I'm going to have to agree that nitpicking over icons is a bit silly. Also, no offense to you Mik, but you don't even play the game, not sure why you are arguing for or against adding features.
wow great post this is the main problem with this forum. everyone has an opinion but most have not even turned on the game.
However as someone with a rank 50 class and HAS played the game with the new updates i gotta say quest markers AND aggro markers are no big deal. I hardly noticed them and you no what not having easy ways to do things is what made FF11 a joke of a userbase compared to wow. Face it people... wow has casual players (a lot of casuals) and if you do not have casual systems in place you will get a low userbase just like FF11. The funny part is markers IN NO WAY make the game easier it just takes away that time wasting element of looking for a NPC....
I love how people want an AH because the MW is "time consuming" but quest markers needs to go because you guys want to waste more time looking for quest givers? thats makes ZERO sense.
FF11 is merging servers again this week right?
And I have to say that, as a casual player playing FFXIV (see my sign, I still don't have a class at rank50, neither my physical level at 50), those markers are not a big deal to YOU. I could totally live without them (i.e. having the option to turn them on/off as suggested by Mikhalia) but in the meantime I don't mind that much. As far as I know, they are very visible and it's pretty hard not to notice them (I mean, it's kind of the purpose of them, to be visible...).
What decrease the interest of people was mostly the huge time sink to do a lot of intersting things (NM camping took hours, dynamis was hours run for ****** drop rate, Kirin fight was hours fight if not zerged but then it took so much time to get ready and it took too much time anyways). Maybe some were hit by the difficulty of some things ('easy way to do things') but then it's more a problem of skills and people wanting easy mob because they don't have the skills to do difficult challenges (CoP before nerf). Also the fact that for a lot of quest, you had no idea what to do, which could have been easily corrected here by simply orienting a tad more (I was very often wondering how the **** people figured out what to in a given quest).
One of the best example to me was RDM Maat fight. I was hearing so many people that it was so **** hard to do so when I attained the level to do it, I went just to check how it was and almost win at the first attempt (did on second though and I was like really? how is that so **** difficult) and it was not a time sink, it was just supposed to be challenging.
FFXIV also has a lot of casual players (check the poll results about the playtime) and has a lot of casual features also and still it's playerbase is low due to different matters than FFXI so the analogy is futile.
Again, the markers makes things easier because you know where to look for NPCs that give quests and in the end, where there is downtime (like party getting ready for leves, waiting for someone that went to the bathroom), you would just ended up waiting in front of the screen rather than walk around to talk to random NPC and have the SURPRISE to trigger a quest. So again, it's not really wasting more time, it's more about using the downtime to do something that can be rewarding.
As it was said already many time, casual does not mean 'easy mode', it means that someone doesn't have too much time to play and things shouldn't take hours. It does not take hours to randomly talk to NPCs (a few minutes on the way to grabbing leves or going to the wards or to a guild to spend points/get a rank quest). One does not have to talk to ALL the NPCs of ALL the cities everytime he gains a rank, that's just not optimizing playing time.
And about the AH, it's been a while since we haven't seen a thread or complains about that, the market wards are now functionnal (not as efficient as an AH but good enough to find an item in a very reasonnable amount of time).
I'm not even going to talk about the FFXI sever merge because it's just trolling...