Posted July 24, 2020 by Andrew Cathie in Feature

Final Fantasy XIV Reaches 20 Million Players Ahead of Major 5.3 Update

At this point, I think everybody has heard about Final Fantasy XIV and the roller coast ride it had at launch. Originally panned, the game was taken back to the drawing board and relaunched to critical acclaim. That acclaim has grown with every passing expansion pack, as Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers became the best reviewed Final Fantasy game in years. Ahead of the upcoming Final Fantasy XIV Patch 5.3 series, Square Enix shared some new details on the game’s success and upcoming content.

With that critical acclaim and relaunch has also come a building financial success, with the game constantly called out by Square Enix as being one of the most successful and consistent performers in their stable. In that case, it should come as no surprise that the game has now passed 20 million total registered players, an absolutely massive achievements for any MMO.

Unrelated to that metric, Square Enix have also confirmed that a new major patch is coming soon for Final Fantasy XIV in Patch 5.3, which will make some absolutely massive changes to the game’s base content and free trial. After multiple expansions the amount of content in the game is massive, so some of that original content from A Realm Reborn is now being streamlined, while there will also be an expanded free trial that now includes all content from that and the game’s first expansion Heavensward. There’s also some new trials and challenges coming to Shadowbringers, as well as the next part of the NieR-inspired YoRHa: Dark Apocalypse raid series.

See below for the full list of changes coming in the Final Fantasy XIV Patch 5.3 update series as per Square Enix, with Patch 5.3 specifically scheduled to release on August 11th:

  • New Main Scenario Quests – The curtains rise for the final act of the FINAL FANTASY XIV: Shadowbringers main scenario questline as the Scions endeavour to shed light upon the Ascian Elidibus’ dark plot. 

  • Main Scenario Questline Update: A Realm Reborn – The A Realm Reborn main scenario questline will be reworked to give new players a more streamlined experience as they progress through the story leading to Heavensward. Additionally, players will be able to use flying mounts to take to the skies in A Realm Reborn areas upon completion of The Ultimate Weapon quest.

  • Expanded Free Trial – The free trial will now allow players to enjoy unlimited playtime up through level 60 and will also include access to Heavensward content, an additional playable race (Au Ra), and an additional three playable jobs (Dark Knight, Astrologian, and Machinist).

  • New YoRHa: Dark Apocalypse Alliance Raid – The white-robed android 2P awakens at last, but so too does an unforeseen danger to Komra in the next chapter of this NieR-inspired alliance raid, The Puppets’ Bunker.

  • Save the Queen Questline Updates (Patch 5.35) – Players can further enhance weapons obtained in the first chapter of this quest series as they explore The Bozjan Southern Front, a new area where the Bozjan Resistance has begun Operation Eagle’s Nest in a bid to regain Alermuc Fortress from the Empire.

  • New “Chronicles of a New Era” Quest: The Sorrow of Werlyt – Part of the ‘Weapon Series’ questline, players can enjoy a story-focused experience culminating in a special event battle.

  • New Dungeon: The Heroes’ Gauntlet – The whole of Norvrandt becomes a battlefield across which the Warriors of Darkness must fight their way. Players can tackle this new challenge alongside fellow adventurers, or a party of non-player characters, using the Trust system.

  • New Trial: A fearsome new foe possessed of immeasurable might shall arise to test Warriors of Darkness in both normal and extreme difficulties.

  • New Beast Tribe Quests – A new crafter-focused questline featuring the dwarves.

  • New Game+ Updates – The updated A Realm Reborn main scenario and other quests will be available for players to revisit while retaining their current character and level.

  • New Battle Content: Unreal Trials – Players will be able to challenge powered-up versions of existing primals that are prepared to battle against level 80 heroes. Unreal Trials will feature one primal fight which will change with each patch, beginning with Shiva in Patch 5.3. Defeating the primal each week gives players the chance to complete a new mini-game, with those who emerge triumphant receiving tokens to exchange for prizes.

  • Ishgard Restoration Update (Patch 5.31) – The third phase of restoration begins following the efforts of the Skybuilders. Skybuilder Rankings return, with new items for players to craft and new achievements for top contributors to the restoration efforts.\

  • Crafter and Gatherer Updates – New custom deliveries, updates to Rowena’s House of Splendors, and an update to the Skysteel Tools questline headline several crafter and gatherer updates. Additionally, recipe search functionality will be improved for ease of use.

  • YO-KAI WATCH Collaboration Returns – The YO-KAI WATCH collaboration event, Gather One, Gather All returns to FINAL FANTASY XIV Online beginning August 19th and includes new rewards in addition.

  • Job Adjustments for PvE and PvP, System Updates, and more.

Andrew Cathie

Rocket Chainsaw's premier Fantasy-loving Editor. I basically play anything and everything that looks like it could be fun or interesting.