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Final Fantasy 14 will prioritize paid players during Endwalker's launch congestion

Long queues will likely be the norm for the first few days of Endwalker

A male Viera poses as a Sage on the beach Image: Square Enix via Polygon

The launch of any new MMO expansion is usually pretty busy, but with Final Fantasy 14’s explosion of players earlier this year, Endwalker’s launch period is about to get messy.

Square Enix addressed player concerns about congestion with a lengthy blog post on the Final Fantasy 14 website. It includes best practices for logging in during the new Endwalker expansion’s early-access period — which starts Friday, ahead of the official launch on Dec. 7 — warning about the severity of the queue, and what players should expect.

First, Square clarifies that it expects Endwalker’s launch to be more congested than previous launches. The studio blames the influx of new players and the semiconductor shortage, which has prevented the team from adding new Worlds for players to log into. Square Enix has already apologized for what promises to be a very lengthy queue.

Once in the queue, things will work a little differently for players, depending on the version they play. Paying players will get priority in the queue, meaning they’ll get to log in faster. Free Trial players will still be able to log in, but only after the paying players have gotten in. No accounts will be able to make new characters during congested periods either, so Square is encouraging players to create them during less busy times. To help ease the queue situation, players who are AFK for longer than 30 minutes will automatically be logged out.

There will also be some new in-game queues. Players may run into these lines when grouping up for instanced content (dungeons, etc.) during main scenario quests. Square Enix also plans to instance certain new areas that experience a lot of congestion — meaning that multiple players on the same world will be staggered into copies of the map. Players will be able to choose the instance they want in order to meet up with friends, and Square will attempt to place all party members into the same instance when traveling.

With Square Enix already asking for patience, it seems safe to assume that almost everyone — paid and free — will run into a lengthy queue sometime during the next week.

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