Final Fantasy 14 director discusses how feedback led to Heavensward

It's been a long road to prominence for Final Fantasy XIV, so who better to talk to about that than director and producer Naoki Yoshida? He recently spoke to our own Greg Burke at E3 2015 about the big Heavensward expansion.


Last week was a monumental week for Final Fantasy XIV players. A Realm Reborn has expanded to become Heavensward, taking Square Enix's MMORPG into the skies for the first time. It's the latest in a continued rejuvenation for the game, so who better to talk to about it than the man that helped lead the way? Shacknews recently had the opportunity to talk to Naoki Yoshida, producer and director for Final Fantasy XIV.

"We value our user feedback greatly," Yoshida told our own Greg Burke at E3 2015. "It's one thing we do everyday. We check the forums, we get feedback from our players, we're always implementing that into the game. So for Heavensward, yes, definitely, we took user feedback and we've implemented it into the game, but it's not that we've waited until Heavensward to implement that feedback. We're constantly implementing that feedback in updates and patches that we have. For example, if players say there's something wrong with the user interface, we try to fix that as soon as possible and get that in before an expansion, through the updates. We're also getting feedback on things like reward systems, item drops, content difficulty. Not only are we getting feedback from the players, but we're also taking our own data on the backend and looking at how players are playing in certain areas and difficulty of areas and we're making adjustments from that. Adjustments in real-time to the game, as well as adjustments to new content that we're releasing for 3.0."

Yoshida goes on to discuss Heavensward's three new Jobs (the Dark Knight, the Astrologian, and the Machinist) and some of the refinements they underwent before hitting their current state. He also points out that while the expansion is finished, the team will remain active in regards to taking feedback and ensuring that the expansion is stable.

For our full conversation with Yoshida, be sure to check out the video below.

For even more about Heavensward, Shacknews also stopped to chat with assistant community director Matt Hilton. You can catch that full interview, regarding classes and content, below.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

From The Chatty

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    June 29, 2015 11:30 AM

    Ozzie Mejia posted a new article, Final Fantasy 14 director discusses how feedback led to Heavensward

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      June 30, 2015 4:30 AM

      Good to see xiv finally getting some love!

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      June 30, 2015 4:32 AM

      I jumped back in with the expansion, and it's pretty great. It may eventually unseat WoW as my favorite MMO, but that remains to be seen.

      One thing is for sure, it's a got a better story than most MMOs, and feels more like a "real" FF game than I think people would expect.

      My only major gripe right now is that you literally can't use any of the 3 new classes without not only clearing the original story content, but also all the story content in the patches from the last year, so if you weren't already there, the expansion is basically worthless until you finish that stuff.

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        June 30, 2015 4:48 AM

        Yea, I came back to a level 30 warrior and have been grinding through the main story. Just found out about having to do all the post-50 content before heavensward.

        I'm still having fun, though. I love gamepads in my mmo's.

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          June 30, 2015 4:52 AM

          I particularly like how easy it is for me to play on either PS4 or PC. I just wish there was a simple way to save UI configs across consoles.