Final Fantasy 14 Online, a game which had to rise from the ashes to save itself from complete obliteration, has now become the most successful installment in the history of the popular franchise.
Speaking during a digital preview event (via IGN) for the upcoming Endwalker expansion pack, director Naoki Yoshida revealed that Final Fantasy 14 has more than 24 million players across the globe, which stands to be a massive increment from 4 million players back in 2015 and 10 million players in 2017.
Final Fantasy 14 hence doubled its player-base in nearly four years, going on to become the most profitable Final Fantasy game in the entire franchise.
“You all know just how hard things were for us with the original Final Fantasy 14,” said Yoshida in reference to the troubled launch. “Since then, we were able to transform the title into one that provides a major contribution to our company’s profits.”
“It’s perhaps unbecoming of me to say but in terms of our business, we have been able to achieve great success. Moving forward, we are going to spare no expense with our investments to ensure that this game continues to be one which our players can enjoy.”
Final Fantasy 14 was released in 2010 to an overwhelmingly negative response. The situation was bleak enough to convince publisher-and-developer Square Enix to remove the attached subscription fees and reduce its income projects by nearly 90 percent for the launch year.
Square Enix however refused to give the game up and immediately began chalking plans for a reboot under the leadership of Yoshida.
Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn arrived in 2013 and the rebooted version received high praise from both players and critics. The motivation was enough for Square Enix to continue its salvation attempts and following three expansion packs worth of solid content, not only have most players stuck to the game, new ones have been rolling in on a regular basis.
Today, Final Fantasy 14 Online stands proudly as an impressive success story and proof that while half-baked releases can happen, there is always a way to win the players back.
Endwalker will be the fourth expansion pack and the final chapter in an ongoing storyline. Final Fantasy 14 will receive its last expansion on November 23, 2021, making for a pretty busy holiday season for active players.
Back in August, Yoshida confirmed that Final Fantasy 14 will continue to receive timely (or seasonal) content updates “even after Final Fantasy 16” has released.