It seems
like almost forever ago that Final
Fantasy
XI
graced us with its presence.
To
some it
was an unsightly
beast, and while it has
evolved quite rapidly over the last few years, many have seen
style="">that evolution as
a case of lang="RU">too little, too
late and likely won't be giving Square
Enix
another try style="">when the
next MMO coming from the RPG powerhouse,
Final Fantasy XIV
style="">, launches. style="">

 

Fortunately,
Square
Enix
has proven that it can
listen to the subscribers, so
let's take a look at the flaws of the previous game and what needs to
be
addressed lang="RU">to intrigue
those of us who are too jaded to give it an honest try.

href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/83204"> style="border: 0px solid ; width: 500px; height: 224px;" alt=""
src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/83204">


Square Enix isn't about to miss out on the Drizzt Do'urden fan
club this time around.

style="">



1. Final
Fantasy XIV
must be more
accessible than XI to new players.



If there's one thing a lot of players hate it's the in-game
tutorials
that
every MMOG forces you to endure
with your initial character. Or perhaps the
game turns on all
sorts of newbie tips and tricks to help guide you through the interface
or
teach you the basics of combat.

On
the other end of
the spectrum, lang="RU">Final Fantasy
XI lang="RU">throws you in the middle
of a town with nothing but
a map. Once you bumble outside of town,
you have to slaughter rabbits
in
your starting rags
with
zero weapon skills, and these
bunnies
will give you a run for your
money for a while! Soloing
doesn't get easier for most classes, and it wasn't until recently that
a patch
made lang="RU">soloing a lang="RU"> viable
option
for more than a
few specific jobs and level ranges. On top of that, a new player has no
access
to travel. Chocobos aren't an option, the Airship travel isn't even
accessible
until well into the game, and as a
result you're stuck moving with your own two legs everywhere you want
to go for
the first
one lang="RU">hundred
or so
in-game hours. That's
not an exaggeration...which brings me to the
next major fault that needs to change



FFXIV's Response - Unknown at this
time, but it's almost a given that the game will be much more simple to
pick up
and play at first than the previous MMORPG.



2. The new game must move much faster in towns as well as in combat. Time is valuable!



Everything in this game feels slow and deliberate style="">, f lang="RU">rom
the half second it
takes to
unsheath

a
weapon, to the seemingly forever cast times of ancient magic, to the
constant
cut-scenes of boarding an Airship or renting a Chocobo from the
stable... this
game just takes time. Too much of it, apparently. Lots of people are
put off by
the slow feel of combat and movement and
style="">, now
that

World of Warcraft has captured the hearts,
minds, and perhaps souls of
so many, a slow game just can't compete anymore. While some may like
the epic
feel of combat and the lack of having to press 60 buttons a minute to
achieve
maximum damage, others will pass out from boredom. As we all know,
bored
players are not subscribing players for long. 



FFXIV'S Response - Fortunately, the
trailers and info we've seen have placed FFXIV at about 88 miles per
hour
compared to it's predecessor. The new Action Gauge and Effect Gauge
will give people a
better
idea of how long each attack takes and give better understanding and
interaction to the flow of combat.  Teleport nodes are being
added both in the field and in towns to reduce the pain of necessary
traveling.


3. The game must achieve a solid balance
within a reasonable amount of time.



One of the legendary gripes of both long term and short term
players is the
lack of balance between the classes. While a game does take time to
develop a
true balance between each of the unique classes, style="font-style: italic;">Final Fantasy XI
has
had far
longer than most games and still lacks a feel of balance in the
end-game or
even before that. Some classes have been classified as utterly useless
by the
community at various stages of the game, and for good reason. Imagine
if you
had to invite another DPS class to your party, and there is a class
that can do
1500 damage over the course of a battle
and one that can do 800 damage--which would you invite? Melee
classes in this game rarely bring anything to the table besides damage,
so if
one falls short in damage, the amount of party invites that class gets
falls
dramatically no matter how good the
player is. You can be
a master of the Dragoon, or the best Puppetmaster on the server, but at
one
point in this game's lifespan if you were that job, you were basically
laughed
at and ignored.



FFXIV's Response - It remains to be
seen how fine a balance Square Enix can strike right out of the gate.
No game
is perfect in this regard immediately, but a prompt response to glaring
problems and imbalances is what the players expect and require at this
point.



4. You are worthless alone in FFXI, and
that cannot be the case again.



For about
the first 7 years of Final
Fantasy XI
, you did one
of two things:
killed monsters and adventured together with a party, or sat looking
for one. Having
friends and getting in a group is the only way to do anything in this
game
until recently. Thankfully Square Enix has realized that people like to
accomplish things on their own and is keeping this in mind with
progression and
quest design. We can rest assured that we no longer have nothing to do
besides
browse the Auction House and feed our Chocobos while waiting for a
group to
form!



FFXIV's Response - Final Fantasy XI
recently corrected this grave error in game design so Final Fantasy XIV
should
be okay in this respect from the start. Partying and soloing will both
be
viable routes of advancement, so rejoice!  
style="">


5. Maintain the same epic
feel to
the
quest lines and the
sense
of
accomplishment that goes along with completing them.



T lang="RU">hose who
actually played long enough to reach the stories of Wings of the
Goddess,
Chains of Promathia, or Rise of the Zilart
were
treated to a fairly good
storyline
featuring
characters they
might actually care
about for once in an MMOG
.
These aren't just characters created for
the sake of being bosses at
the end of an instance, they're highly fleshed out and have real
cut-scenes
that
include lang="RU">more
than just a few lines of dialogue. Reaching these points and receiving
the
titles and rewards associated with them is one of the things style="font-style: italic;">Final
Fantasy XI
did extremely well. In a way, it can be seen as an early Achievement
system,
and we all lang="RU">know
how people love those.
Even if you're not an achievement seeker,
the tangible
rewards
of money and
important objects such as the Airship Pass will have you interested in
continuing the story and not just rushing to the level cap.



FFXIV's Response - They've kept
their
lips sealed about anything major plot-wise. Cut-scenes will be
returning to the
game and
, lang="RU"> so
long as they can be skipped for those that do not care for the story,
will make
everyone happy one way or another.



I too had my time of Final
Fantasy XI
love, and the game fell from
grace with lang="RU">me just as
it did with
many of you who probably
experienced one of the above problems or others. Square Enix knows what
they've
done well,
but that they’ve
also

done wrong,
judging from recent FFXI patches that have
alleviated (at least
partially) many of these woes.  

I've polled
players who
have multiple maxed jobs in the game

as well as
players who threw
the game away after the
initial month to get a wide range of opinions on the matter, so if
something is missing from this list,
make sure and voice what made you throw in the towel.  It
remains to be seen if they can win
over the
hearts of the MMO
gaming lang="RU">populace that felt style="font-style: italic;">Final
Fantasy XI just wasn't up to
snuff. With
an early beta in
progress,

however, we'll see if Square Enix has learned from their mistakes and
can
deliver a winner from the get-go!
style="">


To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

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