With the announcement of Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker, one of the most teased features was the inclusion of Island Sanctuaries. First revealed as early as February 2021, Island Sanctuaries are a new solo feature that will reportedly allow you to play with minions, farm, place buildings, and customize a brand-new area.
The content has been compared and contrasted to Final Fantasy XIV’s Ishgardian Restoration, which currently allows groups of players to team up to repair a damaged city. In an interview in 2021, Developer Naoki Yoshida stated that “we’re aiming for something that allows players to casually play through on a solo basis at their own pace.”
Related: When does the Island Sanctuary release in Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker
“Think of it as a mode that allows you to create your own space without the need to fulfil requirements set up by others or competing with other players. You can tend to your animals and crops, expand the territory on your island, and let your minions roam free. As such, it’s a mode through which you can enjoy the slow life.”
Some of the promised features are farming, customizable placing of buildings, an area for your minion collection to run around free, and more: a perfect place to relax after the dramatic finale of Endwalker. If this is sounding like some over-the-top, Animal-Crossing-meets-the-World-of-Warcraft-Garrison system, then you might be on the right track.
Overall, Island Sanctuaries seem to be a great way to add something akin to Player Housing that’s accessible to all players. While there’s a strictly limited number of Player Houses in Final Fantasy XIV at the moment, with only several thousand per server, every player will get their own Island Sanctuary. And on their Island Sanctuary, they’ll be able to place items, farm, and do many of the things players with houses have been able to do exclusively.
The customization sounds ambitious, but it’s not unheard of. Notably, it sounds remarkably similar to the Housing system in the now defunct MMO Wildstar. In that game, player housing was fully customizable but could bit filled with items and furnishings that grant buffs and bonuses. It feels like Island Sanctuaries could be a familiar return to this style of gameplay.
For more information on upcoming Final Fantasy: Endwalker content, check out When do Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker’s raids release? on Pro Game Guides.