It's not often that a product is so popular that sales need to be paused -- but that's what just happened with Final Fantasy XIV. Following the release of the game's most recent expansion pack, Endwalker, its online servers became more congested than developer Square Enix could handle and the company suspended digital and retail sales, according to Final Fantasy XIV producer and director Naoki Yoshida in a blog post Wednesday.
Final Fantasy XIV is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) ... erh, a mouthful. Thousands of players can play at the same time (on the same server) and interact with the game environment and each other. Endwalker's tremendous popularity is congesting Square Enix's servers, making it sometimes impossible to play the game. Square Enix already had to prioritize players who fully purchased the expansion, and so free trial players have been unable to log in outside of late night or early morning hours.
"Players are currently experiencing extremely long wait times due to the dense concentration of play hours which far exceed our server capacity, especially during the peak times," Yoshida wrote in The Lodenstone blog.
Endwalker, released Dec. 7, is the fourth expansion for the game. You can purchase the standalone expansion, but you can also purchase the Starter Edition and Complete Edition, which include Endwalker, either digitally or physically. It's the latter editions that Square Enix has suspended, along with advertisements for the game.
"These temporary suspensions will be phased in over the next few days as we work with our retail partners," Yoshida wrote. "We will be coordinating with them as swiftly as possible, but please bear in mind that this will be a gradual process."
We've reached out to Square Enix on its expected time frame in resuming sales, but it didn't immediately respond.