Final Fantasy XIV, seemingly the most consistently popular MMO of the last few years, is launching in beta on the PlayStation 5 tomorrow, and the PlayStation Blog has detailed what to expect from it.
Firstly, the beta is a “precaution” that won’t limit the content of the game, according to Lead Project Manager Shoichi Matsuzawa. In other words, the “beta” of it all is mostly for regulation, and you will essentially have the exact same game, but it’ll run and look better. If the beta goes without “critical issues,” Matsuzawa says the team will “transition straight into official service.”
You can choose to play the Free Trial version, which includes the base game, its first expansion, Heavensward, and allows for leveling up to level 60. All of this will carry over to the full release at the end of the open beta.
The game will be able to run at 4K (2160p) on the PlayStation 5, and will offer different resolution modes to pick from based on what you want or can do. You can run the game at full 4K, where it’s expected to hit about 40 FPS during normal gameplay, but if you want to prioritize your frames, there are options for WQHD (1440p) and Full HD (1080p) that will consistently hit 60 FPS.
Alongside higher resolution counts, the game’s UI and icons have been cleaned up to look crisper than ever on consoles and there will be much clearer accompanying text. It will also take advantage of the PlayStation 5’s much-touted SSD in order to load faster than ever, which means that fast traveling should actually be, you know, fast.
There will also be a handful of additional features related to the DualSense controller, like haptic feedback on the footsteps of mounts and the occasional action, but the team have dialed it down so as to not be overwhelming. There won’t be much feedback in battles, for example, so as to not “interfere with players’ concentration during a fight,” but the developers are leaving the door open for feedback in order to adjust this in the future.
Players will also get to enjoy the benefits of 3D audio, which in Final Fantasy XIV will revolve around the camera. As you turn it, the ambient sounds of Eorzea will adjust to your perspective, instead of just having a broad ambient soundscape. It’s a small touch that may get overlooked, but is appreciated and cool nonetheless.
There will be more updates and tweaks to the Final Fantasy XIV experience on PlayStation 5 as the beta and full release roll out, like updated textures, though don’t expect the team to go wild with additions just because they can. In relation to the in-game textures Matsuzawa said that “since FFXIV is an MMO, we need to place some emphasis on being able to simultaneously render player characters and their equipment, while still ensuring everything works smoothly. We do need to take care when planning major updates like this and start with testing and verifying it all works well.”
The team’s also working on adding additional trophies, presumably as they roll out further expansions, since that system seems to be more “flexible” now.
Overall, there seems to be a lot of quality-of-life stuff coming to the PlayStation 5 beta tomorrow that should bring the experience up to snuff with what PC players have been able to enjoy, as well as well as providing PS5 players additional goodies with DualSense implementation and 3D audio. It might just be time to check Final Fantasy XIV out again.