Final Fantasy XIV Playtest: A Little Help, Please?

By Kris . October 27, 2010 . 5:32pm

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I’m not an MMO fan. Aside from a brief stint of MapleStory while I was in middle school, the genre never really got its hooks into me. However, seeing Final Fantasy XIV’s E3 2009 reveal trailer left me awestruck. I decided that Final Fantasy XIV had to be the MMO for me.

 

Promises of dynamic genre-defying combat and a freeing, equipment-based job system had me salivating. When I learned that I’d have the chance to playtest it, I was incredibly excited.

 

Oops.

 

Final Fantasy XIV is frustrating from the get-go. After it’s done installing and patching, you’re given a login screen asking for your Square Enix ID and password. Even if you’re already a “Square Enix Member,” you have to open up your browser, navigate around the labyrinthine “Account Management System” (which is hard to find in and of itself), input your credit card, and register for FFXIV.

 

That doesn’t sound too bad, but you also have to purchase character slots. That’s right, on top of paying a monthly fee for the game, you have to pay extra for playable characters. You can buy up to eight, but you have to pay for them monthly. If you were to pay for all eight character slots, at the moment, the game could cost you approximately $33.99 a month. That’s $408 a year.

 

Naturally, there are cheaper, more long-term plans, but it’s more than a little ludicrous.

 

Once you wrangle all of that into place, and get logged in, you’re treated to a lovely minimalist title screen with classic Final Fantasy music in the background. Naturally, you’ll be inclined to click on “Intro Movie.” It’s seven-and-a-half minutes of adventure-filled CG glory.

 

 

After watching that, you’ll probably think, “How could something that had that much love put into the intro alone turn out badly?” I thought the same thing… until I started the actual game.

 

Character creation is simple enough, and actually rather fun. There are a ton of options for adjusting your character’s hair, eyes, and scars. Although height (which should be relegated to a slider) is locked into a few different settings, there’s still enough to make your character look unique.

 

However, the solid character creation falters when it comes to choosing a character voice. Perhaps it’s due to the awkward, forced laugh your character makes whenever you proceed to another menu in character creation, but it seems like none of the (few) options for your character’s voice are good ones. By comparison, either gender of a race in the PSP game Phantasy Star Portable 2 has about twenty different voices and a pitch slider. I figured that this would be the end of my voice-acting woes, but I was terribly, terribly wrong.

 

If you haven’t yet, watch that intro above. That voice-acting was par the course for a modern RPG, right? Sure, the tiny person was a bit annoying, but overall it was pretty good. Once again, we see the intro outdoing the game itself.

 

Final Fantasy XIV voice-acting is the most frustrating kind of mediocre. Not bad enough to make fun of, but still bad enough to annoy the heck out of the player. Some lines feel totally flat or confused, whereas others are spoken with enough unnecessary exuberance that I start to miss the restraint Final Fantasy XIII’s Vanille.

 

The worst offenders are the diminutive Lalafells, who, in Square’s attempt to make them sound less childish, have squeakier voices than a frustrated teenager’s. It’s a real disappointment, because Square Enix has proved that it can do good voice acting multiple times this year alone (Nier, Final Fantasy XIII).

 

Now, an MMO is a big undertaking, full of macros, rules, stat-building, and player interaction. One would assume that in today’s current climate of simplified gaming, this would be streamlined a little bit for an MMO launching in 2010. Not so in Final Fantasy XIV! In fact, the game is even more complex than your standard MMO.

 

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In addition to your combat, you’ve also exciting (not really) activities like farming, fishing, and mining! Now generally, this would be a good thing, rewarding players who want more than just battles. However, if you want to learn how to do these things, you’re going to have to dig through some menus to find the tutorials for these.

 

Final Fantasy XIV just doesn’t want to help the people playing it. There’s hardly any assistance, even in the beginning of the game. But when you finally get a hold of the basic mechanics, the game goes from perplexing to disappointing.

 

While I like the idea of changing your character’s class by changing their equipment, Square Enix incorporated the “fatigue system” to ensure that players would make full use of it. Under the fatigue system, you’re only allowed to level up at a regular rate in a certain class for about eight hours a week. Keep playing after that, and you’ll gain experience at a slower rate until you don’t gain any at all. Sure, it’s implemented to get players leveling up in multiple classes, but sometimes you just don’t want to trade in your spear for an axe or a shovel. In an attempt to get players to diversify, they’ve limited the ability of players to play the way they want to.

 

Overall, the game just feels unpolished. The world is gigantic but incredibly sparse and actually has areas that are copied and pasted from a basic template. The load times are agonizing, often forcing the player to look at a black screen for minutes at a time. Battles are dull, providing nothing that a free MMO could not. The quests have nothing to do with the overall story (which occasionally threatens to be interesting), and you can only take a limited number of them a day. One would figure that after all of the alpha and beta testing that Square Enix did, some of these problems would have been resolved.

 

Final Fantasy XIV is utterly disappointing. Square Enix is a company that I generally associate with polish and quality, but FFXIV is a far cry from their better efforts. The worst part is that the game has some really interesting ideas, a strong art direction with visuals to match (although, I wish you luck running it), and fantastic music by Nobuo Uematsu.

 

 

Due to a general feeling of disappointment from their players, Square Enix is offering an additional 30 days of free gameplay for those who’ve purchased the game. I’ll let you know if the extra time improves things at all, but at the moment, you’re better off watching the intro and listening to the soundtrack than playing the game.


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  • Kris

    Um, Ishaan, you inadvertently published this under your name… XD
    (I wrote it)

    • http://www.facebook.com/strawberry.kurosaki William Hsia

      kris i am deeply sorry you had to pay and play this sir, you work here will never be forgotten

    • http://www.siliconera.com Spencer

      Fixed! (I apologize for Ishaan, he desperately wanted to play FFXIV as a Lalafell)

    • Code

      Poor Kris, I feel so bad for you having to suffer through Final Fantasy XIV, only to have Ishaan swoop away with your glory, lol >ww<;

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      Whoops, sorry! Forgot to change the name after formatting. ><

  • Testsubject909

    I am unsurprised.

    Personally, I await to see Blade and Soul, T.E.R.A. and upon seeing more of it, Guild Wars 2.

    Well… I’m sorry you had to figure that out the hard way.

  • joesz

    I’ll try this as soon as the ps3 version is released.

  • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

    Vanille’s voice wasnt lacked by all, to be used in this playtest even, she was one of the best in that excellent game.

    Ive not heard nary person recommend this game. Im shocked.

    • Draparde

      Thats because right now, its got lots of bugs and stuff. if anything i’d say wait until ps3 release or December (two major patches are supposed to be out by then) rather than recommend playing it now.

    • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

      You are right, even I that have been playing and will keep playing the game for a while can’t recommend this game to anyone. This game at it’s current state is only for people who really want to like it and would withstand anything. The only reason I keep playing is because I wanna be there when the game gets better.

  • Hraesvelgr

    This game has voice acting? Huh. Never knew. Or is it like FFXI, where there’s an “opening FMV” and that’s it?

    • Aoshi00

      There are voice acting thruout the whole game’s quests/scenarios, GT said the whole game is an unsightly mess though.http://www.gametrailers.com/video/review-final-fantasy/705892Square ID & password!? I’ve forgotten mine for like the 5th time, and every time I try to retrieve it I could never get the secret question right.. Good thing I don’t play MMO…but why does Uematsu have to do music for this out of all FFs?

  • http://twitter.com/pasmith Peter Smith

    So let me get this straight… you don’t like MMOs….and you don’t like this MMO either.

    Not very useful.

    What do we have to look forward to next? Someone who hates driving games reviewing Gran Turismo 5?

    Disappointed in Siliconera…you folks are usually better than this.

    To MMO players: FF XIV doesn’t cleave to an industry-standard UI so there’s a bit of a learning curve, but it’s a very fun casual MMO. There’s probably not enough here (yet) for it to be your primary MMO, but it’s a fun 2nd game. I suggest using a gamepad for the best experience.

    To curious non-MMO players: This isn’t a good first MMO for you, sorry. You’d be better served by something with a more gradual learning curve.

    • Aoshi00

      If a game can make someone who isn’t usually interested in the genre interested, then you know it’s a great game, and if a game makes even veteran players frustrated, you know you got a turkey. And like doubletaco said below, S-E’s goal is going global? Their games are just neither here nor there. The only thing that makes me sad is Uematsu probably won’t be doing the soundtrack for FF15, whenever that comes out in whatever form.. and how they rolled out this BETA after their beta, and requiring people to pay monthly fees, what’s going on here?

      • http://several-hours-into-the-game.blogspot.com/ Nika

        But turkey is so very tasty…

        • Aoshi00

          This is the piece that fell out of a sandwich and sat under the bed for a while, all purple.. (Homer: “hm… turkey….” ambulance siren..) :)

    • http://twitter.com/jleack Jonathan Leack

      Nope, it’s not a fun casual MMO. The grind is horrendous and the game has next to nothing to do. Not to mention everything takes forever to do, so if you get on for only a few minutes you’ll get nothing done.

      • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

        Actually I have been playing 5 days a week for 2-3 hours and I’ve been able to get to Physical Level 19 and Rank 15, 10, 9 and 6 on different classes. That just doing Guildleves and not grinding on monsters.

  • doubletaco

    GameTrailers pretty much nailed every infuriating, horrible aspect of this game in their review. Even for an MMORPG player, it’s unbearably frustrating.So much of the abstraction between game and reality has been done away with; you want that spear? Well, you’re certainly not going to buy it. No, you’re going to go on a frustrating journey across half of the game’s crafting professions, making (or buying) each and every intermediate part of the final product and then assembling it all. Oh, by the way, if you screw up once it’s all for naught. Time to start over!Square Enix said that they wanted to make a game that appealed to a more casual playerbase, and seem to have failed at each and every attempt in that regard. A more accurate description would be that they never even made the attempt in the first place. The only thing they can claim to have done is put limits on the hardcore market. Brotip: That’s not accomplishing the same thing at all.

    The UI is horrible, the combat is clunky, and whoever’s in charge of the game’s design obviously did not learn anything from FFXI’s shortcomings and has instead delivered an even less newbie-friendly product.

    I played the beta and paid nothing. I was given a buddy pass and paid nothing. I still felt ripped off by this game, and I want my time back.

    • glemtvapen

      So the cake was a lie?

  • Draparde

    I have to disagree with what you said about the battling. its much quicker than XI’s and still discourages the players ability to faceslam the keys 1~9 on their keyboard and kill everything. now i wont say its the bestest ever…but to me at least its far from dull.

  • Genjo

    OMG how ya know rukia williams , akia sereo and the others o.O because i know them which one is you Kris O__O

  • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

    The number of players are decreasing lol, just saw a graphic about that

  • MemeticRichard

    Lawl…this game is such an epic failure, it exceeds the realm of “it’s not even funny” to just plain “Family kidnapped by pirates. Need $15 a month to rescue them.”

    It’s pitiful. It makes me feel sorry for it…

  • Code

    God I felt so bad about Final Fantasy XI when I originally tried it, I gave it a shot with a friend, but yeahh it was REALLY not my thing (even old Ragnarok was more fun TwT). But felt even worse when one of my friends (different friend) who doesn’t game that much became REALLY interested in Final Fantasy XIV — he knew I didn’t like Final Fantasy XI, and also knew I thought of XIV. But all summer he talked more, and more, about it and read more, and more, about it. And then it finally came out, and by the end of the week he was sick of it T_T;

    • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

      Good friends dont let friends get BAD games…

      • Code

        I told him what I thought of it, and he shouldn’t buy it. But he wasn’t having any of it, lol >w<; Clearly your friends aren't as stubborn as mine.

        • Aoshi00

          Your buddies should’ve stopped you from getting Front Mission Evolved lol :)

          • Code

            rar, YES exactly, worse part was when I tossed him the idea I might check out FME he was ALL over that idea, and then bailed on me at the last moment without further notice T_T’ Mr. Niwa also bailed me on leaving me to suffer, well getting Castlevania instead omo.

    • Exkaiser

      Ragnarok, as in Ragnarok Online?

      RO’s my digs, man. Only MMO I could ever really bring myself to play for more than a month.

      FFXI came close, but by the time I was playing it, the servers were mostly dead, so…

      • Code

        Yeah I really enjoyed RO back in the day >w< hell I even played it again a summer or two ago with a few friends and it was still plenty of fun, until they both got married for gold, and no one would marry ME!

  • neo_firenze

    I’m sorry, but this is an awful review/playtest by someone who obviously doesn’t know what they’re looking for to ask whether an MMO is well executed or not.

    Note that I also think FFXIV is a truly awful game. I was VERY much looking forward to it, upgraded a PC solely for FFXIV, and I’ve been massively disappointed. I’m also a longtime FFXI player, in fact I still have an active account (max rank Mithra Puppetmaster) which has been active since 2004 – so I’m still a fan of S-E’s not necessarily widely popular MMO past.

    The complaints here are silly though. Nobody would buy 8 characters, so why mention that and complain about price? One character gives you access to all jobs, not like some MMOs. The fatigue system simply doesn’t come into play, and is really designed to encourage players to level multiple classes (something that’s essential to develop your character anyway) or prevent 24 hour level grinding or paying people (e.g. Chinese real money traders) to grind for you.

    The real issues are very significant but the reviewer here didn’t notice them:

    1. XIV has a massively crafting based economy, yet the most hideously inefficient player-to-player sales mechanism I’ve ever seen in an MMO – you literally have to search through rooms of dozens of player owned NPC “retainers” with no sorting options and hope to find what you want. No auction house type system, which worked very well in FFXI and many other MMOs.

    2. UI is clunky and unresponsive, because everything is done server-side. This means checking a menu has a noticeable lag. And the design is poorly thought out and requires LOTS of menus. Just selling NPC vendors the junk you get as drops from low level monsters after playing for a short time takes WAY too long.

    3. Party and communication systems range from bad to non-existent. Again, this hurts because FFXI had a really good system of searching for people and seeking parties, but FFXIV becomes a solo game partly from design but partly because it’s so damn hard to cooperate.

    4. VERY high system requirements. I get the desire to make it future proof, but it doesn’t just feel like it’s ahead of its time, it feels like a shoddy and unoptimized game.

    5. I don’t worry too much about lack of initial content, that’s a simple MMO growing pain. But it is true that there’s not much to do now. Boring “kill x number of monsters” quests, or slow grinding on classes/crafting skill. There are a very small handful of fairly interesting main story quests, but these are few and far between. I know more events will be added, but there’s no flavor to the world – no flair or backstory by little quests adding to the lore or feel of the world.

    I thought 1up’s review (by Michael Vreeland, at http://www.1up.com/do/reviewPage?cId=3181961) was the best written review on any of the gaming sites/blogs I’ve seen. Reviewer explains things clearly, uses good examples, doesn’t get hung up on irrelevant things or issues that happen with any new MMOs, and has some insightful comments.

    • http://www.siliconera.com Spencer

      These were impressions of playing the game over a 30 day period, not a rating or a vote to buy/not buy said game.

      One of the reasons we decided to give this to Kris is because he was interested in FF14, plus its a view from someone who isn’t waist deep in MMO culture. Like looking at the game from a different lens.

      • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

        Yeah, maybe if the game is good having someone who doesn’t like the genre praise the game will make other people want to try it, but if he bashes it people will just think he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Take that into account next time.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1472407455 Charles Lupula

          Exactly. Think of whats-his-face’s awful Vanquish review on Destructoid, where he trashes the game, but reveals that he has no idea how to actually play it. Still, people look at the review, think, “5/10…it must be crap,” and the game gets written off by people who might’ve enjoyed it.

        • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

          Youre making an assumption in that the person would only be possible to do the game if it is “inherently” or “universally” a good game, and that if the game is “inherently” bad that only a hardened MMO fan should even talk about the game. The playtest includes gameplay details and experiences which are vital for any impressions on a game. One would be entering into writing an impression with an already pro-bias expectation or a pro-negative one ready to focus on things to dislike instead of the whole product. I think in this case, the writer entered into the game with, A) limited experience in the genre (well free to play), B) Interest in the title, C) An Open Mind. Open Mind and interest are seemingly all that matters to people when they read and are able to take notice of other things.

          I think it was suffiecient of an experience and if the writer comes back to do an update 30 or so days later then maybe some of the issues that people touched on would be impressed, unless people breezed over the final paragraph…because it is my understanding that these type of perpetual games do change over time.

      • neo_firenze

        Sorry, but this article just wasn’t up to the usual quality I see from Siliconera. Maybe I should only trust articles by better writers like Spencer or Isshan.

        If this was intended to be impressions of playing a game over a 30 day period, it was a failure in that regard because it looked more like impressions of playing the game for one evening. I can barely imagine ANYONE who played for several days not having more insightful comments, even if that person was brand new to MMOs.

        More than half of the article was about the initial setup and account/character creation, not even about the game. Then some of the issues like voice acting are given way too much attention for such a tiny part of the game (since voiced main storyline scenes are VERY uncommon, but you do get a couple right at the beginning of the game). The seeming misconception that the “main story” is anything more than a few random nation missions that are a tiny percentage of current content is also incorrect, and is something that someone who played for more than a few hours would surely notice.

        A couple of the complaints seem like they’re just parroted from other people without understanding the issues:
        a) There was lots of speculation and hand wringing over the fatigue system pre-release. But to put it simply, the fatigue system will NOT come into play for anyone but the most hardcore players (or people paying to have others powerlevel their character). And it’s even intended to nudge players in the right direction if they do focus entirely on one class, since that would be to a player’s detriment and S-E wants to encourage people to learn multi-class skills to develop their character (it’s actually good game design to steer players to the right path).

        b) Another silly comment is the “copy paste issue”, which is something that was a pre-release complaint by some lesser blogs who shall not be named here, but is ridiculous. XIV has one thing going for it, the visuals – and trust me, running around the cities and existing zones impresses nearly any actual player. You simply won’t notice any repeated textures, and frankly, why would you NOT expect some reused art assets in a massive MMO world?

        There are REAL, MAJOR flaws that anyone can see with any substantial time in the game, regardless of whether they’re a seasoned MMO pro or a newbie to the genre. Buying items is WAY too hard. Joining a party (one of the fundamental aspects of the genre) is overly complex – search options are poor, it’s hard to invite people or find people, and parties really ARE needed to even do basic leveling in an efficient manner after the initial 20 or so levels in every class that are easily soloed.

        Chat is harmed by the need to constantly hit buttons during battles, which is a fundamental design concession to allow for the tap-tap-tap combat instead of auto attack.

        These are things that are easily noticed by anyone playing the game for more than a couple days. So, these impressions of a “30 day period” fail in that regard.

        Like I said before, if someone wants a better set of impressions, I’d recommend other sites. 1up’s review is really well written and comprehensive. Kotaku (a site I generally don’t have a high opinion of) had a really useful multi-part adventurer’s journal from a less experienced player that actually succeeds in doing what this article was claiming to try to do.

        Not up to the usual high quality I expect from this site, that’s why this was surprising.

        • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

          My thoughts exactly, I mean.. Even I haven’t played over a “30 days period” and noticed all the wrong that was written on that article….

    • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

      This all the way! (I wrote something similar before I noticed this, sorry!)

      • neo_firenze

        I actually didn’t see your comment until now, and it’s telling that both of us had similar comments backed up by reason and could see through the obvious lack of effort/insight by this “Playtest” article.

        Agree with pretty much everything you said, by the way ;)

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1472407455 Charles Lupula

      I do have to agree with this. If you gave me, for example, Gran Turismo 5 to review, it’d get an awful review, because I am bored silly by driving games. I always feel that reviews should be done by someone who is a fan of the given genre. That way, you prevent reviews from becoming the garbage IGN and Destructoid crap out on a regular basis.

      • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

        Not necessarily, that wouldnt be ideal for the whole population. You could only give games to people that are in their genres so it could potentially lead to much bias. Based on the description that person who playtested this game was interested and intrigued in this game, so it is perfect because they did in fact go into details of gameplay and then approached it explaining their angle on their experience for MMO’s which would be beneficial to both newcomers (because isnt every MMO expected to increase the fanbase and attract newcomers?) as well as people who played others (including key gameplay details).

        Being bored silly of driving games wouldnt be an issue because what if when playing GT5 it was enough to convince you that it was one of the driving games that would excite you and invigorate you about racing. And once again, it provides a nice view to people reading who may or may not have an interest in racing games, as long as once again gameplay details noticed.

        The key here is to enter into these things open mindedly and with little bias.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1472407455 Charles Lupula

          No, playing GT5 for long enough would just make me hate my life. I’ve done reviews of both movies and games. I can tell when something is well made. Doesn’t mean I’ll like it if it’s just something I’m not into. I put 80 hours into Final Fantasy XII. I can acknowledge it was a well-made game, but I still want those hours of my life back for wasting it on that awful battle system and cardboard characters.People have inherit biases when it comes to certain genres. It’s why you see so many reviews that put down JRPG’s for things that JRPG’s should have, like turned based battles. But you get enough reviewers who aren’t into the genre, and suddenly the developers start wondering if they’re doing something wrong. Getting people who dislike a particular genre to review a game and just reinforce their dislike of that genre, usually just ends up turning more people off to that genre.

  • http://twitter.com/jleack Jonathan Leack

    Good review. I bought the CE and regret every dollar of it. This game has SERIOUS issues. I’ll be waiting for a patch while my account is temporarily canceled.

    • MemeticRichard

      Well…at least you got a purty journal! :>

  • mach

    Ugh, I so wanted to like this game.

    Way back in 2003 I spent the entire summer in giddy anticipation of FFXI’s NA release. Then when it finally came out, I played for a week and quit because of the grinding and the lack of soloing opportunities. The devs claimed FFXIV would fix both those problems, but that clearly didn’t happen.

    Still, what’s Squenix going to do if this game bombs? Subscribers are quitting in droves. There might be a second wind from the PS3 release, but if that doesn’t work, they’ll probably shut the servers down in less than a year. So will they just abandon FFXIV and pretend like it never existed (like they did with Fantasy Earth: Zero)?

    I kind of hope that once they go offline, Squenix will take XI and XIV and convert them into single player games. Despite all their flaws, both have decent stories and environments. It’d suck if no one is ever able to experience that once the servers go down.

  • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

    Actually while I can say that the game isn’t perfect by any means, what am I dissapoint is in this playtest. First of all you get a free character slot just by paying the monthly fee of $13.99 so you don’t have to pay the monthly fee plus the character slot, also paying for an extra character is kind of unnecessary because you can play all classes with a single character unlike other MMOs. So coming up with outrageous prices was kinda of out of place.

    Second, guildleves don’t have anything to do with the story, but did you do the actual story quests? I mean, you say you don’t like MMOs but didn’t you try to play FF14 for the story? (which it’s pretty good actually)

    Third, did you actually experienced this “Fatigue” system? I know about the system and let me tell you, I have been playing since launch of the standard version playing almost everyday (like 5 days out of a week) for 2-3 hours and never seen this system, also you forgot to mention that if you DO hit the exp cap it resets after a week.

    Fourth, copy/paste environments? Really? Are you just taking all the complains out of Sankaku Complex and making a review out of it? This is again something I have never seen and you only notice if you are looking REALLY hard for flaws on the game. It’s curious that you actually missed things that are really wrong with the game (like the absence of an Action House and the clunkiness of the UI) but noticed the “copy/paste” environments…

    About battles being dull? Did you ever get more than 2 or 3 skills? It can be a little dull at first for some people (and FF13 suffered from dull battles at first too) but, like every other MMO, once you have more skills to choose from it gets pretty exciting. Ypu also forgot to mention that gathering and crafting are some kind of mini-game so it’s not as dull as you make it out to be unlike other MMOs that are, right-click=get ore, you’re done. Oh and you can also get exp from just from gathering and crafting so it’s more rewarding.

    Again, I love this site but this is by far the most disappointing thing I have ever read here, I know the game still has lots of flaws but geez, at least play more than 2 hours before passing judgement.

  • http://gameplay.pl/keii Keiician

    I really hope that all the broken stuff gets fixed in the big november update :|

  • http://pt-pt.facebook.com/people/Lyh-Scully/613703032 Lyh Scully

    I didnt like this review at all …….. usualy i expect better from Siliconera .
    Its only natural that if you put a person that dosent like MMos playing a JAPANESE MMo to turn out like this.
    Ive been playing FF11 Since 2005 and its very hard and time consuming , and it was very bad when i began playing had alot of issues wich SE fixed over the years ….. yes it will take yearssssssss until FF14 turns out to be at least OK .
    I bought FF14 CE , and began playing , the interface is rather annoying but they already announce to fix it ….. but i find the crafting system very addicting , in my opinion this game shouldve only be relased next year , it was clearly not ready , the world is vast and preety but very empty …. as i was expecting … Guild leves start as fun but after a few its all the same , but the story missions are very cool .
    Will i stay keep on playing ? Yes because i like it , although ill only play it ocasionaly because i also have ff11 active and alot of thing s to play as well.
    Id say give it 1 year or more then play it again . Im sure it wil lbe much better .
    Also who in their right mind would have 8 characters ……. That was unclassy to say the least , especialy because either FF11 or FF14 lets you chose everyclass with only One Character and thats one of the main reasons i love it!
    FF14 is not a good game but its not as horrible as it may seem . The good things are there,they just have to be improved , and with time they will.

    • http://geekouts.blogspot.com/ miruki

      Uhm.. you know, they are doing beta tests before releasing the game… which are kinda like… making ppl play a bad, buggy and unpolished version of the game so they can fix errors BEFORE the game gets released and ppl have to pay a monthly fee. I was beta testing FFXI back then and knew about lots of the faults it had and was quite shocked about how much still remained when they started gaining money from it.

      I’m not much of an MMO person, because, honestly, if I don’t play with the right ppl it’s just not much fun – the lack of an interesting story in most MMORPGs just kills them for me. I don’t think this is the case here, I can imagine the story being pretty good and at first I was rather intrigued, I even felt like wanting to try the game…. but seeing how they did AGAIN release an unpolished MMO and have ppl pay for betatesting the game now.. no, thank you.

      It’s sad how companies keep up that philosophy of first releasing and then fixing, especially the bigger ones that actually HAVE the money to hold the release back to fix a few more things. *sighs*

      • http://pt-pt.facebook.com/people/Lyh-Scully/613703032 Lyh Scully

        You are right . Well i tried the alpha and beta i knew what i was getting myself in . And also very important like you said right people i play with my bf and rl friends , wich makes a huge diference in either FF11 or FF14 .
        Id say give it a year or more then try it , the story is cool and im only at beguining of it . I dont feel like the CE was a Waste of money because first im a collector XD and european so we got diferent box art , and diary.

    • MemeticRichard

      I’m…I’m sorry, but all I’m seeing here is like, a wall of text composed of confused fanboy posturing, and really bad grammar…Not to mention, coupled with the fact that Siliconera doesn’t even fricking do game reviews (or to your satisfaction!) in the general sense, gives me this deep sense of the Virgin Mary syndrome:…Come again? :/

      • http://pt-pt.facebook.com/people/Lyh-Scully/613703032 Lyh Scully

        Well escuse my bad grammar ………….i might be a fangirl , but at least i recognise that the game has many flaws . I am intiled to disagree with certain points of this review no?
        Maybe i didn’t justify my opinon well enough , just nvm my post then ….
        im sure we all got better stuff to , like games to play ;P

  • karasuKumo

    I’ve never really liked MMO’s, I could play them for a week and that would be it (best one I played was Wonderland Online). I was going to get this eventually when they released their PS3 version, thanks to this and many other reviews I wont. It’s a crime people have to pay monthly for this.

  • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

    I’m surprised you didn’t mention the levequest system, which only allows you to have 8 every 36 hours. I accidentally got kicked off by my aging router when I was playing last week and had to wait for more quests.

    I agree on FFXIV. I was very unimpressed. (I’ve since gone back to Mabinogi, and given my cousin my FFXIV account.)

    • MemeticRichard

      That was a very, very cruel thing to do to your cousin…

      How do you live with yourself? >:<

      • http://www.siliconera.com Jenni

        I know, I’m horrible. He said he wanted to try it though!

        Funny story: When I was 10 and he was 7, he insisted on watching It with me one Halloween. I then had him convinced for a year that Pennywise lurked outside everyone’s windows after dark to spy on them and that’s why people kept window shades down. If you pulled the shade away fast enough, you’d catch a glimpse of him looking at you.

        Whenever he’d get annoying, I’d calmly go to the nearest window and rip the shade open as fast as I could. XD

  • Jirin

    I love that all the MMO players are whining they can’t max out immediately by playing 50 hours a week. The moment you complain about the fatigue system, you’re identifying yourself as a gaming addict.

    Of course, if they wanted to do something to level out the playing field for casual gamers, they probably should have made something easier to play.

    • Exand

      Except you’re missing the point of why most people complain about the fatigue system. One, it doesn’t help casual gamers. (I’m guessing) it was intended to level out out the playing field for casual gamers and also stop hardcore players from getting through the sparse content. However, because the hardcore players can just grind continually regardless of the fatigue system (they just need to grind a heck of a lot more), it doesn’t stop them from “rushing to 50″. There are already people at physical level 50, and there are several that I know of at rank 40 and almost to 50 with a craft. Also, the system hurts the casual gamer who may play sparsely then get a weekend to play a lot. The fatigue system ends up giving the casual player smaller exp rewards during their weekend play. Putting aside the intended purpose, the way it’s implemented doesn’t benefit anyone except SE since it just makes people not play their game, lowering server load which is a major issue currently in the game (lag).Second, a game shouldn’t dictate how much you play it (unless you’re playing from China, then the government does that). How much you can play shouldn’t come from the game, it should come from the parent overseeing the gamer / the gamer themselves. Just like you wouldn’t buy a tv that forces you to change the channel every few hours, gamers shouldn’t be forced to change jobs in game just to continue progressing in the game.

  • Exand

    While FFXIV has issues, lots and lots of issues, and isn’t worth people spending money on, the review misses the mark imo.

    Quote:
    “One would assume that in today’s current climate of simplified gaming, this would be streamlined a little bit for an MMO launching in 2010. Not so in Final Fantasy XIV! In fact, the game is even more complex than your standard MMO.”

    The review hinges on the assumption FFXIV is going down the simplified gaming route which is the wrong assumption. SE has a history with making a complicated MMO, ie. FFXI, which sports some of the most obscure bits you can find in modern MMO’s. While SE did implement things in FFXIV that make it more “casual” friendly, it’s still at it’s core a very hardcore MMO built around grinding / repetitive tasks and very little hand-holding that was common in old-school MMO’s.

    Also, what’s the point of having someone who doesn’t even like or play MMO’s do a review on a MMO…? I see this a lot at gaming sites and it always makes me wonder.

  • HerrProblembear

    Thank you for the thoughtful review. Personally, I found nothing objectionable in what you said. But then again, I’m no fan of MMORPGs and am utterly apathetic to Final Fantasy and Square-Enix at this point (the last Final Fantasy I played was IX). So I suppose I’m biased.

    • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

      You need to correct that. Final Fantasy XIII deserves to be played by all. Its an RPG that is in the top percentage of all RPGs, I would say.

      • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

        Flame Shield (Do you need it?)

      • Exkaiser

        Let’s not go saying things we can’t take back, now.

  • doomspeller10

    I remember having read like a month ago in another site that they had also changed the names for chocobos… that they had now some lame ass name… don’t remember which.
    Anyway, I guess I’m back to RO again… at least it can satisfy my thirst for nostalgia.

    • http://twitter.com/Ale598 Ale598

      It was Sankaku Complex, they were complaining that they changed Chocobo to Horsebird but did you actually read the article? It says that it was the JAPANESE version. But yeah most people only read article titles and go “dat geim sox l0l!!”

  • http://pto.yetikitn.com MelodyKitn

    We were so optimistic about this game.. a change of scenery, some fresh air, new characters, interesting job switching mechanics.

    6 months. We’re giving it at least 6 months to get some major patch fixes in (for the love of moogles, let us sort!) and to start filling in the gameplay gaps and bugs (I’m looking at you, weirdo party system that counts the guy in another area as being in battle, making everyone have to wait till he’s done before they can do -anything-).

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