Square EA has begun emailing randomly selected members of its North American PlayOnline service with applications for the first local Final Fantasy XI beta. The beta is planned for the PS2 version of the game and will reportedly be based on servers in Japan. All applications have already been sent, so only those lucky enough to have received one will be able to participate in the closed beta testing stages.
Planned for release world-wide since its announcement three years ago, Final Fantasy XI still has yet to receive a solid release date for North America and Europe. It is expected that after the initial testing stages, Square will have a better idea of how long it will take to localize a game of this magnitude. RPGamer will keep you posted should a public beta be announced.