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FF14 Mega-Patch Hides Player Numbers After 50% Drop


Rather than fixing FF14, Square Enix appears to be busy trying to cover up how badly it is doing – the much vaunted mega-patch discretely hid the server populations, which just happened to coincide with player populations reaching their lowest ever, now below 22,000, a 48% decrease from the peak.

Hidden away in the vast list of patch changes:

World population and nearby player counts are no longer displayed.

This happens to coincide with server populations dropping below 22,000 for the first time – Square Enix is probably unhappy with sites constantly publishing 2ch’s entertaining graphs of how badly the game is faring, like these, the last made before the coverup:


Growth rates are uniformly negative and show a gradually accelerating decline:


The patch even added three new enemies – although the observant will note they all use the same model with minor changes.


Most of the other changes related to balancing and interface tweaking, including a rather telling 10% reduction in the XP requirements for levelling and an alarming number of bug fixes.

In other news, Square Enix is now urgently recruiting programmers “who can work from vague instructions” and writers “who can write properly in Japanese.”

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  • It feels like they’re continuing building their house with bricks and plaster after realizing that straw and manure didn’t quiet cut it. It may work, but I’d wait before buying that house until it’s proven itself in a few earthquakes…

  • You’re missing something really bad — since FF14, like FF11, is designed with consoles in mind, they CAN’T add new models to the game. That’s why in FF11 we didn’t get shit after a certain point — the PS2 couldn’t handle it, and Square Enix never got it in their damned heads to just make the PS2 display shittier recolored models instead of the new stuff.

  • i wonder how many of you tried the free trial. i thought the game would be shitty too but i tried and its not half as terrible as i expected it to be. bought it after playing it 4 days ago and with the recent patch its even better

  • Thank God there’s WoW (and others) as alternatives. I spent sometime fooling around at an 8x ‘private’ server and I still want to go to the official. And yes, that’s gonna be as soon as next week.

    The casual game comment doesn’t stick. WoW is amazingly complex and yet you can have fun casually. I think all they need to do is some graphic update and it’ll live even more than we can imagine.

    I agree with the comments that they got cocky. In fact the gaming industry is trying hard to shove fast-cheap-development crappy games based on successful titles into its costumers for a while (and we complain about Hollywood mass-oriented movies). This is sad since it’ll ruin good stuff out there much like the latest FF games, most of them utter disappointments.

    To finish my rant, they could recover part of their former glory by simply remaking FF7 into new and better graphics. But why do something their customers really want when they can just keep destroying themselves releasing crap?

    • Thinking they actually said something about “towns are too much work” for one of these latest titles, I think it’s only realistic that they wouldn’t want to remake FF7 right now. Plus remaking & making sequels/spin-offs are becoming their image right now they couldn’t afford to stake at a remake anymore.

      • too bad a major console remake is the only thing that’ll save their asses now. Einhander, Grandia 1 / 2 and FF6/7 being remade are the ONLY things right now that can net them any serious cash. too bad wada too much of a chicken shit fanboy.

  • Well, ignoring the obvious troll comments, I’m not surprised that they did this considering the continued bad press those numbers were getting on different sites, including this one. It only makes sense from a business perspective.

    I did play a bit after the patch and the game runs noticeably better. Maybe now that it’s running like it should have at launch, they can get to making it entertaining.

  • Really, what needs to be said? By hiding the numbahz, Square Enix is basically saying “We are failing too much to allow ourselves to present to you just how much we are failing with any amount dignity remaining”. Which is probably counter-productive to the reason why they are doing this.

  • “In other news, Square Enix is now urgently recruiting programmers “who can work from vague instructions” and writers “who can write properly in Japanese.””

    Hahaha, I guess that outsourcing didn’t pay off, huh?

  • This remember me the tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes”.

    A King think he is wearing a special cloth only visible for intelligent people but he is really without clothes. Nobody’s around with guts to recognize the fact they are looking him nude, the noblemen lie about it, telling him how good he looks. But when a kid tells the truth and everybody starts to laugh and the king was ashamed for life.

    well, that king is Square. Their games start to suck a long time ago, the nobleman is the critic and now is the truth is evident for everyone and everyone is laughing. Square never will recover of all this bad experiences of the last years… maybe if they recover the fans with the remake of FF7 (but I doubt)

  • Square and Enix became crap when they fused, because then they didn’t have to outdo each other anymore, and could just ride on name recognition.

    If they don’t get their crap together, it’s only a matter of time before a new RPG king emerges.

    • I totally agree with you, one thing that made Square good is that they had a big rival like Enix. Same for Enix. Square number one was Final Fantasy and Enix number one was Dragon Quest. As a matter of fact Dragon Quest out sells Final Fantasy in Japan.

      For me Enix is no more, what I like about them yes they where small but they created more RPG elements than Square’s story and graphics telling.

      I hope Atlus kick there asses and become the new king of J-RPG making or Factor 5.

  • The only way to save it now is probably to copy the good things from FF11. The creator got too cocky claiming to give it’s players a total new experience. Yes, we got one. A very shitty experience we’ve never had!

  • Can’t wait till the free trial ends and it goes from whatever it is now to a miniscule amount… Square Enix got cocky, made a shit game, now they can’t accept the failings of the company. Just shut it down and I hope they make considerible losses on it, enough to stunt game development for a while… Let some other RPG makers like Atlus take the helm of the industry for a while.

  • it made me LOL when i read the last line

    “In other news, Square Enix is now urgently recruiting programmers “who can work from vague instructions” and writers “who can write properly in Japanese”

    someone just kill the game please… devs just need a small push like crashing their servers so they can officially give up and blame someone

  • What Sankaku fails to mention every time are the small improvements over each patch. This Nov 25 update which just came out has made the game enjoyable to play at least, improving on many aspects that Sankaku has been ripping on. It still isn’t an MMO to be wasting time on, but it’s getting there. Although many people won’t touch it again after it’s horrible launch.

    • It doesn’t matter, this site is so completely anti-Squeenix with a vengence, it wouldn’t matter if SE actually did release the best game ever, this site would find something to bitch about. They won’t even talk about any other game, they just loooooooooove to rail on FF14 because that’s what people with grudges do, they follow their one target and nothing else. Guess what, there’s a billion other sucky mmo’s out there to comment on.

    • Enumerate on the improved aspects please. Does it deal with the slow boring gameplay, the incredible lag due to faulty bot detection, the copy-pasted world, the easily exploitable leveling ‘glitches’, the mass quantity of bots/RMTers or the cancerous tumor that is the market ward?

  • yea all pple can do is rip on somthing they never even played its nothing but fanboy hate from other fan bases lol if pple are this easily pushed away from a game just kuz of critics opions that have no place then damn gamers have went to shit just like most games truly sad how far gamers have fallen these days

  • I don’t know how many of you who’s heavily criticizing the game actually plays it.

    For me, who’s playing it casually, ie, at most 6-8 hours a week, it’s actually not that bad. I do enjoy the game.

    Yeah the ui is crap. The monster population sucks. The lag is atrocious at times. Every other day I complain to my linkshell on WTF SE, you suck.

    But this game really IS casual gamer friendly. As someone who actually has a paying job and need to support family and spend time doing real things in reality, this game is able to let me kind of keeping up with others with it’s design.

    Yeah I know the hard core players who can spend 4-5 hours a day playing a game might say it’s too easy. If so, please go play another game. If you don’t like it, just don’t get involved. One of my friends who bought a collector’s edition already give up and went back to spend time on WOW. Hey, that’s fine. He didn’t think all the remaining players are idiots. It’s just this game doesn’t suit his playing style.

    I guess what I am trying to say is. To each their own. Maybe this game is a joke in many gamer’s eyes, but it could be suitable to some minority of gamers and they deserve to have their game too.

    Btw, the patch REALLY helped with the game play. The lag improved by a lot, like 50%. This should have been the state when the game released.

    Can’t wait for next major update in mid dec.

    • I get where you’re coming from, to each their own as you said. What you have to see though, is that this website probably consists mostly of that hard-core gamer fanbase you were talking about so I guess you could say that this is more of a representation of their point of view? On the other hand, I do think SC really needs to move on now. Yeah, it’s bad but there’s no point ranting on about it. Post some of those funny articles again Sankaku!

    • Thank you for putting things in perspective. Getting sick of Sankaku Complex posting their version of the news. Its like they are trying to make things look as bad as possible by distorting the facts. Fuckers.

  • Oh look another post about how hip it is to rag on a game to get more hits, gj guys lets do another in a few days!

    MEANWHILE Square enix fixes problems and addresses issues without breaking a fucking stride.

    Are all of you 12 or something and forgot that FFXI is still out despite it’s lackluster launch? Really, the launch of FFXIV was a failure but now it’s just beating a dead horsebird. It’s amazing that they’re giving the players still playing free months: Age of Conan didn’t do that, and it was shit.

    So yes, they fucked up the launch, but ever single sankaku post since then has been a huge ‘lets take a dump on them’ post. GJ.

    • You act like it’s limited to Sankaku not liking this game. They’re just reporting on a subject that SquareEnix is trying pretty hard to hide.

      IGN gave it a 5.5 rating

      GameTrailers rated it at 4.2.

      Game Informer’s most recent rating is a 6.5

      PC Gamer gave it a 30 out of 100

      And a friend that tried the free trailer couldn’t stand the game after a week. He told me that it’s not worth the time, free or paid. The combined picture on this is pretty bleak, let alone with the company offering 3 months of free play on a game less than 6 months old.

      • You’re implying that every mmo’s release is something that stays with it. Yeah World of Warcraft is totally the same exact game it was 6 years ago.

        I think the fact that SE is giving it’s customers free time, whether they use it or not, so they can get their shit together is far and above the best thing they’ve done. They could have not done that at all, or not fixed the game at all. They’re fixing it and the only thing that Sankaku focuses on is that, of all things, SE is trying to do damage control?

        Yeah, so no, I don’t care about MMO reviews whatsoever. The game changes, and so should their rating.

        I did infact play this before, while it was in beta. It was terrible then, but I wasn’t asspained about it. Maybe if it was a game that wouldn’t get patched or fixed, I would be!

        • The funny thing that want people to play this game with the all the free gameplay they’re offering. Yet you can only play 8 hours at a time which kills it because when you get into a game you just don’t want the game to say “you can’t do any fun stuff until tomarrow the end.”

          SE fucked over this game, it was rushed and the refused to listen to their own testers. SE is ran by total insecure idiots that think if they suck the western gamers dick by attempting to make killer apps. they have no idea of their target market. People liked Enix and Square for their great stories and gameplay.

          The funniest thing about all this is that Dragon Quest does sell better then damn near everything they have and that’s because DQ keeps it simple and loyal to the fanbase period. DQ games don’t try to whore themselves out just to grab a few extra dollars from new fans and casual gamers which overall will find DQ games too hard for them. SE needs to fire Wada because you can tell he’s shitting himself over this clusterfuck of a game and still trying hard to hide that this is a bad game.

          Most people that play MMO’s only play one at a time if you want a free MMO play anything Nexon has out now of course if you’re willing to pay just get WoW and call it a day. There’s no need to buy FF14 because its outclasses by so much out there.

        • I think everyone is in their right to be asspained about a big game company releasing a product way wayyy too early. They risked their hides, let people buy a severely unfinished product, and they deserve all shit coming their way.

          As an old and experienced MMO gamer I can only say this again, patch your shit games before you release them and it makes a world of a difference. All the money they are flushing down the toilet on free play time could have been spent ON PATCHING BEFORE RELEASE.

  • FYI, this patch is working great.
    IMO, this one make all game play a lot smoother than before.
    But something need to polish, yeah
    But the main obstacles have been removed.

    Anyway, it fun to read FFXIV from sankaku.
    This blog dont impress with any thing that SE do anyway.

    But, for my gamer perspective. SE do great job on the mega-patch.