From Gamer Escape's FFXIV Wiki, the free Final Fantasy XIV encyclopedia
Before the fall of Ala Mhigo
to the Garlean Empire
, few city-states maintained organized militaries, opting instead to hire the services of mercenaries and hedge knights to champion their causes. When city guard units were restructured into legitimate standing armies which could be quickly called upon and mobilized if he need arose, it left a majority of the realm's hireswords with nowhere to pledge their fealty, and with their livelihood ripped out from under them, many of these men and women resorted to acts of villainy to survive. For fear of the situation worsening and the land falling into chaos, several respected leaders from around Eorzea gathered together and formed a network of guilds to provide these lost souls with the opportunity to redeem themselves by aiding others.
Through the foresight and resolve of these leaders a new industry was born, and the life of the adventurer re-emerged into Eorzea.
- ↑ Final Fantasy XIV Official Website (Offline)