There has been a long-running tradition with FINAL FANTASY XIV; there’s always been a benchmark released with every major release. The first time a benchmark was released was back the game was re-released and rebranded as FINAL FANTASY XIV: A Realm Reborn.

As the casual reader or newcomer to FINAL FANTASY XIV, you might be wondering why this is such a big deal. When the game was released initially, it faced backlash from critics and players – One of the significant issues with the game was with how the game was optimized; Square Enix and the FINAL FANTASY brand has always been known for developing titles which push technical, and this is what caused problems in the early days.

During a panel at the GDC (Game Developer Conference) back in 2014, Naoki Yoshida – the now producer of FINAL FANTASY XIV – discusses how Square Enix successfully relaunched the game. During his panel, Behind the Realm Reborn, Yoshida talks about the quality of graphics in the original release where “The flowerpots had around 1K polygons and used 150 lines of shader code. In other words, the same as a single Player Character.”

If you have an interest in video game development or want to get insight into how the world of Eorzea was reborn, check out the talk over at GDCVault.

What is a Benchmark?

The benchmark serves two purposes. The first is to test your current computer’s hardware against the specification of the game and in the end, give you a score. The higher the score will show how well your computer will run the game at a specific quality. The second is to serve as a demo, to showcase what the game will offer and to tease content.

Now that we’re in 2019 and FINAL FANTASY XIV is about to release their third expansion, we’re going to focus on what the benchmark is showcasing!

So what’s on offer?

Shadowbringers is set to introduce a host of new systems, two new cities, five locations, two playable races, and two new jobs.

Throughout each release of FINAL FANTASY XIV, the character in the trailers changes their job, and with Shadowbringers they have befittingly become an Edge Lord (Dark Knight). What makes these benchmarks somewhat unique, is the ability to create a character which will feature throughout the benchmarking process.

Having the option to create a character for the benchmark means we’re getting early access to the two new races, The Hrothgar and Viera. Everything is subject to change and if the FINAL FANTASY XIV team and Yoshida fully take on board, is player feedback.

We’re also getting our first look at some of the Artefact armor, mounts and pets. It’s an awesome 7-minute long tease.

Once you’ve created your new character, you can also choose from a list of armor sets which you’d like them to wear throughout the video; anywhere from Serious to Moogle.

Where can I get a hold of this benchmark?

You can head over to the official website and download the benchmark, but don’t worry, let me help.

I don’t have PC! What about me?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Check out our recording of the benchmark and see how our rig holds up.

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