All right, back in business once more. Hopefully we won’t be hit by another freak storm this weekend, but really it seems like the power dies if someone so much as coughs too loudly. Let’s get to the news before it happens again. Here’s what’s going down:
- Zynga starts getting hit with lawsuits regarding allegations of insider trading, with underwriters paid to help insiders offload stock before it fell. Also known as “Tuesday on Wall Street.”
- Not to be outdone, EA has also filed suit that Zynga copied The Sims Social to create The Ville. Man, who do you root for in that fight? (The answer is EA, seriously.)
- Ubisoft’s Uplay exposes players to an exploit that allows websites access to, and control over, a user’s computer. It’s like they want people to pirate their games.
- The Old Republic pulls the pin and goes free-to-play. Should’ve kept the base, BioWare! And the base I mean your playerbase. By making KotOR III instead.
- Sony posts a sizable loss of some $312 million for the first quarter of 2012, including losses in the games division. Tempting to blame the Vita, but their true problems run deeper.
- Squenix has an ambitious ten-year plan for Dragon Quest X. It sounds crazy until you realize they’ve been running Final Fantasy XI for at least that long.
- Rumors abound regarding Bethesda and the STALKER series, Take Two posts a lower earnings report due to unrealistic expectations, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Cold Calculus of Microtransactions’ »
Square Enix is developing a fifth expansion to Final Fantasy XI, titled Seekers of Adoulin and planned to release sometime in 2013. On top of new areas, the expansion adds two jobs: Geomancers and Rune Fencers, the latter of whom appear to be more melee-oriented Red Mages. The curious can find the official site over here.
In addition, it was revealed during VanaFest 2012 that Hiromichi Tanaka, FFXI‘s producer, will be leaving his post at Square Enix. A longtime memer of the company, Tanaka cited health reasons for his departure. Akihiko Matsui, FFXIV‘s battle planner, will take over Tanaka’s position.
Or so we’re supposed to think, I guess. Hey, everybody! We’re on time this week! Let’s not dawdle, here’s what’s going on:
- Microsoft unveils the Surface, a powerful new tablet with a keyboard cover
that may cost $800-$1000 we’ll discuss price later
- Nintendo shows off a new, bigger 3DS with a longer battery life, possibly at the expense of the whole ‘portable’ thing.
- Persona 4: The Golden gives Vita sales a shot in the arm. Good game Sony, now you just need, oh, another couple dozen of those.
- A week after EA’s Origin pointman says they won’t be offering “going out of business” deep discounts, Origin offers deep discounts. EA GOING OUT OF BUSINESS FULL STORY AT 11
- Squenix might bring Final Fantasy VII to Steam, if only they could get it to work. Meanwhile, Final Fantasy XI continues to print money.
- Sega launches a browser-based card game for Valkyria Chronicles, to be depicted in the TBS miniseries, “How to Ruin Everything Beautiful in This World.”
- Blizzard suspends digital Diablo III sales briefly to combat goldfarmers, another Capcom fighting game veteran leaves for greener pastures, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Tablet Plus Keyboard Equals Innovation’ »
Say what you will about obscure Korean MMOs, but they come up with some catchy (if unrelated) promo videos. But I digress. News time! Here’s what’s going down:
- 38 Studios and Big Huge Games got shuttered this week, their staff laid off and Amalur now property of Rhode Island. Sadly, not too surprising given the money hole they were in.
- Conflicting sales goals hide the real issue of what those 300+ developers – and their shiny new second mortgages from relocating – are going to do now.
- Meanwhile, BioWare lays off some of its own people from The Old Republic team. How’s that $200 million development cost working out, guys?
- All this prompts Pachter to speculate that MMOs are dooooooomed! My take: maybe, if everybody keeps trying to imitate/defeat World of Warcraft. And speaking of which…
- Diablo III got hacked, with reports of stolen items, money, and even characters. Getting hacked in a single-player game has got to be some kind of record.
- The horrible, horrible contract between Activision and Bungie is revealed. Short version: 5 million sales of a new property in six months, and eight titles in eight years. Read it and weep.
- Sony patents a technology to interrupt your game with advertisements, Japan developers alternatives to kompu gacha, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Endless Online Phenomenon’ »
With Final Fantasy XI hitting its tenth year in running, Square Enix will be throwing a celebration to commemorate the event. “Vana Fest 2012: A Decade of Final Fantasy XI” is to be held on June 23/24, with an image on the official site suggesting Tokyo as the “where.” An exact location is not yet known.
As has been done before, Square Enix has bundled all its Final Fantasy XI content to date into one downloadable package. The Final Fantasy XI Ultimate Collection Abyssea Edition includes everything so far: all four main expansions, the three smaller add-ons (Crystalline Prophecy, Moogle Kupo d’Etat, and Shantotto Ascension,) and all three of the Abyssea add-ons. This collection also includes access to an in-game Destrier Beret, which has bonuses intended to help new players.
The Abyssea Edition will be available via Steam, Nexway, and Metaboli starting May 16.
Square Enix announced that they intend to reopen Final Fantasy XI and Final Fantasy XIV starting March 25. With energy restrictions in place, the company has opted to reduce certain operations to offset the amount required by the servers. As mentioned before, players will not be billed for April due to the outage.
The announcement can be read in full via Lodestone.
In the wake of the earthquake and tsunami that recently struck Japan, Square Enix announced this week that both Final Fantasy XI and Final Fantasy XIV would temporarily be shut down. The move is an attempt to conserve power amidst energy shortages and rolling blackouts, and the servers are expected to be offline for at least a week. In the meantime, players will not be billed through the April statement cycle.
The announcement can be read in full on the Lodestone, and further information will be posted as it becomes available.
Is it the shoes? Yes, it is, now that Square Enix has announced three perks for players who subscribe to both Final Fantasy XI and XIV. The first perk is a discount for Final Fantasy XI that reduces the basic monthly fee from $12.95 to $7.00. The second perk gives every newly-created character in Final Fantasy XIV a pair of Hermes Shoes, special footwear that increase movement speed. The third perk lets players transfer their character names from Final Fantasy XI to XIV.
You can find all the details at the official site.
Square Enix announced numerous additions and changes to Final Fantasy XI at VanaFest, a special event in Tokyo dedicated to the company’s eight-year-old MMORPG. These changes are set to be released throughout 2010, thus confirming that the game will remain afloat through this year.
Continue reading ‘Square Enix Announces Final Fantasy XI Additions for 2010’ »
To hear Square-Enix tell it, Vana’Diel is in dire peril pretty much ’round the clock. To highlight this, a compilation of every expansion for their online RPG Final Fantasy XI is coming out November 12 in Europe and other PAL territories, available exclusively through a Windows download. The Final Fantasy XI: Ultimate Collection will include all current retail expansions – Rise of the Zilart, Chains of Promathia, Treasures of Aht Urhgan, and Wings of the Goddess – as well as the recently-released add-ons A Crystalline Prophecy and A Moogle Kupo d’Etat. The upcoming A Shantotto Ascension will also be included.
A price has not yet been set for the European release of the collection, although the US version is set at $19.99 with a November 10 release.
Let the outtakes commence! Fresh from our last Radio Free Jeuno and Better Know a Dev Team podcasts, we’ve got a pile of audio goofs and silly antics that didn’t quite make the cut. Nerdboy once again instructs us on the proper way to spell tri-Ace, we find out why people ever bother singing in the first place, and good times are had by all. Enjoy!
Continue reading ‘August Podcast Omake: Gone With the Belchwave’ »
Radio Free Jeuno returns! It’s been over two weeks since the update alongside the release of A Moogle Kupo d’Etat, and we’ve had time to partially digest the changes both have brought. Our impressions: mixed, to be charitable. Join Nerdboy, Alethea, and myself as we discuss the new things lurking about the wilds of Vana’Diel. Also, Nerdboy assaults the elderly. Like, a lot. Eight times.
We are accepting mailbag requests for a Q&A session in our next podcast, so please, fire off those comments and feedback… things! Whatever the plural noun form of feedback is. FFXI stuff, general stuff, questions about fanfiction that I wrote when I was young and stupid two weeks ago, it’s all good. Lay it on us, we’ll answer it. Continue reading ‘NPCast XI-2: This is Three Chocobo! Waaaaaark!’ »
Howdy, Vana’Dielians! Some of you may have noticed that Squenix has gotten in on the episodic content thing with their MMOPRG, for which they are doling out mini-expansions at ten bucks a pop. Paired with them are totally free updates, of course. But are they worth it? Fellow Final Fantasy XI denizens Alethea and Nerdboy join myself for a discussion on the latest update notes and how silly they are. Also, this (lack of a usable) chair is an eyesore. Behold! Continue reading ‘NPCast XI: Radio Free Jeuno’ »
Square Enix has announced that the next mini-expansion for Final Fantasy XI will be available for prepurchase worldwide on Sunday, July 5. Titled A Moogle Kupo d’Etat – Evil in Small Doses, the story apparently focuses on how a single drop of rain in a run-down Mog House spells trouble for Moogles everywhere, or something. You had to know something was up when every level one schmoe in the game got their own personal flying butler, no questions asked.
A job of at least level ten is required to start this latest questline, along with at least the Rise of the Zilart expansion. Final Fantasy XI will also see a general version update coinciding with the release of A Moogle Kupo d’Etat.
A Moogle Kupo d’Etat will price for $9.99 US, €9.99 throughout Europe and £7.99 in the UK. Kupo nuts are reportedly an acceptable form of payment as well, though this has not been confirmed by Square Enix.
Though E3 is over, the gaming world is still bewildered over the announcement of Final Fantasy XIV. Only a trailer was shown and information is scarce, but nevertheless there are a few details about the game. Our own Jordan Jackson spoke with a representative of Square Enix on the last day of the show about the next installment of Final Fantasy.
Continue reading ‘Final Fantasy XIV Becomes Slightly Less Mysterious’ »
Square Enix made a pair of announcements today. First off, fans eager for a peek at Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers for the Wii can take a look at the game’s teaser site.
The company is also launching enhanced security for Final Fantasy XI accounts via the Square Enix Security Token. which cost 9.99 USD. Continue reading ‘Square Enix Bares Crystals, Sells Tokens’ »
Final Fantasy XI is getting three new expansion scenarios by Masato Kato. Square Enix will be kicking things off with A Crystalline Prophecy – Ode of Life Blessing later this month. Square Enix describes the expansion thusly:
“One day, a giant crystal appeared in the skies above Jeuno, triggering a series of unexplained happenings across the land. Now, adventurers will set forth to unravel the mysteries of this primordial crystal that holds the secret of Vana’diel’s past.” Continue reading ‘Final Fantasy XI Getting Three New Expansions’ »
Square Enix announced today that it will be release three online expansion for Final Fantasy XI. Unlike past expansions, these will only be made available via digital download.
Masato Kato, who worked on the original Final Fantasy XI storyline as well as the scenarios for numerous other Square Enix RPGs including Chrono Trigger and Xenogears, is in charge of the scenario for the expansions. There’s not a great deal of information yet about the specifics of each expansion aside from a brief teaser for each one: Continue reading ‘Final Fantasy XI to Add On Three Add-Ons’ »
A Crystalline Prophecy – Ode of Life Bestowing™
Illustration Katsuya Terada
Continue reading ‘Final Fantasy XI – Artwork’ »