When I started FFXI I didn't really have much experience with MMOs, but the most difficult thing I remember doing was trying to find my way around Windurst. SE did a great job making FFXI user friendly, and I hope they continue to do so in FFXIV.
Well I would say they did a good job making it more user friendly over the years, but when it was released in North America with Zilart it was horribly inefficient and hardly user friendly. Menus were and still are fairly cumbersome, massive timesinks which I don't mind as long as there is some incentive or efficiency (outpost warps come to mind as one of the best improvements), party mechanics back then and now -while somewhat driven by the player-base- made leveling some jobs downright non-existent, and not to mention the mob trains and mPking and the like and I'll refrain from mentioning solo-ability of the game at lvl 20 or higher.
That said, SE made huge strides in recent years to improve all of that stuff and I can't see SE falling back to the ways of 2003 MMORPG rules. I look back on FFXI as my first MMORPG with nothing but love, and that love allows me to see the horrible scars and rashes FFXI had back then. No need to endure that torture again when there is a better, more proven way of doing things.
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-- Egg Shen