June 23 marked the release of the first expansion for Final Fantasy XIV, called Heavensward, but it also signified that the popular online game would be making its way to a third platform — the Mac. However, after less than two weeks and numerous complaints about the game and its new port, Square Enix is now offering refunds to those who bought the game for Mac and will also temporarily suspend sales of the Mac version until the problem is fixed.
Speaking via the game's forums, producer and director Naoki Yoshida stated that the reason for the issues was the release of incorrect system requirements for Mac users. Yoshida said that development on the client was ongoing right up to the release date, with constant improvements to the game. However, the system requirements were still unavailable to developers. This made the team nervous, so they developed several versions of the game to fit multiple system requirements. When the correct version was finally available, they could easily launch the game from one of the pre-made versions.
In addition to last-minute improvements, there was also the issue of making Heavensward ready for all three platforms. In a sense, the team doubled down on getting both the Mac version as well as Heavensward ready for their simultaneous release. You can imagine how hectic the office would be under those circumstances.
This eventually led to the release of incorrect specs, which were not updated for the final Mac version. In addition, the team was supposed to conduct maintenance on the game on the release date to address some final issues on the Mac version. However, another miscommunication occurred between Square Enix and retailers, so some players had access to the Mac version before the fixes, leading to poor in-game performance.
For Square Enix, the Mac is still uncharted territory, as the company has only released one title as a native port (Deus Ex: Human Revolution). Development for Windows is a far cry for developing on the Mac platform, because Windows uses the DirectX API for games and the Mac uses OpenGL, although that performance gap could change soon with Apple's Metal API.
With Final Fantasy XIV displaying an overwhelming number of elements on the screen, including monsters, multiple characters, environment and animations, the demand on the system can be taxing. Yoshida even said that the team expected a performance gap of about 30 percent in the Mac version when using OpenGL versus the Windows version.
If you are one of the many Mac players who want to get a refund, you can fill out a form if you bought the game from the Square Enix online store. If you bought it from other retailers, you can fill out a consultation form for Square Enix. Otherwise, you can still keep playing the game on the Mac.
Square Enix is using the same strategy as WB Games, which pulled sales of the PC version of Batman: Arkham Knight days after its release due to a multitude of performance issues. The Final Fantasy XIV team, just like Arkham Knight’s development team Rocksteady, is quickly nipping the problem in the bud and fixing it as fast as possible. Yoshida didn’t provide a date for when sales of the Mac version would resume, but the team will put out an announcement with the updated and final specs when the problem is resolved.
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When are these companies going to learn a delay way better than releasing buggy crap?Reply
I call that the "Blizzard Principle." Blizzard's titles are usually delayed, but they're almost always solid when they finally get released ( at least before the Activision marriage ).16195294 said:When are these companies going to learn a delay way better than releasing buggy crap?
The problem is that a dev studio needs to earn some credit with their audience that the delays make it worth it. If you delay a game but it comes out rock solid, people tend to give you the benefit of the doubt for future releases. If you delay a title and it's still problematic when it comes out, you're sunk.
Then add in the problem of the distributor/publisher. They're fronting the money for the game, meaning they have a lot of say over what the dev studio does. If the dev tells the publisher a game isn't ready, but the publisher says release it anyway, the studio has to decide whether to ship a buggy game or to default on a contract. Choice 1 means they still get paid to feed their families, even if gamers don't like them much for it.
However, the problem is that there's no significant consequence for the publishers or studios for releasing crappy stuff. Gamers have bought into the whole pre-order and season pass concept. They're giving money to the publisher before the product is even done. And when the problems inevitably come, the gamers will rant and rave and say they hate EA or Ubi. But EA and Ubi probably don't care much because they already have your money. And those gamers who said they'll never purchase another title from that publisher will still pre-order Battlefield 9 or Call of Duty 7 or Assassin's Creed 10.
Why would any decent gamer use a Mac?Reply
@RedJaron You need to understand that the majority of Developers have to follow orders from the people that write their pay cheques. Hence, their lack of control on the release dates and rushed deadlines. As a result of this; many devs put in PERSONAL hours (voluntary no pay hours outside of work hours) to fix bugs and optimize code, however this is NOT enough due to how rushed some projects have become nowadays. You have to keep in mind that not every company/publisher has the standard, resources nor patience as Blizzard (While they're still doing great, they definitely lost some of their touch since Activisioon took over; just my opinion). It's a shame where this industry is headed...Reply
Wait wait wait.... Hold the Phone, the Blizzard approach?? Please for the love of god don't do that..... Have you ever had to deal with content patches for World of Warcraft? It is painful, very, very, very painful.Reply
Also need to notice that Square-Enix is the distributor/publisher/developer :DReply
Big companies are Big.
Square-Enix: "Turns out Macs suck"Reply
lol what do they expect when the majority of Mac users have an Intel IGP and have no idea what graphics performance is.
When are these companies going to learn a delay way better than releasing buggy crap?
Better for who?
Not for the company, that I can assure you of.
Run Bootcamp, play in native DirectX. Problem solved. That way no performance hit from the port and it works right away.Reply
Silly mac gamers
PC Gamers have enough trouble with the console ports. Please don't further the problem by porting to MAC. Mac isn't for games, has never been, and will probably not be for a long time.Reply