Final Fantasy XIV allows each character to hold 175 items, but your inventory can be expanded with the help of Retainers. These NPCs allow you to sell more items in the market, go on quests to obtain valuable items, and hold extra items for Final Fantasy XIV adventurers.
Each player can get two retainers for free, but additional retainers cost additional cash on top of your monthly subscription fee. Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn allowed players to hire up to four retainers and the most recent patch that prepares for Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward ups this to eight retainers. While allowing players to hold more items is a plus since Heavensward introduces brand new items, Square Enix is also charging players, particularly crafters who are packed to the brim, more to carry all of these goodies. Siliconera asked Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward producer and director Naoki Yoshida if they have any plans to handle inventory issues without passing the buck through Retainers.
"The reason why we can’t increase item space is saving to the servers and getting that data transferred is one of the main reasons we haven’t been able to increase space. Currently, the save data size amount per character is probably the biggest in all of MMOs in the world," said Yoshida. "We have the most data per character. Every 15 seconds we take a backup of every player’s data. This is good for players because if the servers crash there is no rollback. Every 15 seconds we are updating that data. Increasing the inventory also increases the amount of data we send back to the servers to save every 15 seconds. What we could do is extend that time from every 15 seconds to five minutes we can add more data, but what happens then is if the servers crash there is the threat of rolling back player data and players losing some data."
"But, that’s not to say we’re not working on this or not doing anything. We’re always working on optimization making it so we can transfer more data. Right now, with Heavensward coming out we know that a lot of players are going to access the servers and there is going to be a lot of stress on the servers. To do something like this at launch would create an unstable environment. It’s something we’re working on now and hopefully we can increase the amount of items players can carry. I also need more space in my inventory."
Siliconera will have more about Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward and the most recent patch later this week.