Part 1 of more elaborate translations (I'm taking some freedom to combine questions with similar subjects and such):
FFR : The decision to redo FFXIV few months after its launch is a hard decision to take. How did your team take it ? Did you have problemns to motivate them ?
Y-P: Since the team was aware of how the community felt about the game and knew the problems, everyone understood.
They did not lose their motivation, they acted like given a second chance. One thing I insisted on was: “What type of MMO do you want to build ?”.
We want to game to live through the next 10 years, so we felt better to re-work it now than in few years.
FFU : We heard you met Blizzard. What did you talk about ?
Y-P: When we met Blizzard’s director, who is a die hard fan of FFVII, it started the conversation really well (laugh).
The conversation was mostly about managing teams, how updates are managed and additional content.
We discussed about how WoW succeeded, their challenges and problems they face. Everythiung was detailed and precise, and passionate.
In Blizzard’s office, there’s a human size statue with the words: “Priority is game experience”. We learned a lot from their advices, especially on how to make the game experience better for the community. We’ll try to do that for FFXIV.
FFU : Japanese MMORPG’s are deeply different from the others. Did you think about changing the game mechanics to make it more accessible to WoW or Lotro players ?
Y-P: You’ll recognize some aspects from popular MMORPG’s when you try out 2.0 Alpha and Beta. Especially the battle system which is now more dynamic.
I hope you’ll enjoy the improvements. The UI will prolly be the most important change. With this new design, if you played WoW, it will be easy to feel comfortable in the game environment.
Finaland : FFXIV launch has been considered a fail by the fans. You never talked about the number of active accounts. Do you have an objective ?
Y-P: Yes, we do have an objective, but we can’t talk about it. However, the most important thing is to get trust back.
As long as the game is interesting, I think players will come back and motivate others to try it. Game experience is really the priority.
We’re counting on the Beta test to convince many players. When we compare January 2012 accounts and yesterday’s, we doubled the number of active accounts.
The best way to promote the game is to make the players talk about it. We’ll also have a promotional campaign.