EDIT - OOPS. It was posted already. I fail. Sorry. Feel free to ignore.
Let me preface my post by saying that I've been watching FFXIV from the sidelines for a while. If you had asked me last spring I would have said I was going to be all over this game the instant it launched. RL has taken a turn for the busier, and so I have just been watching. I am not whining about the game - I haven't even played it - but I am disappointed by how poorly it has been received.
Gamespot is not everyone's favorite gaming site. However, it is a decent and unbiased metric, and since the 90s I have looked to them for scores on games. I always take every review with a grain of salt (and so should you) but I was pretty shocked to see that the game scored a 4. FFXI, by comparison, scored an 8.2 at launch.
I watched the review video and it outlined what most people are complaining about ... What they didn't mention was the incredible similarity to FFXI. I know it's a completely different game... However, a good number of the issues, including the interface and the strange diversity of difficulty, coupled with the lack of NPC descriptions, vague quests and grind-intensive gameplay, are all similar to FFXI.
I was really hoping that FFXIV would bring FFXI-style gameplay into the modern era. I guess I didn't really know what I was hoping for because that is exactly what they did. They added far superior graphics and a more casual friendly leveling/progression system, but it seems like they left the rest of their old-school marks in place. It's also amazing that they launched the game without an Auction House. I mean - seriously? Accounting must have made that decision. There is no way a gaming exec would choose to push a game out before such a staple feature is in place. An MMO without an AH lacks a proper economy, regardless of whether some players are happy to sift through dozens of bazaars. Releasing before the AH was ready is a disgrace.
I hope things improve over time. I really want to grab this game when RL hands me some spare time.
Watch the video.
Edited, Oct 7th 2010 4:56pm by Jordster