It takes a lot of work to maintain an MMORPG, and sometimes to make it better for players, you need to take drastic steps. That’s exactly what Square Enix is doing with Final Fantasy XIV, for they have decided to relocate all the North American data centers. Why are they doing this you ask? Producer and Director Naoki Yoshida spoke of this on the official Final Fantasy XIV forums:
“The FINAL FANTASY XIV NA data center was Square Enix’s first attempt at establishing game servers outside of Japan, and as such, we have spent much time quietly tackling related problems since the center’s inception four years ago.”
While this may not sound bad, as games always have problems, there have been some rather large issues with the servers. Such voltage overload, as well as a literal lack of physical space for additional servers, means that the game couldn’t be optimized to run the game as best as it could be. Plus, with no room to add more servers, there was no way to help share the load of the game.
Add to that the growing player base, especially in the North American region, and you get a need to grow in a way that the current setup can’t support, so they’re relocating the servers to a place where the system itself can grow, and ultimately make Final Fantasy XIV better.
Now obviously, because the data is being moved, the game itself will shut down. This will happen in two parts, and the FFXIV team laid out when the data would be moved, and how long the connected game worlds would be affected:
“Aether / Primal Data Center Worlds
From Monday, May 15, 2017 8:00 / 7:00 to Wednesday, May 17, 2017 8:00 (BST) / 7:00 (GMT) * 48 hours
Elemental / Gaia / Mana / Chaos Data Center Worlds
From Tuesday, May 16, 2017 8:00 / 7:00 to Wednesday, May 17, 2017 8:00 (BST) / 7:00 (GMT) * 24 hours”
For those who are on subscription, you’ll actually get an extension during this downtime as long as you have it before the downtime starts.