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Author Topic: Final Fantasy XIV
TomDavidson
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quote:
When half your forum is people talking about how bad the game is, and the other half is people saying "omg why r u crying about this if you don't like the game just stop playin" you are in hot water.
Isn't that every game, everywhere?
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
When half your forum is people talking about how bad the game is, and the other half is people saying "omg why r u crying about this if you don't like the game just stop playin" you are in hot water.
Isn't that every game, everywhere?
I doubt chess forums have that dynamic.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
When half your forum is people talking about how bad the game is, and the other half is people saying "omg why r u crying about this if you don't like the game just stop playin" you are in hot water.
Isn't that every game, everywhere?
Um, no. When you have forums that are actually pretty much like that, the game's legit bad.
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Geraine
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Guild Wars 2 is looking really good. It looks like they are going for a different take on the MMO with more random events and quests. And still no monthly fee.

I think that the non-WoW MMO market will not be sustainable unless gaming companies quit rehashing the same formulas of every other RPG. Speak to an NPC, kill X of a mob, gain experience, rinse and repeat. Gaming companies need to be innovative and original. FFXIV attempted this but it was poorly implemented. Guild Wars 2 looks promising, I just pray it can deliver.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Ginol_Enam:
quote:
Under the surface, the insider scoop is grim.
Like what, in your opinion?
I don't have a personal opinion. I haven't played the game, or been privy to the happenings of the studio where it is being developed. I have, however, a consistent opinion by those who have worked on the game and/or have had a chance to test it out in depth.

- at present you wouldn't even recognize it as a Bioware game. It has none of bioware's hallmarks of quality.
- it's run by rampantly uncreative sorts and idea poachers, and is mismanaged to the point of implosion.
- people are trying to leave the project in large numbers.
- the game itself is horrific; the testers hate it, and the devs know it.
- it is massively over-budget (they may even be verifiable openly).
- as noted in the expanding EAlouse drama, it appears a lot of remaining EA mythic employees have been poached to try to salvage the game.

I'll continue to hope that this doesn't end up nearly as bad as it could end up. I want to be optimistic enough to say that the game is certainly salvageable at this juncture. I also can't lie; if they don't even manage to at least overhaul the character and combat animations, it wouldn't matter too much to me whether or not they fixed the combat mechanics and gameplay. If insider rumors and the various airings-of-dirty-laundry from EA employees past and present are to be believed, the game's in sorry shape right now, and development cycles coming back from that brink are exceptional.

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Samprimary
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Also, in FFXIV news: to quote Sankaku, 'So Bad They Gave Players Another Free Month'

http://lodestone.finalfantasyxiv.com/pl/news/detail?newsId=60bd5ecff1b7645d4e1ead107941f0d8c4e88994

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0Megabyte
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Goodness. What is wrong with new MMO's these days? I'm sure it's really hard to make one that's good... but don't they have a list of what they need to do by now? And don't these huge companies have the money and manpower to do those necessary things?
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Samprimary
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MMO's and their longitudinal development offer scads of opportunities to express and display dysfunction on the part of designers. There also seems to be a distinct trend with the mentalities and the shortsightednesses of people who manage to pole-vault themselves onto the lead design and developmental direction roles of MMO's they tend to be overexuberant dysfunction personified. This I have seen in person. So profoundly, in fact, that I was amazed.

Here's two comments by others that I believe sum it up nicely:

quote:
I think entire industry deserves to be replaced by Packaged Goods people that can at least produce something, given tried-and-true formula. I don't even expect innovation at this point, just don't repeat the same mistakes year after year after year...

Here are seems to be typical failure modes:

1. Have no plan/vision until late into development, then panic and try to badly clone WoW
2. Have overly-ambitious plan, then end up cutting ENTIRE GAME to meet deadlines/budget constrains
3. Release early and extra-buggy
4. Try to clone WoW from the start, succeed at it to a large degree then fail because people could just play WoW that has more content and polish

quote:
Let's not forget to add the simple fact that today's MMO public is vastly different from the pre-WoW MMO public. The masses are no longer uninformed and easily pleased.

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Ginol_Enam
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Ginol_Enam:
quote:
Under the surface, the insider scoop is grim.
Like what, in your opinion?
I don't have a personal opinion. I haven't played the game, or been privy to the happenings of the studio where it is being developed. I have, however, a consistent opinion by those who have worked on the game and/or have had a chance to test it out in depth.

- at present you wouldn't even recognize it as a Bioware game. It has none of bioware's hallmarks of quality.
- it's run by rampantly uncreative sorts and idea poachers, and is mismanaged to the point of implosion.
- people are trying to leave the project in large numbers.
- the game itself is horrific; the testers hate it, and the devs know it.
- it is massively over-budget (they may even be verifiable openly).
- as noted in the expanding EAlouse drama, it appears a lot of remaining EA mythic employees have been poached to try to salvage the game.

I'll continue to hope that this doesn't end up nearly as bad as it could end up. I want to be optimistic enough to say that the game is certainly salvageable at this juncture. I also can't lie; if they don't even manage to at least overhaul the character and combat animations, it wouldn't matter too much to me whether or not they fixed the combat mechanics and gameplay. If insider rumors and the various airings-of-dirty-laundry from EA employees past and present are to be believed, the game's in sorry shape right now, and development cycles coming back from that brink are exceptional.

Well, I hadn't heard any of that. It'll be a real bummer if the game turns out awful... I was just starting to get really excited for it...
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Samprimary
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Hey guyyyyyyyyys

In light of the solidly abysmal reception by fans, critics, and players alike AND S-E giving all subscribers a free month to try to taper off dropouts and unsubs, I wanna put some over-unders on this.

Bet for/against:

FFXIV has CONTRACTED THEIR WORLD SERVERS by at least HALF by April 31st, 2011

FFXIV has GONE FREE TO PLAY by April 31st, 2011

FFXIV has GONE OFFLINE by April 31st, 2011

Place wagers on date:

Date for MAJOR FFXIV SERVER CONTRACTION

Date for FFXIV going FREE TO PLAY

Date for FFXIV going OFFLINE

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Juxtapose
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Does FFXIV have the equivalent of a /who?
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Samprimary
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I guess, someone came up with these peak hours figures recently.

10:01 p.m. Gysahl two thousand nine hundred and eighty Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72951.jpg 11:12 p.m. three thousand and five Cornelia Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72995.jpg
Mysidia 2849 23:02 Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72987.jpg
Two thousand eight hundred and seventy-two 11 p.m. Selbina Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72983.jpg
2 958 Figaro thirteen past eleven p.m. Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72993.jpg
10:28 p.m. 2,127 Trabia Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72961.jpg
2,259 fifty-nine past ten p.m. Palamecia Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72984.jpg
2,259 Lindblum 22:47 Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72972.jpg
Istory 2176 23:28 Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72998.jpg
22:53 Besaid two thousand two hundred eleven Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72974.jpg
Wutai 1583 seventeen past ten p.m. Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72969.jpg
One thousand seven hundred thirty-five twenty-one past eleven p.m. Rabanastre Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72997.jpg
1861 fifty-six past ten p.m. Kashuan Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72976.jpg
10:57 p.m. Saronia one thousand seven hundred and ten Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72979.jpg
1579 fifty-eight past ten p.m. Fabul Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72981.jpg
One thousand five hundred sixty-three 22:54 Bodhum Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72975.jpg
One thousand seven hundred and sixty-three 22:33 Melmond Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72971.jpg
Karnak one thousand seven hundred twenty-six 23:06 Http://Minus-K.com/N...der/Up72990.jpg
Total 39,216

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Juxtapose
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Those numbers seem alright for the moment. They look to be about on par with your average WoW server. It'll be interesting to see what happens when that free month ends.
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Samprimary
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wait, wth is the wow server average? Is it down that far?
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Juxtapose
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I was looking at data from here.

The peak (averaged between servers) looks like about 950 for Alliance and 900 for Horde.

Are the servers you listed for FFXIV NA servers, or is that worldwide?

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Samprimary
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Today I learned that Square is actually in such bad shape that XIV is likely to lead to it being 'restructured.' So, thread necro.

quote:
Compared with the previous year, sales at Square Enix were down 25%, operating profits were down 56%, ordinary profits were down 71%, and net income was down 36%. Sales of Final Fantasy XIV were actually the biggest positive contributer, with 630,000 copies sold (190,000 in Japan, 260,000 in North America, and 250,000 in Europe). However, FFXIV may now also prove to be the company's biggest problem.

Wada was reported to have been deluged with questions regarding the status of FFXIV and the maelstrom of negativity surrounding the game. On stage, Wada did admit that, "the customers are not satisfied with the state [of FFXIV]." Current plans include big updates in November and December, and of course, the PlayStation 3 release coming next March. While other details were not to be divulged at the time, Wada stated, "We must put our full effort into regaining the user's trust."

However, the CEO was not let off easily. Attendees continued to bring down tough questions and harsh criticisms. When asked about user numbers, Wada dodged by saying he could not predict how things will change once FFXIV ends the free trial period and institutes the monthly fee. Another attendee asked, "Do you test your games to make sure they're complete?" to which Wada admitted, "There may be some areas of testing that were lacking or too rigid," before quickly bringing it back to, "In the short term, we're working hard on restoring user trust."

I also want to do a SWTOR thread soon.
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BlackBlade
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To be honest Square games have felt stagnated for a very long time, and yet it seemed to take so long for players and reviewers to pick up on it.
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jebus202
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I gave up on Final Fantasy after XII, which I thought was brutal, worse than IX. The fact that it was a critical success only enraged me more.

Final Fantasy VI, VII, VIII and X... 4EVA.

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Samprimary
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It's the miracle of branding. Get a rep as good as Square had it for years, and you can coast on it for a long, long time.

Square also has the 'advantage' of appealing to the Japanese market, which is a bit culturally imperious (The average japanese gamer will say something like 'japan game good! western game bad!' despite the fact that if you put them in front of a more sandboxed western game, they're literally boggled and amazed that they're playing what they expected was a cutscene) and whose studios are in rapid quality decline for reasons that mirrored the development of the "lost decade."

There, you can coast for a while just by being japanese, even if your games are mediocre.

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jebus202
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
also want to do a SWTOR thread soon.

I'd like to see that. I've been following the game closely and was put off by the info you posted in this thread. Hopefully something with that much money invested into can be pulled back from the brink.
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Ecthalion
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I liked 12 more than i liked 10. the problem with 10 and 12 is that you really just dont have the replay value that the 6-9 (and 4) group gave you. That and 12 was just Star-Wars in FF universe...
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BlackBlade
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I haven't really enjoyed a JRPG since FF9. I purchased XII and XIII and I have just been extremely underwhelmed. I can distinctly remember very early in XIII's development there was an IGN interview where they asked the program lead if there was going to be an option to listen to the Japanese voice track instead of English. The lead's response was in essence, "Do people want that?" XIII shipped without the Japanese track as an option. They really need to get a clue.

I think Blue Dragon was the only JRPG of this generation of consoles that I completed, and only just because I adored the music, and Akira Toriyama's drawing. Also, I was trying to support a JRPG from a company with great artists who weren't working for Square and were attempting to court the US market.

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Ecthalion
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yea i dont think i've played a truely good JRPG. Like i said i did like 12, but it wasnt the greatest game ever.

I actually think that Square's move from a deep fantasy structure might be hurting them. I remember an article when 10 came out that they were looking to make more futuristic and adult oriented games. Cant say that 12 or 13 really succeeds in that. 7 is still the most "adult" one, though 4 does have less "kid" themes than most of them.

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Samprimary
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12 was fine, and the last really inspired entry in the series. Even if 'inspired' in this case means 'let's totally make this one star wars,' that's okay. It's not like star wars was original either. The end result was still a fun game with a story that was worth paying attention to, in a gameplay engine which did away with the tired mechanic of monster encounters popping you off of the game map what that you might listen to the same fight music again what you have heard already nine billion times.
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jebus202
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As far as I got in the story it seemed achingly cliched and simple, and the characters all felt much the same.

The new fight system changed the game from turn-based strategic combat using your whole party, to wildly running around after your enemy with one character while the rest go on pre-programmed auto-pilot. It didn't really feel like FF any more.

To be fair, I'd say I only got about 10-15 hours into the game, but it didn't grab me at all.

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Dr Strangelove
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I really enjoyed XII personally, though it was the first Final Fantasy that I dumped the requisite 60+ hours into, so I didn't have the reaction against the new system that a lot of people did. Since then I've played X, IX, parts of VIII, parts of VII (really want to play the whole thing) and one of the old old ones, though I can't remember which one (IV maybe?). And while I certainly enjoyed them all, especially the story in IX, XII remains my favorite (forgive me for the heresy).

Edit: I haven't played XIII or XIV after hearing from Ecthalion and others that they weren't worth it.

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BlackBlade
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Chrono Trigger for the most part ditched the random battles and it was a good idea then. Secret of Mana completely ditched random battles and that was a fantastic game as well. Why did they ever bring them back? I don't think anybody liked them.

FFXII had a good fighting system. I never got bored with it, so that's a plus. I liked the grids where you could go in any direction and unlock better and better things the deeper you got into a corner. The characters didn't really have fantastic personalities, and that was probably my biggest turn off. I just didn't like the main character at all. I like Ashe just fine, and even the chic in the playboy bunny outfit with actual heels for feet had an interesting voice, but Vaan just annoyed me whenever he was talking.

[ November 12, 2010, 10:39 AM: Message edited by: BlackBlade ]

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Happy Camper
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I'm not completely sure why, but XII was the first modernish (PS or later) FF that I set down and didn't bother to go back to till weeks or months later to just power through to the end and see what happened. Haven't played XIII, since I don't have a platform for it. XIV, I beta'd briefly and thought it was awful. Would never pay to play that kind of grindfest.
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Samprimary
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quote:
The new fight system changed the game from turn-based strategic combat using your whole party, to wildly running around after your enemy with one character while the rest go on pre-programmed auto-pilot. It didn't really feel like FF any more.
You can emulate the old FF system by setting the battle speed to slowest and then manually entering all commands for all the party members each turn and forsaking Gambits. But if you do this even for 20 minutes you realize how tired it is.

quote:
I just didn't like the main character at all. I like Ashe just fine, and even the chic in the playboy bunny outfit with actual heels for feet had an interesting voice, but Vaan just annoyed me whenever he was talking.
Vaan's story is actually kind of refreshing for the FF series. He has to be taught through most of the game, mostly by balthier and fran, what he lacks in terms of perspective as well as class.

[ November 13, 2010, 06:39 AM: Message edited by: Samprimary ]

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Geraine
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
The new fight system changed the game from turn-based strategic combat using your whole party, to wildly running around after your enemy with one character while the rest go on pre-programmed auto-pilot. It didn't really feel like FF any more.
You can emulate the old FF system by setting the battle speed to slowest and then manually entering all commands for all the party members each turn and forsaking Gambits. But if you do this even for 20 minutes you realize how tired it is.

quote:
I just didn't like the main character at all. I like Ashe just fine, and even the chic in the playboy bunny outfit with actual heels for feet had an interesting voice, but Vaan just annoyed me whenever he was talking.
Vaan's story is actually kind of refreshing for the FF series. He has to be taught through most of the game, mostly by balthier and fran, what he lacks in terms of perspective as well as class.

I agree with Sam. Vaan was unique in that he wasn't really a hero. Though he could be considered the "main" character, there wasn't anything special about him. The main storyline didn't revolve around him, there wasn't any secret past to him, he was just along for the ride.

The only other FF that had this was FFVI. Each character in your party was just a person that joins up with others to stop an evil clown man.

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jebus202
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quote:
The main storyline didn't revolve around him, there wasn't any secret past to him, he was just along for the ride.
Which, while different, is hardly an interesting feature in a main character.
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Ecthalion
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i think thats why i find 4, 7, 9 and 10 to be the most compelling. Each character has their own story that usually unfolds as the game goes along. With 7 you could have broke the game down into chapters by character. Some of the characters arent very interesting granted, like The twins in 4, Qiina (sp?) in 9 etc.

Those old jrpgs arent built to stand up to fast-paced gameplay or generalised archetypical plots. The characters really moved the games along and made them worth playing.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by jebus202:
quote:
The main storyline didn't revolve around him, there wasn't any secret past to him, he was just along for the ride.
Which, while different, is hardly an interesting feature in a main character.
It allows him to actually evolve into something. You're watching him learn how not to be a dolt, and you get to view the more interesting non-adolescent story of adults from his perspective until he figures it out and picks up a role in his own right. I'll take it over being an underwater football player who was invented by ghosts which were the dream of a dead civilization's dream and then sent through time to kill his dad who has become satan.
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jebus202
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Somehow you're not seeing the level of unbelievable awesome in your description of FFX.
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Ecthalion
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I kind of got the impression that both Tidus and his father were real when sent through time, but because the energies of Sin were eventually destroyed that link could not hold him in the same reality as the others.

Overall i felt that the story for 10 was one of the better ones. What i didnt like was the ease of the combat mechanic. It got boring to simply associate a specific enemy to a specific character. 10 was also the first very linear game with no real world exploration which took away from the experience.

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Samprimary
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I liked 10, I just think 12 is better. Either way, I suspect that 12 will be the last good one they ever make unless the studio is drastically reformed.
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Ecthalion
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with Nier and infinite undescovery being pretty bad games id have to say 12 is going to be the last good game for quite a while....
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0Megabyte
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Sigh. How depressing. What ever happened to the guys who made Chrono Trigger, anyway? Enix and Square are the same company now, after all... (I don't mean Akira Toriyama, I mean the other guys)
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Ecthalion
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yea i remember in the 90's i'd buy any game with the squaresoft name branded on it....
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0Megabyte
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To be fair, back then they tended to make good games...
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Sa'eed
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I remember back in the summer before I started middle school (summer 97) I had somehow come to acquire Final Fantasy III (also known as VI). Before that, all I had ever played was Super Mario/Donkey Kong Country games/Super Mario Kart/MegamanX. I didn't have any experience with RPGs or was any familiar with fantasy storytelling.

Anyway, that was the most intense gaming I've ever experienced. Everything in the game had the optimum impact on me, from the dreariness of the town of Narsh (where you start the game) to the single most epic moment of gaming at the midway point of the game (the onset of the World of Ruins.) The creatures, the towns, the music, the characters, the grand storytelling, the humor, the emotion -- all were splendid and brought together perfectly and I think it brought me to tears several times.

One thing I like about the game in retrospect is its art style and 2d graphics (which are very well done and don't look cheap.) It somehow engages the imagination more and allows the creators to get away with gaming mechanics and humor that don't seem to be compatible with 3D.

A year later I played FFVII and had nearly as a good a time. Squaresoft however lost me with FFVIII. By that point they had the infrastructure to churn out another FF title for the PS and (apparently) none of the eagerness and ambition to make another great title. All their subsequent titles followed this path.

I unfortunately missed out on "Chrono Trigger" in the late 90s. Maybe I'll get around to it one of those days on the DS...

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Ecthalion
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I've always found it confusing that people seem to hate 8 so much. To me 8 has always been the easiest one to re-play. The world is created well, with plenty of side areas and dungeons. I thought the characters were well done and advance significantly over the course of the game. The plot would (and probably has) make for a great book/movie with a few exceptions (mainly that i never bought the amnesia gimmick)

The game mechanics didnt really bother me, i rather enjoyed the junction system. Of course the menue is convoluted, confusing and really big. And spending hours drawing magic or playing cards for items to refine is annoying. Other than that i never really understood the ire it brought from people.

That being said i thought 9 was a much better game. It remains my favorite of the series and the last one that I considered "great".

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jebus202
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I couldn't get into IX when I played it. Perhaps a revisit is in order.
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Samprimary
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Hey, if anyone is still playing this, I'd like an update for when (.. if?) the game runs out of free months. The game's peak hours is down below 20,000 so I want to see what the census shows happening between the last day of free play and the first day of paid subscription play.
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Geraine
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I'll keep you updated. I logged in yesterday after about a month, and I will say I was fairly impressed by the changes they have made. The input lag and inventory lag has been resolved, and the UI has been improved drastically. They have also lowered the amount of SP and EXP needed to rank up.

I will probably play it for another week, but when Cataclysm lands I'll probably never boot it up again.

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Ecthalion
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unless it goes free to play im not gonna touch it again
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Parkour
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Nobody is. Whole game only has lingerers left saying they have faith for the "miracle patch".
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Samprimary
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http://kotaku.com/5711039/heads-roll-over-final-fantasy-xiv-ps3-version-delayed
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Juxtapose
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see also: http://i.imgur.com/L9orD.jpg
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Samprimary
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lodestone link w/ more is contained at end.

http://lodestone.finalfantasyxiv.com/pl/topics/detail?id=c499e4c5df4f3f0fde1fb47a28574cb9c3991c9f

quote:
First of all, I would like to apologize for our inability to fully satisfy our users with the initial release of FINAL FANTASY XIV. I take full responsibility for the game's current situation, and have therefore made the decision to step down from my role as producer. A number of concerns that have been voiced by users, such as the design of the user interface, availability of tutorials and game content, and battle system functionality, represent key issues that must be addressed. While improvements are already well underway in many areas, we were unfortunately not able to incorporate player feedback as quickly as we would have liked. We are aware, however, that in many cases, addressing these issues will call for a reworking of game elements. As these changes are our first priority, they will be commanding our full attention and efforts. It is to that end that we have put a new organizational structure into place for the development team. Under this new system, FINAL FANTASY XIV will see changes and additions in line with the desires and expectations of players. Though no longer producer, I will be continuing to support the development team in other capacities, and personally hope that you will continue your adventures in the realm of Eorzea.

Hiromichi Tanaka


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