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  1. #1
    Dev Team Naoki_Yoshida's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
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    730

    Important Information Regarding North American Data Center Relocation

    Greetings FINAL FANTASY XIV players. As many of you already know, we made a special announcement during the Q&A session held at PAX East regarding the relocation of our North American data center.

    I understand that this news came as quite a surprise for many, and so I would like to take this opportunity to explain some of the reasons behind this decision, as well as how it will affect users.

    Current Facilities
    During development for A Realm Reborn, we strongly felt that the establishment of a North American data center was necessary to achieve the type of game experience we wished to provide. Though faced with a tight development and preparation schedule, we were able to realize our goal in time for ARR’s launch.

    However, the endeavor hasn’t been without its challenges. The FINAL FANTASY XIV NA data center was Square Enix’s first attempt at establishing game servers outside of Japan, and as such, we have spent much time quietly tackling related problems since the center’s inception four years ago.

    Some of these problems have included voltage overload and a lack of physical space for additional servers, ultimately leading to an inability to efficiently optimize servers or expand the scale of data center itself.

    As a result, players have been repeatedly inconvenienced with server crashes and protracted server maintenance periods.
    Reasons behind the Relocation
    Thanks largely in part to support from our loyal fan base, FINAL FANTASY XIV has continued to exhibit steady growth, allowing for even larger company investment into the project. As has been previously announced, with the release of our upcoming expansion Stormblood, we are planning major updates and upgrades to our server system to allow not only for increased server efficiency, but also:
    • Increased inventory capacity
    • Worldless (cross-world) party matching and friend management
    • Additional content & increased field size for new areas
    All which we hope will contribute to increased playability.

    To achieve these goals and, in turn, be in a position to better provide our user base an ever-improving game experience via future updates, we came to the conclusion that it would be in the project’s best interest to heavily invest in a move to a new data center equipped with more modern facilities.


    One section of the new data center.
    Servers in the new data center.
    While we are aware that many of you are curious as to the actual physical location of the new data center, please understand that for security reasons specific to the operation of an online game, we are unable to divulge that information to the public. What we can tell you is that the servers will remain on North American soil, in an area that features an advanced Internet infrastructure.
    Changes to Ping* Times
    In preparation for the move, we have conducted countless preliminary simulations and on-site verifications regarding ping times. However, due to the physical distance between the old and new data centers, players accessing the NA servers will most likely experience a change in their current ping times. While those who play FINAL FANTASY XIV closer to the new data center will see their ping time fall, those who are now further away from the servers may see those times increase.

    FINAL FANTASY XIV was designed to be played in an environment featuring ping times of 200 – 220 milliseconds or less. Even if players experience an increase in ping times due to the data center relocation, as long as their times remain below 200 ms, then they may rest easy, for there should be no discernable difference in gameplay.

    We expect that the players most likely to experience a significant increase in ping times will be those in Europe playing on an NA data center World. We will be working hard to minimize the anticipated increases, but there is the chance that based on their location, some players may be more severely affected by this relocation than others.
    Data Center Relocation Schedule
    The current plan is to conduct the relocation sometime in mid-May of 2017. Once a date has been solidified, we will make an official announcement on the Lodestone and via other channels.

    In conjunction with the relocation, we expect a maximum downtime of 48 hours for those players using the NA servers. The EU and JP data centers will also experience downtime of up to 24 hours to allow for maintenance required to connect existing servers with the new NA data center. To compensate for play time lost, we are looking into extending all active account subscriptions by one day.
    In Conclusion
    It is rare for an online game, especially one that is currently operating with stability, to relocate data centers, even if the intention is to increase optimization and expandability while improving overall game experience. We did our best to explore options that would allow us to achieve these goals without having to move, but ultimately came to the conclusion that to ensure the continued growth of FINAL FANTASY XIV, relocation was the right choice.

    In the coming months, there may be extended periods of maintenance. We humbly ask for your patience and thank you for your cooperation and understanding as we continue our work at providing our community with the best gaming environment possible.

    FINAL FANTASY XIV Producer & Director, Naoki Yoshida


    *”Ping” is the amount of time it takes data to make a round-trip journey from your PC/PS4 to the game servers and back.
    (92)

  2. #2
    Player
    Hezkezl's Avatar
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    Jun 2013
    Location
    Ul'dah
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    179
    Character
    Hezkezl Mewrilah
    World
    Hyperion
    Main Class
    Thaumaturge Lv 70
    Can't wait for the Primal servers to be reliable again!
    (3)
    Yoshi /facepalm!

  3. #3
    Player
    MuseTraveller's Avatar
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    Jul 2016
    Location
    Gridania
    Posts
    138
    Character
    Mihn Lalabihn
    World
    Malboro
    Main Class
    Bard Lv 70
    This is great news! Good job and may all data be moved without an issue! As an EU player on a NA server, the news of increased PING is troublesome. I sincerely hope it's not as bad as I expect it.
    (9)

  4. #4
    Player
    Remus's Avatar
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    Aug 2013
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    Garlemald
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    1,229
    Character
    Robas Kebas
    World
    Odin
    Main Class
    Samurai Lv 70
    Interesting... Even though I am on Chaos Data Center, it's nice to see NA getting a relocation and better data centers.
    (1)

  5. #5
    Player
    alimdia's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
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    1,071
    Character
    Ali Lifesaver
    World
    Gilgamesh
    Main Class
    Marauder Lv 70
    Make Primal and Aether a single data center so we share PF and DF.
    (8)

  6. #6
    Player
    Aronys's Avatar
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    Dec 2014
    Location
    Nym
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    283
    Character
    Arty Highbrush
    World
    Lich
    Main Class
    Scholar Lv 70
    Um... "We expect that the players most likely to experience a significant increase in ping times will be those in Europe playing on an NA data center World." - will this render endgame unplayable for people who are from EU and have been playing on NA servers since way before EU got servers of their own? This doesn't bode well.
    (15)

  7. #7
    Player
    Serilda's Avatar
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    Feb 2015
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    1,496
    Character
    Renard Lefeuvre
    World
    Yojimbo
    Main Class
    White Mage Lv 68
    I play with a relatively large ping and it's certainly not unplayable; you do need to learn to react even faster and some optimisations (weaving multiple abilities in one GCD, for example) might simply be out of reach. It does make you feel as though you're cheating when you play on a local world though and everything is suddenly easy to dodge.

    I'm not affected at all by this particular relocation but if the staff acknowledge that non-NA players might struggle, perhaps they can consider running a free transfer campaign like the one for the EU datacenter? The relocation sounds like a very good idea overall.
    (4)

  8. #8
    Player
    alimdia's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
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    Ali Lifesaver
    World
    Gilgamesh
    Main Class
    Marauder Lv 70
    Quote Originally Posted by Aronys View Post
    Um... "We expect that the players most likely to experience a significant increase in ping times will be those in Europe playing on an NA data center World." - will this render endgame unplayable for people who are from EU and have been playing on NA servers since way before EU got servers of their own? This doesn't bode well.
    Google WoW servers IPs and ping the west, midwest and central servers, it's not the same but should give you a close number to what it will be for you depending on which of those three zones SE plans to pick.
    (0)

  9. #9
    Player
    Bizzy's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
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    Gridania
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    107
    Character
    Bizzy Bee
    World
    Balmung
    Main Class
    Bard Lv 67
    In conjunction with the relocation, we expect a maximum downtime of 48 hours for those players using the NA servers. The EU and JP data centers will also experience downtime of up to 24 hours to allow for maintenance required to connect existing servers with the new NA data center. To compensate for play time lost, we are looking into extending all active account subscriptions by one day.
    So if NA servers are down for a max of 48 hours, we are only getting a compensation for 1 day? Come on SE you can do better then this! If we can't play for 48 hours then you should give us 2 days compensation. There is 24 hours in a day. Learn to do your math. We all pay a subscription to this game, so I feel that we should get 2 days compensation.
    (23)
    Last edited by Bizzy; 03-24-2017 at 07:45 PM.

  10. #10
    Player
    Canadane's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Limsa Lominsa
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    3,073
    Character
    King Canadane
    World
    Hyperion
    Main Class
    Warrior Lv 70
    People will likely figure out where the servers are as soon as they connect. It's not like you have exactly hidden the current servers locations. Why hide it now?
    (15)

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