhaps a logical one. At the moment it seems that players of the game are enjoying themselves. Square has commented on the issue recently, decrying comments made by Nintendo President Satoru Iwata, who made an assertion that FFXI was failing because of its dependence on networked gaming, by highlighting the game's popularity amongst players. At the moment the main problem facing FFXI stems from hardware shortages. Without the hard disk and broadband adapter, players are unable to make their way into the game world, and this has stunted sales, with interest surging sporadically as Sony struggles to keep up with demand. It was always going to be difficult for Squaresoft to pull this off first time, and with more updates and the game's American release still to come, it seems likely that the developer and the platform holder will have learnt from their mistakes, and that if and when it materialises in Europe, it will be an extremely polished product. Related Feature - Final Fantasy XI preview

Source - IGN