Wandering through Alla's FFXI forum for nostalgia's sake has been a bit of a frightening experience. It's like the guy in the charge of XI's banhammer gave it to his 2 year son and casually stepped out of the room...for the last few months.
I guess through the rose tinted glasses of hindsight, I'd forgotten just how often SE approached genuine player grievances by sticking their fingers in their ears and singing "la la la" at the top of their lungs.
I know that XI was an experiment, despite that overly-insistent blurb about giving it a number, SE probably didn't put it's full faith and backing into it. XI came out before WoW revealed MMOs to be veritable money trees, so I can't really blame them. Getting a multi-platform multilingual game together was a feat in an of itself, actually running it well would've been a daunting task for any company back then. I think the recent induction of the MMO into the mainstream, combined with the gobs of financial backing at SE's disposal, there should be a reasonable expectation of quality Customer Service in XIV from Day 1.
But this will be undermined if people smile and nod and vote with their wallets to support what is by today's standards absolutely appalling business practices.
I joined XI at the start of NA release in 2003 and called it quits somewhere in 2006 before XI got past it's wild teenage years and settled down in quaint suburbia, swearing to spare it's kids the military upbringing it had under Everquest. I'm just now checking back on it as it totters into old age, stumbling aimlessly through formerly familiar territory while forgetting the names of it's loyal grandchildren. So I'll acknowledge, I've probably never caught SE's MMO department in it's best light...
...But for a company of SE's caliber, not being in your best light for years at a time really says something. Whatever circumstances may have surrounded XI, for XIV I expect better than the detached indifference I put up with and the disjointed nonsense people seem to be taking now.
And I hope you do too.
Edited, Jul 21st 2009 6:18pm by Zemzelette