"Okay, let's get right to the core: Let's analyze why Final Fantasy XIV failed."
- Game director Naoki Yoshida speaks candidly about how Square Enix stumbled when launching their second big MMORPG.
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn is a game worth studying, if only for the fact that it's proven to be a markedly successful relaunch of the Final Fantasy XIV MMORPG Square Enix debuted in 2010 to disastrous critical and commercial response.
Director Naoki Yoshida spoke at length about the experience this year during GDC 2014, analyzing the causes of the game's initial failure and disclosing some of the behind-the-scenes decisions that led Square Enix to take the game down and relaunch it in 2013. Yoshida also delved into the practical dangers of hubris, the challenges of developing a contemporary PC/console MMORPG in a relatively short timeframe, and the rapidly-shifting landscape of online game business models.
His talk offers interesting insight into large-scale Japanese online game development, so we've gone ahead and embedded the free video of "Behind the Realm Reborn" above. You can also watch it (translated into English) here on the GDC Vault. You can watch the Japanese language version here.
In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.
Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC Next already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.
Gamasutra and GDC are sibling organizations under parent UBM Tech