Glad to see others are feeling this way. The first couple years of FFXI just contained some magic I can't find anywhere else. NOTHING HAS YET TO make me feel the way FFXI did during the Zilart/CoP era
This, this, a thousand times this. Which is why I'm still holding out hope that XIV can be rescued. I've played Final Fantasy titles since FF1 on NES when I was like 8 years old. I suppose that makes me a fanboi but I don't care. And FFXI- Oh how I remember thee.
I got started right after RotZ was released. I remember battling the Quadavs outside of Bastok. I remember my first party in the dunes. I remember getting helped when farming items for my subjob. Several "high level" strangers took me to Gusgen Mines and made me stay at the entrance haha. Back then knowing someone with a job at 75 was like knowing a celebrity. I remember the first trip to Jeuno. I remember farming for Kazahm keys. I remember leveling in Kuftal and the tank saying "WTF was that giant chicken that just ran past?" Thus we were introduced to Guivre... I remember how proud I was of my first set of AF, or when I beat Maat for the "final" limit break.
I remember camping wyvernpoacher as a 67 RNG for hours on end back before merits, when only a few jobs could solo him. And begging the few 75's in my LS to come kill him with me when he popped. And how, one night, half my LS showed up unannounced (they planned it outside of LS chat) and helped me farm the drop. And how I ran around shooting crap with that crossbow for like 4 hrs straight afterwards. Like I'd won the lottery haha. I remember low manning on BST for O-hats (75 cap days). I remember the first time I saw Vrtra (and how Vrtra saw me pretty shortly thereafter which led to a homepoint).
But most of all I remember missions- CoP especially.
I didn't do CoP when it first came out. I had taken a pretty substantial break due to college and when I came back, my ls was trying to organize a massive CoP clearing for people. We all know how that goes. I ended up taking over the static (which dwindled down to 6 people pretty quickly) and running it (Sundays at 11AM EST!) for the next 6 months. BEST IN-GAME DAYS OF MY LIFE! I planned obsessively. I drilled strategy into their brains. We took our time and really got into the storyline. Even though we were slow, we were quite successful and managed to get our shiny rings and earrings at the end of the CoP/ZM dual missions. And how the most important drops I got from that six months were the unbelievable friendships and memories.
I could sit here and type out
a thousand stories that are in my heart- but I also realize that for each story I have, you guys have a similar one of your own.
This is why I hope XIV will succeed- because I want to know what it's like again to be scared of a lvl 5 rabbit (I haven't played XIV yet). I want to explore the world with my friends. I like the idea that there is a mob in the bottom of a dungeon somewhere that noone has ever seen yet. Someday he will be soloable sure- but for now, he remains King-Ding.
Now I realize that there are some of you who will practically leap over each other to crush my dreams. SE dropped the ball in a big way- I get it- I'm not trying to defend them. But I also realize that there are those of you- grown adults such as myself- who still get goosebumps when they think about those old memories. Those fond memories that wouldn't exist
if not for the wonderful game SE put out in FFXI. Maybe I'm naive for wanting to recapture old glory, but isn't that the fate of any adventurer?
So, as for me, I haven't given up hope. FFXI was just too good for me to give up yet. I'm hoping XIV can still be saved. I know people who play the game. They feel very positive about the direction the game has gone since Yoshi P took over. Regardless of how you feel about XIV currently, you have to admit there is something special about a Final Fantasy title that no other game will be able to capture. How can we give up hope on that?
I'm kind of glad I haven't had a chance to play it up until this point. It gives me the perspective of trying it fresh and for the first time- without all the negativity that surrounded the failure of the launch (once again, I get it- I know enough people who play/played. No need to reiterate it for me). I'll let you know what I think.
And for those of you who are still secretly hoping this will somehow work out- please don't give up that hope. Don't let that piece of you die. That's the piece that you'll need alive in you if and when it's time for the next great adventure! GODSPEED!