You guys realize that FFXI was a failure at first?
I mean, get real, FFXI has been under 500k subscriber for 3 years.
It was not until TOAU release that they announce a 1 million break through.
For those who played jp beta, you think the game was easy?
Hey, who remember where to level from 30-50? It was **** as well.
and what content you think it was available for the japanese to keep playing the game for almost 1 years and half. Pretty much nothing was in.
Let's face it, MMORPG isn't all about the beginning, this isn't HALO or call of duty, the game change, people come and goes.
This argument would hold water if not for the fact that when FFXI launched in Japan, it got some pretty extensive patches during the first six months of it's release. Check out this link for a pretty detailed breakdown of the first year of FFXI's life: http://www.jpbutton.com/?p=157
As for what content was available to the Japanese when the game came out in May 2002 up to the release of Rise of the Zilart one year after the launch of FFXI.... let's see...
-> Jobs at Launch: Warrior, Monk, Thief, White Mage, Red Mage, Black Mage, Paladin, Dark Knight, Beastmaster, Bard, Ranger
-> Craft Skills at Launch: Smithing, Goldsmithing, Woodworking, Bonecrafting, Weaving, Cooking, Fishing
-> Rank 1-5 Nation Missions (including the Shadow Lord fight, which was capped at level 50)
-> AF1 Weapon Quest for all launch jobs.
-> Working Quest System (which rewarded gil and fame and were of-times repeatable) with numerous start NPC's strewn around Vana'diel.
-> Conquest and Garrison Systems
-> Beastmen Seal BCNM fights
-> Ronfoere Region (East/West Ronfoere, King Ramperre's Tomb, Ghelsba Outpost, Fort Ghelsba, Yugutt Grotto)
-> Gustaburg Region (North/South Gustaburg, Palborough Mine, Dangruff Wadi, Zehrumn Mine)
-> Sarutabaruta Region (East/West Sarutabaruta, Inner/Outer Horototo Ruins, Giddeus)
-> Kolshushu Region (Tarongi Canyon, Buburimu Penninsula, Mhuara, Maze of Shakrami, Labyrinth of Onzozo)
-> Araganeu Region (Meriphitaud Mountains, Castle Oztroja, Saraumugue Champaign, Garlaige Citadel)
-> Derfland Region (Rolanberry Fields, Crawlers Nest, Pashaw Marshlands, Beadeaux)
-> Norvallen Region (Batilla Downs, Eldeime Necropolis, Jugner Forest, Davoi)
-> Zulkeim Region (La Theine Plataeu, Valkrum Dunes, Konchetat Highlands, Gusgen Mine, Ordelle's Caves, Selibina)
-> Fauregandi Region (Beaucidine Glacier, Ranguemont Pass, Fei'Yin)
-> Valdeaunia Region (Xarcabard, Castle Zvahl Baileys, Castle Zvahl Keep)
-> Qufim Region (Qufim Island, Lower/Middle/Upper Delkfutt Tower)
-> San d'Oria (North/South/Chateau d'Oraganneu/Port San d'Oria)
-> Bastok (Port, Markets, Metalworks, Mines)
-> Windurst (Walls, Waters, Woods, Port, Heavens Tower)
-> Jeuno (Ru'Lude Gardens, Upper/Lower/Port Jeuno)
I'd say there was quite a lot of stuff for the Japanese to do for the year between when vanilla FFXI came out and when Rise of the Zilart came out.
And now compare all this with what we've gotten with FFXIV during the first six months. Doesn't hold a candle, does it?