I agree with a lot of what you have to say Maximusdb. However, I think a lot of people are getting to caught up with the phrase: classless class. I am pretty sure the major point of that article was to say that we will have very customizable classes. That being said, you skill up a weapon and get everything from stats to traits to spells to abilities, etc. I remember people hatching theories on this forum about equiping/learning job abilities with armor. I have not seen any information that has even hinted at that. If there is please, show me a source.
I think a more simple solution is the answer. Outside of weapons and weapon skills, what we learn from one job we can apply to another. They even gave an example in one interview that said something to the affect: A (specified class) could import an ability like steal (I think, might have been another ability) even though that ability was not native to it. The way it was worded, implied that classes will have abilities specific to them. Also, it sounds more SEish to make you level a job all the way to cap, if you want to use its highest level ability. Getting Gladiator to cap, then equiping a piece of armor that gives you or lets you learn another class' highest ability sounds way too easy. As for limitations, probably something similar to blue mages point system or maybe a limited but specific amount of abilities/spells in terms of limiting the amount of imported abilities you can use at one time. In terms of effectiveness, I am sure they will include some form of limitation such as maybe half-powered abilities, or twice the ability points (the ability meter in the playable demo) more than if you were using it on its native class.
I have not played the game, so I do not know 100% what the final product will be like. I just think this is a more straight-forward yet still challenging approach to the "subjob" system. That and the only things mentioned about armor that I am aware of are that it can be crafted, needs repairing, supposedly will be lots and lots of it, and there will be two basic types: all purpose and class specific. One reason they mentioned for all purpose armor was to be able to switch between classes a lot with out having to worry about changing armor constantly. Not only is that a nice idea, because of the lack of stress on the player. But it also goes against the idea of equiping armor to learn or set abilities. People would end up skilling up a class but not learning any abilities or have to go back and learn some. Or worse yet you cloud just go buy armor with a high level ability from another job and equip it to use it. Anyways, my two gil.
Once I read your post I went out to find the post on armor having abilities...and found no concrete evidence. I suppose I mis-interprited the meaning of a stament or possibly took all the talk of abilities coming from armor as something that was stated as part of the game the closest I came to finding evidence was in the same article you mentioned about being able to use abilities cross-class (which I would hope they would have as well or I wouldn't think of it as an improvement over the job system of FF XI as welll) here's the link to the article here on Zam
and here's th section. I've bold'd the intresting part to take notice of.
While some abilities will be linked to weapons, there is a possibility that certain abilities will be usable across multiple classes. Komoto referenced the way in which FFXI allows players to use sub-jobs to access skills learned from different jobs. This will make its way into FFXIV, but in a different form. A character using an axe may still have access to magic, but it may not be as effective in battle as using the axe. As an example, Komoto says a Marauder may be able to use Steal, an ability not native to the class, but the success rate would be lower than normal.
as for equipment I think your talking about this article
. here's the specific part about equipment:
What's my Motivation?
The developers restate that the major concept behind the game is "growth" - the freedom to grow your character in any way you choose and the chance to enjoy the process instead of sink into a routine of endless grinding. For players who seek shiny loot, the amount and variety of equipment is set to be increased by leaps and bounds above Final Fantasy XI. There will also be unique pieces of equipment obtainable through participation in special events. Perhaps this is hinting at something akin to holiday events or special BCs?
Since levels are out the window, gear will now be equippable based on skill. When you switch your weapon, your skill in that weapon, as well as your class, will determine what equipment you can wear. For those looking for some light action and plan to change classes a lot, there will also be some generic gear available that is wearable by all classes.
They don't nessiarily say equipment based on class ( it could be type of equipment like leather, cloth or plated) but thats very unclear. Still it you make good points and I can see easily this going agiant my theory (which I guess I'll have to make some adjustments then) It's quiet intresting going through all the articles again and just seeing how many times people ask about the armory system and disciples with Se either giving no comment or glossing over the finer details. I suppose these parts are the things they're still working on designing.
edit- ack forgot to put in the first link, sorry! :S Edited, Oct 11th 2009 4:08am by Maximusdb