Square Enix announced that the Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn beta will start on February 25th, a week later than initially scheduled. People that have applied for beta testing will be able to participate in the so called “Phase 1” of their previously revealed roadmap.
It seems that FF XIV: A Realm Reborn will have gameplay mechanics similar to those of Guild Wars 2. A new FATE (Full Active Time Events) system will let players participate in random open area events, where everyone can easily jump in and contribute without being in a party. During Phase 1, playable areas will be limited to areas around Gridania, including one instanced dungeon. FF XIV: A Realm Reborn is planned for release later this year for both PC and PS3.