Ohhh Wait, 11's UI was system based and 14 is server based?
Yep. All to stop the hackers/RMT. So basically we suffer. What a great idea....
Here's how FF11's 'route' works.
You press a key on your PC. It sends a packet 'hey I did this!' over the internet to the server.
Server receives the packet, actions it and sends reply to player's PC: 'Ok its done!'
Player PC receives the packet and animates the action on the player's screen.
Here's how FF14's 'route' works:
You press a key on your PC. It sends a packet 'hey I WANT TO DO this!' over the internet to the server.
Server receives packet, authenticates it, authorizes or denies it, sends packet to player's PC: 'OK I ALLOW YOU TO DO THIS'
Player PC receives packet, sees its authorized, sends packet back 'OK I WANT TO DO THIS HERE'S YOUR AUTHORIZATION' to the server.
Server receives packet, checks the authorization, processes it, actions it, sends packet back: OK ITS DONE.
Player PC receives packet, animates the action on the player's screen.
This happens for every single boneheaded action you take. From opening an inventory menu to every combat related key stroke to sending a chat message. This double workload and authentication is supposed to stop RMT from being able to collect data from the server via 3rd pty software and use it to perform global chat spam messages.
Problem is, by doing so, they lag everyone to death. The interface is insanely laggy because opening a menu that shows your inventory or gear means your pc and the server have to undergo that idiotic authentication exchange for EVERY ITEM. Until you receive the server authentication your client (aka your FF14 game installed on the pc) is not allowed to do anything else because it is stuck waiting for authorization.
It is why you cant browse a bazaar and move and why your combat interface sometimes just gets stuck... too many chances for packets to be lost and too much workload for the server and the client to process.
All this to stop RMT's from spamming. The irony of it is that on the 3rd day after launch we started to see ... RMT spams! 2 weeks after launch RMT's figured that crystals were the new gil and they are selling crystals and shards for real money (rather than gil).
As for the '2 different control' schemes.. thats absolute BS. All they had to do (and have done according to their patch notes) is to allow PC players to keymap any command to any key they want. thats all there is to it! The interface changes of reducing menus apply to both pc and gamepad users.. less menus is good.
I have my FF14 playing 100% keyboard by re-mapping keys.. its almost identical to FF11 play now besides the too-many-menus to go through issue (that again affects both systems). Edited, Nov 18th 2010 4:23pm by Skyfaller