The Fender Stratocaster continues to amaze us – perhaps the finest electric guitar canvas ever, judging by the way designers keep finding new ways to make it look… well, stunning. The new limited edition Final Fantasy XIV Strat is the latest example and we want one.
The collaboration between Fender and the massively popular RPG videogame series' creators Square Enix celebrates the big F's 7th anniversary.
The made-in-Japan model is available for preorder in Japan from May 25 and will ship in the Autumn. Preorders for the Americas, Europe and Australia will start in late 2021 for shipping in early 2022. So we all have plenty of time to save up the $3,499.99 / £3,199 / €3,499 / $6,499 AUD / ¥396,000 JPY for it.
And it's going to be in the game too.
The Stratocaster is black with translucent body sections of blue and purple “crystals” to mirror the Crystals of Darkness and Light of the game.
It features maple neck with a slim 'Modern C' shape and a 9.5” radius rosewood fingerboard with narrow tall frets. The rosewood used here looks notably dark too.
"Crystalline, warm and touch-sensitive tones" are on tap via the trio of V-Mod single-coil Strat pickups but with a “limit break” (it's a special ability players can use in FFXIV) switch; a push-push tone pot that puts the bridge and middle pickups in series for added beef.
The FFXIV meteor symbol is inlaid into the 12th fret and there's a numbered neck plate decorated with the Final Fantasy XIV logo.
A special badge featuring both Fender and FFXIV logos features on the front of the included vintage-style hardshell case. The guitar also comes with a special book containing a numbered certificate and an exclusive FFXIV illustration card made by Square Enix.
The Final Fantasy XIV Strat will also be added in the game from 25 May as part of the "Performance System” in FFXIV Patch 5.55.
Players will be able to enjoy a wide range of sounds that vary from clean tones to unique distorted tones of the electric guitar in the game and perform with special playing methods, such as pick sliding and muting.
More details will reportedly be made available on the patch 5.5 website here but right now we know the "Aetherolectric guitar" will also be available at the Gold Saucer playground allowing fans to enjoy the guitar as a home furnishing in the game.
"Furthermore, the guitar is equipped with an in-game job called Bard," says Fender, "which allows players to use special skills." We're guessing that will make sense to players of the game but you can find out more regarding the in-game appearance in the video below.
Check out the video introduction of the Strat at the recent Final Fantasy XIV Fast Festival 2021 below.
And later it made its debut live performance on the event's live stage in the hands of Masayoshi Soken, Final Fantasy composer and guitarist with Japanese Final Fantasy rock covers band The Primals…