Final Fantasy XIV, which has an anticipated new expansion on the way and sustained population growth, will undergo a lengthy maintenance tonight to help with the server issues.
With population growth that began surging several months into this year, Final Fantasy XIV has had to consistently adjust to try and keep everything as stable as possible while letting people enjoy the game. Changes that could alleviate demand have been added, like kicking idle characters, along with some other adjustments like closing the Aether data center, one of three in North America, to new characters. It remains closed under a "congested" state and won’t reopen until that passes. Perhaps they’ll add capacity, but it’s uncertain at this point. But the halt to new characters on Aether does mean that anyone on that server who might have finally gotten their friends to try FFXIV wouldn’t be able to play with them after all.
The work will be applied to “implementing measures to address heavy server stress loads based on the result from the public server stress test we have held the other day”. Maintenance will begin with the North American and EU servers going down at 10pm ET/3am BST. The app and Lodestone will also be down during this time. The app and Lodestone are scheduled to come back up first, on September 28th at 3am PT/ 8am BST. The game is planned to return to service tomorrow, September 28th at 6am PT/11am BST.
With planned maintenance, there's always the potential for changes and delays, so if you're a Final Fantasy XIV player, you should account for this. With the upcoming expansion Endwalker set for release on November 23rd, the need to get the server issues sorted is even more pressing. While it is inconvenient for players to not have access for extended times, it is necessary, and if this new work announced helps settle the server problems, many will surely appreciate it.