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The 8th Vana'diel Census (05/16/2008)

[[{{SUBST:The 8th Vana'diel Census (05/16/2008)}}|   ]]
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Header.jpg
[[{{SUBST:The 8th Vana'diel Census (05/16/2008)}}|   ]]

Table of Contents:
Introduction | Login Distribution | Job Levels | Jobs | Racial Distribution | Face Type Distribution
Linkshells | Items | Synthesis Skills | Chocobo Raising | Home Points
Expansion Data | Your Voice | In Closing


On May 16, 2008, FINAL FANTASY XI celebrates its six-year anniversary since its launch in Japan, and will blaze a trail into its seventh year of service! With adventurers now blazing trails across Vana'diel's time stream in the fourth expansion pack, Wings of the Goddess, and with the addition of a “World Transfer Service,” FINAL FANTASY XI's thriving community has grown to more than 500,000 users. Once again, the development and operations teams have analyzed both past and current data to bring you a detailed report on Vana'diel's lively denizens. We hope you enjoy our cross-sectioned look at FINAL FANTASY XI's constantly evolving community!

*All research other than login distribution is based off data obtained April 2008.

Login Distribution

The below graphs represent the login data for the first week in May 2008. As demonstrated in the data collected each year, there are three main login times each day for FINAL FANTASY XI users from Japan, North America, and Europe indicated by the peaks displayed below. The first peak time takes place in Japan, which is followed by Europe, and then - after a short break - by North America. One can see just how busy the game regularly is by looking at the multiple peak login times.

≪Simultaneous Logins≫ * Indicated in JST
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Login.jpg

Now let's take a look at how much time players are logged into the game each day. When compared to 2006 and 2007, the number of players playing under 3 hours a day has slightly increased and the number of players playing between 4 and 6 hours a day has slightly decreased. The reason for this could be due to experience bonuses through signet and sanctions, enabling players to level up in shorter lengths of time. Another contribution to this figure could be the increase of content such as Assault and Campaign, where players can play with their friends for relatively short periods of time. On the other hand, however, the average play time for a character this year comes to 171 minutes (about 2 hours and 50 minutes), which is slightly longer than last year (168 minutes) and the year before that (164 minutes).

≪Login Time Per Character≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Login Time.jpg

Job Levels

This year, in addition to our data on Main Job Distribution, we have also added the results of research into how many players have completed Maat's final challenges and obtained the highly coveted “Maat's Cap.”

Let's start out talking about main job distribution. We researched job levels for all characters except those at level 1, most of which would be “storage characters” (also known as “mules”).

The rough distribution is the same as every year, but the percentage of job levels over 31 has increased. It may be obvious that adventurers' levels would rise after a year, but this may also be attributed to the introduction of Campaign Ops, Campaign Battles, and other features added in Wings of the Goddess -- such as the addition of content enabling players to obtain extra experience, the presence of players leveling up to try their hand once again at missions from the expansion packs that have been made easier, and players who have finished various missions now in a position where they can obtain ENM quests or pages from Miratete's memoirs.

≪Main Job Level Distribution (Level 2-75)≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Job Levels.jpg
[ Main Job Distribution (Level 1) ]
Job Levels Population Distribution
1 56.89%

[ Main Job Level Distribution (Level 2-75) ]
Job Levels Population Distribution Level Distribution
2 2.72% Levels 2-10
3 2.44%
4 2.30%
5 3.50%
6 2.49%
7 3.22%
8 2.65%
9 2.08%
10 4.38%
11 2.36% Levels 11-20
12 2.41%
13 1.94%
14 1.79%
15 2.72%
16 1.61%
17 1.79%
18 2.33%
19 1.36%
20 2.53%
21 1.40% Levels 21-30
22 1.11%
23 0.91%
24 0.93%
25 1.56%
26 0.93%
27 0.81%
28 0.65%
29 0.61%
30 1.86%
31 1.01% Levels 31-40
32 0.91%
33 0.75%
34 0.66%
35 0.74%
36 0.82%
37 7.23%
38 1.86%
39 0.73%
40 1.75%
Job Levels Population Distribution Level Distribution
41 0.95% Levels 41-50
42 0.98%
43 0.63%
44 0.49%
45 0.52%
46 0.40%
47 0.32%
48 0.28%
49 0.21%
50 0.58%
51 0.39% Levels 51-60
52 0.37%
53 0.30%
54 0.28%
55 0.29%
56 0.27%
57 0.24%
58 0.29%
59 0.25%
60 0.86%
61 0.58% Levels 61-70
62 0.46%
63 0.40%
64 0.34%
65 0.36%
66 0.39%
67 0.29%
68 0.26%
69 0.21%
70 0.38%
71 0.24% Levels 71-75
72 0.26%
73 0.28%
74 0.39%
75 12.41%
Total 100% 100%

We will now mention the item that only the Ultimate Champion of the World could possibly acquire, “Maat's Cap.” As you undoubtedly already know, the only way to get one's hands on this enigmatic item is to level up 15 jobs to level 66 or higher and defeat Maat in single combat with each job. The number of adventurers across all worlds who have taken on this treacherous path and successfully become Maat's successor is a staggering 6,575 characters!

Maat's Cap adds +7 to each statistic as a reward for the grueling work put into its acquisition. When Maat's Cap was first being designed, in order to make it the ultimate status-enhancing piece of equipment, it was given STR+7 to surpass even the wyvern helm +1.

[ Maat's Cap Acquisition ] *All Worlds
Number Acquired


This section looks at the distribution of jobs and the most popular combinations for main and support jobs.

As has been the case for the past few years, the initial six jobs (warrior, monk, white mage, black mage, red mage, and thief) account for the vast percentage of main job distribution, having increased by 12% since last year to a total of 74%.

≪Main Job Distribution≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Job Distribution.jpg

The incredibly popular mage main and support job combination has continued to hold on to the top two spots.

Because more jobs are regarded as frontline jobs, most backline players tended to select the exact same jobs. Also, when choosing a support job, there are more diverse frontline jobs than backline. If someone thinks, “Hey, I want to help my friends out with restoration and strengthening magic,” the two jobs that come to mind are white mage and bard, but when a character chooses one of the initial jobs, they almost always choose white mage. On the other hand, if someone thinks, “I want to attack with a weapon and deal lots of damage,” a plethora of jobs comes to mind such as warrior, monk, and thief.

However, there are also the dancer and scholar jobs that were added in Wings of the Goddess. While it goes without saying that either could be chosen as a main job, they both happen to be ideal support jobs. In the next census, the rankings may be drastically different, considering the benefits of the magic-oriented scholar with his technical prowess over both black and white magic and the stratagems' ability to turn battles to one's favor.

[ Main/Support Job Ranking ]
Ranking Main Job Support Job Relative Percentage Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 White Mage Black Mage 13.18%
2 Black Mage White Mage 10.18%
3 Red Mage White Mage 5.58% ↑(6)
4 Red Mage Black Mage 5.29% ↓(3)
5 Thief Ninja 4.25% ↑(8)
6 Ninja Warrior 3.93% ↓(4)
7 Monk Warrior 3.71% ↓(5)
8 Paladin Warrior 3.20% ↑(9)
9 Warrior Monk 3.19% ↓(7)
10 Warrior Ninja 2.55%
11 Bard White Mage 2.15% ↑(12)
12 Black Mage Red Mage 2.02% ↓(11)
13 Dancer Ninja 1.76% -
14 Beastmaster White Mage 1.69%
15 Thief Warrior 1.68% ↓(13)
Others 35.64%

The data in the following pie chart was taken from characters who have acquired one or more of the new extra jobs. The reason for the dancer's 13% lead over the scholar is most likely due to the difference in the difficulty in acquiring the job. It's been about six months since these jobs have become available and, since the price of the items necessary in obtaining these jobs have come down in price and several version updates have been introduced, the percentage of players who have acquired both jobs is gradually increasing.

≪New Extra Job Acquisition≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-New Jobs.jpg

Racial Distribution

Last year we wrote: “Hume males still top the rankings this year; however, Tarutaru males are hot on their heels. If the popularity of the diminutive Windurstians continues to rise, we may see a new race in the number one position this time next year.”And, just as we had predicted, this year the Tarutaru males have overtaken the Hume males, successfully wresting away the number one position. The last time Tarutaru males actually sat in the lead was before the 2005 Vana'diel Census. We'll have to keep our eyes on both the Tarutaru males and Hume males to see what the future holds. Also on the Tarutaru front, Tarutaru females are gradually moving up the ranks and one can see that overall, the Windurstian natives are growing in popularity.

≪Racial Distribution≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Race.jpg
[ Race Ranking ]
Ranking Race
Relative Percentage Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Tarutaru (♂) 16.99% ↑(2)
2 Hume (♂) 15.59% ↓(1)
3 Mithra (♀) 15.47%
4 Hume (♀) 13.38%
5 Tarutaru (♀) 12.90% ↑(6)
6 Elvaan (♂) 11.11% ↓(5)
7 Galka (♂) 7.48%
8 Elvaan (♀) 7.08%

Looking at race size distribution each year, one can see that sizes fitting a race or gender's overall image are extremely popular. This year is, of course, no exception. Last year, Elvaan males' popularity moved from medium to large, and this year, the gap between medium and large grew even wider.

[ Race Size Distribution ]
Racial Distribution
Size Relative Percentage
Hume (♂) S 17.78%
M 46.62%
L 35.60%
Hume (♀) S 57.85%
M 29.60%
L 12.55%
Elvaan (♂) S 18.44%
M 37.16%
L 44.40%
Elvaan (♀) S 54.91%
M 24.34%
L 20.75%
Tarutaru (♂) S 64.95%
M 17.94%
L 17.11%
Tarutaru (♀) S 79.22%
M 12.27%
L 8.51%
Mithra (♀) S 58.68%
M 25.85%
L 15.47%
Galka (♂) S 12.74%
M 8.31%
L 78.95%

Face Type Distribution

The number one face type for each race has remained constant with last year's. Let's take a look at the face type distribution for each race, making sure to pay attention to the minute changes from the number two position on down.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-M Hume Face.jpg
As with last year, three quarters of the male Hume face type distribution is occupied by types 1, 2, 3, and 4. There has been no change in the order of popularity, and there seems to be a balance between each of the popular 4 face types and each of the less popular 4 face types.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-F Hume Face.jpg
Just as with last year, face types 1, 2, and 3 occupy almost three quarters of the female Hume chart and the percentage difference between face types 2 and 3 decreased by 2% since last year.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-M Elvaan Face.jpg
Face type 1 and 7 switched places this year and returned to the same position they were 2 years ago. Where could this fierce competition take us next year?

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-F Elvaan Face.jpg
The gap between face types 8 and 5 which had started to disappear last year has widened again this year.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-M Taru Face.jpg
Types 3, 5, and 7 have struck an almost perfect balance in their ongoing rivalry. There has been no change in face type order.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-F Taru Face.jpg
The face types being chosen are relatively balanced in popularity. Last year, the gap between face Type 1 and 4 almost disappeared, but this year they have switched places, the gap considerably widening. Now Tarutaru female face Type 4 is diligently protecting its number one position.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Mithra Face.jpg
Types 5, 6, and 7 occupy about 70% of the chart. Of those, Type 6, by far, boasts the most popularity.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Galka Face.jpg
The Galka face types are still relatively balanced in popularity with Type 6 remaining the most popular choice.


Linkshells have become an essential part of life in Vana'diel. Linkshell members may lend you a hand in your struggles, providing you with necessary items or just helping you level up for missions and quests.

There are also many adventurers who participate in events planned out by linkshell leaders to celebrate occasions such as a friend's birthday or marriage.

Let's take a look at linkshells, those amazing tools that let us share adventures and feelings together.

We compiled data on the number of currently active linkshells. According to the data, there were a total of 44,560 linkshells active at least once a day, which comes out to an average of 1,392 linkshells per World.

As seen in the graph below, just as last year's census and the census before that, the large majority of active linkshells consist of up to 9 members. However, what's characteristically different about this year's statistics is how remarkably this percentage has increased (For reference, the percentage of linkshells with 1-9 members in the previous censuses was 72.70% in 2007 and 71.00% in 2006).

This trend establishes that many of FINAL FANTASY XI's players possess and use multiple linkshells. It could be said that this indicates an evolution in the game's community. A single player may possess multiple linkshells with different purposes, from beginner-friendly conversation linkshells to linkshells for organizing user events, or linkshells for strategizing Assault, Salvage, or Limbus on small or large scales. The proliferation of various linkshells indicates the active lifestyle that many players are enjoying in Vana'diel. Many different kinds of linkshells are created every day. Some are for adventurers who share the same goal, such as completing quests and missions or vanquishing powerful monsters, while other linkshells exist solely for conversation and small talk.

On the other hand, let's take a look at The Linkshell Community, a service made for supporting linkshells. Since the time the service started up until the present, a total of 166,144 community accounts have been registered, and a total of 29,226 communities have been established. In a recent version update, a function was added enabling users to upload images to the message board, as well as an album. The Linkshell Community is continuing to advance and evolve as the site is updated. We encourage players who have not yet given the Linkshell Community a chance to register on the site and enjoy a new level of communication with their linkshell members.

Linkshell Community:

≪Linkshell Usage≫ *1 day
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Linkshells.jpg


This section will cover the most common items put up for auction, as well as the proliferation of relic-level equipment.

First, let's take a look at the data from the four auction houses. We can tell by looking at the results that there are more and more adventurers trying to improve their synthesis skills, and that users abusing auction houses for activities such as RMT are being regularly banned.

As before, about half of San d'Oria's rankings are hides and skins, but it is interesting to note that, of those hides, the dhalmel hide is steadily moving up in rank. Besides being a popular item for improving one's skills, it is also an essential material for the Square of Cilice in the quest “The Gobbiebag Part III.” It should be noted that it is one of the more expensive hides sold by the Tanners' guild. For example, sheepskin can sometimes be bought cheaper at the Tanners' guild than at the auction house, but dhalmel hide is almost always cheaper at the auction house. The reason it is bought so much from the auction house is likely because it is difficult to locally procure at places such as Buburimu Peninsula, it is just too much trouble to procure, or because it is required for a certain product's synthesis recipe. Elm log moved up from last year's number 9 position to number 4 this year. This is most likely due to the Special Task Force's activities against users selling items for RMT and, as a result, an increase in the number of players making “shihei” themselves.

[ Goods Most Placed On Auction ]
[ San d'Oria ]
Ranking Item Name Successful Bids Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Moat Carp 93.33%
2 Tiger Hide 91.49% ↑(3)
3 Ram Skin 87.68% ↓(2)
4 Elm Log 85.17% ↑(9)
5 Zinc Ore 91.81% ↓(4)
6 Dhalmel Hide 86.13% ↑(7)
7 Sheepskin 86.42% ↓(6)
8 Insect Ball 91.64% ↑(Unavailable)
9 Ebony Log 90.17% ↑(Unavailable)
10 Win. Tea Leaves 88.59% ↑(Unavailable)

The four top-ranked items for the Bastok auction house have remained unchanged for the last 3 years. Among the newly ranked items this year, number 6 “chunk of mythril ore” and number 8 “pot of honey” both caught our attention. Mythril ore is quite valuable in goldsmithing synthesis when combined with gold dust. Synthesis for goldsmithing is relatively costly, but one can use just “copper ingot” and “brass ingot” as materials to raise one's synthesis skill to 50 and, by selling the results of the synthesis to different shops, a player can raise one's skill at a relatively low cost. In other words, players are most likely synthesizing “mythril ingot” using “chunk of mythril ore” and then “pinch of gold dust” to raise their skill. Also, due to the influence of items that can be synthesized starting out with a mythril ingot, the demand for mythril ingots has been increasing recently. Pot of honey's rank on the list could be considered an obvious outcome when considering it would be inevitable for players searching for beehive chips to find them, and also because there is some demand in Bastok for pots of honey as a material in synthesis for the item “flask of echo drops.”

[ Bastok ]
Ranking Item Name Successful Bids Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Zinc Ore 95.04%
2 Iron Ore 90.78%
3 Quadav Backplate 93.42%
4 Beehive Chip 75.73%
5 Goblin Mask 95.37% ↑(6)
6 Mythril Ore 94.66% ↑(Unavailable)
7 Rusty Leggings 81.68% ↓(5)
8 Honey 88.03% ↑(Unavailable)
9 Silver Ore 88.67% ↑(Unavailable)
10 Rusty Subligar 86.70% ↓(7)

Just like the other nations, the items “pot of honey” and “beetle shell” have climbed into the rankings, and “bone chip” which was ranked number 6 last year, has jumped up in rank to number 3. These are all essential items for improving one's synthesis skills, and it could be said that their low cost is the primary reason for their popularity. Beetle shells are used to synthesize ”Ponze of carapace powder” and bone chips are used to synthesize different kinds of arrowheads, but “pot of honey” is different in that not only is it used by au laits, but also used to some extent in “coeurl subs” and different kinds of cookies.

[ Windurst ]
Ranking Item Name Successful Bids Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Giant Femur 90.19%
2 Yagudo Necklace 85.98%
3 Bone Chip 91.67% ↑(6)
4 Tarutaru Rice 82.52%
5 Moat Carp 90.49% ↓(3)
6 Silk Thread 85.92% ↓(5)
7 Scorpion Claw 91.72%
8 Honey 90.46% ↑(Unavailable)
9 Beetle Shell 72.27% ↑(Unavailable)
10 Ram Horn 81.41% ↓(8)

Next, let's take a look at the rankings at Jeuno's auction house.

As is shown every year, when compared to the three starting nations, the items sold in Jeuno are generally end products rather than materials or ingredients. The reason for the meat mithkabob's unusual rank jump is partially due to the new jobs added in the latest expansion, “Wings of the Goddess.”Adventurers of various different jobs engaged in leveling up enjoy the food effects provided by meat mithkabobs to lower-level characters. Also, because “Jack-o'-Lantern” is also a viable choice depending on the situation and on one's tastes, it may have indirectly helped raise meat mithkabob's ranking. The furnishing “Bahut” exploded into the number 7 position with its quickly rising popularity. It goes without saying that its functionality is one reason for this, but considering that it can be created at a low cost with relatively low skills, its high position shouldn't come as a surprise. “Pot of silent oil” has seriously dropped in rank, but it is thought that the reason for this is the introduction of “sanjaku-tenugui.” It hasn't risen as much as Bahut, but it is battling its way up the rankings and is currently at number 16.

[ Jeuno ]
Ranking Item Name Successful Bids Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Yagudo Drink 92.31%
2 Spider Web 96.36% ↑(3)
3 Meat Mithkabob 91.12% ↑(8)
4 Squid Sushi 88.15% ↑(7)
5 Sole Sushi 86.33% ↓(4)
6 Silent Oil 87.13% ↓(2)
7 Bahut 79.28% ↑(Unavailable)
8 Imp. Gold Piece 90.99% ↑(Unavailable)
9 Toolbag (Shihei) 85.38%
10 Gigant Squid 91.56% ↓(5)

Lastly, we'll take a look at relic-level equipment, which can be acquired through each Dynamis area. As with last year's census, we'll be focusing on the number of fourth stage and completed relic items that exist in all Worlds. Once again, the most popular relic is the Aegis, boasting a total of 366 shields created. Mandau, Kikoku, and Gjallarhorn continue to be very popular, with over 200 of each created. Of the relics, the scythe Apocalypse has drastically and suddenly risen in popularity. While the weapon's performance clearly makes it desirable, its weapon skill “Catastrophe” may be the reason for its incredible popularity. A total of 141 items have been created.

This year's totals of 558 for fourth stage items and 1869 for completed relic items have far exceeded the previous year's totals of 353 and 778. The total number of final stage relics across all Worlds is rapidly approaching 2000 items.

[ Relic Acquisition (4th stage and final stage) ] *All Worlds
Equipment Type Stage Relic Name Number Acquired
Hand-to-Hand Fourth Stage Caestus 27
Final Stage Spharai 125
Dagger Fourth Stage Batardeau 59
Final Stage Mandau 238
Sword Fourth Stage Caliburn 51
Final Stage Excalibur 147
Great Sword Fourth Stage Valhalla 23
Final Stage Ragnarok 45
Axe Fourth Stage Ogre Killer 17
Final Stage Guttler 16
Great Axe Fourth Stage Abaddon Killer 19
Final Stage Bravura 46
Scythe Fourth Stage Bec de Faucon 65
Final Stage Apocalypse 141
Polearm Fourth Stage Gae Assail 17
Final Stage Gungnir 28
Katana Fourth Stage Yoshimitsu 22
Final Stage Kikoku 219
Great Katana Fourth Stage Totsukanotsurugi 71
Final Stage Amanomurakumo 93
Club Fourth Stage Gullintani 16
Final Stage Mjollnir 29
Staff Fourth Stage Thyrus 4
Final Stage Claustrum 16
Bow Fourth Stage Futatokoroto 23
Final Stage Yoichinoyumi 59
Gun Fourth Stage Ferdinand 9
Final Stage Annihilator 96
Instrument Fourth Stage Millennium Horn 44
Final Stage Gjallarhorn 205
Shield Fourth Stage Ancile 91
Final Stage Aegis 366
Total Fourth Stage 558
Final Stage 1869

Synthesis Skills

In this next section, we will be taking a look at this year's data regarding synthesis skills. The last time we looked into synthesis skills was during the 2005 census. How much could synthesis skills have possibly changed in the past three years? We compiled statistics about major synthesis skills and how many characters have skill ranks of craftsman or above. Even if you're just starting out on a synthesis skill, you can use this data as a resource for finding out how many people are involved in the same synthesis skill as yourself. We have not included characters whose skills have not improved at all.

≪Comparison of Skill Rank Distribution≫ (*All Worlds)
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Skill Levels.jpg
≪Percentage of Characters Craftsman or above≫ (*All Worlds)
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Skill Levels (Pie).jpg

By assuming an overall view of the statistics, we can see that skill ranks for most synthesis skills have risen. This is easiest to see when looking at the “Comparison of Skill Rank Distribution” bar graphs, especially by noting the increase in characters above journeyman and craftsman. Among those skills, the three most popular are cooking, alchemy, and woodworking. The reason for their popularity is most likely due to the relative ease in raising them.

≪Skill Rank Distribution≫ (*All Worlds)
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Fishing Skill.jpg

The most notable characteristic about fishing is that roughly 50% of practitioners are amateurs. This is most likely due to the fact that only a fishing rod and bait are necessary to fish, and that many of the fishermen included in the statistics may have only fished once. Because fishing is an independent skill, even if another synthesis skill has reached 100, one will be able to raise fishing to 100. Despite that, however, the number of characters craftsman rank or above has not increased since the previous census, possibly due to the difficulty in raising the skill at higher ranks.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Woodworking Skill.jpg

Woodworking is peculiar for having a high percentage of journeymen, indicating that many characters use it as a sub-skill. Unlike fishing, the percentage of craftsmen is gradually increasing. Considering that the percentage of veterans has increased to seven times its previous percentage, it could be said that woodworking is one of the easier skills to raise. There are many woodworking recipes that use lumber and, when making lumber from logs, if the player succeeds in a high quality synthesis, that player can receive a lot of lumber from a single log. Whether or not a player receives extra lumber may be the key to raising one's woodworking skill.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Smithing Skill.jpg

After goldsmithing, smithing has the lowest percentage of characters ranked craftsman or above, indicating that it is a very difficult skill to raise. However, for how difficult it is to raise a smithing synthesis skill, high quality items produced through smithing are sold at very high prices. If you are finding it difficult to raise your skill, keep your hand at it and you may find yourself getting rich quick!

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Goldsmithing Skill.jpg

Although the number of characters ranked craftsman or above for goldsmithing has increased since the last census, the number still remains the lowest in comparison to the other synthesis skills, and goldsmithing is still considered the most difficult skill to raise. Smithing and goldsmithing are difficult skills to raise because of the high number of recipes that require expensive materials. And, unlike woodworking, when refining ingots (the main ingredient in smithing and goldsmithing recipes), the number of items produced will not change, regardless of whether the synthesis is high quality or not. This could be said about any synthesis skill, but rather than synthesizing with costly items, it is important to check item costs at auction houses and carefully choose cheaper recipes to save gil.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Clothcraft Skill.jpg

Apprentices and journeymen make up about 50% of weavers. Because leathercrafting and bonecrafting have many recipes that need weaving as a sub-skill, it could be said that weaving is a necessary skill for characters involved in building armor. On the other hand, recipes at adept rank are very expensive, and it is difficult to raise one's skill to veteran. Once one's skill goes above 90, many recipes require smithing and leathercrafting as sub-skills, and one must make various investments simply to raise one's skill.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Leathercraft Skill.jpg

Like woodworking, there is a high percentage of journeymen, and it seems that many characters are using leathercrafting as a sub-skill. However, if you look only at the percentage of veterans, you'll note that leathercrafting has the second highest percentage of veterans among all synthesis skills and is one of the easiest skills to raise. Once a character becomes an adept, there are many recipes that require weaving or bonecrafting as sub-skills. Leathercrafters can entirely avoid recipes requiring smithing as a sub-skill for raising their skills. Also, there are many high-level recipes with materials that are relatively easy to acquire, and it is quite easy to reach the 100 skill cap when compared to other skills.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Bonecraft Skill.jpg

Because there are many recipes after initiate that require leathercrafting as a sub-skill, it is necessary to also raise leathercrafting skills in order to raise one's bonecrafting skills. Like leathercrafting, materials for bonecrafting recipes are easy to acquire, and few recipes require a sub-skill once one has become a veteran. However, bonecrafting has the third lowest percentage of characters craftsman rank and above, and it is quite difficult to raise one's skills from craftsman to adept.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Alchemy Skill.jpg

Alchemy has the second highest percentage of characters craftsman rank and up. Once players have raised their skills to journeyman rank, they can make items that are useful within burning circles such as hi-potions, or items used for travelling through monster-infested areas such as prism powder and silent oil. Also, one reason for alchemy’s appeal is that successful high quality synthesis will yield players multiple items. With alchemy, it is possible to apply special effects to weapons or armor or to raise one’s skills through recipes that don’t require sub-skills.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Cooking Skill.jpg

Cooking has the highest percentage of characters craftsman rank and higher due to food's position as a necessary item on the battlefield. There are also many characters who continue with another skill as their main skill, while keeping cooking as a sub-skill after raising it to journeyman rank. There are many cooking recipes that use eight ingredients for a single synthesis, but because there are so many inexpensive recipes, cooking skills can be easily and steadily raised. Also, because it does not need any sub-skills, one can become a veteran through practicing cooking alone.

Chocobo Raising

We looked into the different color chocobos Vana'diel's adventurers have been raising, and came up with the following data.

At the moment, yellow chocobos are annihilating the competition, followed by black chocobos, then blue chocobos, red chocobos, and lastly by green chocobos. When a chocobo first hatches from an egg, most people note how common yellow chocobos are--an observation clearly supported by the data here.

As you are undoubtedly aware, you can acquire a chocobo egg as a reward for a quest or battlefield, as a purchase from Dabih's Wares in Ru'Lude Gardens, or another adventurer could transfer his or her chococard to you. There is no possible way of knowing what color your chocobo will be before it has hatched, but the data from our research indicates each color's likelihood.

And nowadays, with methods of chocobo rearing being expanded upon and the proliferation of chococards for colored chocobos on the increase, chocobo color percentages may be very different in next year's census.

The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Chocobo.jpg

Home Points

This year, we once again investigated all characters' home points and came up with some interesting results.

Just as was demonstrated last year, home points in the three starting nations of San d'Oria, Bastok, and Windurst are the most distinctive, with Aht Urhgan's Whitegate at number 3 and Lower Jeuno having ranked down out of the top 10.

Several explanations are provided when considering the background behind these locations, such as the popularization of transportation methods between the three starting nations and the Empire of Aht Urhgan, and between Jeuno and the Empire of Aht Urhgan. Other factors are the convenience of Outpost Teleportation and passage to the world of the past (added in Wings of the Goddess) possible from any of the areas in the three nations. It's intriguing to think of the influence that the recently introduced black magic “Retrace,” the recently introduced white magics “Recall-Jugner,” “Recall-Pashh,” and “Recall-Meriph,” and the various elements to be added in the future will have on these rankings.

[ Home Point Area Ranking ]
Ranking Area Name Change from 2007 Census
( ) denotes 2007 ranking
1 Windurst Woods ↑(4)
2 Bastok Market ↑(2)
3 Aht Urhgan Whitegate ↓(1)
4 Southern San d'Oria ↓(2)
5 Northern San d'Oria ↑(6)
6 Bastok Mines ↓(5)
7 Port San d'Oria
8 Port Bastok ↑(Unavailable)
9 Windurst Waters
10 Port Windurst

Expansion Data

With the release of the Wings of the Goddess expansion, the world of Vana'diel has expanded further than ever before. The following section of the census focuses on mission progression from each expansion, with data only taken from characters who have accepted mission offers.

Let's start out with the Rise of the Zilart missions. Just like last year, many characters have received offers for the last missions after Ark Angels, coming to a total of around 80% of players. Another interesting fact to note is that the percentage of characters who have accepted an offer for “The Last Verse” has increased by about 5% since last year. This is an honor that can only be enjoyed by those who have beaten all of the missions from both Rise of the Zilart and Chains of Promathia, as well as various quests. The road to beating “The Last Verse” is certainly not an easy one. However, the percentage increase may also be due to Chains of Promathia missions being made easier, and experience points no longer being lost for characters KO'd on the battlefield.

[ Rise of the Zilart Mission Progression ]
Mission Title Character Relative Percentage
Welcome t'Norg 1.33%
Kazham's Chieftainness 3.66%
The Temple of Uggalepih 8.82%
Headstone Pilgrimage 4.32%
Through the Quicksand Caves 1.41%
The Chamber of Oracles 0.01%
Return to Delkfutt's Tower 0.80%
Ro'Maeve 0.12%
The Temple of Desolation 0.07%
The Hall of the Gods 0.01%
The Mithra and the Crystal 1.17%
The Gate of the Gods 0.02%
Ark Angels 23.38%
The Sealed Shrine 11.68%
The Celestial Nexus 7.86%
Awakening 19.79%
The Last Verse 15.55%

Next, we have the mission progress data for Chains of Promathia. By looking at this data, we can gather that mission progress is moving along reasonably well, just like Rise of the Zilart. Because the number of characters who have accepted mission offers for “Emptiness Bleeds” has only increased by 3% since last year, one might think that mission progress is moving slightly slower than Rise of the Zilart--but actually, the number of users who have accepted Chains of Promathia missions outnumber Rise of the Zilart users by 1.5 times. This change is actually very small.

Because of the large number of areas with level restrictions, and the elaborate care required to obtain items used to lower the overall difficulty, it's considered difficult to find party members for this particular expansion pack. However, looking at the current situation, the difficulty level has been lowered and now highly useful battlefield items can be easily found at auction houses.

Since players who have already beaten a mission's battlefield can gain additional experience points by challenging it again, this has encouraged players to cooperate with each other, making it easier for players to take on the challenges of Chains of Promathia.

[ Chains of Promathia Mission Progression ]
Mission Title Character Relative Percentage
Ancient Flames Beckon 47.64%
The Isle of Forgotten Saints 6.64%
A Transient Dream 5.19%
The Cradles of Children Lost 6.47%
The Return Home 5.35%
Echoes of Time 0.28%
In the Light of the Crystal 1.09%
Emptiness Bleeds 27.34%

Next, we come to Treasures of Aht Urhgan, which had its final mission added on August 28, 2007. When last year's census was released, the most recent mission was Sentinels' Honor, and the percentage of characters that had beaten Sentinels' Honor came to 11%. According to this year's data, the total percentage of characters to have beaten the final mission Eternal Mercenary has already exceeded 15%. By looking at the percentages for each mission, we can see that missions with battlefields are somewhat higher than others.

In addition, higher percentages can be seen at missions that end in battles. Even a number like 1% equates into thousands of adventurers, so if you find that you are stuck on one of the earlier missions, chances are, many more are in the same predicament. Try shouting in Jeuno or Whitegate, and chances are you will easily find companions to come to your aid.

[ Treasures of Aht Urhgan Mission Progression ]
Mission Title Character Relative Percentage
Immortal Sentries 4.78%
President Salaheem 22.67%%
Knight of Gold 7.19%
Confessions of Royalty 0.98%
Easterly Winds 0.68%
Westerly Winds 1.92%
A Mercenary Life 3.19%
Undersea Scouting 3.41%
Astral Waves 0.60%
Imperial Schemes 0.82%
Royal Puppeteer 5.38%
Lost Kingdom 3.20%
The Dolphin Crest 0.20%
The Black Coffin 4.67%
Ghosts of the Past 0.13%
Guests of the Empire 0.28%
Passing Glory 0.88%
Sweets for the Soul 1.02%
Teahouse Tumult 3.53%
Finders Keepers 0.05%
Shield of Diplomacy 3.83%
Social Graces 0.06%
Foiled Ambition 0.14%
Playing the Part 0.83%
Seal of the Serpent 0.31%
Misplaced Nobility 1.59%
Bastion of Knowledge 0.06%
Puppet in Peril 2.69%
Prevalence of Pirates 0.75%
Shades of Vengeance 0.92%
In the Blood 0.03%
Sentinels' Honor 0.46%
Testing the Waters 2.04%
Legacy of the Lost 0.99%
Gaze of the Saboteur 0.10%
Path of Blood 0.02%
Stirrings of War 0.37%
Allied Rumblings 0.05%
Unraveling Reason 0.16%
Light of Judgment 0.15%
Path of Darkness 1.35%
Fangs of the Lion 0.01%
Nashmeira's Plea 1.78%
Ragnarok 0.05%
Imperial Coronation 0.13%
The Empress Crowned 0.14%
Eternal Mercenary 15.41%

Now we continue on to Assault's mercenary rankings.

Because players can be promoted up to First Lieutenant by raising their mercenary assessment and passing rank evaluations, it beats Private First Class by a hair's length with 9.69%. Because players who wish to become captains need to complete all Treasures of Aht Urhgan mission and all Assaults in each area, the percentage is slightly lower.

[ Mercenary Ranking ]
Mission Title Character Relative Percentage
Private Second Class 49.06%
Private First Class 9.62%
Superior Private 7.07%
Lance Corporal 4.44%
Corporal 3.14%
Sergeant 3.03%
Sergeant Major 2.77%
Chief Sergeant 2.42%
Second Lieutenant 4.07%
First Lieutenant 9.69%
Captain 4.69%

And finally, we introduce data from the Wings of the Goddess expansion.

The following information may drastically change a year from now according to future version updates, but we present the results of our research into allegiance distribution in Campaign and Campaign medal acquisition.

Let's take a look at allegiance distribution first.

Since all players in the world of the past are bound to take part in the Allied Forces of Altana, and there is no identification to the same allied nation in the world of the present, players can freely pledge allegiance to any nation in the past as they please.

As a result, the percentage for each of the three nations is almost equal, with a slightly smaller percentage of players allied to the Republican Army of Bastok.

≪Campaign Allegiance Distribution≫ (*All Worlds)
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Campaign.jpg

Let's shift our attention to Campaign medal acquisition.

The best part about Campaign lies in the ability players have to participate as their favorite job for as long as they want. As a result, players are able to acquire medals by laboriously participating in Campaign for even short periods of time.

There are various merits in acquiring such medals, but most likely the lure of Campaign ops available through higher rank medals, and the obtaining of items that can be used in trade for Allied Notes, spurs so many players forward to get better and better medals.

[ Campaign Medal Acquisition ] (*All Worlds)
Medals Character Distribution
Bronze Ribbon of Service 28.41%
Brass Ribbon of Service 11.62%
Allied Ribbon of Bravery 8.22%
Allied Ribbon of Glory 6.73%
Bronze Star 5.69%
Sterling Star 4.75%
Mythril Star 4.01%
Golden Star 3.58%
Copper Emblem of Service 3.73%
Iron Emblem of Service 3.36%
Emblem of the Steel Knight 3.48%
Emblem of the Holy Knight 16.42%

Your Voice

One of the most important elements of our community is the ability to listen to players' needs and desires. For the first time in a census, we introduce a section where we take a look at the subjects brought up in GM calls and with the Special Task Force.

【GM calls】

The GM Call is a simple and immediate method for voicing your concerns at any time.

Let's take a look at how many GM calls are made at each time of the day.

The following data was taken from all GM calls made for a whole week in the middle of April 2008. The red areas indicate when the most GM calls were being made, the yellow areas indicate relatively busy times, and the green areas indicate when the least GM calls were being made. It seems that the data is perfectly lined up with the times most users for each region are logged in, but there tend to be more yellow areas on the weekends. Also, immediately after version updates, it is common for the majority of the areas to turn yellow and on some occasions, even half of the day to turn red.

≪GM Calls by Region≫*Times are printed in the local time for each region.
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-GM Calls.jpg

Next, let's take a look at the topics that are being brought up in GM calls. The pie chart below is based off of the same data as the GM Calls by Region graph. The topic most brought up in GM calls is “Actions disrupting game balance” and accounts for around 30% of GM calls. The most common complaint is regarding characters suspected to be using external third-party programs and, along with “Bug reports,” has been an important source of information for the Special Task Force and FINAL FANTASY XI development team.

The second most common topic is “Inappropriate behavior.”

We have unfortunately received many reports regarding problems that should have been sorted out through conversation, growing worse and worse until a character is harming another through abuse of the game system. Through these reports and conversations, we have managed to reduce the problem and are looking into changing the game system and GM Policy in order to solve these problems in an easier manner.

The next most common topic is “Opinions/Requests.”

Subjects of all different kinds from support to the game system are being brought up in GM calls all the time. In addition to e-mails provided to us by FINAL FANTASY XI users, this is one of the main ways version updates and the GM Policy are changed.

≪GM Call Topics≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-GM Topics.jpg

*For details regarding the pie chart, please click here.

【The Special Task Force】

Now let's take a look at the statistics regarding the Special Task Force.

Since its founding in September 2006, the Special Task Force has banned around 7,000 violators of the user agreement a month, and frozen around 13,330,000,000 gil. The most important element to our activities has been the information provided by FINAL FANTASY XI users.

Let's take a look at the data regarding the mail form since its establishment in June 2007 up until March 2008, as well as the content of these reports.

A total of 66,882 e-mails have been received by the Special Task Force as of now.

The most common subject of these reports has been the use of cheats to automatically repeat particular actions.

The majority of these characters automatically engaged in particular actions have been illegally fishing on the coastline or waterside. Continuing on, the next most common reports are regarding characters known as hunters (*), the use of illegal tools/software, and the use of synthesis or auction houses for RMT. At one time, all of these violators of the user agreement ran amuck and were very common, but currently, the range of their activities has grown considerably smaller and they are heading towards extinction.

*Hunters: Characters who kill Notorious Monsters, clear quests, and obtain items over and over again with the sole purpose of gathering gil, which is then handed off to RMT groups.

≪Topics in e-mails to STF≫
The 8th Vanadiel Census (05-16-2008)-Email Topics.jpg

As demonstrated, the voices of FINAL FANTASY XI players allow us to gauge the community's health and are our most valuable source of information for improving the game.

Because of information we've received from players and posts on community sites, we learned of the seriousness of unauthorized access and the threat it has been carrying all over the internet, as well as the importance of this problem to FINAL FANTASY XI players. As a result of our investigations into this problem, we updated our policy in April 2008, expanded the range of our aid, and greatly shortened the length of time from a request for aid until the completion of that aid.

In the background of many of our plans and policies, we have had the voices of the players in mind. They have been absolutely indispensable to all of us in the development and management teams.

*For details on unauthorized access, please click here.

In Closing

So, how did you enjoy the 8th Vana'diel Census?

Way back in 2002, when we started the first Vana'diel Census, the FINAL FANTASY XI community was still much like a newborn child. Over the years, however, with countless version updates and several expansion packs, our world has grown to a thriving 500,000 accounts across multiple platforms and many countries. We hope that you've enjoyed this year's census as much as we did.

In the past year, there have been so many exciting events, such as Fan Festival 2007 in North America, Square Enix Party 2007 and Osaka Altana Festival in Japan, and the Games Convention in Germany. Attendants at any of these events could meet other FINAL FANTASY XI enthusiasts to share their passion for the game. The opinions and requests shared in e-mails, phone calls, and posted on community sites have strongly motivated the development and management teams to continue improving the Vana'diel experience. Be sure your voice is heard! We are working hard for you.

The six long years that you've lived in Vana'diel are comparable to the time it takes a newborn to grow up and enter elementary school. And, likewise, our community continues to change and mature as time goes on. I wonder just how our community will evolve in the future.

I look forward to seeing all of you in Vana'diel.

May 16, 2008 Sage Sundi Global Online Producer

The 8th Vana'diel Census (05-16-2008).jpg
The 8th Vana'diel Census (05/16/2008)
[[{{SUBST:The 8th Vana'diel Census (05/16/2008)}}|   ]]

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