In fact, wow got scores of 9+ in it's first month.. not to mention it was a little baby companies first MMO. That's right, blizzard was a small company back then.
They were, and do you know why they were successful? I believe that they really, truly, love their product. I just don't get that feeling from SE anymore.
I logged into FFXI last night just to wander around and remember where we came from, and I could just feel the love and care that went into ever pixel over there. It didn't feel like a copy-pasted crusade against RMT, it felt like a carefully crafted world for us to enjoy.
I really wish they would have taken the Blizzard approach with Cataclysm - who needs a sequel when you can just overhaul the entire game to bring it more up to date with current technology, and keep players old and new?
This was such a bad idea - because people who loved FFXI wanted to stay there, and people who were bored with FFXI just wanted new experiences. Everyone else, might have given XI a second look once it was brought up to date, ps2 support was dropped and it was coded to work more cleanly on the Ps3.
Instead, I guess they tried to avoid XI's legacy of being "too hard" and "too group-centric" with a new product, and it backfired very badly on them.
The game may be updated and the major issues fixed, but the damage is already done and it's because they have lost touch with what made their products so special in the first place.