The stars did not align for the Nexon reboot of Final Fantasy XI. The game is now officially canceled.
Square Enix‘s Final Fantasy XI is revered as one of the best MMO titles of all time, and back in 2015, Korean developer Nexon announced that they were going to be bringing the game to mobile devices in the form of Final Fantasy XI R, a reboot of the game for mobile devices, dubbed as a MMMRPG (Massively Multiplayer Mobile RPG).
The title was initially slated to launch in Japan and South Korea five years ago in 2016. It never happened and everyone thought at that time that the game was already canceled. Then in 2018, fans of the title got their first look at what the game would look like in-game on a mobile device. And I have to say, it looked gorgeous.
After the initial showing in 2018, the game went radio-silent again, and no one heard anything about the title until an earnings call back in November of 2020, when they stated that the game was on track for a third quarter 2021 release.
Then, out of the blue, the game was announced to be canceled. It seems that internally the project was canceled all the way back on 9 February 2021 but did not get announced until news broke on the Japanese website Social Game Info.
The actual reason for the cancellation of Final Fantasy XI R is not fully known, but the article states that both parties were not happy with how the progression of the game was coming along and they decided to move the team members that were working on the project to other games.
While unfortunate, it seems that the project was too much of an undertaking to port to mobile and it just didn’t live up to expectations. Maybe one day, we’ll see the project get resurrected in some shape or form, but as it stands today, we can only imagine how it would have been to traverse the world of Vana’diel on mobile.