Final Fantasy 14 players are ordering pizza, not for themselves, but for their characters. And one catgirl is more than happy to cook and deliver them.
FF14 is an MMO that lets you do a lot of things. You can be a warrior or a spellcaster. You can fish and you can make armor. You can also bake pizza for yourself with the Culinarian job. Or you can send a message to a player and have it delivered to you wherever you are in the big world of Eorzea.
"I got real bored on FF14 so I ordered a pizza off party finder," Saige, a hungry FF14 player, announced on Twitter (opens in new tab). She didn't order pizza with a chat command that brought her to a website like Everquest had many years ago (opens in new tab). No, she sent a message to a one-woman pizza shop, told her what she wanted, where to deliver it, and waited.
"I saw her character sprinting over to where I was, it was actually pretty funny until I realized she came cross-world for it so I gave her a decent tip for it. A++ service," Saige told me.
Saige's tweet, which has blown up with about 6,900 retweets, has, unsurprisingly, prompted dozens of people to order some pizza (opens in new tab) from this dutiful catgirl. I tracked her down and, despite telling her who I was and why I was chatting with her, still asked me for my order up front.
"Sometimes it gets real busy, sometimes it's really empty, the last few orders I got two or three at the same time with a large gap in between," Catharsis, the pizza catgirl, told me.
Catharsis puts the advertisement on the game's Party Finder tool, which was originally designed for you to find people to group up with, and waits for people to message her. Catharsis is on one of the new Oceania servers (opens in new tab) (Sephirot), but is willing to deliver cross-world (which requires an extra loading screen).
She has a website (opens in new tab), which offers both a menu and a 'meet the team' option. That team is solely comprised of Catharsis, who provides some history to her pizza enthusiasm in her bio. She describes herself as an "expert(ish) delivery person and chef" who discovered she could make pizza after leveling up her Culinarian job.
At the bottom of the page, she had this bit of wisdom: "Life is like a pizza. It can be a shitty microwavable pizza that makes you sad, or a quality oven cooked pizza made by someone with a mustache." I can't really disagree.
Catharsis said she decided to start bringing the pizza to the people because it reminds her of Spider-Man 2—the 2004 one.
"Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to be Spider-Man. And in Spider-Man 2, he delivered pizzas (opens in new tab)," she said.
A standard pizza, which comes with tomatoes, mozzarella, and salt crystals from Ala Mhigo, will cost you 10,000 gil. Garlic bread (Flatbread (opens in new tab)) is 5,000 gil. Bubble tea (Ishgardian Tea (opens in new tab)) is also 5,000 gil. The kid's meal combo, with drink and a mystery toy, will run you 20,000 gil.
Most people order the pizza, Catharsis said, but the allure of the kid's meal toy makes it a close second. "People like the novelty of having a pseudo-Happy Meal," she said. "People want to relive a part of their childhood of getting a Happy Meal from McDonalds, and I am bringing them a small slice of nostalgia."
"Sometimes someone pays it forward for the next customer, sometimes people anonymously buy kids meals for each other as if it were a pizza prank," she said.
Catharsis says she likes the role-playing part of the job, and expects it to be even more fun for both sides when the Oceania servers get access to housing. "I think people would like the appeal of having a pizza delivered to their home instead of somewhere in Limsa Lominsa," she said. She plans to open a small cafe when that time comes too.
It's not about profit for Catharsis; it's simply about meeting people and giving them pizza—even if it's on top of Kugane Tower (which takes a series of careful jumps to climb).
"You can go to the market board (the game's auction house) and buy pizzas for cheaper, but it wouldn't be the same," she said. "Plus the market board won't have kid's meals."