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Final Fantasy XIV subscription to be reinstated

Troubled MMO looking to raise funds for new features

MMO Final Fantasy XIV, which has been through a period of heavy readjustment and turmoil, is to reinstate subscriptions after allowing players to login for free whilst the game was rebalanced.

A statement on the game's official blog features posts from Square-Enix president and CEO Yoichi Wada and the game's producer and director Naoki Yoshida, explaining the ongoing process of tuning and refinement.

"In the ten months since the Final Fantasy XIV team's restructuring, we have put forth the utmost effort into not only improving the game's existing features, but also creating a concrete plan to outline the game's new direction," writes Wada.

"Today, I am pleased to announce we can confidently present that plan to our customers. We fully realize this is but a single step towards our ultimate goal, and that to meet the high standards set in the plan, more time is required. In the meantime, however, we will not waver in our commitment to bringing players exciting and engaging content, even as the game moves through its evolution.

"With this, it is my hope that we will continue to receive your support as we will need to bring the unbilled period to a close between late November and early December 2011, and introduce our subscription-based billing system. I appreciate that this decision will not be popular, but it is a necessary step in building upon the foundation our fans and development team have made together and to realize the full potential of Final Fantasy XIV."

The game launched on PC over a year ago, but negative player reactions to various factors casued team restructuring, including the resignation of then producer Hiromichi Tanaka and extended delays to the release of the PS3 SKU.

Later in October of 2010, the company decided to extend the unbilled period of the game indefinitely until the issues had been fully addressed.

On its PC release the game only managed a 54 per cent Metacritic average.

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