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  1. #1
    Player Gwydion's Avatar
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    Oct 2014
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    Galkashield
    World
    Asura
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    THF Lv 1

    20th Anniv. suggestion: Open Source Final Fantasy XI?

    Hello SE!
    I am a software engineer of ~15 years and have lots of experience supporting applications and infrastructure that are aging. I think, in fact, I have made a career out of working on technical debt. I understand the perspective of many developers, who want to continuously update their skill set by working on newer technologies, or else risk stagnation by remaining on a platform, which depends on skills that will not be desirable years or decades later.

    Two things will always remain true:
    1. Operational overhead and technical support for an aging production platform will only increase, as tools, software environments and hardware are deprecated or reach their end-of-life.
    2. Attracting or retaining engineering talent will be necessary in order to support the platform's development life cycle. This will prove difficult for the reasons mentioned above, as developers flock to new technologies and continuously improve their skill set.

    Similarly, the potential revenue gained by maintaining the platform will eventually be eclipsed by the costs associated with development, operations, monitoring, alerting, as well as periodic upkeep, security fixes, compliance and infrastructure upgrades.

    Producer Matsui has already mentioned some of these challenges in various interviews to Famitsu over the last two years. and again last month: https://www.usgamer.net/articles/fin...medium=twitter

    However, these are not insurmountable problems:
    1. There already exists a sizable open-source development community willing to maintain Final Fantasy XI, and I believe Square-Enix is already aware of this.
    2. Offering a complete, free, open-source distribute-able version of Final Fantasy XI available to the public, will ensure a beloved, main-numbered Final Fantasy-title remains in circulation without any associated costs to the company. (Hosting this installation, technically, can even be done on an official Square-Enix github/gitlab/bitbucket account).


    In my mind, it would be unthinkable to permanently shut-down FFXI beyond the 20th anniversary, but simply unsustainable to keep the game running without substantive, quality updates that warrant players continuing to pay the cost of one (or more) subscriptions.

    On one hand, decommissioning FFXI would mean a main-numbered Final Fantasy title would not be accessible to the general public. On the otherhand, maintaining FFXI beyond the point of being able to provide regular, qualitative content or updates also goes against the reputation of the Final Fantasy brand. In other words, today, any gamer can and often does pick up any Final Fantasy game they want and start playing it by various means (retro consoles, modern consoles, various handhelds, etc etc). They do this because Final Fantasy games are historically great. Providing us with an open-source version of FFXI ensures that Final Fantasy 11 remains in the hearts and minds of both gamers and developers (as SE intends) indefinitely.

    I hope you seriously consider this request, as your loyal fanbase of nearly two decades will continue to keep this game alive, long after the operational overhead and other forms of technical debt have become too burdensome.

    Thank you for your time.
    (7)
    Last edited by Gwydion; 05-05-2020 at 05:07 PM.

  2. #2
    Player Dragoy's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Bastok
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    Character
    Dragoy
    World
    Fenrir
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    BRD Lv 66

    €°(((><

    Being an avid open-source supported and user, I would like this a lot as well, once the time comes to shut things down (or earlier, if the official thing would still keep on going as well). It's probably very unlikely to actually ever happen though, due to various licensing issues that probably have their tentacles a ways deep in.

    Of course, copyrights do expire, too, sometimes... and all that, and in the end some people just need to make a decision to 'OK' things, and things can happen. Those people usually don't, however, but you know, impossible is nothing. :]
    (1)
    Kind Regards,
    ~ The Noob Unlimited ~



    Sore wa sore, kore wa kore.

  3. #3
    Player Typral's Avatar
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    Aug 2019
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    117
    Character
    Typral
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    SMN Lv 99
    How about they actually put resources into the game... cmon now. You can remaster Final fantasy crystal chronicles and Chocobos dungeon but you can't spend anything on this game that carried the company thru hard years? Give it some justice devs.
    (3)

  4. #4
    Player Divaud's Avatar
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    May 2014
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    31
    Character
    Divaud
    World
    Quetzalcoatl
    Main Class
    GEO Lv 99
    I'm hoping, at the very least, SE will keep ffxi up even beyond when they stop developing.

    Many games can enter "maintenance mode" and still turn a profit and i'd imagine a Final Fantasy title would easily be able to accomplish this.

    Whether that means a sub price to keep to doors open or switching to a buy-to-play model, I don't see how it would go into the red long-term.

    I think maintenance mode or a stand-alone game is more likely than open sourced, even though I would enjoy that.
    (1)

  5. #5
    Player Alhanelem's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
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    Bastok
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    7,168
    Character
    Tahngarthor
    World
    Shiva
    Main Class
    PUP Lv 99
    I question SE even has the source anymore considering how much else they don't have, since they apparently didn't keep checkpoint builds back in the day. Considering some of the things they can't change, I don't think that's too far off.


    //basically, you'll get the source to a Final Fantasy title from SE when you pry it from their cold dead hard drives....
    (1)

  6. #6
    Player Beastorizer's Avatar
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    Jun 2019
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    118
    Character
    Superbeest
    World
    Bahamut
    Main Class
    BST Lv 52
    Good points

    This brought me back here
    https://massivelyop.com/2020/05/08/f...ogin-campaign/

    I am a Massively reader, saw this, decided to check up on FFXI. The next Free login for old players who are no longer subbed is Friday. I am a couple days late on this, but like I said, I was not going to play FFXI unless it was a free login period. I cannot justify paying for something that halts major updates, and also promises content they never delivered.

    The fact they take sub money, not sure if it is sustainable, but it has been so far so can't argue with the results.

    I used to play a game called City of heroes. The title shutdown like a decade ago, but fans have it back up and running again. People were hesitate to play, because they believed NCSoft would use action against those for using their IP. I guess it was akin to emulators to an extent. It was awfully quiet on NC's front, which made suspicions worst......

    In the end, NC did not care that much lol.....

    There is a huge difference from City of Heroes and a Final Fantasy IP though.....players have added so much to City of Heroes, including new powers. I feel that players tend to be the best developers. Fallout 76 is an example of that compered to their modded counterparts. Players also seem more likely to support a community maintained game, because they are dealing with one another.

    I feel that, if players got hold of FFXI to support it similar to CoH (Pipe dream) the game would be in a much better place (Will finally get a monstrosity update among other things), but I digress....

    Not sure that is what you are getting at in terms of a community ran title, but CoH instantly came to mind...
    (2)

  7. #7
    Player RagingAvatar's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
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    Bastok
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    112
    Character
    Aubinann
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    SMN Lv 66
    I have been a videogame programmer for over 15 years.. It is my genuine dream job to work on the FFXI team and port the renderer to DirectX 12 and optimise the game systems. My dream job <3
    (1)

  8. #8
    Player Ultimoore's Avatar
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    May 2014
    Location
    Windurst
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    23
    Character
    Ultimoore
    World
    Ragnarok
    Main Class
    GEO Lv 75
    Quote Originally Posted by RagingAvatar View Post
    I have been a videogame programmer for over 15 years.. It is my genuine dream job to work on the FFXI team and port the renderer to DirectX 12 and optimise the game systems. My dream job <3
    Vulkan would be a far better choice for the rendering.
    (1)

  9. #9
    Player Gwydion's Avatar
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    Oct 2014
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    504
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    Galkashield
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    THF Lv 1
    Thank you for the mostly positive feedback thus far. I think a version of FFXI that is platform-independent (can be hosted on Windows or Linux operating system, on physical or virtual hardware) would be ideal.

    Similarly, a version of FFXI where the POL client can be deprecated would be another boon for SE's loyal fan base. I know this is all just wishful thinking, and SE ultimately holds all the cards, but I don't see a problem with holding out hope.
    (2)

  10. #10
    Player Pixela's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
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    Character
    Lynettta
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    MNK Lv 99
    >Company makes product

    >Company makes product 2

    >Product 2 becomes companies main focus, reduces funding to product 1

    >players of product1 "please let us make product 1 better"

    >company looks at product 2 and tells you no

    When they make another mmorpg in 5 years they will do the same to product 2. The circle of life.
    (2)

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