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Final Fantasy XIV Producer Talks Alpha, Beta Tests

Company to determine length of alpha test based off player response.

Looks pretty playable!

We may at long last have some sort of idea of just what Square Enix was talking about at the VanaFest event yesterday regarding all that Final Fantasy XIV alpha and beta jive, along with some specifics on just what was shown as far as game footage goes.

A press Q&A session following the event was mostly focused on the newly announced initiatives for Final Fantasy XI, including changes in level caps and expansion contents. But Hiromichi Tanaka, producer of both FFXI and FFXIV, did share brief comments on FFXIV towards the end.

As reported at Famitsu.com, Tanaka was asked when the game's alpha test and beta test would take place. This information, he said, will be announced on March 11, when the beta tester site goes live. They're currently making adjustments which could change the date around.

Tanaka was asked about the alpha test in particular. How long will the alpha test, which of course takes place before the beta test, run? His response was that Square Enix will decide that based off user response.

We're still not entirely sure of who will be able to take part in the alpha and beta. At the event, Square Enix said that all VanaFest attendees would be able to take part in both. Famitsu.com's report says that FFXI players will also be able to take part in the alpha. The Famitsu.com report also says that the winners of the first drawing for beta testers will be announced starting March 1.

If you'll allow for some speculation, the confusion here appears to be from Square Enix's use of the term "beta tester." It's possible that they're just using this as a general term that applies to the people who take part in both the alpha and beta test programs. In other words, beta testers are also alpha testers, and the people whose names are drawn on March 1 will be the first people to try out FFXIV.

Separate from the beta information, Impress Watch also clarifies some details on just what was shown for FFXIV at the evnet. Square Enix showed the game's opening movie, which was just completed one week prior. They also showed real gameplay footage.

The Impress writer wrote that the opening movie can be thought of as a full version of the pre rendered sections from the trailer that debuted at E3. They wouldn't share details, as they were worried about spoilers. It seems that there's a little trick to the game that you'll understand after watching the movie.

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