Square Enix has confirmed that when Final Fantasy XIV Online launches later this year for Xbox, you’ll need to have a current Xbox Game Pass subscription in order to play the game. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean Final Fantasy XIV Online is coming to Xbox Game Pass. The MMORPG is still a fully purchasable game.
The news was shared on the Final Fantasy XIV Online blog ahead of the Xbox Series X/S open beta later this month. According to the blog, the upcoming beta is only available to gamers who have never played Final Fantasy XIV Online before. So you’ll need to go into the beta with a fresh account.
Square Enix says that existing Final Fantasy XIV Online owners are urged to wait until the full game releases to play it. If you try to log into the beta with an existing account, it won’t let you in.
The blog post continues to detail the beta saying the experience will include certain limitations including the inability to purchase items from the Online Store.
As for the Xbox Game Pass requirements, Square Enix says that the open beta test will not require any subscription. However, when the full Xbox Series X/S version of Final Fantasy XIV Online launches, you will need an active subscription to play the game.
The Free Trial version, including the open beta test, will not require an Xbox Game Pass (Core or Ultimate) plan to play. However, the full Xbox Series X|S version will require an Xbox Game Pass (Core or Ultimate) plan to play.
This is a strange move for Square Enix and Microsoft. Most MMORPG and free-to-play games don’t require any active subscriptions to play them. For example, Final Fantasy XIV Online on PS5 and PS4 doesn’t require PlayStation Plus at all.
Keep in mind that Final Fantasy XIV Online is already an expensive game. It requires a monthly subscription to play it on top of the game purchase itself. So you’ll need to pay for both Final Fantasy XIV Online and Xbox Game Pass in order to enjoy the MMORPG. Definitely a strange move compared to other platforms.
The beta test kicks off on 21 February with an expected full launch sometime in mid-2024.