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They should have gone with Instanced housing. It's the most common implementation of housing in MMORPGs, and for very good reason - not least of all being that it pretty much guarantees that demand will never exceed availability, to the extent that a player can own *multiple* houses if they so choose (EQ2, I believe, allows up to 20).
Took me a bit to get back around to this post but, having now read it, there's quite a bit to unpack here, so... Let's get to it.I'll start with the closing statement:"EQ2 might have 'bigger' housing but I still prefer a small diamond over a giant turd "Well, your "smiley" of apparent self-satisfaction notwithstanding, this has a couple major problems right off the bat. You commit two sins in a single sentence. Impressive!You are (1) creating a false dichotomy, and (2) asserting a matter of personal taste/preference as though it were one of the only two options (ie. "turd" or "diamond"). Put another way... Someone who doesn't share your opinion of EQ2 doesn't have to choose one or the other. They can get the "big and shiny diamond". Several of them, actually, if they want. And I won't start talking about a graphics comparison, lets just say
that FF14 is one of the, if not the, best looking MMOs right now.Say it all you like, in as many ways as you like. It's personal preference/taste. Nothing more.Quite an unfair comparison. FF14 was built with the ps3 in mind, a
console from 2006 which when it comes to specs was somewhat like a high
end spec PC from 2004, it also has severe memory restrictions that
needed to be worked around. EQ2 to this day is an unoptimised mess that
could hardly be played on hardware from these days, FF14 ran almost
perfect on the PS3.Lots to unpack here, too...Yoshida/SE has gone on record citing housing restrictions as being a limitation of server power. I've not found a single source where he cites PS3 as being a reason why housing is continuously limited, no matter how many times they expand/update it. PS3 limitations affect how many decorations can be placed in your yard/house, due to memory limits... which is a result of poor design/planning and resource management on his part, starting with and stemming directly from how he chose to implement housing in the first place.Yoshida and his team knew the limitations/restrictions of the PS3. They knew how much they could throw at it, how much memory they had to play with. More poignantly, they knew what their server infrastructure was; after all, they designed it. Regardless, they proceeded to paint themselves into a corner by going with a system that devoured those resources, leaving them in a position they've been unable to overcome since.Sadder still, there's simply no good excuse for it.They had numerous other examples in the genre to look at, to see ways others had successfully implemented housing in a way that was both highly functional, and - more importantly - accessible to all players, without having to use exorbitant costs as a barrier to "keep demand down".They should have gone with Instanced housing. It's the most common implementation of housing in MMORPGs, and for very good reason - not least of all being that it pretty much guarantees that demand will never exceed availability, to the extent that a player can own *multiple* houses if they so choose (EQ2, I believe, allows up to 20). But no, Yoshida and his team - per their own say-so "underestimated how popular housing would be" and didn't bother to plan or design for anything beyond what they *assumed* people would want. Adding insult to injury, this is *after* they'd already had their expectations exceeded with XIV's re-launch, nevermind how popular a request housing was prior to its official announcement. So what's the deal there? Is Yoshida and co. just perpetually pessimistic about their own product? Terminally out of touch with their own playerbase, perhaps? Really slow learners, maybe? Even FFXI, developed for even *weaker* hardware (PS2) offered more utility and availability (one house per character, guaranteed), right out of the gate than FFXIV. And, despite the PS2's limitations, they went on to expand on it continuously over the years. How could they do this, despite hardware, infrastructure and console limitations far more restrictive than even the PS3? Again: Instancing - and a demonstrably better grasp on the limits of their hardware and infrastructure.You'd *think* maybe they'd have looked to see how FFXI did it, nevermind myriad other titles with similar implementations. You know, build off the knowledge and experience of those who came before you, rather than trying to re-invent the wheel and making the same mistakes. Yoshida thought he knew better, I guess.But let's get back to EQ2. You address, as I did, that EQ2 was an unpolished, poorly optimized game that ran poorly on even high-end hardware of the time. This is true, and I noted as much even in my previous comments. It's on record that SOE had decided to place all their technology eggs for EQ2's engine in the basket of a CPU architecture that ultimately never came to pass. It screwed them and their game over for years to come. No secret there. Yet... Yet.... Despite that. Despite EQ2's poor performance, poor optimization and so forth.. They still managed to implement a housing system that utterly eclipses that of a MMORPG developed almost a decade later. One that allows every player *multiple* houses if they wish, and provides *far* more control over exactly how it's decorated. Items can be placed anywhere, arbitrarily, even in mid-air, if so wished. They could be rotated and scaled and arranged in creative, interesting ways. Players could own multiple homes, could place teleporters connecting all their individual houses into one huge one if they wish. And so on.I know your intent in pointing out EQ2's poor performance, etc was meant to prove the contrary... but you've only underscored my point.FFXIV's housing wasn't only outshined by that of EQ2, an unpolished, unoptimized dog of an engine designed over a decade ago, *despite* its problems... It was also outshined by FFXI, a MMORPG *by the very same developer*, designed to work on even *more* inferior technology and hardware.FFXIV's housing is a shining example of how *not* to design and implement a housing system in a mainstream MMO. Unless you want to be dealing with constant limitations and restrictions, year after year, patch after patch. If that's the goal, then it's a stellar case study.