This. I've already made tons of posts about this. But this....
I keep playing because I'm hoping that SE will recognize their mistakes for what they are. All of the problems that came out of this game were from how "innovative" it was. I use that term, because that's what they thought they were doing. And to a point, maybe they were. But all they did was just remove everything that was cool about their original MMO, and added the god-awful crafting system. Everything they advertised was about making the game interesting. But they failed. They just need to admit that this system doesn't work. Then they can try to correct the problems by analyzing what specifically works and what doesn't.
To be honest, the main reason I even still play is for my friends. If I had to pay monthly for this, I'd leave before they even finished saying the word "subscription."
I still can't believe that the people who made one of the most memorable and fun online games are having such a horrible time doing it again.
Alright. Gonna tackle this one at the risk of...tackling. I ain't as young as I used to be.
The other night, you made a fairly long post in response to one of mine, and though I didn't want you to think I didn't read it and consider what you had said, I didn't respond for a variety of reasons. But I'll address that here and now.
In my opinion, skill-based though it may be, it's not that I don't welcome a return to a class-based environment. But I think people clamoring for it might be deluding themselves. As someone else said, a situation of "be careful what you wish for...".
good in theory. And seems even better in retrospect. However, the simple truth of the matter is that while XI had class-based game-play most of those classes were excluded from normal pickup parties. Especially at higher levels.
For example, DRG, prior to the much-vaunted 2-handed update. PUP (Anytime). SMN had to go and do what more than a few considered an exploit (though not SE) and introduce smn-burns in korroloka tunnel to hit 75. BLM were forced to group together and nuke jellies in Ifrit's Couldron. And while a fair few people might consider XIV to be Crafter Fantasy XIV, for a far longer period of time XI was considered SAM-Fantasy XI.
I guess, in the end, as much as I wish SE could manage to balance out classes, they don't seem to have a good track record, and personally I would rather they give us the tools to balance our "classes" ourselves. But again, this stems from the fact that I don't want to spend endless hours nuking jellies alone. Or some other obsurdity.
It isn't that I disagree with what you say, it's more that I don't believe SE has the ability to balance the classes to which you aspire with any degree of even-handedness. And they've proved that point.
Edit: Vowels are important. I have learned this. >.< Edited, Mar 24th 2011 11:50pm by Wintersage
You know, Wintersage? I can now see why you would be apprehensive.
It's true. No one can deny that SE has a certain knack for making some classes better at certain situations than others. And SE makes parties pay for not having those classes. I remember very clearly the trouble I went through to get the Soboro Sukehiro for my Samurai, (back when Ranger was all the rage, thank you). Black Mages were absolutely necessary to beat the NM, but it only dropped a Samurai sword.
It is true that SE has some problems when it comes to balance. I wouldn't even dream of arguing that. I remember when I convinced a friend of mine to play FFXI with me, and he had his heart set on being a I'm a moron. He didn't last too long, as the game was still very time-consuming, and he had a part-time job to put him through college. But the entire time, I kept trying to sway him into being something more useful, because I knew that he would be waiting a long, long time for a group.
This goes back to the impression that I got from the way SE presented the game in their promotions for it. They made it sound like each class could solo their way to end-game, and that they would be able to group to complete certain tasks. That sounded like it would be great. I was ready to pick up my White Mage hammer and Banish / Cure-kill some Bogys. (Anyone else annoyed they can't heal undead to kill them? That was the coolest thing about being a white mage!) But instead of giving us defined/refined classes that could solo, they mixed them all together and changed their names. I feel like SE cheated when they made that decision.
On top of that, instead of making characters that add something to a party, they just made it so individual characters can perform the basics of a party's need. A Gladiator can tank, heal themselves, and still dish out damage, (physical or magical), without ever needing to think about it. The end result tends to be making characters able to perform every role so that we can effectively do things ourselves, instead of making the classes capable of standing alone.
So I understand your skepticism. Being that I leveled Summoner to 60 as a Big Mana Pool/whm, (solo'd in the down time. Man was that fun! A little slow, though.) And working on my side project of perfecting the art of Pup/dnc just before I retired. (Yes! It would be the most flamboyant class combination ever!) I would hate to see certain classes not used at all because of their lack of utility, or because they get out-shined by other classes. As with anything in life, there will be some styles that are more popular/main-stream than others. (Who didn't think Samurai AF was cool looking?) But I would still hope that the game would be welcoming to every class that was created to play in it.
I agree that it is unlikely that SE knows how to balance the game in such a way that every class would be welcomed in every event. And it is a valid concern, and a probability that there might be some classes that perform certain roles better than others. (Remember Ranger?) However,
I still feel that a class-based system is far superior to what we have now. As it stands, people think of it as building blocks to create a unique character. It's really more of a checklist to see what jobs we need to level until we are our own party. I feel like this completely defeats the point of an MMO. This sounds like something that might be neat in a single-player game, (FFXII), but doesn't work well in an online setting.
But thank you, Wintersage, for explaining this skepticism. I completely agree that it was a shame that some jobs weren't as useful as others. I always felt a little guilty when my tank would ask who to invite, and I would point out that some jobs did more damage than others. FFXI was a very elitist game, and I think that FFXIV's advertisement of being for the casual player is what sold so many CE copies at launch. People liked the FFXI style, but wanted it to be more accessible to regular players.
I say "thank you," because I was beginning to think that you were just being a stubborn ol'e.... Well, you get the idea. :3
I'm sorry that some of my posts as of late have been more ranting. But with SE opening the lodestone, I can't help but feel like we owe it to them to give our criticism. SE is already notorious for being a little... "biased" against North American players. With all the posts that I keep seeing, it makes me feel like SE will just chuckle and be reassured that English speaking players have silly thoughts that shouldn't be taken seriously, (as some of the threads there are exactly that). I've always enjoyed the Final Fantasy series, and I adored FFXI for what it was. (Though I am not above saying that it had its flaws. Time consumption and accessibility being the main ones). I have very high hopes for the game. You can imagine why I get frustrated when I see people talking about talent trees and why we shouldn't want the game to be changed, because it's fine the way it is. /facepalm.
So thanks for the tackle. I liked it. I hope my counter-tackle was gentle enough for you~