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Final Fantasy 14’s Endwalker expansion has been delayed into December, Square Enix confirmed on Saturday.
The news was shared during a live stream featuring director and producer Naoki Yoshida, who was visibly upset and at one point moved to tears as he confirmed that Endwalker will now launch on December 7, 2021 – two weeks later than its originally planned release on November 23.
Additionally, the early access period for the expansion has also been delayed two weeks to December 3, 2021, Yoshida confirmed.
The producer stated that the short delay was so that the development team could make final adjustments and refinements before launch.
“This is something that we’ve finalised and made the decision on last Friday, so it is very sudden,” he said. “This is the first time not just with XIV but throughout my entire career that we’ve announced a release date and had to delay it, so again I feel really bad about this.”
Wiping away tears, Yoshida added: “I understand that some of you had taken days off for this and I know that people have been preparing… we tried to think if there was any way that we could [make the original release].
“Could we split it up into patches or do we make a bold step and cut some of the elements? But that’s not how our content is made unfortunately so this time we really wanted to prioritise bringing you the best quality. So again, I’m really sorry it came to this.”
Endwalker is billed as Final Fantasy XIV’s largest expansion pack to date and will conclude the game’s current long-running story arc. Yoshida said the pressure to deliver a worthy expansion is what ultimately led to the last-minute slip.
“I didn’t even realise that I had put so much of myself in there and my emotions have grown attached to this expansion,” he said during the live stream.
“It was very unexpected that I would feel so much about this, but I think players – especially those who have been with us since the original – understand that this is not just a finale, but looking at the entire saga’s story and seeing those loose ends come to a conclusion.”
He added: “I know I may have been too nit-picky about all of what’s going into this expansion, but considering we’re ging to move on and continue the story after we have made a milestone with this saga, I think I needed to make sure we are giving it our all and we are doing all that we can for this expansion.”
In a blog post following the stream, Yoshida said his “own selfishness” was the reason for the short slip.
During the live stream (embedded above), the Final Fantasy XIV team also revealed upcoming changes to the game’s housing, PvP and more.