Final Fantasy 14 suspends player housing demolition across Japanese servers, following major earthquake

Square Enix has suspended its housing demolition process in Final Fantasy 14, following an earthquake in the Noto Peninsula of Japan on New Year’s Day. The 7.6 magnitude earthquake has left thousands without power or shelter.

The scale of the disaster is not yet clear, although the BBC reports at least 80 confirmed deaths. Due to the difficult nature of search & rescue after the collapse of major infrastructure, it’s likely that figure will rise in the coming days. Sky reports that at least 33,000 have had to evacuate, with many of the worst-hit areas “inaccessible” due to destroyed roads. Officials have also stated that some 100,000 homes have no water supply.

As to what this means for players: FF14’s player housing system has a limited number of wards on every server—to keep them open to new players wishing to buy virtual property, player houses are removed if the player has not visited them within 45 days. 

However, Square Enix will often suspend this limit under unusual circumstances and real-world tragedies, where it’s unreasonable to expect players to log in due to loss of power, financial struggles, or property damage.

During the Turkey-Syria earthquake last year, similar measures were applied. Housing demolition was also suspended during the Covid-19 pandemic, and prolonged during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

The company’s statement reads: “From all of us on the FFXIV development and management team, our hearts go out to those who were affected by the massive earthquake that occurred in Noto Peninsula on January 1st, Monday.” Timers will be suspended on the Elemental, Gaia, Mana, and Meteor data centers—or in other words, all data centers that serve Japan.  

As for when the pause will be lifted, “we will monitor the situation in the coming days, and inform you all when we have come to a decision that auto-demolition can commence again … It is our sincere hope that recovery is swift, and those of you who were affected will be able to rejoin us in FFXIV soon.”

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