Final Fantasy 14's MMO account sign-up process is an "endless labyrinth and rube goldberg machine," and one fan's built a tool to save you from all the hassle

Screenshot from Final Fantasy 14's new graphics update, showing a character in an action pose.
(Image credit: Square Enix)

Final Fantasy 14 is a great game, and arguably the very best MMORPG you can play today. But with the highly anticipated Dawntrail expansion approaching, we can't ignore the fact that the game's account system is an absolute nightmare. Luckily, one player has gone several extra miles to build a helpful tool that explains everything you need to know.

That player is Warchamp7, and the tool is a website called How To Literally Play Final Fantasy XIV. It's basically a little mini-quiz that runs you through every permutation of getting an active account to play the game. Do you have a Square Enix account? Do you own any version of the game? What platform do you want to play on? Then you get step-by-step instructions on how to proceed. 

This might all sound like obvious stuff, but Warchamp7's description of Square Enix's account websites as an "endless labyrinth and rube goldberg machine" is no exaggeration. The account site is tough enough to navigate on its own, and then there are all the weird, byzantine rules for how accounts work. For example, did you know that once you own a copy of Final Fantasy 14, you're locked into paying the monthly subscription, even if you only want to play content that's in the free trial? Or were you aware of the fact that the standalone PC launcher and Steam versions are treated as completely different products, and once you buy the game on Steam you can never go back to the non-Steam version?

Final Fantasy 14 is an all-time favorite for me, but even I'll admit that the account and license rules are absurd - hence why I published a PSA earlier this year warning prospective players from getting trapped by the Starter Edition that was being offered as an Xbox Game Pass perk. Playing a game this good shouldn't be this complicated.

Looking for details on the Final Fantasy 14 Dawntrail maintenance start and end time for patch 7.0? You know where to click. 

Dustin Bailey
Staff Writer

Dustin Bailey joined the GamesRadar team as a Staff Writer in May 2022, and is currently based in Missouri. He's been covering games (with occasional dalliances in the worlds of anime and pro wrestling) since 2015, first as a freelancer, then as a news writer at PCGamesN for nearly five years. His love for games was sparked somewhere between Metal Gear Solid 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, and these days you can usually find him splitting his entertainment time between retro gaming, the latest big action-adventure title, or a long haul in American Truck Simulator.