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Final Fantasy 14 Director Says the Game's Become Too Relaxed, Will Increase the Challenge Going Forward

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director Naoki Yoshida has said the massively multiplayer online game has become too relaxed in the last few years, so he and developer Square Enix are looking to increase the difficulty going forward.

In an interview with
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, translated by IGN, Yoshida likened Final Fantasy 14 to a side-scrolling action game where there aren't any gaps to fall through, and therefore had lost some of the challenge and fun.

"From now on, we’ll keep working to surprise players and surpass their expectations," Yoshida said. "But there is one thing I’ve been reflecting on. As we’ve continued to operate Final Fantasy 14, we’ve made the game more approachable, so that it can be played without stress. But looking back on the last 10 years, we may have overdone it a bit.

"Video games should, of course, include an element of stress, but finding that balance is extremely difficult. For example, if you play a side-scrolling action game and there aren’t any gaps you could fall down when you miss a jump, the game would be free of stress. But it would also not be fun."

Final Fantasy 14 launched in 2010 but after a rough start was relaunched as A Realm Reborn in 2013. It's therefore been active for well over a decade, and this new era of increased difficulty will perhaps arrive with
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. That being said, Yoshida made clear its going to be a long-term change he'll consider over the next decade.

"In terms of Final Fantasy 14, I would like to restore that [stress] somewhat," he said. "By doing that, we could offer players the right kind of challenge, and do it better than ever. This is a development challenge for the next 10 years, and I’m currently working on various game design elements, which is fun. However, I’m sure some people will think, 'Why on earth would you do that?'"

Final Fantasy 14 is changing in other ways too, and a difficulty bump could perhaps accompany the increased level cap coming with Dawntrail. The highly anticipated update also brings
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to Final Fantasy 14 alongside a wealth of new story content.

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, IGN said: "Final Fantasy 14's Endwalker expansion brings its longest story arc to a satisfying close and cements its place as one of the best Final Fantasy stories ever told."

Ryan Dinsdale is an IGN freelance reporter. He'll talk about The Witcher all day.

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