Well I read yesterday via Massively’s Mog Log article that highlights the severely high prices for the announced housing in Final Fantasy XIV. This is guild housing (guilds are called Free Companies in the game) so in a sense it’s not that relevant to my character as he never joined such a group. Prices seem to be ranging between 4 and 60 million gil (gil = gold coin in Final Fantasy speak) according to the article; that’s pretty crazy! These costs are for the plot of land and basic building, I presume it’ll cost a significant amount on top to decorate the house after you purchase it.
The article talks about the Balmung server on which my character resides so this is the exact situation I would face if I returned to the game. It seems like a move aimed at punishing the minority of legacy players who managed to save up a lot of gil before the game was frozen for the A Realm Reborn remake. There’s an open letter with ~600 replies on the game’s forums calling for a zero to be taken off the price of housing plots (link). As the original poster (Abriael) states:
And this is another of the elements that maybe hasn’t been considered when setting the housing prices: many MMORPG players don’t like being part of large, sprawling guilds. Many like medium sized guilds with 20-30 close-knit members. Others like family-sized groups of 8-10 members
This is an important point. Some players, myself included, prefer to be in smaller guilds. The pricing of the housing system (which is also lacking personal housing at present) is biased towards larger grinding-guilds. It reminds me of the pressure to farm money and status inherent to Tera’s old political system – my time in a largish guild there was dominated by the unwritten pressure to contribute towards the guild’s requirements for maintaining Vanarchy (political leadership of a zone). This inequity also smacks of the original problems with the revamped guild system in WoW or the guild mission system as introduced in Guild Wars 2.
Developers shouldn’t engage in social engineering like this, whether by design or by accident. Even if this is aimed at fixing the problems with gil-sellers during the game’s earlier period, punishing the whole playerbase is wrong. I’d much rather see a very wide range of housing, including some available for individuals to own, with highly prestigious and expensive larger housing providing the longer term goal for big guilds to aim for.