UPDATE: Square Enix has clarified some points on the promo. Details at the end.
I love Final Fantasy XIV. You all know that. But that’s not to say Square Enix (the developers) are often capable of acts of randomness so marvelous that it sometimes… it makes you ask a familiar Angry Video Game Nerd phrase:
A while back they had a Japan-only promo which involved buying stuff from 7-11 stores in exchange for codes that could be redeemed for certain in-game items like the much-sought-after Butler and Maid outfits. The rest of the world wanted these items, but they’d have to wait. During June the promotion had its NA incarnation, but it was different: you had to buy $19.99 or more from a physical item in the Amazon video game department to receive the codes. While it wasn’t cheap, it was convenient. With so many good games on frequent discounts, you could get a good title and extra items for the same price. The code arrived via email almost immediately, and from there it was a quick trip to the Mogstation to apply them. The rest of the world still waited for their own version of the promo.
Today is UK’s turn. And boy it’s… interesting.
How does it work?
You have to buy a physical UK video game magazine called “GamesMaster” for three months in a row, for each month 3 items will be included in a code printed inside each magazine.
Inferno Mask (glamour), tokes for Jandelaine (the aesthetician), and a ticket for 30k MGP (gold saucer).
Crag Mask (glamour), Aetheryte tickets (free teleports) and Deluxe Heavenscracker (fireworks).
Butler outfit (glamour, males), Maid outfit (glamour, females), Magicked Prisms (temporary wings).
And finally, to get the ultimate reward, the Fat Chocobo Mount, you have to take a picture of yourself holding the codes of the three issues and send them to a specific email using a specific subject line. Once it’s validated, you’ll get an email response with the code for the mount, which you then go into the Mogstation to input and get the item in-game. Whew.
Things to note
With the exception of the Prisms (wings), all other ticket-like items are unique to EU. I cannot speak for Japan but the NA promo only had the permanent items, and you got all of them with a single code (remember: $19.99):
A curious one is the 30k MGP ticket. That’s new. It’s not a revolutionary amount, but it’s curious they would include this currency in such a promotion.
As stated above, you got the items with a single code, so you didn’t have to wait three weeks to get the most sought-after ones (the butler and maid outfits).
Finally, it’s important to mention that this is the UK promo. SE has different promos planned for other countries in Europe, so remember that.
Where do I begin? Oh, yeah: You have to buy a physical video game magazine. In 2016. I know, they exist, but it’s such an odd choice! I sure hope they are well sealed in that neat plastic wrap they tend to have… otherwise there’s always the jerk that will copy the code and then return the slip to the magazine stand, resulting in an honest buyer that will find an invalid code. As someone outside the UK, I also wonder how well known that magazine is. Is it popular? A quick FFXIV reddit visit doesn’t really give a good impression, though:
Oh, and I sure hope you weren’t planning on subbing to it! I mean, being a cross-promo I would guess part of the deal is to bring the people’s attention to the magazine, right? But, as mentioned by fellow Twitter user FusionX, be warned:
If you sub today (the date the promo was made public) you won’t get the first two magazines of the set. You have to buy them individually, in a magazine stand, I guess. Or online:
Prices vary depending of your region. UK fellas pay 4.99 pounds per issue, which in today’s exchange rate amounts to about $19.77 for all three issues.
And finally, the picture part. I will not go into the fact that there’s people out there that are not comfortable sending their picture to random email addresses on the internet – which is a subject for another area of study entirely – but I will ask myself: is there no easier way? Off the top of my head:
- Make a special section in the Mogstation where UK players can input their magazine codes, and when all three are in and validated, a final fourth code appears or is auto-applied and sends the mount to your acccount.
- Have the game detect when you have all three sets of items in your character’s “license”, and auto-apply the mount.
- If you create a GamesMaster account to purchase the magazine digitally, have the final code be sent automatically when all three issues are purchased by your account.
But I guess it’s easier to have a lucky soul having to check God knows how many emails checking photos of people with codes, and then validating them to ensure it’s not multiple people with the same codes, to then send them a code so they can redeem the mount from the Mogstation. Good luck, random lucky guy!
Another, more personal, take
Despite all this weirdness… you know, at least UK fellows have a way. If you really really want those items, you have a choice. I’m sure many don’t care about the items being offered in the first two issues, so I’m sure the third one (the one with the butler and maid code) will be a popular one. And if you only want those items and not the Fat Chocobo then that’s all you need. If you really REALLY want the Fat Chocobo mount then, well, you have a lot to do. It does suck that you can’t get all the items at once like NA did, but it’s something.
This is coming from someone who lives where this stuff simply doesn’t exist. Here in Latin America we don’t get promotions, Fan Fests, or other cool stuff. Technically, there isn’t even a “Latin America Data Center“. Everyone I know that plays (or has played) XIV has a NA account. For us, the Amazon promo was literally “out of our way”. I was lucky though. The NA promo appeared during my recent vacation in Miami. So when I found out, I went to Amazon and ordered the first $19.99 thing that I remembered I had been sitting on for ages, and took advantage of my Prime trial which I had activated for the trip:
The code arrived instantly, but it wasn’t until I came back home that I could apply it to the Mogstation. Had I not been there I would have had to order something, send it to a courier who would have charged me around $12 for delivery, and then pay $42 local courier tax for it.
So yeah, three magazines, three months and a photo don’t sound so bad from a certain point of view.
That’s not to say that it’s not a really, really convoluted way. My Twelve…
Square Enix jumped into the forums to clear up some details people have been complaining on social media about. Link: http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/threads/298950-About-the-EU-campaign-for-maid-outfit-and-fat-chocobo?p=3778581#post3778581
Basically, three points:
- The picture must be of yourself holding the three codes, but it doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be your face – basically a torso shot would suffice. Also, the magazine cannot use your pictures for anything other than verifying the codes; good for those who were worried they may use them for other stuff.
- Reminding people that this is the UK’s version of the promo, and that other EU countries will have their own promos. However, being part of the EU zones, Europeans who wish to jump on this promo can do so.
- Finally, a reminder that you do not need to sub to the magazine. Just buy the individual issues.