Final Fantasy XIV first launched in 2010 for the PC, and though there were initial plans for a PlayStation 3 port, the game flopped due to a myriad of issues, causing a lot of distrust among fans. In 2013, new producer Naoki Yoshida and a new team revamped one of Square's biggest disappointments into one of Square's biggest triumphs. A Realm Reborn was released for both PS3 and PC, sporting improved gameplay, narrative, and systems. It's this version of the game that has now found its way to PS4, complete with spruced up visuals and various other additions. Though the game costs $15 per month after a fresh purchase's free 30 days, the amount of gameplay currently available (and soon to be added in each major patch) will keep you entertained for a very long time. Frankly, MMO fans probably won’t need to play anything else--on PS4, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn is just that good.
Controls and Settings
One of the most impressive features about the PS3 version was its cross-platform play with PC users. However, with the PS4 version out, cross-play exists between all three version. On a systems level, A Realm Reborn has all the main features of the PS3 version plus a few surprises, including Remote Play with PS Vita (bringing total platforms to 4!) and mouse emulation using the touchpad. This is a pretty nifty feature for on-the-fly HUD access and adjustments, but you can also equip yourself with a keyboard and mouse to emulate PC play. A Realm Reborn plays exceptionally well using a controller, with easy access to abilities and menus, and feels very natural using the DualShock 4. Cycling through HUD elements by pressing the touchpad is annoying and a bit of a stretch compared to hitting Select on PS3, but everything else is perfect.
A Realm Reborn also allows you to completely customise your HUD, changing options like the size and location of the quest log and just about every HUD element you like. I do recommend doing this for late-game dungeons, especially the 24-man raids, as the game can look quite cluttered with the standard layout. You can also change the size of the chat box--I found the default font size to be too small. The potential personalization of your experience is refreshing for a console game, and you could spend hours tweaking things to match your preference perfectly.
A Realm Reborn also offers a myriad of targeting options, like disabling the ability to select people that are not in your party, or even disabling the ability to select players altogether. Though these may seem like useless features, they can be quite good for certain classes that won’t need to select other players--for example, if you're playing a DPS class like Pugilist or Lancer.