Eorzean Amsterdam? The Balmung Wall in Final Fantasy's most populous roleplaying server is having a moment.
Feline Chaotic? FFXIV's Balmung Server Becomes a Kinky Tourist Trap
Things are getting slightly out of hand in Final Fantasy XIV's foremost roleplaying server, Balmung. So much so that a (mostly) playful blockade has been established to dissuade tourists from gawking at its inhabitants. But why have the floodgates to this roleplaying haven been opened?
Since 2013, Balmung has been the go-to server for roleplayers. Practically every MMORPG has a space for players who want to maximize their immersion by fully embracing the role of their character when interacting with others.
For FFXIV's NA and EU players, Balmung and Mateus provide the spaces that RPers are looking for. Balmung has always been the most populous of FFXIV's RP servers. And as such has formed a tight-knit community who engage in various forms of roleplaying. Including the kind intended for *ahem*...mature audiences.
So when Square Enix introduced the new Data Center Travel system with Monday's Update 6.18, Balmung quickly became a tourist hotspot. A phenomenon spurred on in no small part by a viral billboard erected IRL by a Balmung Free Company known as Rain Nightclub. This FC was keen to get the party started at their Balmung house, complete with guest DJs and, yes, some of that erotic roleplay that everyone has heard so much about recently. The party takes place on July 9.
Following swift backlash from the community, however, the billboards in Texas and California have since been taken down. But the proverbial horse has well and truly bolted, and curious crowds have begun descending on Balmung in their droves to snatch a glimpse of the Quicksand in Ul'dah - the de facto hub of steamy shenanigans on the server - causing long queues for Travelers.
But Balmung natives have decided to stave off the randy rabble by setting up a blockade at the entrance. A blockade that has ironically become as much of a reason to visit as the roleplaying utopia they are 'guarding'.
Of course, the "blockade" can't actually stop tourists from exploring the wonders within. But along with the wait times, the spectacle upon first appearing in Ul'dah certainly gives players enough reason to stop in their tracks and watch as the stalwart line of Catgirls hold fast against the invasion, or as the immensely talented band of performers who relieved them go about performing a rendition of Blue Öyster Cult's "Don't Fear the Reaper" complete with mesmerizing light show. The changing of the guard has become its own show entirely, prompting many to take to Twitter with 'Balmung Wall' updates.
But the Balmung Wall is also a reminder that RPing is a valid way of enjoying the game. Many are unhappy with the server being treated as a 'zoo' to be gawked at. So perhaps skip the queues and check out what's going on via social media. Or alternatively, if you're not already an avid RPer, get stuck in in earnest and embrace some new experiences.
Hero Image Credit to Twitter User: @irwinxiv