I feel sorta the same way as the OP. After reading all the hype about how 'next gen', user and gamer friendly and totally new experience this game was promoted as I had high expectations of how the released version would be.
So I ordered the CE, 8 days early entry into the game, oh yess ... ermm, oh nooo, more like 3 because the rest was naffed up with emergency maintenance. So, ok, it has been through Beta etc and there are allways a few glitches to sort out on releases, not a problem, the game will be ok at mass release .. LMAO , fail again, cant get into servers as they are full and you are in a queue .. pfft.
Finally get in, play for a couple of days, reroll 6 times as I wanted to try out a few starting jobs. Impressed - , er, Nope . The only next gen thing about it is the shiney graphics .. the gameplay, the UI , and the overal content is so old school I am suprised that we arent asked to get out the 6 sided dice!and pad of paper.. Player friendly it is not .. Totally new experience, where? oh, they mean the crafting, well, gathering certainly is, and an unpleasant one at that. If the performance of carrying out a gathering action is any slower my character would need to draw a pension !!. The game is on rails , its Craft, Craft, and go Craft some more, forget fighting monsters outside of leves, why .. try and find one that isnt being hit on or a spawn area for grindable mobs that isnt being cammped out. Respawn times are rubbish, number of spawns being same - rubbish. Quest - Leve content kil 2 of x, 3 of b (DOW), done 8 today so now what, ohh look, I can craft, but i dont want to craft, i have no interest in crafting!! or run around for a 15 minuites trying to get a hit on a spawn that i can grind to bridge the gap .. Content please ..
UI -- basically you should macro everything you want to do .. Why ?? or use a controller to make playability smoother? Why , its released as a PC Game - i.e. Mouse and Keyboard, so why should I use a controller, If I wanted to use a controller Id blow the dust off my PS3. The PS3 one is released in a few months, they gonna make that mouse and keyboard ? ... I want to play my MMORPS on a PC , if the game is sold for a PC then I want to use my mouse and keyboard exclusively and to be able to effectively 'click' my choices of actions, not click then press enter .. not take a programming degree to write a macro to do this for me because the devs are so lazy to not bother to make doing something an enjoyable thing. Plain and simple FFXIV is a Console port in its worst,bare bones basic, form to a PC. ITs a single player console game which has been touted as a MMO (because they give u servers and you can play online --Guild support ? nope , Party support , erm, nope they missed that too.. So theres two of the main basics gone which could enable it to be under the genre of MMORP. Content, ermm, nope as you are limited to what you can do for content , as in Leves per 36 hours. There is no content which is why they have this in place, it stretches game/time play.
Even for a new release, this should never have been released now. It is if anything still not even through beta. Reading the forums a lot of the problems now have been brought up and duly ignored throughout the beta stages. So hows that for a promising future .. They brought it out now for one reason, they are scared . why , WOW Cataclysm, love it or hate the series WOW is the biggest. SOE knew that if they brought this crap out after Cata release they would not have a hope in **** of converting the player base, so they try to capatalise on the player base that is just 'hanging' out with empty promises.
Taskbars /Action bars or whatever you want to call them, non expandable, customisable ,how lame, and outdated. Just how is this game to be better than existing titles in the MMO genre ? ,, certainly not by gameplay, user friendliness or content, but wait, its got shiney graphics, well thats it then.
Im not a Wowboy or anything, in fact I have been playing online MMO since Ultima and have done the lot, SWG, Vanguard, COH,EQ,and more, and yes, WOW. To make a point, SWG --- Very very old game .. UI interface was more user friendly and useable than FFXIV ... go figure ... Even menus were accessible. My gripe, look at other mmorps that encompass inventory useage and note just how accessible and smooth it is to actually use/equip anything is.
Flame me if you like, but before you do so go read some other FFXIV forums other that Zams, see what the whole playerbase (those that post that is) are saying and their points too. Even as a 'new release' this is unnaceptable. Yes WOW,EQ, SWG blah blah had problems with their release ,BUT , they are very old games, the technology was not as it is now, the knowledge of such games was not as it is now so there should not really be soo many issues and lack of polish that is evident now. SOE claimed to have looked at the competion and gleamed ideas and improvements from them, cough, where? , everything about the game is so old style and unfriendly there is nothing new or revolutionary about this apart from the shiney graphics.
I really want FFXIV to shine, to glow, it had so much potential to be just so **** totally awesome but has failed. It is a single player CONSOLE game that has been badly ported for the PC, (point in fact is the control method for a PC release - gamepad as there is nothing to support the PC main control method of Mouse click,point or ease of keyboard)and had the tag MMO put into it because it can be played online by the massess. I did enjoy playing it, for a while, then I realised that so much has been added just as a time sink ~(i.e. crafting being so prominant) as to try and hide the overal lack of content or gameplay. I refer to WOW as it is the biggest at the moment, it has had years to grow to what is is now , so fair play to SOE, this is a new title, just a new title by someone who has totally failed in bringing anything new,exciting or accessable to the genre, instead using outdated and unfriendly methods instead.
Overall score from the Hype and expectations of the game 10/10 ..
Atfer reading and trolling through many different hosted forums and playing the game since CE release, 2/10 and thats being generous. I sincerely hope that in 6 months time the game grows some more, with more polish. But with the soon to be released WoW Cataclysm SOE have promised so much, delivered so little and refuse to even acknowledge this (no patch notes , little to no feedback to reassure their playerbase) that it is destined to be an epic fail. The only people captured by this game will be the Final Fantasy fanboys who will accept whatever crap is given out purely because it says Final Fantasy on the tin. (****, I was one of them).
Rant over, or whatever you want to call it. Just very dissapointed overal in a very sub standard release.Please SoE get yuor act together and give Wow the slap it deserves. Just do it very quickly .... or it may be too late.