The Final Fantasy series won't be getting a new MMO any time soon thanks to the immense success of FFXIV, according to producer and director Naoki Yoshida. FFXIV Shadowbringers released earlier this summer to rave reviews, outstripping expectation it would be one of the game's best expansions and cementing itself instead as one of the best Final Fantasy games ever made in the context of the entire series.
FFXIV Shadowbringers combined many of the game's earlier successful implementations with what many believe to be the franchise's strongest story in recent memory. That, combined with a smooth launch that has seen exciting content get added regularly, has kept FFXIV in the spotlight as the MMORPG of the summer - at least until WoW Classic releases to attempt to compete with it. For those unfamiliar with the game's story, FFXIV's success is even more impressive because it originally launched to abysmal reviews and poor fan reception before Yoshida and the rest of the team salvaged it, putting in a ton of work just to get the game to an enjoyable state before future expansions established it as one of the genre's best.
Now that FFXIV has hit 16 million subscribers and climbing, it appears that Square Enix is satisfied to continue to produce content for its smash hit rather than attempting to move on to a newer variant of Final Fantasy MMO. In an interview with Spieletipps (via PCGamesN) at Gamescom, Naoki Yoshida and head writer Banri Oda were pretty clear about the game's future:
"Currently there is no prospect of a new online offshoot."
Naturally, there's a chance for a translation error thanks to the German interview, but the point remains clear regardless. While Yoshida and Oda refrained from offering up plans for further FFXIV content, they did confirm that there are new equipment and customization options coming for Viera and Hrothgar, as well as the bigger content that's already been announced, like the FFXIV NieR: Automata raid. With so much in the pipeline for FFXIV, it appears that any future MMO attempt from Square Enix is a long ways off.
That's a good thing, though. A lot of work was put in from both developers and players to build FFXIV into one of the premier offerings in the MMORPG genre, and it would be a shame to see that fall by the wayside prematurely in pursuit of better graphics or a fresh start. World of Warcraft has already proven that an old game can have very long legs indeed as long as the developer continues to add compelling content, and the fact that consumers aren't likely to see a new Final Fantasy MMO any time soon is a good sign that Square Enix is just as committed to the game now as it was when it salvaged it back in 2013.