FFXIV: Great game, poor service.

Please note: This is not intended to be a “whiny bitch post.” I’ve been a tester since Alpha and I honestly love this game. I’ve written guides and articles praising the game and have tried to participate in the community as much as possible. My issue is that this game is simply too amazing to not have a large enough community relations team to support it.

With the launch of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn comes a great deal of excitement and even larger expectations. The early Phase 4 access began at 5:00 am EDT on Friday, August 16th. The servers were up within 20 minutes of the projected time and personally I had zero issues up until 6:30 pm EDT the same day. More than 12 hours of game play and the game played absolutely flawlessly – no lag, no issues, beautiful. At 6:30 pm EDT on Friday, August 16th, I was disconnected – I have been locked out since with the error message 3102: “You are still logged into the game…”

Developer response

18 hours after this thread was created on the forums and 96 pages later, we finally received a response from Community Rep, Gildrein. He locked the thread and asked everyone to repost on a different thread with a specific template for their post (character name and world) – that was the last we heard from the Developers.

My gripe

There’s a couple reasons why this really grinds my gears. First off, and I’m sure many people can relate to this, is that I’m in the process of forming a rather large Free Company – a FFXIV Division of my larger Tier Two gaming community. The second reason is that I run this blog, which I aim to provide people with accurate, useful information regarding various games – FFXIV being my current focus. It is very important to me that I am able to confirm the accuracy of my guides, such as my high traffic “FFXIV: ARR – Getting Started Guide.” Granted, these two should give me no priority in getting this issue fixed – but they absolutely have increased my displeasure with the situation.

Why is this unacceptable?

This is Beta – things go wrong. I have no issue with the fact the game is unavailable. In fact, most of us came into beta expecting something to go wrong and were amazed when the game ran, and continues to run, flawlessly for the duration. However when something does go wrong and hundreds, possibly thousands of players are affected, it is the Developer’s responsibility to stay transparent and available.

This doesn’t mean fixing the issue immediately and if they don’t, that’s unacceptable. This means communicating with the community and simply being the middle man between them and the Development team. As far as I know, Square Enix has appointed one (yes, one) Community Manager for the English speaking audience, @Mattalos – who has been MIA for the last 12 hours.

This is not necessarily pinned on him, more so Square Enix. The company needs to realize that community relations is a big deal and simply needs to allocate more resources. If your game is live, especially in a state such as Open Beta, you must have resources available to the community to provide transparency for your game. At this point, specifically on their forums – never mind reddit – there have been about 150 pages of posts regarding this issue with one Developer post stating to re-post in a different thread they made, providing no insight on the issue whatsoever.

Conclusion

Basically, Square Enix needs to treat community relations with a much higher priority. Even if they appoint some Junior level Community Manager to sit on the forums all night replying that, “We are working on the issue.” People have been calling Help Desk and they have stated to just wait or re-install the client – neither of which have yielded any results.

I guess my closing remark will be that despite FFXIV being a simply amazing game, if they do not restructure their community relations team, people honestly need to reconsider investing in the game. Thank you for reading.

Accomp

Accomp

Accomp is a Gamer, UX Engineer, and Writer. He’s a PC MMO enthusiast, console gamer, and mobile geek. Whether it’s hardcore raid leading, competitive FPS gameplay, or discovering indie games, he’s got the experience. You can follow him on Twitter, Twitch, or YouTube!

19 Responses

  1. Accomp Accomp says:

    Going on 18 hours of being locked out without any real Developer response to the issue. Thousands affected.

  2. Yeah Right says:

    B E T A

    • Accomp Accomp says:

      Open Beta that leads into actual release, you are correct. And beta is no excuse for a poorly structured development/community relations team. If you read the article, you’d realize I’m not upset at being locked out. I’m upset at going 19+ hours without any form of status feedback – that is what is unacceptable.

  3. Lance Green says:

    Dude, what is this? You loved the game, but it has poor service because of congestion? I got d/c’d, got the same error, and was able to log in 30 seconds later.

    Fix your ignorance.

    • Accomp Accomp says:

      ^^ Does not compute. This isn’t a matter of poor service because of congestion. It’s a matter of poor service because of a flawed department structure and lack of resources.

    • Quentin says:

      You got back in 30 sec…part of the reason why I feel you don’t think the lack of communication between mods and the community isn’t a big deal. Just because you got back in quickly doesn’t mean others have had the same expierence.

      I have had the error going on 7 hrs now, and others I know are going on 20+ hrs. Not your 30 sec. b/s. And all this with ZERO feedback from moderators. There is a 190+ page thread going on with people posting from yesterday and still not being able to play because of the error.

      Please realize this is an issue and more so without any feedback. Possibly a hint as to how things will go once the game goes live and there are other issues.

  4. C.Allen says:

    ill agree with the OP here, the games great, we get its beta and we expect issues, hell we welcome issues because that means its that less likely to find them on launch…. what we also expect however is a public relations team that you know… doesnt go 18+ hours of ignoring us with not even a hey we got theres an issue and are working on it post. a beta doesnt excuse lack of communication to the players, especially one that leads into launch…. what im getting at is all this steam thats building up about error 3102 wouldnt exist had they simply been like “hey yeah we see the issue, working on it but as of now no fix”
    Public relations… real simple stuff ( i work in public relations… not that difficult…)

  5. Mike Allan says:

    I absolutely agree with everything you’ve said. Being a company with the kind of resources and money that SE is, theres absolutely no excuse for the lack of communication we have with them. And I’m not just speaking about this issue, throughout this entire beta process we’ve had plenty of silence from them when people were clamouring for some attention to specific issues. This particular issue was also exacerbated by the fact that they seem to have taken down both the linkshell forums and the beta forums, hindering us from communicating with them even further. Very disappointing. I love the game, but I definitely think they need to be more open with us, after all, this whole game is supposed to be them trying to re-prove themselves to us.

  6. Joshua says:

    Great post man agreed 100%

  7. Teh Blue says:

    I never understood why customers are abandoned like this. I have per-ordered this game and love it. but i agree no one loves silence from the developers/community relations. The server lock system is extremely annoying and honestly this is the first I’ve seen in a mmo (since ive been playing) that does this. Most just issue a que and people wait. I talked friends into buying this game yesterday despite of my error 90000 that i was hit with at 2pm pst. They cant even create a toon on my server. I go to login at 8am pst and hit with a #3102 error. last tweet from sqaure enix is forums are down (coincidence??) and that new worlds are being created ( most of us cant even get in the existing worlds thanks to 3102) and no response for 10 hours?? I can tweet off the toilet so i know taking the time to holler at your community that supports your game isn’t an issue

  8. tirielwow says:

    The frustrating thing for me is the lack of communication. I expect bugs, but a complete lack of communication is a make or break thing for me. I will not go through the same experience I had with SWTOR a second time.

  9. otakuman523 says:

    honestly i have to agree with you, putting out a great product isnt all about the paint job , its not all how things look its how things behave and this is a huge problem getting booted because there is congestion i can understand that, not being able to play for 18 hours and going because my character is still in world when it shouldnt be (realm restarts and all) is bogus. add on the fact that this issue was a problem with ffxiv 1.0 and it is still in current yeah its frustrating and is going to hurt SE

    and why would i bother so much when sure it is beta? because yoshi has said that p4 is pretty much a demo of the game, this is what our final product will be here look at it. and hey we did and what do we get? errors and inability to play

    bottom line im not paying for this blizzard in all its short comings would have at least made some effort to communicate with its playerbase.

  10. Lauren says:

    I think the lack of response was mainly because the English speaking messengers have been pre-occupied with Gamescom that started today.

    While I totally get your frustrations with the lack of communication, I think you have to remember that it WAS beta and shit happens and it doesn’t get fixed straight away (it goes on the LIST with other major things) and that’s the point of the beta and alpha is to find these major issues.

    I really hate when people were going insane on the forums about not being able to play the beta because of an issue and it’s like I just wanna tell them all “that’s the risk you take when you play a beta.”

    The games out really soon and since you’ve been playing it since alpha you’ve probably had plenty of time with it pre-release anyway.

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