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Admin | March 11, 2012

FFXIV update #1: Current overview

Yeah, I picked up a copy of FFXIV to try it out for observing purposes to see what all changed during its release – now. The game was only 6 bucks so I thought why not, it includes 30 days free trial so that means I don’t have to pay any subscription fee for 30 days. Anyway

Story 7/10
Story revolves around you. It starts when you start working as recruit for these so called “Grand Company” You could see them more as a nation where you undertake missions. Eventually you can only join up with 1 grand company at a time which means you have to either choose between the 3 cities; Ul’dah, Gridania or Limsa. The story is pretty short you are able to complete the Grand Company storyline within a day or a few evening of playtime. The story does include cutscenes with fancy cutscenes where you also see your own character which did surprise me as many MMORPG if there were cutscenes it revolves in first person view most cases.

Gameplay 5.5/10
The gameplay has vastly improved, but it’s not quite there yet. There’s a few bad things I can mention about the gameplay that frustrates your experience playing FFXIV. When FFXIV made its debute on when the game was release it was a total wreck and Square-Enix has shown fair amount of attempts to fix and tweak this game with several patches. But this doesn’t change the facts there are many flaws in this game that ends up in frustration.

First I’m going to discuss the leveling system, there’s two ways to level you can solo your ways to 30 which becomes very boring quickly as you reach level 15-20 it becomes a very linear and painful grind that you want to avoid. Then you ask how do I level up? Just like its predecessor a way to level up is grouping up with other players, however in FFXIV these parties before level 30 they are hard to come by. Due to the rarity it becomes rather a chore to get to level 30 another way of leveling up is by doing levequests with 3-4 players.

Music 8/10
FFXI music was not composed by the Final Fantasy composer Nobuo Uematsu, however they did a great job. In FFXIV the composer Nobuo Uematsu is back with fancy and neat tunes.
I think the music displays an excellent variety of classic to rock most instrument used (rock) guitar, piano and synthesizer. While some battle music can become annoying and linear at times, overall field music and dungeon music are done well.

I’ve been exping a bit and had a friend showing me around and stuff, I know a few people I met in FFXI that are currently playing FFXIV. Any other I got MRD 50 before patch 1.21 hit which introduced Artifiact armor. So far, I’m abit disappointed what MRD/WAR has to offer and I would like to see more Warrior like abilities that has been through the FF franchise such as Double Attack or Warrior’s Charge. The power where Warrior currently stands is underwhelming especially the advanced warrior class since changing from MRD to WAR makes you not being able to use several sub class abilities such as Lancer’s Meditate. Any other than that Lancers seems to be the top melee class as in currently. SE is pretty horrible at game design period, so they really need to fix up their class balance next coming patch hopefully. About the Warrior Artifact I think it looks ok, but it leans more towards BST than WAR. Asside of that I am working on getting LNC to 50, because DRG Artifact gear looks pretty awesome and it’s overall good melee class. Warrior will still be my favorite though. Hopefully I will be able to see some content endgame wise before my 30 days are up, and from there decide if I want to keep playing this game or not.


Click to enlarge.


Click to enlarge.

My speculations so far that FFXIV is not a successful MMORPG yet, but the improvements so far are significant to what it was when it made its debute on the release. Though, the game probably has only little endgame content. You can complete the main storyline by playing a few nights. Asside of crafting and leveling there’s not too much to do in the game, the Achievement system feels somehow copy/pasted from WoW, but doesn’t show as important role in FFXIV as it has in WoW. Another con is that its very hard to level pre-30 if you’re not someone that takes initiative you will find it very rare for a party invite to come by, if you are leveling solo past level 10-15 you will find this to go very painful and slow showing very little progress make in huge amount time you spent level grinding solo.

Pros+
o Amazing graphics
o Great story telling so far, with flashy cutscenes
o Artifact are here!
o Unique mechanics
o Continuously improvements

Cons-
o Too many graphic glitches, invisible walls, and cliffs you cannot drop down to becomes very frustrating at times.
o Only very few useful classes for endgame content that the game has.
o Leveling 15-30 becomes a chore due rarity finding parties.
o Very bad user interface interaction.

Rating: 6.0


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